How to renew a Zimbabwe passport from the UK: Step by step

Last updated May 2024
Renew Zimbabwe passport There are more than 112,000 Zimbabweans living in the UK according to the website (2023). Zimbabwe passports are issued in Zimbabwe, but you can do the initial paperwork from the UK at the Zimbabwean Embassy in London. You will then need a family member or agent to act as your representative to submit your documents for you in Zimbabwe.

If you’re renewing your Zimbabwe passport from the UK, read the step-by-step guide below to do it yourself without hiring an agency.

This post contains affiliate links which do not make any difference to you but contribute valuable pennies to me.

When to apply? It’s best to start the application process 18 months before your passport expires. This is because you usually need a passport to have six months’ validity in order to travel, and passports seem to be taking a long time to process in Zimbabwe. The initial process in London does not take long, but it is the Zimbabwe side that can be delayed.

DISCLAIMER: I am not a consular official nor legal advisor, and I do not take any responsibility for actions taken based on the information in the guide below. This article is based on real-life experience from myself and other readers, and it is presented in a way that is (hopefully) easy to understand. It should not replace official Embassy or Registrar advice. I suggest you read this article completely to get a complete understanding, and perhaps print it out to use as a checklist.

Please refer to the below official websites for the Zimbabwe Embassy in UK and the Registrar General in Zimbabwe in the first instance:

    • Zimbabwe Embassy in the UK: The Facebook page for the Zimbabwe Embassy in UK is here and honestly, it is the best source of information from the Embassy. They do respond to messages via Facebook. You can also use the search function within their Facebook page to look for your particular question.
    • Other UK/Ireland locations: The Embassy also offers services such as passport applications and renewals outside London: in Letchworth, Dublin and Belfast: see their Facebook page for details.
    • Zimbabwe: Here’s the Facebook page for the Zimbabwe passports. The Zimbabwe Department of the Registrar General website is here: The physical address for the Harare passport office is: Central Registry Headquarters, Cnr Herbert  Chitepo and Leopold Takawira Street, Harare. The phone number of the Registrar General office in Harare is +263 242 702295 or +263 4 790708. There is also a web page on the Zimbabwe Registrar General website for Zimbabweans living abroad, here: This page states that passport processing time is six months, although faster paid options are available. Other passport offices in Zimbabwe are available.

A guide to renewing your Zimbabwe passport from the UK

Step 1: Collect the below documentation

The documents you need are listed below (May 2024). Re-check the official government websites (above) if in doubt.

Things you will need before going to the Embassy in London:

  1. Long original birth certificate plus a photocopy. ☐
  2. Original ID (paper or card) plus a photocopy. ☐
  3. Expired or current Zimbabwe passport and a photocopy of the biodata page, plus a photocopy of the page showing your right to live in the UK. ☐
    • If you have another passport from a different country, you must have that, as well as a photocopy of the biodata page too. As far as I’m aware, you will not need to post the original non-Zimbabwe passport to Zimbabwe. ☐
  4. For women who are married: Marriage Certificate/National Identity Card in married name/divorce order if applicable, plus a photocopy. Note that the surnames should all match as far as possible. A change of name on an ID can only be done in Zimbabwe. Further details at end of this article. ☐
  5. Citizenship certificate (for citizens by registration), plus a photocopy. ☐
  6. £65 admin fee payable via cash in Pounds or postal order at the London Embassy. ☐
  7. Photos: You need 2 photographs – but due to the strict requirements, it is best to get the photographs taken by a particular photo shop which is near the London Embassy. This can be done on the day of your visit, before to going to the London Embassy (see details of the specific photo shop in Step 3 below).
  8. UK study permit/permanent residence permit or waiver/temporary permit/work permit (this may be in a page in your passport as per #3), plus a photocopy. ☐
  9. For lost or stolen passports: the police report, plus a photocopy. Note: a loss of a passport should be immediately reported to the nearest local police and nearest Zimbabwean Embassy. ☐
  10. For children: Section 5 of the passport application form need to be signed by the father or other legal guardian of children under 18 years when you go to the Embassy. In the case of divorced parents, the legal guardian’s “Documentary Proof” should be in a form of a court order from the High Court or Community, plus a photocopy. ☐
  11. A local representative: You will need to ask someone in Zimbabwe to be your representative: they will receive your couriered documents and hand in the application at the passport office on your behalf, if you are not going to Zimbabwe yourself. They will also pay the local application fee in Zimbabwe on your behalf. You’ll need their full name and ID details. ☐
  12. Two printed and completed affidavits for your local representative (see details in Step 2 below). ☐

The photocopies do not need to be certified because the Embassy official will check them against the originals that you present in person.

