Lilongwe - Post Report Question and Answers

Are local buses, trams, trains or taxis safe and affordable?

Not safe but probably affordable. Just don't. RSO will brief you. - Jul 2020

You cannot take the local "buses" which are small vans that just go when they are full -- and often are over full. And generally have poor safety. There are no trains. There are no official taxis, just a few guys with cars. - Feb 2020

Local taxis (private minibuses crammed with up to 36 people and driven by drivers that seem to have no regard for the rules of the road or the mechanical condition of their vehicle) are not permitted. Hiring a private driver is possible, but you should ensure the driver is experienced (obtaining a driver's license here is a matter of paying the well-established bribe) and has a reliable vehicle. - Sep 2018

We are advised not to take the local mini buses. Some take taxis, but they usually have a relationship with one specific taxi driver and call them when they need rides. - Jul 2017

There are buses for long distance travel; minibuses, tuktuk , taxis, and bike taxis for getting around in town. It is really helpful to have a car or a taxi driver you trust. - Oct 2016

There are mini buses, bus service between bigger cities and, in Lilongwe, tuk-tuks. We drove everywhere though. - Aug 2015

Public transport is not as common as other countries in the region. Everyone is walking! - Sep 2013

RSO suggests not to take public transportation. Most of the minibuses are falling apart, and many get in accidents. Some people take the nice buses from one part of the country to the other, but not often. - Sep 2012

I wouldn't recommend taking the buses, although some people do. There are only private taxis -- which are a bit expensive but good in a pinch. - Sep 2009

Affordable, but not safe. There are many fatal road accidents. - Jul 2009

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