Changing money in South Africa

south africa currency

The South African rand (ZAR) trades at very favourable rates to most international currencies. There’s no need to bring large amounts of hard currency cash or to buy Rands in advance. Major international credit/debit cards (for instance Visa, Master and to a lesser extent American Express) can be used to draw local currency at 24-hour ATMs throughout the country (the one exception being in most national parks and game reserves) and to pay directly for almost all services and goods. That said, it’s a good idea to carry a bit of hard currency cash as a fallback, say the equivalent of around US$200-400; this can be exchanged into Rands at any bank or Bureau de Change.


Popular South Africa Safaris

These popular itineraries can be customised to match your budget and travel dates

 | Cosmopolitan Cape Town and Kruger Tour (7 days)

Cosmopolitan Cape Town and Kruger Tour (7 days)

Discover the Big Cats in the Kruger National Park and enjoy the bustling harbour, world-class beaches and top-notch vineyards in Cape Town...

 | Cape Town, the Winelands and Kruger Luxury Journey (9 days)

Cape Town, the Winelands and Kruger Luxury Journey (9 days)

Experience Cape Town, the lush Cape Winelands and a safari in the Kruger National Park and you'll fall under South Africa's spell...

 | South African Holiday Adventure (10 days)

South African Holiday Adventure (10 days)

Explore the southern-most city on the African continent, before jetting off to spot the Big Five...

 | Best of Africa Safari (16 days)

Best of Africa Safari (16 days)

Experience the best of Africa, from the Okavango Delta – one of Africa's Seven Natural Wonders – to the endangered mountain gorillas and East Africa's Great Migration...

 | Magical Mauritius and South Africa Honeymoon Safari (11 days)

Magical Mauritius and South Africa Honeymoon Safari

Start your trip in South Africa and finish in Mauritius. Experience the stunning beaches and the Big Five in the Phinda Private Game Reserve. ...

 | Luxury South Africa to Zimbabwe safari (8 days)

Luxury South Africa to Zimbabwe safari (8 days)

Spot the Big Five in Thornybush Private Game Reserve and enjoy the majesty of Zimbabwe's roaring Victoria Falls ...

Mountain Walk | Cape Town, Whale Coast and Victoria Falls Tour (10 days)

Cape Town, Whale Coast and Victoria Falls Tour (10 days)

Experience a safari adventure that combines the very best of Victoria Falls with the undeniable highlights of Cape Town and the Whale Coast....

 | Luxurious South Africa and Zambia Honeymoon Safari (10 days)

South Africa and Zambia honeymoon

Explore the romantic Atlantic Ocean with it's multi-cultural heritage and a Big Five safari in the Sabi Sands, finally ending off at Victoria Falls from the Zambian side...

 | Two weeks in South Africa - a luxury rail safari

Two weeks in South Africa - a luxury rail safari

Experience the best that South Africa has to offer: it's white-sand beaches, lush green wine-lands and find the Big Five wildlife in the Kruger National Park. ...

 | Forray into the Wilderness of Sabi Sands and Madikwe  (7 days)

Forray into the Wilderness of Sabi Sands and Madikwe (7 days)

Our selection of South Africa's top safari lodges and game reserves are guaranteed to suit every taste and budget...



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South Africa in October

It’s dry during October in the Kruger. Animals congregate at watering holes in large numbers | Credit: National Geographic Johannesburg and the highveld is warm by day, cooler at night and will receive occasional rainfall. Cape Town and the Western Cape is hot by day, cooler at night, and generally dry, while the Kruger Park and surrounds is hot by day, warm at night, and…

South Africa in April

Lush foliage can hide wildlife in its fold during April Johannesburg and the highveld is warm by day, cool at night and might receive occasional rainfall. Cape Town and the Western Cape is mild by day, cool at night and might start receiving occasional rainfall to mark the start of the wet winter period. The Kruger Park and surrounds sees the seasonal shift towards autumn with…

Medical emergencies in South Africa

If no other assistance is at hand, call a medical emergency service. The government-run emergency number for ambulances in South Africa is 10177. Private 24-hour national emergency and ambulance services include ER24 (084 124), which is linked to a private network of 50-plus MediClinic hospitals, and Netcare 911 (082 911). The police flying squad can be reached at 10111. ...

Languages in South Africa

South Africa is a linguistically diverse nation with 11 official languages, more than any other country, and several other minor regional tongues. The most numerically significant language is isiZulu, which is the mother tongue of roughly 22.5% of South Africans, follows by IsiXhosa (16%) and Dutch-based Afrikaans (13.5%). English, the first language of 9.5% of South Africans, is the…

Madikwe and Pilanesberg

Pride of lions in the Madikwe Game Reserve Situated in the blandly-named low-profile North West Province, these two relatively recently-created reserves have grown in popularity in recent years thanks to their family-friendly location in a malaria free-zone and excellent Big Five viewing. Pilanesberg and Madikwe are quite similar in ecological terms, both being situated on the…

South Africa in November

You can expect thundershows in the Kruger during November Johannesburg and the Highveld is hot by day, cool at night and receives regular rainfall often in the form of afternoon thunderstorms. Cape Town and the Western Cape is hot by day, cooler at night, and dry. The Kruger Park and surrounds is hot by day, warm at night, and dry. November is an ideal time for beach holidays…

Highlights of South Africa

South Africa attracts more than its fair share of repeat visitors. Some return every year or two to enjoy the familiar pleasures of a favourite beach or re-explore the vast expanses of the Kruger National Park, where no two days on safari are every quite the same. For others, it would be the fact that South Africa offers so many fresh potential experiences to more adventurous…

South African cultures and their nuances

The San bushmen are one of the oldest groups of people in Africa. Their keen survival skills and ancient ways have been passed down from generation to generation | Credit: @Ghanzi South Africa has four main ethnic groups that comprises the entire population. There are 11 official languages that are spoken, with English being the most widely used. South Africa is affectionately known…

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