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

Renew Zimbabwe passport

There are more than 110 000 Zimbabweans living in the UK according to a 2013 report from the Office of National Statistics, and many will need to renew their Zimbabwean passports. Although Zimbabwe passports are issued in Zimbabwe, you can do the  paperwork from the UK at the Zimbabwean Embassy in London. You will 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, here’s a step-by-step guide to do it yourself without hiring an agency. Frustratingly, it’s best to start the application process at least 18 months before the 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.

DISCLAIMER: I am not a consular official or advisor, and I cannot take any responsibility for actions taken based on the information in the guide below. This article is a useful addition to your own research, and it is based on real-life experience. This article does not replace official Embassy or Registrar advice.

Official Embassy and Registrar contact details: Please check the information from the official websites as a priority; see below.

  • In London: The official website for the Embassy of Zimbabwe to Britain and Ireland is: www.zimlondon.gov.zw (although it is not always running). Their email addresses are: zimlondon@zimfa.gov.zw and zimembassy@zimlondon.gov.zw. The physical address is: 429 The Strand, London WC2R 0JR, and the UK phone number is +44 207 836 7755. Their normal opening hours for the public are 09h00 to 12h30 Monday to Friday.
  • In Zimbabwe: The Zimbabwe Department of the Registrar General website is here: http://www.rg.gov.zw. The physical address 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 a page on the Zimbabwe Registrar General website for Zimbabweans living abroad, here: http://www.rg.gov.zw/index.php/services/zimbabweans-living-abroad. This page states that passport processing time is six months, although faster options are available.

A guide to renewing your Zimbabwe passport from the UK

Step 1: Gather the correct documentation in advance

Check the official websites (above) for the latest requirements. Make a photocopy of each of these certificates/documents, to take to the Embassy with the originals. The copies do not need to be certified because the Embassy official will check they are valid along with the originals.

To take to the Embassy in London, with photocopies of each:

  • Long birth certificate
  • Original ID
  • Old passport and photocopy of the biodata page plus the page showing your right to live in the UK
  • Marriage Certificate/National Identity Card in married name/divorce order if applicable
  • Citizenship certificate (for citizen by registration)
  • £65 payable via cash or postal order at the London Embassy
  • Study permit permanent residence permit or waiver/ Temporary permit/work permit
  • For lost or stolen passports: the police report. Note: a loss of a passport should be immediately reported to the nearest local police and nearest Zimbabwean Embassy
  • Children: Section 5 of the passport application form must be signed by the father or other legal guardian of children under 18 years. Legal guardian’s “Documentary Proof” should be in a form of a court order from the High Court or Community in the case of divorced parents
  • Photos: Note that 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 on the day (see Step 2)

The following will be needed after your visit to the Embassy in London. These will be sent to your representative in Zimbabwe, along with the above documents:

  • P34 form and Passport form, completed and stamped (these will be given to you to complete and stamp at the London Embassy)
  • Two affidavits for your local representative (detailed in Step 5)
  • A local representative: You will need to liaise with someone in Zimbabwe to hand in the application on your behalf later, if you are not going to Zimbabwe yourself
  • If you are sending the documents to your representative in Zimbabwe via courier, there will be a courier fee, varying in price depending on which company you choose. Your representative may then need to courier the documents/new passport back to you, depending on your situation.
  • The application fee in Zimbabwe of US$60

Step 2: Get your passport photos (near the Zim Embassy in London)

The requirements for Zimbabwean passport photos are very strict – you must wear only black clothing, the background must be pure white, no jewellery must be worn, and ears must be completely visible.

You could try and ensure all these things are correct yourself, but if there’s something wrong, it’s likely that the embassy will ask you to get the photos re-taken at a particular photo shop near the embassy. It’s probably easier just to go to the photo shop in the first instance.

The photo shop is extremely close to the Zimbabwean embassy and it is called The ID Photo Shop. You can get the photos done on the day of going to the Embassy, because the photos are printed instantly. The photo shop website is here and they are experienced in taking photos for Zimbabwean requirements. Check their website for current opening hours. They are located beneath ground level, down the stairs next to the Paperchase shop on The Strand. The photos cost under £10. Email: info@idphotoshop.co.uk.

