Gaborone - Post Report Question and Answers

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Bring your hobbies with you. Living here has been very isolating; travel and my hobbies have saved my sanity. - Dec 2023

Southern Africa is really special. I had some incredible adventures. I think Namibia or South Africa would be better posts than Gaborone but Gaborone was not bad. At times I was bored and discontent when I was only in the city with nothing to do but now that I have been gone for a year I realize how amazing the things I did were and as much as I did do I wish I had done more. I would probably not go back to Gaborone, but I would go back to the region, particularly Namibia. - Jul 2019

Don't come here expecting to go on safari every weekend. The best places, like the Okavango Delta and Chobe, are a 10-14 hour drive from Gaborone, and ridiculously expensive. $1000 per night per person would be considered a bargain at many of the lodges. You will no doubt have some great trips during this tour, but it will not be your day to day reality unless you work on environmental issues, wildlife preservation, or tourism. I mention this because a factor contributing to the low morale at post is unrealistic expectations. - Apr 2017

Come. This is a great post. There is interesting, substantive work at a small embassy if you're with the US mission, and if not, you'll make some friends who are! The wildlife and other travel opportunities are extraordinary. And it's really, really easy to live here. So come. - Jul 2016

Water shortages have been an issue in recent history, as well as load shedding. The most dangerous aspect of living in Gaborone for me was the power outages at major intersections between dusk and dark. - Nov 2013

This is a post where you really need to be able to make your own fun, or you will be bored and disappointed. For a country so dependent on luxury safari tourism, the general lack of customer service -- at a cultural level -- is surprising. The locals are generally not warm, welcoming, friendly people. The ones who are just see dollar signs across your forehead (see luxury safari tourism). Too often the "this is Africa" excuse is used when things don't work as they should, or are difficult to accomplish, or are not as expected, including within the Embassy. Outside the mission, it is constantly difficult to work with the locals, who seem to hold the USG in very low regard. Overall this has been a surprisingly difficult post. - Jul 2013

Botswana is one of Africa's true success stories:a successful democracy for more than 40 years which has also built a stable economy and raised living standards for its people. Botswana has turned its diamond wealth into roads, schools, and clinics. You have to admire this country and this government. They still have areas for improvement, but Batswana are deservedly proud of their nation. This is a great place to experience! - Jun 2010

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