Magnet Tours and Safaris

Incoming Tour Operator for southern Africa



Useful Information

When is the best time to visit
Depending on what kind of tour / holiday you would like to have there are “best” times during the year. Please contact us with what you would like to experience and we will assist you in choosing the best and most convenient time of the year for you.
 
Visa requirements
Requirements for entry into South Africa differ from country to country, and are subject to change. Always make enquiries before travelling to South Africa.
For more information, visit: http://www.dha.gov.za/index.php/immigration-services/exempt-countries
 

What you need:

  • A valid passport or travel document that will be valid for the length of your intended stay. Your passport should have at least TWO blank facing pages in it and must be valid for at least 6 months from date of return to your home country
  • All children under 18 need their own passport and/or travel document with an unabridged birth certificate (in English, or a legal document, issued by the relevant authority in their home country, containing information similar to South Africa’s full birth certificate).
  • A valid visa, if required.
  • Sufficient funds.
  • A return or onward ticket.
  • Yellow fever certificates – if your journey starts or passes through the yellow fever belt of Africa or South America.

 
Money Matters
With a favorable exchange rate for many international currencies, you'll find South Africa an inexpensive destination. And an easy one – our financial institutions are world-class, with no shortage of banks, bureaux de change and automatic tellers.

South Africa's unit of currency is the rand, which is divided into 100 cents. Notes come in denominations of R10, R20, R50, R100 and R200; and coins come in 5c, 10c, 20c, 50c, R1, R2 and R5. There are two R5 coins in circulation, both of which are legal currency. All transactions are rounded down to the nearest 5c.
 
Credit Cards & Cash

All major credit cards can be used in South Africa, with American Express and Diners Club enjoying less universal acceptance than MasterCard and Visa. If you have a so-called "chip card", you will be required to enter a pin code. Pin-based debit cards are often accepted too. Remember to notify your bank in advance that you will be traveling.

When it comes to paying for fuel, you can pay cash or use your credit card.
 
Taxes
All South Africans pay Value Added Tax (VAT) as it included in the price of most goods and services. It is currently set at 14%. Visitors are not exempt from paying it, but if you are a foreign passport holder you can claim it back on the items you are taking out the country if their value is more than R250. Be sure to request a tax invoice when buying goods.
 
Safety
South African safety precautions are not unlike those recommended when traveling to other countries and major cities. More common sense than hard and fast measures, safety precautions in South Africa mostly require vigilance on behalf of the traveler and sound travel preparation.

Important South African safety advice includes avoiding deserted areas at night; securing valuables such as photographic equipment and wallets on your person; and leaving expensive jewellery in your hotel safe while out and about.
 
Other safety precautions you may want to consider include:

  • Locking valuables and luggage away in the car boot while travelling (never leave handbags or cameras on car seats)
  • Being vigilant of your luggage and other belongings (never leave them unattended).
  • Storing valuables in your hotel safe.
  • Limit the amount of money you carry on your person. Also, don't accept offers of assistance at ATM's and keep your pin numbers secure.
  • When using a credit card in restaurants, ask the waiter to bring a portable credit card machine to your table.  Report stolen or lost cards immediately.
  • In rural areas, watch out for wild or farm animals - road signage will warn you when you need to take care.
  • If you intend traveling to malaria areas, take the necessary prophylaxis before you leave home.


Phoning to, from and in South Africa
South Africa’s latest mobile phone policy does not allow for non-residents to buy a local SIM card unless you can provide a residential address in SA. You can either opt to activate international roaming with your local mobile phone provider, or rent a mobile phone upon arrival.


If you're dialing a number in South Africa from outside the country, it must be preceded by +27, South Africa's international country code (the + sign represents the international access code for the country you're calling from); and either:


the area code of the city or town in South Africa you're calling (leaving out the first zero), if you're calling a landline; or


the mobile network code (leaving out the first zero), if you're calling a cellular/mobile network.

Things to remember:

  • International Driver’s License
  • Travel Insurance
  • Good map of South Africa
  • Binoculars
  • Camera
  • Comfortable shoes
  • Warm jersey or jacket
  • If you’re going to watch game, bring some clothing with neutral colors (does not have to be a full safari outfit!)
  • Cap
  • Sun glasses
  • Credit Card (you can buy anything you forget here)