Preparations for South Africa Trip
Trip Start Jan 20, 2012
22Trip End Feb 04, 2012
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Today I begin taking my anti-malarial pills. I was instructed to begin taking them 2 days before my trip begins, everyday during the trip and a full week after I return. While in Kruger national Park I will be in a high malarial area. Since malaria is transmitted by mosquitoes and they love me….I'm going to follow doctors orders on this one. In addition to the drugs, I am bringing the following mosquito prevention items:
Insect repellant containing Deet
Avon skin so soft lotion
Dryer sheets (carry one on you as they don’t like the smell)
Insect repellant towelettes
Nothing succeeds like excess right?
South African Currency
When I travel I use my debit card to get local currency from ATMs and that usually works well
Currently there are 8.03 rand in one US dollar. So, when I see something with a price tag of 2400 ZAR I will divide by 8 and know that it will cost me about $30. I have also have a currency conversion application on my iphone to assist with that process.
Driving/Purchasing Gas for Car
Look out South Africa…an American on the road! I got my “International Driver’s License “ at the AAA Center and yes, I will be renting a car and driving on the left side of the road while sitting on the right side of the car. I got my training on that while driving in Ireland about 10 years ago
Luckily the current price of gas in South Africa is about $2.62 per gallon according to the money.cnn.com website. I’m not sure if they have self-service stations or if they pump it for you. I’ll soon find out.
My iphone has international calling available so I can use it when necessary but at a rate of $1.69 per minute I won’t be making many calls. And, using data out of the country is also very expensive if you use the 3G network. But, if you are in a wi-fi area you are not roaming and do not incur data fees. So, I will turn off the roaming setting on the phone, look for those wi-fi hotspots and only make limited calls. I may also purchase a local phone once I am there if I can find one for a reasonable price so I can contact the people I will be staying with during my travels.
My passport is up to date with more than 6 months before it expires and plenty of blank pages for country stamps. No Visa is required for US Citizens to enter South Africa.
My suitcase is almost packed and filled with all the khaki/green/safari/Columbia sportswear clothes I own
Two more days of anticipation and then I'm on my way!