Step 3: Go to the Zimbabwean Embassy with your documents

You’ll need to go to the Zimbabwean Embassy in London, with your originals, photocopies, money and photos. Also take a black pen and some coins for the photocopier machine at the Embassy just in case.

Zimbabwe House is located at 429 The Strand, WC2R 0JR. It is a great central location, very easy walking distance from Charing Cross Station or Embankment Station. (Have a walk around Trafalgar Square and Victoria Embankment Gardens afterwards!)

Check the Embassy of Zimbabwe to Britain and Ireland website for opening times (see top of page). Their usual opening hours are 09h00 to 12h30 Monday to Friday.

The entrance is to the left of the main door – walk around the building for a few steps to the left side door. It will probably look closed, but if you push it, it will open! The office isn’t usually too busy and there shouldn’t be a long queue.

Step 4: Process your documents with the Embassy

As far as I’m aware, you do not need to book an appointment before going to the embassy – but try to phone them or email them to confirm this first, if you are making a long journey. Show your originals and photocopies to the official at the Embassy. They may ask you to photocopy something that may have been overlooked – there is a coin-operated photocopier in the Embassy for you to do this.

You will be given a P34 form and a Passport form at the Embassy to complete in black pen. You will be asked to complete personal details such as height, eye colour and hair colour.

Once they are happy with those completed forms, you pay the £65 fee 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.

Step 5: Sign two affidavits for your local representative

In order for your representative to submit your passport application at the Zimbabwe passport office, and for them to collect the 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 forms.

I’ve created a template affidavit for you at the bottom of this page. Copy & paste the text at 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 so that there is one signed letter for submission and one for collection. Fill out the name and ID details of your representative in Zimbabwe.

Step 6: Send your documents to Zimbabwe for submission

Send all the originals, photocopies, photos, forms and affidavits to your representative in Zimbabwe. You can courier the documents via FedEx, DHL or a method of your choosing. Do not courier to a P.O. Box in Zimbabwe, but to a physical address.

Step 7: Your representative submits the documents in Zimbabwe

Your representative takes the documentation to the passport office in Zimbabwe and uses the submission affidavit to submit your forms. There is a different queue for applications from abroad, which will hopefully be shorter than the local queue. Your representative will need to pay a fee of US$60 for the new passport to be issued (more expensive options are available for faster turnaround). Your representative needs to keep the affidavit that authorises them to collect the passport. A receipt will be given to the representative.

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. 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.

Appendix: Sample text to use in the affidavit (See Step 5 above for instructions)

RE: PASSPORT APPLICATION AFFIDAVIT

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 …………………………

 

I hope this guide is useful for your own research about renewing your Zimbabwe passport. I repeat that I am not an official passport advisor, and readers should send their enquiries to the Embassy or Registrar General. Contact details for them are at the top of this page, or readers can do a Google search for the official contact details.

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

Last updated April 2021

You might also like:

FAQs about visiting Zimbabwe, Africa Zimbabwe Visa Requirements Tips visitors Zimbabwe cash crisis

75 Responses

  1. Archibald

    Hello I want to apply for a new passport and wanted to find out if the embassy is open Monday to Friday 9 to 1230pm for this.

    Cheers

  2. Nancy

    Hello everyone,
    I thought I’d let you all know that at the moment (during COVID times) you can only go to the embassy for passport applications on a Friday between 9:00 and 12:30. However during this Easter period instead of opening on the Friday (2 April) they’ll be offering consular services on Wednesday (31 March) between 10:30 am and 2:00pm then back to normal from the following week. I’m not sure if you have to pay for the passport while you’re at the embassy or if it’s your contact who will have to pay in Zimbabwe but I will surely find out tomorrow and let you all know

      • Patricia

        Good afternoon many thanks for your updates really appreciate please can you continue to update us by emailing me

      • Patricia

        Thank God if everything back to our daily routine .we can sort out our passport immediately thanks for your feedback we’ve been worried throughout this Corvid pandemic I hope everyone is safe and well where ever you are

      • Patricia

        Please can you give us more information about affidavit forms be grateful if you assist me with more information and also what time is the embassy office opened after Easter

      • Patricia

        April 01, 2021 |
        Good afternoon. I find this quite helpful as I can’t get through your London number to speak to one of the advisors. I understand passport renewal was at halt due to the lockdown crisis worldwide. I desperately want to renew my passport as soon as possible Please advise if the photo shop in London is open, and are you now open full time as from the first of April 2021? Please provide the opening times and the most convenient days to come for the processing of the forms. Your help would be greatly appreciated . Thanking you in advance.

