General preparations

General preparations

It was with a heavy heart that we decided to pull the plug on PhilGuides Southern Africa, it was a passion project and circumstances beyond our control made it impossible to continue. We saved all the information and carried it here. Geraldine and Pascal will try to keep it up to date and add more information as time goes by, you may even find a tour or two in the future.

Our team has prepared a list that would help you to prepare for your visit to our beautiful South Africa. We trust that this will make your trip more pleasant and hassle-free.

Travel papers

Your passport will be your means of identification throughout your trip. We recommend that it be valid for six months from your date of arrival, this may avoid issues at border-crossings, or purchases where identification is necessary.

Currently South African rules regarding entry into the country change on a regular basis. Please check with your local South African consulate or embassy regarding the documentation requirements for yourself and minors travelling with you. A good practice when coming to South Africa with younger people is to have their original unabridged birth certificates translated into English and keep them on your person.

Get a certified copy of all your original travel papers and carry these separately to your originals. You might consider scanning them and keeping them online where you can access them in case of loss. Also, bring the contact information of your embassy and consulate in South Africa.

For detailed information refer to the Government Gazette no. 37679 and the Immigration Act 13 of 2002

Declare all your valuable items such as laptops, mobile phones, tablets, and cameras at your customs before leaving your home country, it may make easier to get back in with these items. Take pictures or make copies of serial numbers and have an affidavit signed that you owned these items before leaving your country.

Driver's licence

We have an extensive section on driving in South Africa here.

We recommend that all people able to drive have their driving and international driving licenses with them.

If more than one driver is driving the rental car, please list every driver on the booking form with your travel or rental car agency.
Reason: it avoids time delays and complications on arrival.

Insurance and valuable items

We highly recommend that all your valuable items such as laptops, mobile phones, tablets, cameras and electronic devices are insured.  Speak to your insurance provider and make sure that each item is specified individually and fully covered for international travel before leaving.

Do not carry unnecessary valuable items while travelling.


South Africa is relatively well-equipped for people with disabilities. Wheelchair access is widespread and in many cases a legislative requirement. If you are going to travel by bus, advise your travel agency at the time of booking of your special needs. Many bus operators have special buses for people with wheelchairs.

Other special needs

If you have special requirements, inform your travel agent or accommodations when making your bookings. These include religious (Halaal, Kosher, vegetarian or other), dietary and allergic requirements so they can cater to your needs.