FAQ's and other information
Where is South Africa located?
South Africa is located on the southern tip of Africa and is bordered by the Atlantic Ocean on the west and the Indian Ocean on the south and east. Its neighbouring countries are Namibia, Botswana, Zimbabwe, Mozambique and Swaziland. The Kingdom of Lesotho is situated in the eastern central plain of the country. How big is the area of South Africa?
South Africa's total land area is 1 219 912 sq km (471,011 sq mi). The country is five times larger than Great Britain and three times the size of Texas.
· Cape Town - 2,499 square kilometres
· Johannesburg - 1,644 square kilometres
· Durban - 2,292 square kilometres
· Kruger National Park - 18,989 square kilometres
What is the Country Dialing Code of South Africa?
The South Africa country dialing code is 27. Long distance calls can be made in South Africa using the correct country code. Many hotels, lodges and guest houses offer direct dialing facilities. If you are not able to connect, a staff member will surely be available to help. Blue public telephones are coin operated and require a minimum of 80c a local call, more for international calls. It is also worth purchasing a phone card for international calls, available from post offices and news agencies and units range from R20, R50, R100 and R200. Can I use my Cell/Mobile Phone in South Africa?
South Africa has 4 world class mobile phone operators, namely Vodacom- the biggest and most popular - MTN, Cell C and Virgin Mobile. Sim cards can be purchased almost anywhere and can be as little as R3. Pay-as-you-go airtime is recommended for tourists. How big is the Population?
South Africa is a diverse country filled with a myriad of traditional origins, languages and beliefs, and is home to over 47 million people from all walks of life. The population of South Africa is divided into four ethnic groups, black Africans, whites, coloureds and Asians. The Black Africans make up the majority of the population, which accounts for 76% of the entire countries population. Whites account for 13%, coloureds (mixed White and Black descent) make up for 9% and Asian account for 3%. When is the best time to visit for my holiday to South Africa?
South Africa is a year round holiday destination, but it all depends on what kind of experience you are looking for. Different activities are better suited to different seasons. For the best game watching, visit during a South African spring (August - October), Whale watching from mid June to the end of October and for diving and surfing, April to September. The beaches of Cape Town, Port Elizabeth and Durban are great and best visited in the peak of summer (November - February), but are often overcrowded. What currency do I need for my South Africa holiday?
The unit of currency is the South African Rand, denoted by the symbol R. One hundred cents makes up one Rand (R1). Coins are available in denominations of 5c, 10c, 20c, 50c, R1, R2 and R5, and notes in denominations of R10, R20, R50, R100 and R200. The Rand is weaker than the Pound and Dollar, making a visit to South Africa highly affordable by international standards. Accommodation, eating out and shopping in South Africa offers great value for money to the international traveller. Your foreign currency can be exchanged at most local banks and Bureaux de Change. There are many banks and ATM's all around South Africa, including airports, petrol stations and malls. Please Note: In South Africa you cannot purchase fuel (petrol) with a credit card. Many locals possess a special 'petrol card' that can only be used at filling stations. You can, however, pay toll with MasterCard or Visa. What are the Bank Opening Hours?
Operating hours for banks are 09:00am - 15:30pm on Mondays to Fridays, and 08:30am - 11:00am on Saturdays. Banks are closed on Sundays and public holidays. Credit cards are widely accepted, including American Express, Diners Club, MasterCard and Visa. How much should I Tip?
In South Africa it is customary to tip for good service. Porters usually receive R5 per item; taxis receive 10% of the bill, and waiters and waitresses in restaurants 10-15%. In South African restaurants the service charge is not included in the total bill. At petrol stations, petrol attendants will fill your car and offer to clean your windscreen and check your oil and water, therefore a tip of about R2 will be appreciated. In parking areas, official and unofficial parking attendants may offer to help you park your car and watch it while you are away. Again, whatever small change you may have will be appreciated. What kind of clothes do I need to pack?
South Africa is generally a very casual country, with warm, windy days and chilly nights. Denims, t-shits and skirts are fine for during the day. In summer, the day's range from pleasant, to very hot and evenings are balmy. In some areas of South Africa, winter is wet and windy during the day, while in other areas it is dry, hot and humid. Winter nights are, however, always cold. Formal to semi-formal attire is worn to work, upper-class restaurants and clubs. Casual wear is accepted at most restaurants, pubs and bars. The majority of clubs do not accept guests in running shoes. Bathing suits - full or two pieces - are for the beach. School uniform is worn at all schools in South Africa. In general, South Africa is very fashion conscious, especially in the big cities - Cape Town, Johannesburg and Durban. Jeans, shirts, sneakers, sandals, blouses, pants and skirts are all regarded as appropriate everyday wear. What are the Visa and Passport Requirements?
Entry is relatively straightforward to the majority of foreigners travelling to South Africa. Travellers from certain parts of the world, including Scandinavia, the USA and most European countries do not need to apply for a visa. Upon arrival in South Africa, travellers from either of these countries are given a free entry permit sticker with details of how long they may stay in the country. This permit is usually valid for a maximum of 90 days. Foreign nationals from other countries offer this service, but for a maximum of 30 days. If you wish to stay longer than 90 days, they will then need to apply for a visa. What is the Country Dialing Code of South Africa?
The South Africa country dialing code is 27. Long distance calls can be made in South Africa using the correct country code. Many hotels, lodges and guest houses offer direct dialing facilities. If you are not able to connect, a staff member will surely be available to help. Blue public telephones are coin operated and require a minimum of 80c a local call, more for international calls. It is also worth purchasing a phone card for international calls, available from post offices and news agencies and units range from R20, R50, R100 and R200. What plugs and power voltage is used in South Africa?
Electricity in South Africa runs on 220/230V, 50Hz AC and the sockets are adapted to take round or flat pinned plugs. Most hotel rooms have sockets for 110V electric razors. Plugs have 3 round pins, with some plugs having 2 smaller pins. Adaptors can be purchased but may be in short supply. Please keep in mind that for the sake of authenticity, some bush camps may not even have electricity. Top 10 Things on South African Holidays
· Safari in the Kruger National Park
· Cable car on Table Mountain
· Whale watching in Hermanus
· Traveling the Garden Route
· Exploring the Cape Winelands and wine tasting
· Cape Town beaches
· Tee off at world class South African golf courses
· Adventure sports - bungee jumping, abseiling, shark cage diving
· Township tours and cultural excursions - Soweto
· Surfing at Jeffrey's Bay