Cash or credit? Carrying cash in South Africa?

Jody

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What's your thoughts on carrying cash in South Africa? Should I convert to the rand or do most places accept US cash? Or am I better off with a credit card? The I'm not looking to carry around a ton of cash, just enough to do a little shopping.
Which brings me to my next question, anyone know of a good shop in Kimberley to pick up gifts for the wife and daughters?
 

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I took and used both. If your outfitter does not accept credit cards then bring extra cash for extra animals you decide you must have. And there will be some. I exchanged some dollars for Rand for small purchases and tips etc. I used a credit card for the hotel, sighting trips, larger stores for items to bring home and such. I also brought a few different Rand home to keep. At least the ones I kept on me and the San Francisco TSA did not steal out of my check in bag in a locked box I used for ammo on my way over to SA.
 

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I took and used both. ..................

I withdrew Rand at an ATM for small purchases and brought some dollars for tips etc.

Shopping in Kimberley. Sorry on that one. One day maybe. Let me know what you find.
 

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Hi Jody,

Along with the good advice you have already gotten, you will find that most, if not all business establishments accept the major credit cards. Using your cards will also ensure you the best exchange rate. Check with your particular provider to see if they will charge you an extra fee for making international charges. Some companies do and some don't.

Many outfitters and some businesses accept U.S. cash and some even prefer it. Still, it's not a bad idea to get some Rand to have on hand. There are ATMs in all the major airports, and any ATM card within the Cirrus network will work. Also, the conversion rates at the ATMs are usually much better than the commission charged at the currency exchange kiosks. The only downside to the ATMs is that you are limited to $300 per day withdrawal.

I can't offer any shopping advice for Kimberley, but most outfitters are well aware of all of the good curio shopping in their area, and I'm sure they will allow for some opportunity for you to shop along they way. As a last resort, there is a massive gift shop in OR Tambo Airport in Jo'burg, called Out Of Africa. They actually have some very nice authentic art, curios, clothing, and jewelry at pretty good prices..... I don't know if your travels have you overnighting in Jo'burg at the Afton Guest House or not, but they also have an in-house gift shop and offer some really nice quality African themed jewelry... At least, that's what my wife says... Enjoy your safari!
 

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Always have some Rand on you. Its a lot easier to use for tips, small purchases, fuel etc.. Credit cards, Visa or preferably Master Card (accepted more widely) debit cards are fine. You can get multi-currency cards from most institutions and airlines. Pre-load only with the amount of forex you expect to use.

Unless you are dealing in tens of thousands of US$ or Euros, quibbling over exchange rates (for me) is a pointless exercise. You may save one or two hundred over very large amounts, but compared to safari costs its negligible.

People seem happy to pay 1-200 for someone to do their RSA firearms paperwork for them and then get their nickers in a twist over exchange rates.
 

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Howdy Jody,

I wouldn't venture to far out in KIM. Get with your PH, they can get you to a curio shop & such. Good luck!

BWH
 

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Thanks again guys, once again most helpful. This trip felt real today. Booked my airline today so I'm heading to Africa in July.
 

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Best of luck to you!!!! Feel free to ever inquire! This place is an encyclopedia.... But better!!!
 

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Enjoy!!! July is middle of winter there, can be cold or sunny and warm!! Great time to be in South Africa!
 

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I had a few Hundred Rand and a Few Hundred in USD, I also had a Nice Money belt that had Trophy Fee Money in it
 

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Something to consider for folks going to South Africa. There are approximately 12 SA Rand(SAR) to the US Dollar(USD) today 3-6-2015. So, a deposit of $10,000 USD coverted to SAR today would be approximately 120,000 SAR. Put that in a South African bank or hold onto the Rands yourself or put it down as a deposit on a hunt. The US Dollar is not likely to the hold this level of exchange for long term and some currency experts believe the USD is at or near its top value now. If that is the case, one could speculate that in the next 6 months to 2 years the US Dollar will likely be worth significantly less than the current exchange rate. As an example, if the US Dollar/SA Rand decreases to 8 SAR per USD, when you covert your 120,000 Rand back to US Dollars, you will have $15,000 USD. Possible? In June 2011, the USD/SAR exchange rate was 6.6. Also consider, the hunt that cost $10,000 USD in June 2011 and costs $10,000 USD today is almost two times as "expensive" in less than 4 years. Thinking about the exchange rates could help finance a hunt, if you could make early deposits to outfitters which convert USD to SAR and then have them apply payment based on conversion rates when you actually do the hunt. The USD may never be as strong as it is right now. You might consider taking advantage of it, if you can make the appropriate arrangements. Just a thought.
 

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The US Dollar is not likely to the hold this level of exchange for long term and some currency experts believe the USD is at or near its top value now.

hope this is correct , the exchange on the aussie dollar ,sucks right now .
its within a cent of what it was back in 2009 when we put up the deposit for our 2010 hunt .
now ive got a big taxidermy and freight bill to sort out , at an expense of plus 25%...........:A Thumbs Down:
 

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I take a mix of currency.

Larger town and cities will take your credit card.

For trinket and gift shopping, Smaller towns and vendor rows will want Rands.

Tips in Rands was a welcome to the trackers as they rely on the PH to make the exchange for them.
 

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