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Things you will need after your visit to the Embassy in London. These will be sent to your representative in Zimbabwe:

  1. P34 form and Passport form, completed and stamped (these will be given to you when you go to the London Embassy)
  2. The documents listed in Step 1 above.
  3. Courier fees: If you are sending the documents from the UK to your representative in Zimbabwe via courier, there will be a courier fee, varying in price depending on which company you choose (around £40). Later on, your representative may then need to courier the documents/new passport back to you in the UK from Zimbabwe, depending on your situation
  4. Application fee payable in Zimbabwe (Starting at $60, ranging to US$318 for fast track; see Step 7)

Step 2: Print two affidavits for your local representative

  • In order for your representative to submit your passport application at the passport office in Zimbabwe, and for them to collect your new passport, you need to write a letter authorising them to do these things. You need two letters – one to authorise submission of the passport forms, and one to authorise collection of the passport documents. These will be officially signed at the London Embassy when you go in person.
  • A reader who visited the London Embassy in Sept 2021 has reported that the embassy is now providing affidavits there – however, you may wish to print your own out in advance just in case they run out.
  • I’ve created a template affidavit for you at the bottom of this page, if you choose. Copy & paste the text from the bottom of this page into your own Word document, format it as you wish, print two copies, and complete the blank parts of the form in pen. You should have one signed letter for submission, and one for collection. You will need the name and ID details of your representative in Zimbabwe in order to complete this.

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Step 3: Get your photos taken at a specific shop in London, before going to the London Embassy

  • On the day of your passport application in London, before going to the Embassy, go to the photo shop below. The photo shop is extremely close to the Zimbabwean embassy and it is called The ID Photo Shop. It is behind The National Gallery, on the first floor of St Vincent House, Orange Street, postcode WC2H 7HH. The photos cost £10. Email: [email protected].
  • The photos are printed instantly. The photo shop website is here and they are experienced in taking photos for Zimbabwean requirements. They will guide you through the photo rules. Check their website for current opening hours.
  • Clothing: The requirements for Zimbabwean passport photos are very strict – you must wear black clothing, the background must be pure white, no jewellery or make-up must be worn, ears must be completely visible, hair tied up, no head scarf etc. You could try and ensure all these things are correct yourself, but if there’s something wrong, it’s likely that the embassy will require you to get the photos re-taken. It’s easier just to go to the photo shop in the first instance. They even have a black scarf to put over your shoulders in case you’re wearing the wrong colour clothes.Zimbabwe passport ID photo shop map

Step 4: Go to the Zimbabwean Embassy in London with your documents

  • Check the Embassy Facebook page for opening times (link at top of page). Their usual opening hours are 09h00 to 12h30 Monday to Friday (so don’t go in the afternoon).
  • Go to the Zimbabwean Embassy (Zimbabwe House) in London, with your originals, photocopies, affidavits, cash and photos.
  • Also take a black pen to complete the additional forms at the Embassy.
  • Here’s the address for Zimbabwe House: 429 The Strand, WC2R 0JR. It is a great central location, easy walking distance from Charing Cross Station or Embankment Station.
  • The public entrance is to the left of the main door – walk around the building for a few steps to the left side door. It will might look closed, but if you push it, it should open!
  • Note that if you need any additional photocopies of your documentation, you can do this at the Rymans stationers next to the London Embassy.

