Long queues formed as Zambians turned out to vote in a closely contested election. Many arrived at polling stations three hours before they opened.
The four million registered voters face a choice of five presidential candidates.
Zambia's economy dominated the campaign, with opposition leader Michael Sata telling voters: "You can't eat inflation."
President Levy Mwanawasa's economic reforms have been praised by donors, who have forgiven Zambia's debts...
... But two-thirds of Zambia's 11.5m population still live on less than $1 a day.
Michael Sata promised to deport unscrupulous foreign businessmen and on election day, he praised Zimbabwe's President Robert Mugabe.
As voting day is a public holiday, most voters hoped to cast their ballots as early as possible and then have the rest of the day off with their families.
Apart from the delays experienced by those waiting in the long queues unprotected from the sun, most have praised the process for being well-organised.