Traveling to South Africa

Introduction
South Africa is situated at the Southern tip of Africa and has almost 3000km of coast line which is partially Indian and Atlantic ocean. The country shares borders with Namibia, Botswana, Zimbabwe, and Mozambique and also has two independent countries which fall within South Africa which is Lesotho and Swaziland.

There are three capitals in South Africa: Cape Town (legislative), Pretoria (administrative) and Bloemfontein (Judicial)

Provinces
There are nine provinces in South Africa with the largest being the Northern Cape and the smallest is Gauteng province. The other seven provinces are: Eastern Cape, Free State, Western Cape, Limpopo, North West, Kwazulu Natal and Mpumalanga.

South African provinces

Population and Cultures
South Africa has a very diverse population. The 50 million strong country consists mostly of Africans at around 80% followed by Whites at 4m, Coloureds 4m and Asians at around 2m.

Currency
The South African currency is called “Rand”. 100 cents makes one Rand. When refering to a price numbers are prefixed with the “R” symbol. Paper currency dominations are available in R10, R20, R50, R100 and R200 while coins come in 10c, 20c, 50c, R1, R2 and R5.

Use our currency converter to the right to compare your currency to the South African rand.

Languages
Whilst English is understood and spoken in every major city South Africa does have 12 official languages. You might struggle to communicate in english in some remote areas but this is rare. The other official languages in South Africa are: Afrikaans (derived from Dutch), Southern Sotho, Northern Sotho, Tsongo, Tswana, Swati, Zulu, Ndebele, Xhosa and Venda.

Popular things to do

* Bird watching
* Safari
* Surfing
* Water activities
* Scuba diving
* Sky diving
* Table mountain
* Hikes

Transport
South Africa has a very good infrastructure should one decide to rent a vehicle and travel by road. Alternatively there are daily flights to and from all major cities within South Africa. Using a bus may be more economical at times.

In-town transport
Moving around in the city could be done with a rented vehicle without restrictions. There are also metered taxis and uber should you prefer that. Joburg has the Gautrain which is fast and a safe to use alternative.

Tipping
Tipping for service is non mandatory anywhere in South Africa but it is good gesture to do so. Tips of around 10% or more is acceptable.

Please be wary of requesting services without confirming the price before giving the go ahead. An example would be the porters at the airport assisting you as if they are employed to do so and then demanding a fixed and sometimes ridiculous amounts on completion of the service.

Cellular networks
South Africa have four cellular networks. There are Vodacom, MTN, CellC and Telkom Mobile (in order of market share). To find out more about which one is right for you please visit their respective websites.