South Africa is one of the most popular tourist destinations in the world and filled with exciting things to do.
However, the crime rate there is known to be high, so you have to be very careful. If you are not cautious enough, you could end up getting mugged or attacked. If you, however, take the proper precautions and trust your instincts, you should have a perfectly safe and pleasant time in South Africa. Here are seven ways you can stay safe in South Africa.
Take Advice from Locals
Do not hesitate to ask the locals for advice about how you can stay safe. Ask taxi drivers, hotel staff and even waiters about which areas to avoid. Most of them will be glad to tell you about the nice parts of town and the sketchy areas.
Go on Tours
If you are nervous about running into bad neighborhoods, take a few different tours. The guides of these tours normally know the safest routes to take and you will be safer with a group. Make sure to book your tour at least a few days ahead of time.
Do not Go on a Safari By Yourself
Safaris are very popular in South Africa and can provide you with an experience of a lifetime. However, there are wild animals out there and anything can happen. That is why you should avoid driving into the reserves by yourself and go with a guide. The guides are armed with weapons and know what to do if they are approached by wild animals.
Use Your Common Sense
If you just use your common sense and do not take obvious risks, you probably won’t have any trouble in South Africa. For example, avoid carrying a lot of cash with you when you go out at night. You should also avoid wearing flashy accessories and leaving your bag unattended.
Do not Go Out Alone at Night
Because most crimes happen at night, it is not a smart idea to go out by yourself at night. If thieves and criminals see you walking alone at night, they will see you as an easy target. If you want to go out to a club or restaurant at night, bring at least one friend with you.
Be Cautious When Using ATM Machines
If you need to get money out of an ATM machine, be very cautious. Be sure to use ATMs that are in well-lit areas and keep your PIN covered. If people start gathering around you, leave the area and try to find a different ATM.
Be Aware of the Hot Sun
The sun in South Africa can get really hot, so you have to be careful. If you are going to be outside for a long period of time, make sure to wear sunscreen. If your skin is very sensitive to the skin, you should also wear a hat, sunglasses and a long-sleeved shirt.
If you follow these helpful tips, you should be very safe while you are in South Africa. Remember to relax and take a lot of photos during your trip.
Louise Trainor writes about a number of travel-related subjects. She particularly enjoys sharing her experiences of South Africa. Click for a list of hotels in Johannesburg.