Living in South Africa
If you are looking to move to South Africa the first thing you will need is a job. Visit TRS Staffing to see what opportunities there are available. When you decide to make to move to South Africa there are a few things you need to know:
1. Know Thy Surroundings
It is always advisable to pay close attention to your location and surroundings. If you see or hear a loud, angry-sounding mob or demonstration, it would be best to turn the other way and keep away, regardless of how curious you might be.
Be aware of where you are going and avoid wandering around aimlessly. In many parts of cities such as Johannesburg and Cape Town, the bad and good neighbourhoods are usually a block away from each other.
2. Protect Yourself Against Theft
If you plan to visit South Africa, it can be a good idea to avoid packing flashy jewelry or even expensive clothing. Avoid flashing cash when dealing with street vendors or really at any other time during your stay. Instead of packing your big fancy camera and lenses, choose a smaller point and shoot camera.
Always pay close attention wherever you go. If you start showing off expensive items, you will definitely attract the unwanted attention of criminals, particularly in the neighborhoods that have a bad reputation.
3. Mobile Phone Coverage Is Surprisingly Great
Mobile phone coverage in South Africa is both extensive and easily accessible. Just buy a local SIM card from one of the 4 key cellular service providers in the country: MTN, Vodacom, Telkom, and Cell C. You can actually do this at the airport upon your arrival. Reception and Internet speeds are great in major towns and cities, but once you head into the wilderness, you will lose the ability to connect fast.
Keep in mind that you can only use a local SIM card on a SIM-unlocked GSM phone. Check with your home country’s mobile network provider to be sure that you can use it on your phone before your departure. Avoid purchasing SIM cards off street sellers. Always buy one in store at a supermarket, kiosk, or one of the official outlets.
4. Don’t Rent a Convertible If You Want to Hire a Car
Poverty is still a harsh reality in the country and car theft is a common occurrence, which is why it is advisable to hire a vehicle that’s not flashy and preferably one with a roof. If you hire a car, try not to drive after dark since there has been a lot more highway robbery after dark especially in recent years.
If you plan to navigate the country yourself, remember that South Africans drive on the left -hand side of the road. Fuel stations, which are known as garages aren’t self-service. When you drive onto the forecourt, your vehicle will be filled by an attendant. It is customary and polite to tip the attendant about $1 for the service.
Driving yourself should be relatively safe, but it can be a good idea to brush up on the local roads and road etiquette before you start driving.
5. Volunteering Scams in South Africa
If you plan to volunteer in the country, ensure that you book with a reputable organization. A popular scam has emerged where travelers are approached to assist at an orphanage. The problem is that the children are made to look very poor just to get massive donations out of sappy travelers. That’s why orphanage visits are considered actually more harmful than they are helpful.