Mozambique - Country Commercial Guide
Business Travel
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Business Customs

AnchorAnchorAnchorMozambicans consider personal relationships an essential part of doing business. Whether business is international or domestic, knowing their partners well is exceedingly important. Newcomers to the market should expect to discuss business face-to-face. Doing business by email or phone without first developing a business relationship is not common in Mozambique and can be challenging. A significant portion of the business community is of South Asian descent, and many Mozambicans engaged in international trade take advantage of personal ties in Portugal, South Africa, Zimbabwe, the Middle East, Brazil, and India for their commerce.

Mozambican business culture may be considered more social and less rigidly punctual than what is considered typical for U.S. businesspersons.  While business meetings can be expected to begin on time or close to it, larger gatherings, especially involving notable figures, often run behind schedule, and speakers rarely adhere to their allotted speaking time. Patience and flexibility are essential for success in Mozambique. Business cards are generally exchanged.

Maintaining a good reputation with government officials and local clients is important. The business community in Maputo is small and most businesspeople know one another. Competitors in one area may be partners in another. Many studied together at school or university. Furthermore, the concept of family extends to close friends, including business partners, resulting in quick dissemination of information and few secrets.

Potential investors should be cautious in selecting partners. Questionable business practices are common, such as tax evasion and corruption. Though accounting standards have recently been redefined to meet international standards, implementation remains weak, and many businesses do not maintain accurate financial records, especially small and medium enterprises. The concepts of accounting, depreciation, and asset management are not yet widely understood beyond the largest companies.

Note that Mozambican drivers use the left side of the road and use right-hand drive vehicles.

Travel Advisory

Travel information from the Department of State is available online.

Johannesburg, South Africa, is the regional hub for air travel throughout Southern Africa. Both South African Airways (SAA) and Mozambique Airlines (Linhas Aéreas de Moçambique, LAM) offer 45-minute flights between Johannesburg and Maputo several times a day. American and European airlines offer flights through Johannesburg daily. Airlink recently reestablished a direct flight between Maputo and Cape Town. Other international flights direct to Mozambique originate in Addis Ababa, Dar-Es-Salaam, Doha, Harare, Istanbul, Kigali, Lisbon, Luanda, and Nairobi. Domestic air travel is available on LAM and other carriers, but prices are high.

There is no direct commercial air service between the United States and Mozambique.

Visa Requirements

Under a new visa policy issued in early 2023, U.S. citizens wishing to enter Mozambique for the purposes of tourism or business are not required to obtain a visa. This visa exemption also applies to citizens of 28 other mostly developed countries. Tourists and business travelers are required to show proof of a round-trip flight and hotel reservation. These travelers may stay no more than 90 days (consecutive or interrupted) in a year. Travelers are eligible for tourist visas only if they do not intend to reside with a citizen or resident of Mozambique during their stay in the country. Tourist and business travelers from countries not eligible for visa exemption must apply for a visa using the electronic visa (e-visa) platform

Mozambican law states travelers intending to reside with a citizen or resident of Mozambique during their stay in the country must obtain a visitor visa. Pre-approval for visitor visas can be obtained via the e-visa platform. Travelers must submit a letter of support from their host – notarization is often preferred – and proof of the host’s status in Mozambique (i.e., valid visa, foreign residency document known as a DIRE, or passport) with the application. Visitor visa pre-approvals are located under the “Border Visa” section of the e-visa platform.  

Visa pre-authorizations are accessed via the e-visa platform. In addition to tourist, business, and visitor visa pre-approvals, the site also provides pre-approvals for those engaging in crew member travel, humanitarian assistance efforts, sports and cultural activity participation, and investment.  

Pre-approvals are not guaranteed visas, travelers must be sure to travel with all requirements related to their visa category for official review and acceptance at the time of arrival to Mozambique.  All fees related to visa acquisition or administrative processing are collected at the point of entry by immigration officials via cash or credit card payment.  Travelers who obtain visas from their nearest Mozambican embassy or consulate are obliged to pay related fees to embassy/consulate personnel directly.  No fee collection is requested for visa pre-approvals.

In the case of diplomatic, courtesy, official, transit, student, work, temporary residency, and residential visas, the Mozambican Government requires travelers to obtain visas from their nearest embassy or consulate before arriving at Mozambican borders. Those wishing to obtain a visa instead of a pre-authorization prior to arrival in Mozambique can apply for visas at their nearest embassy or consulate.

Additional visa queries can be directed to the Embassy of Mozambique by phone at (202) 293-7146 between the hours of 3-5 p.m. or online at Portal eVisa de Moçambique.

U.S. companies that require travel of foreign businesspersons to the United States are advised that security evaluations are handled via an interagency process. Visa applicants should go to the following link(s):  State Department Visa Website.


AnchorThe metical (plural: meticais) is the local currency of Mozambique. The U.S. dollar, euro, and South African rand are commonly used for business transactions. VISA and Master Card are accepted in all point-of-sale (POS) machines and ATMs; American Express is not commonly accepted. ATMs and POS are widely available in urban areas but scarce in rural areas. It is recommended that U.S. travelers convert some foreign cash currency into the local metical.


AnchorAnchorAnchorAnchorAnchorThe Mozambican postal service is slow and unreliable. Federal Express (FedEx), DHL, Skynet, and UPS delivery services are available. Telephone and wireless services are reliable in major urban centers.

Mobile phone service (GSM standard) is available in all provincial capitals and many district capitals and all network operators offer 4G mobile internet services in urban areas. Tmcel and Vodacom have roaming agreements with most South African, European, and U.S. mobile operators.

Several hotels and restaurants in cities offer internet access through their business centers or Wi-Fi connections in their facilities. There are also internet cafes in provincial capitals and some secondary cities.

The plug types used in Mozambique are type C, E and F, making it essential for travelers from the United States to carry a travel adaptor. The standard voltage is 220V with a frequency of 50Hz.


AnchorAnchorAnchorAnchorAnchorBasic services necessary for the business traveler are available in Maputo, Beira, and to a lesser degree in other major cities. Outside of major urban centers, arranging for travel and accommodation is difficult. In Maputo and other major cities with airports, rental cars with drivers are available from Imperial, Sixt, and Europcar (National Car Rental’s international network).


AnchorAnchorAnchorAnchorAnchorPortuguese, the official language, is taught in schools, spoken by government officials and by the general population in all urban areas and in many provincial capitals, though only local languages are used in many rural areas and smaller villages. English is understood by many members of the business community and some senior government officials, especially in the capital Maputo, but is not widely used in other parts of the country.


Medical facilities do not meet U.S. standards and most medical providers do not speak English. Medicines are not always available, and travelers who may be taking routine prescription medication should plan to bring a supply to cover the length of their visit. There are both public and private medical facilities in the city of Maputo. All health care institutions and providers require payment at the time of service and may even require payment before service is given. While some private clinics accept credit cards, many medical facilities do not. Doctors and hospitals outside of Maputo generally expect immediate cash payment for health services. Outside of Maputo, available medical care ranges from non-existent to very basic.

Malaria is prevalent in Mozambique, especially in rural areas and the center and north of the country. Travelers to Mozambique should take malaria prophylaxis. Plasmodium falciparum, the serious and sometimes fatal strain of malaria in Mozambique, is resistant to the anti-malarial drug chloroquine. Because travelers to Mozambique are at high risk for contracting malaria, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) advises that travelers should take one of the following anti-malarial drugs: mefloquine (Lariam), doxycycline, or atovaquone/proguanil (Malarone), and each of these medications need to be started prior to arriving in Mozambique. The CDC has determined that a traveler who is on an appropriate anti-malarial drug has a greatly reduced chance of contracting the disease.

Travelers to Mozambique experience a high prevalence of gastrointestinal illnesses. Travelers should drink bottled water rather than tap water and avoid eating undercooked meat or seafood.


All travelers should carry a World Health Organization (WHO) vaccination card with them while traveling in Africa to show proof of yellow fever vaccination. This yellow WHO vaccination card is required for entrance to most countries in Africa for any traveler over one year of age. While proof of yellow fever vaccination is not officially required by some African countries, the rules are not uniformly enforced. To avoid any possibility of being refused entry due to a layover in a yellow fever country or an unplanned change of an itinerary by an airline, it is advised that all travelers over one year of age have a yellow WHO card documenting yellow fever vaccination, regardless of a country’s published policy that may state otherwise. A record of all other vaccinations, either on the yellow card or a separate form, is recommended but is not an official document required for travel.

Proof of COVID-19 vaccination is no longer required for entry into Mozambique.

Other immunizations strongly recommended are 1) Hepatitis A 2) Typhoid Fever 3) Hepatitis B 4) Rabies; for prolonged stays, or those who anticipate any activity that might bring them in direct contact with wild animals; and 6) Influenza. Travelers should ensure that their routine immunizations, including Tetanus/Diphtheria (Tdap or Td), Measles/Mumps/Rubella (MMR), Polio (IPV), and Varicella, are current.

Illness Prior to Travel: If you are sick with symptoms of influenza-like illness, you should not travel. These symptoms include fever, cough, sore throat, runny or stuffy nose, body aches, headache, chills, and fatigue. Travel can resume after you are at least 24 hours free of fever (100F or 37.8C), or free of signs of a fever without the use of fever-reducing medications. Flights arriving in Maputo may be specifically targeted for screening.

Information on vaccinations and other health precautions, such as safe food and water precautions and insect bite protection, may be obtained from the CDC’s hotline for international travelers at 1-877-FYI-TRIP (+1-877-394-8747) or via the CDC’s Internet site. For more information about outbreaks of infectious diseases abroad, consult the World Health Organization’s (WHO) website.

The Department of State strongly urges U.S. citizens to consult with their medical insurance company prior to traveling abroad to confirm whether their policy applies overseas and whether it will cover emergency expenses such as medical evacuation. Please see the Department of State’s information on medical insurance overseas.

Local Time, Business Hours, and Holidays

Local time is GMT +2.

Business hours are generally 8:00am to 5:00pm, while government offices function from 7:30am to 3:30pm. It is common for NGOs and diplomatic institutions to close early on Fridays, with closing times ranging from 11:00am to 3pm.

National Holidays in Mozambique:

January 1             New Year’s Day

February 3           Mozambican Heroes Day

April 7                  Mozambican Woman’s Day

May 1                   Worker’s Day

June 25                 Independence Day

September 7        Lusaka Agreement Day

September 25      Revolution Day

October 4             Peace and Reconciliation Day

November 10       Maputo Day (Maputo city only)

December 25       Family Day

Temporary Entry of Materials or Personal Belongings

Product samples that have no commercial value may be imported without paying duties, and those with commercial value may be imported duty free for up to 12 months. Samples used at exhibitions may be imported on a temporary basis but cannot be sold or removed from the exhibition without customs authority. Furthermore, customs officials require a guarantee of 10% of actual duty payable, and re-export of these goods must take place within 180 days after the closing of exhibitions. However, this period may be extended up to one year. If the goods are not re-exported within the specified periods, they will be considered to have been imported for consumption and subject to normal customs formalities. Mozambique does not currently accept ATA Carnet to import and re-export exhibition materials.