The Sobering News About Ebola
Ebola is no joke, let's get that straight. It's a virus that is fatal in nearly 50% of cases but, to counter the panic-stricken media frenzy that is crippling Africa's tourism industry, we have some slightly more sober, sensible news for you:
- The only reported cases of the ebola virus outside West Africa are in USA and Europe indicating travel by infected West Africans to other African countries is rare to none. So if you're really worried about Ebola, come to Namibia.
- Ebola is not an airborne virus like measles or chickenpox and is, as the figures attest, difficult to contract. According to the Official WHO Travel Advisory: The risk of becoming infected with ebola virus is extremely low, even if you travel to the local areas from which primary cases have been reported. Transmission requires direct contact with blood, secretions, organs or other body fluids, which are all unlikely exposures for the average traveler.
- The nearest primary case of ebola is in Nigeria 3,567km from Namibia. To put that into perspective:
- The longest straight line in USA is Jupiter, FL to Ocean Creek, WA: 4,509km
- The longest straight line in UK is Land's End to John O'Groats: 968km
- Ebola was first identified in 1976 and has to date claimed the lives of 4,811 people whereas malaria claims an average of 1 million lives per year.
Truth is there are lots of nasty ways to die, especially in tropical West Africa, but ebola is so far down the list of threats it is almost negligible.
If you are worried about ebola, then probably one of the safest countries to visit is Namibia. The population is so sparse as to make spreading almost impossible; the attractions you are going to visit are very far from any settlements; most of the population lives in the far north well out of your way; the dry, desert climate is the exact opposite of those where ebola is found and there is almost no tourist trade between West and Southern Africa.
We cannot of course guarantee you won't get ebola when you visit Africa but we can suggest the odds are small to infinitesimal, and those odds grow even smaller when compared with the more predictable and prevalent risks like plane crashes and military coups.
We will keep this page updated should new developments occur but for now our recommendation is to proceed with your travel plans as normal. Should you have any queries about your deposit or other safety issues please Contact Us directly.
Page last updated: 23 Oct 2014