The short answer is it is as safe as you make it. And that applies for travelling in any country. Be sensible, be aware and be informed about local dangers. If you’re unsure about something, ask. Also, don’t flaunt expensive jewellery, bags, cell phones, laptops, sunglasses and the like in poor or isolated areas.

Here are a few guidelines that can help you enjoy a safe and happy holiday.

  • Make sure you book into a reputable hotel or guest house in a safe area with adequate security. That includes keycard entrance facilities, doormen or other security services, safes for your valuables and burglar bars on the windows.
  • Talk to your hosts about areas and attractions that are safe to visit and which areas to avoid.
  • Don’t put yourself in isolated situations. Walking alone at night or in dodgy areas is asking for trouble. Be aware of pickpockets and scam artists. Although it is quite safe to shop alone in decent shopping centres and malls, it is still a good idea to hold on tightly to your handbag and purchases. Stick with groups going to the same events or places of interest.
  • Do not use minibus taxis. Many of them are not roadworthy and operate below the legal radar. On the other hand, cab companies are safe to use.
  • If you take a connecting or local flight, make use of the facility that wraps your bags in plastic at the airport, ensuring that nothing will disappear from them between destinations.
  • Don’t drive alone, especially at night. Smash-and-grab incidents, hijackings and harassment from beggars at traffic lights abound.
  • When on safari, do listen to the guides. There is a reason why they warn you not to leave the vehicle, not to open the windows widely and not to feed the animals.

The best thing to do is to contact Rhino Shuttles to drive you wherever you want to go. We will pick you up at the airport and drop you off at your hotel or guest house, take you on a Soweto tour, a wildlife safari, Gold Reef City and many more places of interest.

But do visit South Africa. When you head home you will relish relating your adventures to friends and family – unique experiences like watching a cheetah hunting its prey at 120km/h, visiting the site where our ancestors originated, descending into the depths of a gold mine and living it up at a township shebeen.