    • Maxwell

      Hallo
      Thank you for this helpful information. I just wanted to find out if I need to book an appointment at the embassy to make my application for a new passport and if so by phone or email?

      • Great Zimbabwe Guide

        In the past it was not necessary to book an appointment, but this may have changed. If you are journeying from far, try to contact the embassy first to ask.

  3. Tendai

    Thank you so much for the article. This is 2021 and it still very helpful. Can you please tell me where to get the affidavit forms. Thanks.

    • Great Zimbabwe Guide

      Hi Tendai, I’m glad to hear that this is still helpful in 2021! Thank you for your support, it is encouraging. I have placed some text at the bottom of the article under the subheading ‘Appendix: Sample text to use in the affidavit’. You can copy and paste that text into your own Word document and format it how you like, for you to print out and complete.

      • Washington Teterai

        Do we have to sign the letters before a solicitor,lawyer or commissioner of Oath ?Or we just just put in the required details and our signature?

  4. Mandhlakaise Mubhongo

    I find it unreasonable to for the Zimbabwean embassy to process renewed passports in Zimbabwe. Britain has better facilities to process these documents. If it can process Visa to individuals for any country, why can’t they process Zimbabwean passports.
    This is failure and incompetent for an embassy.

  5. Mimi

    Hi,

    Thank you for this page as it has been very helpful given the government embassy zim website isn’t working.

    My partner’s passport (with indefinite leave to remain visa) has expired and he needs to renew this. Do i just follow your steps as explained above and would this cover the renewal of his visa too?

    Also he is unable to find his birth certificate, so what would he need to do in this case?

    Thanks

  6. Farai Gwenzi

    Hi Beth,

    My brother and I do not have our passports or a birth certificate due to someone in our family basically holding them hostage, all I need from the embassy is for them to give me official documentation to say that they can’t provide me with a new passport would that be a simple task?

  7. Maya

    Hi Beth

    I lost my national id but I am planning to go back to Zimbabwe soon, my question is can l still get the application processed and fingerprints done at the embassy?without my id?

    • Ruvimbo

      Hi

      How did you manage to get about your application process without a Zim ID? I would like to renew my passport and do not have a Zim ID.

      • Edna Mberengwa

        Good afternoon. I find this quite helpful as I can’t get through your London number to speak to one of the advisors. I understand passport renewal was at halt due to the lockdown crisis worldwide. I desperately want to renew my passport for my Uk visa application extension which is due soon. Please advise if the photo shop in London is open, and are you now open full time as from the first of April 2021? Please provide the opening times and the most convenient days to come for the processing of the forms. Your help would be greatly appreciated . Thanking you in advance.
        Edina. M.

      • Great Zimbabwe Guide

        Hello! I do not work for the consulate, my aim is to provide helpful information. Another reader has commented: “at the moment (during COVID times) you can only go to the embassy for passport applications on a Friday between 9:00 and 12:30. However during this Easter period instead of opening on the Friday (2 April) they’ll be offering consular services on Wednesday (31 March) between 10:30 am and 2:00pm then back to normal from the following week. I’m not sure if you have to pay for the passport while you’re at the embassy or if it’s your contact who will have to pay in Zimbabwe but I will surely find out tomorrow and let you all know.” Please check back at the bottom of this page for comments in due course. Also check out the Facebook group ‘Zimbo birds’ where people often discuss these topics. Best of luck. Beth

  8. Whitney

    Has anyone used the one day express service ? And how did you get on ?

  9. Kuda

    Hi Beth

    Thank you so much for the useful info, I am looking forward to renew mine as well . I have an old paper ID from 10 year ago, will they not chase me away? If so do you know how I can get the plastic one from here. I am not planning on going to Zim anytime soon .

  10. Tatenda

    Hi Beth,

    Thanks for your guidance. This site has proved to be an invaluable resource. Keep up the good work.

