This expat guide offers information and advice if you are moving to South Africa. Click on the different tabs to find out about anything from tax rules and banking to education and cultural highlights.
Moving to South Africa
Expats move to South Africa for its outdoor lifestyle, high standard of living and a business environment with plenty of opportunity. Retirees are drawn by the wonderful climate, relatively cheap cost of living and access to beachfront homes for affordable prices. The most popular cities for expats moving to South Africa are Cape Town and Johannesburg.
The economy is fairly stable and the policies of the left-leaning ANC-led government are tempered by a constitution that enshrines minority rights and private property rights. Crime is perceived as a major problem affecting both private citizens and businesses. Private security is therefore essential and can easily be contracted for affordable rates.
Moving to South Africa gives many advantages to the expat. Within its borders there is considerable diversity and splendid natural beauty. From the 24-hour bustle of Johannesburg's business centre, to the beach and mountain framed vistas of Cape Town, South Africa offers the prospect of space, clean air, and abundant opportunities for business and leisure activities. You have an idiosyncratic combination of first and third world elements here that many find exciting, despite the problems that such a mixture presents.
So many cultures competing for resources against an historical background of Apartheid leads to tensions and true national reconciliation is some way off yet.
Many reputable companies offer shipping and air freight services to South Africa. Cost usually depends on volume of goods, as well as length of time involved in shipping. Air freight services are more expensive, although quicker. Some companies also offer storage services and insurance on goods.
Note that the postal service is unreliable and packages must be insured against theft and delay.
Shipping pets to South Africa requires a Veterinary Health Certificate, or equivalent, and may involve a quarantine period of three to six months.
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