Transport in Botswana

Gaborone Lobatse Francistown
Flag of Botswana

Transportation in Botswana is provided by internal and extensive network of railways, highways, ferry services and air routes that criss-cross the country.[1]

Rail transport


BR Express

BR Express Interior.jpg
The new comfortable chairs of BR Express

All passenger services were discontinued in 2009, with the only remaining service being an international link to Zimbabwe from Francistown. Freight trains still operate. Passenger service was expected to resume in late 2015.[2] Passenger services were later re-introduced in March 2016.

Freight trains

Freight Train of Botswana

Over half of BRs freight traffic is in coal, grain and intermodal freight, and it also ships automative parts and assembled automobiles, sulphur, fertilizers, other chemicals, soda ash, forest products and other types of the commodities.

Regional trains

Botswana Railways run 2 nightly passenger trains, one from Lobatse to Francistown, and the other from Francistown to Lobatse, with stops in Gaborone, Mahalapye, Palapye, and Serule. The passenger train is termed the "BR Express" (Botswana Railways).

Commuter/Suburban trains

In Botswana, the (Botswana Railways) "BR Express" has a commuter train between Lobatse and Gaborone. The train is scheduled to depart in Lobatse at 0530hrs and arrive at Gaborone 0649hrs. This train return to Lobatse in the evening, well departing in Gaborone at 1800hrs. Arrival time at Lobatse is 1934hrs.

The train stops at Otse, Ramotswa and Commerce Park Halt.

BR Express Sleeping & Dining Department

BR Express Dining Department

The BR decided from the very beginning that it would operate its own sleeping cars. Bigger - sized berths and more comfortable surroundings were built. Providing and operating their own cars allowed better control of the service provided as well as revenue received, although profit was never a direct result of providing food to passengers. Rather, it was for those who could afford to travel great distances expected such facilities and favourable opinion would - well attracting others to Botswana and the BR's trains.


BR Express Train from Gaborone to Francistown
BR Express 2.jpg

Diesel locomotives

As of March 2009

8 new gt142aces delivered in 2017 from emd.


Botswana rail network

Railway links with adjacent countries


South Africa-yes- same gauge 1,067 mm (3 ft 6 in)

Zimbabwe-yes- same gauge 1,067 mm (3 ft 6 in)

Currently under construction

Zambia- being built at Kazungula Bridge in Kazungula.




Road transport

Vehicle Population


Bus on the A1l
Cargo Trucking o the A3


Existing highways




Motorways in Botswana have a set of restrictions, which prohibit certain traffic from using the road. The following classes of traffic are not allowed on Botswana motorways:

Rules for driving on motorways include the following:

The general motorway speed limit is 120 km/h.[5]

Road Sign

Botswana's old "caution curves" sign
New sign

Traditionally, road signs in Botswana used blue backgrounds rather than the yellow, white, or orange that the rest of the world uses on traffic warning signs. In the early 2010s, officials announced plans to begin phasing out the distinctive blue signs in favor of more typical signs in order to be more in line with the neighboring Southern African Development Community member states.[6]




The Government of Botswana is building three (3) interchanges along K.T Motsete Drive (Western Bypass) in Gaborone. This project started on August 2019, and deadline date is set 2021.

Longest Bridges

Botswana will have two (2) longest bridges by span and the following are:

Under construction

Kazungula Bridge under construction

Roadway links with adjacent countries


Mass Transit


In most parts of Botswana, there are many taxiscabs of various colours and styles. Botswana has no limitation in taxicab design, so each taxiscab company adopts their own design.

Minibus Taxis

Kombi (Minibus taxi)

Minibus Taxis is also known as Kombi are the predominant form of transport for people in urban areas of Botswana and mostly of them they're found within cities, towns, major villages and even least populated areas.

They also have their own minibus station within that particular area, they only transport people within that specific area, and all of them they have different routes. This is due to their availability and affordability to the public.

Most minibus taxis they do not have depart time that's allocated by the state and mostly of them they have 15 seaters. Currently, they're owned by many minibus owners.

Coach Bus

Coach buses are used for longer-distance services within and even outside Botswana. They're normally operated by private companies and they're the only ones that have depart time that's allocated by the ministry of transport.

