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Your passport should be valid for at least 6 months on the date of entry. To avoid problems at the airport on arrival, you’re advised to ensure your passport is valid.
Your passport must have at least 2 consecutive "empty" pages. Visas are issued upon arrival into Cape Town International Airport. If asked, you must provide proof of sufficient funds to pay for your holiday (credit/debit cards, etc.) If you are transferring via in Johannesburg, you must pick up your luggage before you go to the domestic terminal. This applies even if you already have your boarding card for a flight to Cape Town or any other South African destinations.
U.S. Citizens (U.S. passport holders) visiting the Republic of South Africa for (90) days or less will receive the visa stamp on arrival.
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Yellow Fever: There is no risk of yellow fever in South Africa. The government of South Africa requires proof of yellow fever vaccination only if you are arriving from a country with risk of yellow fever such as Ghana. This does not include arriving from the US.
Most locals tip waiters, bar staff and other people in the service industry between 10% and 20% of the final bill, depending on the level of service. In most cases it is optional, but many restaurants now add a 10% surcharge to tables of 6 or more, which should be indicated on the bill.
South African outlets follow international protocols and produce 220-240 volts. Most sockets are suitable for rounded 3-prong plugs, while many appliances make use of 2-prong plugs. Adapters are available cheaply in supermarkets and stores throughout the city and are more expensive at major tourist locations such as the airport.
It is well known that you can experience 4 seasons in one day while in Cape Town. Since South Africa is below the equator, the seasons are opposite of those above the equator. The average temperatures are between 75-85 degrees during the day and 60-70 degrees in the evening.
Is the tap water in Cape Town safe to drink?
Absolutely! Cape Town and South Africa has some of the best drinking water in the world.
There is a wide network of banks throughout South Africa that will exchange your currency. Most major tourist locations such as the airport have dedicated foreign exchange facilities. Once you pass immigration and collect your luggage, there will be an exchange office. You must have your passport with you. You can also withdraw the local currency (Rand/ZAR) from ATM's. Contact your bank prior to departing the U.S. to inform them of your travel plans.
Major credit/debit cards are widely accepted by most shops and outlets. The area around Cape Town and the Western Cape use chip and pin services on your cards although you can still sign if you have forgotten your pin number or your card does not have a chip and pin. Notify your bank your travel plans.
Yes - you should bring whatever toiletries you travel with. However, in case you should leave something behind, there are ample stores within a short distance that provide items you are familiar with.