  11. Simba

    hi anyine wuth the no. for the zim embassy london the one in site doesnt seem to wrk

    • Rufus

      Hi there
      i have just gone through the process of applying for a renewal of my Zimbabwe Passport. The staff are quite helpful, but slow, the usual story when dealing with the government sectors in Zimbabwe. However, they are very helpful, especially the girl called Fiona. The process is quite simple and i used this site before i went down to sort my papers out. Traumatic initially but very simple in the end,. After going through it, i wouldn’t stress about the process at all.

      Get there early, the quicker you get there, the quicker it all gets done. They open 9am from Monday to Friday, and close at 12.30pm. Entrance is to the side of the building, and its a 2 minute walk from Charing Cross station.

      Photo’s from a normal photo booth are fine, or go into your local post office that offers passport style photos and get them done there. The ID photoshop charges £9 for only 4 photos, most places usually charge a fiver (£5).This place is directly opposite the entrance/exit of Charing Cross station, next to Papermate.
      Make sure, and this is a definite, wear BLACK CLOTHING. Your top must be Black, and black ONLY. Any other colour and you wasting your time. YOU will get rejected.

      You need the following documents :
      1. Passport & 1x photocopy of the passport detail section where your photo is located. If you have any otters visa/ permits, get them photocopied as well, just in case. I had a residence permit so had to get that photocopied as well.
      2. Birth certificate & 1x photocopy.
      3. 2x photos (which they will make you write your name on the back and then officially stamp)
      4. Zimbabwe ID & 1x photocopy.

      Your affidavit doesn’t need stamping and they don’t require that either. It is something you can do at a later stage, but if you have already done it then by all means ask them to check it. Like i said, they are very helpful.

      Take a black pen. THIS IS A MUST as they will not give you theirs and tell you that they use blue pens only, which unfortunately is true.

      Take change for the photo copy machine. it takes all coins from 10p up to £2. On personal experience, take 50p coins as the machine will continuously reject your 10p and 20p…not sure why, but maybe like the police back home, they need “more” than is necessary 😉

      Be polite to them as well, if you lose your cool, they will make life difficult for you. That happened to a couple who were there at the same time as i was, and trust me they had to jump through hoops and all sorts just to get their paperwork sorted. Good thing i left before it got really ugly.

      If your passport has expired, they will cancel it for you there as well. Again, this may take almost an hour, but get it done, saves you having to come back and deal with them again

      Hopefully this helps. Like i said, have done this first hand, others will have had a different experience. Mine was very simple and straight forward and all the panicking that took place beforehand was unnecessary.

      Good luck and god bless

  12. nuri

    hi beth

    thanks for all the helpful info when i send through my affidavit does it have to be stamped by embassy or police station or can i just sign and send through and also any idea if they are currently open as the line seems to be not working at the moment was planning on going through next week

    thank you

    • Great Zimbabwe Guide

      Hi, you affidavit doesn’t have to be signed by a police station. You should take it with you to the embassy and you can ask them to check it over but I don’t think they will need to sign it. They will stamp all the other documentation anyway. I don’t know whether their phones are currently down, keep trying, but remember to phone during their working hours (listed above), basically mornings only. Hope it goes well.

      • nuri

        thanks so ,much for the reply will try my luck next week fingers crossed.

  13. nuri

    hi beth

    thanks for all the helpful info when i send through my affidavit does it have to be stamped by embassy or police station or can i just sign and send through and also any idea if they are currently open as the line seems to be not working at the moment was planning on going through next week

    • Mabel Moyo

      Hi Beth
      My name is Mabel Rosalie Moyo. I posted my expired passports, one for me and one for my daughter Tahana. We had done all the processing at the UK Zimbabwe Embassy. But the passports were not received up to now by the recipient.
      I posted them by Royal Mail. I was told that after they have left UK, l can not trace them any more. What should l do since we need passports urgently.
      Yours sincerely
      Mabel Moyo

      • Great Zimbabwe Guide

        Hi Mabel, thanks for your comment. I’m afraid I don’t have any advice except maybe you can try get hold of Zimpost offices in Zimbabwe and track down the parcel. My advice in Step 6 was to send the passports with a courier company such as Fedex, not a local mail company. I hope that you are able to track down the passports soon. Best wishes, Beth

  14. Tatenda

    Hi Beth.