All couch buses have different time for depart and they also have different routes, and they also have their couch bus stations all over Botswana.


Sir Seretse Khama International Airport in Gaborone, Botswana

In 2004 there were an estimated 85 airports, 10 of which (as of 2005), were paved. The country's main international airport is Sir Seretse Khama International Airport in Gaborone. The government-owned Air Botswana operates scheduled flights to Francistown, Gaborone, Maun, and Selebi-Phikwe. There is international service to Johannesburg, South Africa; Mbabane, Swaziland; and Harare, Zimbabwe. A new international airport near Gaborone was opened in 1984. Air passengers arriving to and departing from Botswana during 2003 totalled about 183,000.

International Airports

Botswana has 4 international airports. The following are:

Sir Seretse Khama International Airport's new terminal building

Kasane International Airport
Kasane International Airport

Maun International Airport


Currently under construction

North-South Carrier

Botswana NSC and extension

NSC is a pipeline in Botswana that carries raw water, south for a distance of 360 kilometres (220 mi) to the capital city of Gaborone. It was done in phases. However, phase 1 was completed in 2000.

Phase 2 of the NSC, still under construction, will duplicate the pipeline to carry water from the Dikgatlhong Dam, which was completed in 2012.

A proposed extension to deliver water from the Zambezi would add another 500 to 520 kilometres (310 to 320 mi) to the total pipeline length.

Lesotho-Botswana Water Transport

The Lesotho-Botswana Water Transfer is a project which is expected to provide Two Hundred Million Cubic Meters per year, to transfer water to the South-Eastern parts of Botswana is also ongoing.

The scheme involves the supply of water to Gaborone from Lesotho via a Six to Seven Hundred kilometer 600 to 700 kilometres (370 to 430 mi) pipeline.

The project commenced on the 1 August 2018 and is set for completion in June, 2020.


Sea Water Desalination Project

The Government of Botswana intends to sign the Sea Water Desalination Project from Namibia. The project is at a tendering stage.

Water transport



Border crossing (ferry) from Botswana to Zambia

Kazungula Ferry is a pontoon ferry that crosses 400 metres (1,300 ft) wide Zambezi River between Botswana and Zambia.

Border Posts

Pandamatenga Border Post Sign


Pedestrian Elevated Walkway

Botswana has many pedestrian elevated walkways at different places.

Gaborone's Pedestrian Elevated Walkway
Gaborone's Pedestrian Elevated Walkway

Tour Boats

BW Tour boats

See also

External links


  1. ^ Mupimpila, C (2010-09-30). "Internalising the Externalities of Public Transport in Botswana". Botswana Journal of Economics. 5 (7). doi:10.4314/boje.v5i7.60307. ISSN 1810-0163.
  2. ^ Passenger train is coming back, Tue 09 Dec 2014, Mmegi Online, http://www.mmegi.bw/index.php?aid=47955 Archived 2015-02-26 at the Wayback Machine
  3. ^ "Figure 7.13. Total Length of Rail Network/ Country Area". doi:10.1787/806740202414. Cite journal requires |journal= (help)
  4. ^ "Vehicle population nears 600,000". MmegiOnline. Mmegi. Retrieved 1 November 2019.
  5. ^ "ROADS AND RAILWAYS: Botswana". Africa Research Bulletin: Economic, Financial and Technical Series. 53 (3): 21217C–21219A. 2016-04-27. doi:10.1111/j.1467-6346.2016.07003.x. ISSN 0001-9852.
  6. ^ "Mmegi Online" staff writer Maranyane Ngwanaamotho (Dec 21, 2011). "Old road signs are being phased out". Archived from the original on November 29, 2012. Retrieved Oct 5, 2012.
  7. ^ Ketumile, Kesentse (Jan 25, 2016). "Hello spaghetti, bye bye traffic circles". Botswana Daily News. Archived from the original on 2016-10-14. Retrieved Oct 4, 2016.
  8. ^ "Francistown Spaghetti Junction Opens for Public Use". The Midweek Sun. Dec 16, 2016. Retrieved Oct 4, 2017.[permanent dead link]