Step 5: Process your documents at the Embassy

  • As far as I’m aware, you do not need to book an appointment before going to the embassy. It’s first come, first served, and there usually aren’t long queues. However, one reader visited in August 2021 and did have to wait in a queue for 2 hours: they advised bringing water and a book with you. One reader visited in late 2023 and reported that she was in and out of the embassy within 2 hours.
  • Show your originals and photocopies to the official at the Embassy.
  • Ask the official to sign your affidavit letters.
  • You will be given a P34 form and a Passport form at the Embassy to complete in black pen, in person, there and then. You will be asked to complete personal details such as height, eye colour, hair colour, and your right to live in the UK.
  • Depending on the expiry date of your existing passport, ask the Embassy whether you need to cancel it.
  • Once they are happy with those completed forms, you pay the £65 fee in cash/postal order and they will officially stamp your forms. You will also have your fingerprints taken at the Embassy.
  • You then leave the Embassy with all of your originals and photocopies, plus the completed P34 form and Passport form which have been stamped by the official.

If you have time, have a walk around Trafalgar Square or the beautiful Victoria Embankment Gardens afterwards to reward yourself after all that paperwork!

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Step 6: Send your documents to Zimbabwe for submission

  • Take photos/photocopies of all your documents, receipts and stamped forms for your own records, just in case.
  • Send the original existing/expired Zimbabwe passport, documents, photocopies, photos, forms, receipts and the two affidavits to your representative in Zimbabwe.
    • You can courier the documents via FedEx, DHL or a method of your choosing. There is a DHL in the Rymans stationers next to the London Embassy, where the courier fee is around £40.
    • Make a note of your courier tracking details.
    • Do not courier documents to a P.O. Box address, but to a physical street address.
  • Facilitate the passport fee with your representative: they will be doing this for you in Zimbabwe using US Dollars cash (see below).
  • Discuss the process described in Steps 7 and 8 with your representative.

Step 7: Your representative submits the documents in Zimbabwe

  • Your representative takes the passport and documentation to the passport office in Zimbabwe (either in Harare, Bulawayo, Gweru or Gwanda) and shows the submission affidavit to the officer.
  • Your representative needs to keep the second affidavit that authorises them to collect the passport – they will need this later.
  • There is usually a different queue for applications from abroad, which will hopefully be shorter than the local queue.
  • Your representative will need to pay a fee for the new passport to be issued. Here are the published fees as of April 2021 (confirmed by a reader in 2024), as well as the official turnaround times, but bear in mind it may take longer than advertised:
    • 24 Hour Express Urgent Passport – US$318 (Note that one reader who applied in Aug 2021 reported that this was the only option the passport office allowed them to use, however I have not heard of many cases like this)
    • Emergence 3 Day /72 Hr Passport – US$200
    • Normal 14 Days Passport – US$100
    • Normal 14 Days Passport – US$60
    • Electronic E-Passport – US$60
  • A receipt will be given to your representative. Ask them to take a photo of this for your records.

Step 8: Your representative collects the new passport

  • If you’ve opted for the standard turnaround time, then your representative will collect the new passport from the passport office in Zimbabwe (a notification will be sent to them via text message).
  • To collect the passport, they will present the collection affidavit that you had supplied, plus the receipt that was provided when submitting the application.
  • Standard processing time used to be 6 weeks. Unfortunately the Department of the Registrar General is stating that standard processing time is currently 6 months, although there is a fast option at a higher fee.
  • Your representative may then need to courier the documents back to you, depending on your situation.
    • Ask them to take a photo of the courier information.

Appendix 1: Sample text to use in the affidavit (See Step 2 above for instructions)


To whom it may concern

This is to confirm that I …………………………………………………. (applicant’s name), ID number …………………………. (applicant’s ID),

hereby authorise my representative ……………………………………………. (representative’s name), ID/Passport number …………………………. (representative’s ID),

to  SUBMIT / COLLECT [delete as appropriate] my passport and necessary documentation  to / from the Registrar General’s Office on my behalf.

Yours sincerely

Applicant’s full name ………………………………………………………..

Signature ……………………………………………………

Date …………………………


Appendix 2: Screenshot from the Zimbabwean Embassy in London Facebook page re: Can I apply for a new passport in my married name?

Zimbabwe Passport Application UK Married Name


Appendix 3: Screenshot from the Zimbabwean Embassy in London Facebook page re: Divorced name and maiden name

Zimbabwe Passport Application UK Divorced Name

Appendix 4: Screenshot from the Zimbabwean Embassy in London Facebook page: Does my child have to come for the appointment as a minor to get fingerprints taken?