    What do you do if you don’t have a 3rd party to take your documents for you. Can you just send them straight to the passport office or do I need to find someone to do it for me

    • Great Zimbabwe Guide

      Hi Tatenda, I don’t believe it’s possible to send it to the passport office in Zim; I think a person has to hand it in on your behalf. That is my understanding. You could perhaps hire an agent in Harare to help with this but I don’t know any.

  15. Rey

    Hi Beth, thank you so much for the information. I unfortunately have a complicated situation I hope you can help or point me in the right direction. I am living in the UK since I was 15 (2003) I am now 29 and due to many unfortunate events have no status to remain (Currently working on this with a lawyer but no active case currently). The Home Office ceased my passport (Which has since expired) and birth certificate, and as I left Zim before my 16th birthday I have no ID card. My partner (Kirsty) and I are due to marry next year and have just started the process with our notice of marriage. It looks as though this is going to be very difficult (If not impossible) to do without a valid ID 🙁 How can I renew my Zimbabwean passport from inside the UK, and have you heard of any experiences like this before where you can offer advice? Any thoughts are much appreciated

    • Great Zimbabwe Guide

      Hi Rey, thanks for your message. That is a tricky situation and to be honest I’m not sure of what to advise. Perhaps your best route is to pursue the UK passport option as it has been your home since you were 16? Otherwise go visit the Zimbabwe embassy in person and ask them what your options are, I think. All the best.

    • Shokomunerombo

      Not sure if have now been sorted my friend. But you will have to get some Hama of yours in Zim to obtain an ID using your long birth certificate, if you you don’t have a birth certificate then you will need to fill in affidavits claiming you have lost everything. This can be done via the embassy too. Send these to zim via your sahwira back there.Thereafter, repeat the process for your passport. Not sure how the consulate can cease your passport. All the same, be polite and respectful when you deal the the staff they usually understand. I hope they will when I renew mine on Tuesday.

      All the same, all the best. Stay positive and keep trying coz if u giv up, it will still come back and haunt you again. Seek help wherever you can. One day the silver cord will break for you.

      Above all, do your bit and be thankful to the almighty.

  16. Francis

    Quick question, Is there a time limit to when I should submit my passport form. I got my fingerprints filled form and made my payment etc back in 2016 January and would like to send my docs over to a relative in zim. Do i need to do the process again or I can send the forms I completed in 2016?

  17. Stanley

    This guide was spot on. Thank you Beth for this information, which the process smooth for us.

  18. Ngoni

    Thank you Beth for the informative article. I called the embassy today asking what is required to enable me to renew my passport and I wasnt given this much detail!

  19. Janet King

    Hi Beth

    Thanks for the info. I have lost my original birth certificate do you know will they accept a copy which has been certified by a Commissioner of Oaths in Zim for a new passport application – thanks This is urgent.
    Jan

    • irvine

      hi Jan , if you havent managed to replace you original birth certificate, contact : zdocument@aol.com , they can help in that regard ,even those with issues with lost metal id cards ,non marriage letters,collections of new passports and many more , contact them , i hope this will help

  20. Sonia

    Any suggestions on a lost ID card please? Can I get another issued at the embassy.

  21. Sharmie

    Hi can you travel to zimbabwe with a passport thats expiring in one month and renew it while in zimbabwe is that possible does anyone know

  22. Sophie

    Hi Beth
    Thank you so much for this info. May you be Blessed beyond measure,taking your time to do all this.
    I am waiting for my birth certificate and ID from Zimbabwe,,,,I will definitely follow the info you’ve provided.
    Again thank you x

  23. Annette

    Hi Beth,
    I’m not even in the UK but your blog provided me with very useful tips that I could use for us people down under!
    Thanks a mil we need more people like you 🙂

  24. John Querl

    My husbands passport expired in december2016. We wish to get a new 8ne but he only has his original one and it is not a long version will this be ok thank you mrs margarwt querl

  25. Ezra Volo Sibanda

    Hi Beth
    I lost my passport but I have my ID and birth certificate. Is it possible to be given passport forms?
    Many thanks
    Ezra

  26. aaron tsanga

    Hi,

    I am base in ireland and want to know when the zimbabwe embassy are visiting ireland next, as i need to renew my passport.

    Regards,

    AaronT

  27. 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

  28. 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!

  29. 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,
    Mark

    • 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.

  30. 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

  31. 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

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *