Money / Finances[edit | edit source]

Some general information on money for our trip.

The amount of currency you can take into South Africa in cash is limited to 5000 ZAR (South African Rand; £440 approx.) or equivalent (not sure how this is policed - I mean what is stopping me stuffing my shoe with money?)

There is a high incidence of credit card fraud and fraud involving ATMs. You should be vigilant to ensure your PIN is not observed by others when withdrawing money from an ATM. Refuse offers of assistance from bystanders. Do not change large sums of money in busy public areas.

Closely protect any documents containing details of credit cards, PINs or bank accounts.

Maybe preload travel cards instead of much money or travellers cheques. Can be used just like cash cards then. Obviously be careful with the advice above though. - my boss has suggested that pre-pay cards are a pain to use in many places, and that credit cards are better.

Having thought about it a bit, Roy and I thnk that maybe the way to go is take cash in, and then get as much cash out from an ATM as possible as a one time (hopefully) thing. Then just take small amouns of cash out to coevr each individual day.

Some info on using ATMs and general security:

Beating the ATM scams

Follow the rules listed below and you'll cut your chances of becoming a crime statistic while withdrawing cash from an ATM:

  • Avoid ATMs at night and in secluded places. Rows of machines in shopping malls are usually the safest.
  • Most ATMs in banks have security guards. If there's no guard around when you're withdrawing cash, watch your back, or get someone else to watch it for you.
  • Watch the people using the ATM ahead of you carefully. If they look suspicious, go to another machine.
  • Use ATMs during banking hours and if possible take a friend. If your card is jammed in a machine then one person stays at the ATM and the other seeks assistance from the bank.
  • When you put your card into the ATM press cancel immediately. If the card is returned then you know there is no blockage in the machine and it should be safe to proceed.
  • Don't hesitate to be rude in refusing any offers of help to complete your transaction. If someone does offer, end your transaction immediately and find another machine.
  • Carry your bank's emergency phone number, and if you do lose your card report it immediately.

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