And: can a 16-year-old apply for a passport without a National ID?

Zimbabwe Passport Minor Baby Fingerprints

Appendix 5: Screenshot from the Zimbabwean Embassy in London Facebook page: Passport applications, Temporary Travel Documents (TTD) and Repatriation

Note that this screenshot was taken in 2021 during COVID times, so the photo studio arrangement was different due at that particular time.

Zimbabwe Passport Application UK Advice

Appendix 6: Screenshot from a Facebook chat group about British and Zimbabwe passports and IDs; maiden vs married names

Zimbabwe Passport UK British Maiden Name ID

I hope this guide is useful for your own research about renewing your Zimbabwe passport in the UK.
** I repeat that I am not an official passport advisor, and readers should send their questions to the Embassy or Registrar General. Contact details for them are at the top of this page.

Follow Great Zimbabwe Guide on social media for even more content: Facebook (@GreatZimbabweGuide) & Instagram(@GreatZimGuide).

Renew Zimbabwe passport

If you would like to add learnings from your own experience, please add it to the comments below.

You might also like:

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Follow Great Zimbabwe Guide on social media for even more content: Facebook (@GreatZimbabweGuide) & Instagram(@GreatZimGuide).

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Beth is the founder of Great Zimbabwe Guide Travel Blog: Zimbabwe’s first and longest-running independent online travel guide, created in 2010.

106 Responses

  1. Simbarashe

    Hi Beth

    What a blessing you are, I just followed the info you provided and the process was such a joy.
    I really want to say thank you and God bless. I took everything I needed as per info and within
    45mins I was done.

    Kind regards

  2. Mutsa

    Thank you so much for posting this! Do you remember how long the renewal process took?

    • GreatZimbabweGuide

      Hi Mutsa, it depends how you count it. Theoretically, 1 day at the embassy, 3 days to courier the documents, 6 weeks to process the documents and 3 days to courier them back. But realistically it takes a bit longer than that!

  3. Mark

    Hi Beth

    Thanks for the advice – you wouldn’t happen to know when one would be able to apply for a new passport before the current passport expires? I have heard rumours before of 6 months but obviously this could just be hearsay.

    Many thanks,

    • GreatZimbabweGuide

      Hi Mark, hope this was helpful. I can’t see a rule about this on official documentation. However, in terms of Zimbabwe travel rules, to enter Zimbabwe on any passport, the passport must be valid for at least 6 months from the date of arrival in Zimbabwe and should have at least 3 blank pages left in it. So it would be wise to renew your passport before either of those take place. A normal passport takes about 6 weeks to be made and issued in Zimbabwe, so you would need to work backwards from there factoring in the time you need to go to the embassy in London and send the passport application to Zimbabwe.

  4. Tafadzwa

    Hi Beth thank you for taking your time to publish this .. Wanted to ask what do u do if you came here when you were young and wasn’t able to get he Zim i.d (chitupa).. Is there anything I need to do ?

    • GreatZimbabweGuide

      Hi Tafadzwa, I’m glad you enjoyed the article! I don’t know about the I.D. question, so perhaps phone the Zim Commission and ask for their advice. Best wishes, Beth

  5. Tendai

    Hi Beth

    Thanks very much for your willingness to share the valuable information
    on passport processing . We followed your advice and the process was just flawless

    • GreatZimbabweGuide

      Hi Tendai, thanks for your positive comments! I’m so glad that the process went well for you. This is the reason that I write articles like this, so thank you for the encouragement. All the best, Beth

      • Cece

        Hello Beth
        Just discovered your blog. It’s very helpful. Thank you so much for sharing all this information. Me being in Scotland it has helped me a lot to prepare for my trip to get my passport renewed. One can never get this great information anywhere else. Thank you.

      • Beth (Travel Editor/Writer)

        Thanks so much for the kind words! The article was written to help others – great to hear it has done that for you!

    • Mgcini

      Thanks for such helping information. I have a question .can I apply for a passport renewal without an ID.

      • Beth (Travel Editor/Writer)

        The guidance states you need an ID. Best to contact the officials using the contact details in the article. All the best

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