Safety Tips

Welcome to the rainbow nation of South Africa. These safety tips are provided for your safety and that of your loved ones.

General Safety Tips

  • Do not attract unwarranted attention by openly displaying cash, expensive jewellery, cameras and other valuables.
  • Carry your wallet, credit cards, passport and other travel documents in your inside and front pockets.
  • Avoid carrying large sums of money, particularly foreign currency.
  • Avoid strange, dark, poorly illuminated or isolated places.
  • Avoid traveling and exploring on your own.
  • Plan your travel routes before hand.
  • Practice safe sex.
  • Carry certified copies of your passport, ID and travel documents.
  • Tag your luggage and belongings for easy identification and contract procedures.

Motor Vehicle Safety Tips

  • Follow the applicable general tips above.
  • As in anywhere in the world, remember that your personal safety in a vehicle is strongly dependent on YOU. Make sure :
    • All windows are fully closed
    • Doors are locked
    • Gearlock is secured when parked
    • Alarm is switched on
    • Valuables are locked away - AT ALL TIMES, EVEN WHEN TRAVELING!
  • Plan your route in advance.
  • Ensure you have sufficient fuel and that your vehicle is ina roadworthy condition.
  • Fasten your seatbelt, lock your doors and keep your windows shut.
  • Avoid displaying valuables openly in the vehicle to avoid smash-and-grab crime. Lock your valuables in the boot (trunk).
  • Be alert at traffic lights and stop streets.
  • Leave enough space around the vehicle for a quick getaway.
  • If you are softly bumped from behind and the individuals involved looks suspect, proceed to the nearest police station to report the incident - do not get out of the car.
  • NEVER pick up strangers.
  • NEVER entertain the advances of street beggars and "ladies of the night".
  • It is illegal to use your cell phone whilst driving - use a hands free kit.
  • At night, park in well illuminated areas. When returning to your vehicle, have your keys ready to unlock your car.
  • If you are lost and concerned about the safety of the area you are in, Phone 10111, 0829111 (24 Hours) or 112 on your cell phone.

At Your Hotel / Accommodation

  • Do not leave your luggage and belongings unattended.
  • Store valuables in the hotel's safe deposit box at reception or in your room's safe.
  • Keep your hotel room and any sliding doors/windows locked at all times.
  • Never open your room door unless you have identified the person who has knocked on your door. If in doubt contact reception for verification.
  • It is advisable to hand your keys of your room at reception when going out.
  • Do not entertain the unwarranted advances of undesirable, strange or suspicious persons. Report such persons to management.
  • Use the main entrance of the hotel when you arrive late at night.

On The Street

  • Follow the applicable general tips above.
  • If possible, plan your route before.
  • Where possible, explore the streets in groups and stick to well illuminated, busy streets.
  • Beware of your surroundings, be alert.
  • Walk on or close to the curb and face on-coming traffic.
  • Avoid alley-ways and dense shrubs/bushes.
  • Use credit cards instead of cash where possible.
  • Avoid ostentatious displays of wealth.
  • If you require any information approach a policeman, traffic officer, Security officer or shopkeeper.
  • Avoid jogging or cycling alone and at night - plan your route before hand.
  • Vary your daily routine.
  • Should you wish to use a taxi, your hotel or the local tourism information centre will recommend a reliable service to you.

Automated Banking (ATM)

  • Follow the general tips and other street tips above.
  • Have your ATM card out and ready to use.
  • If you are suspicious of anything or anyone - cancel your transaction and leave immediately.
  • Avoid ATM machines which are isolated or poorly illuminated.
  • Never allow strangers to assist you with your transaction.
  • Keep your secret code to yourself and do not let anyone look over your shoulder whilst keying in your code.
  • When your transaction is complete, secure your cash and move off immediately. You can count it later.

On The Beach

  • Swim at the beaches manned by life guards and between swimming beacons.
  • Avoid bringing valuables to the beach.
  • The African Sun can BURN - use a high sunscreen factor sun protection cream.
  • Do not take breakables (e.g. glass bottles) to the beach.
  • Avoid mixing alcohol and soft drinks.

How To React In An Emergency

  • Do not panic.
  • Think laterally.
  • Talk your way out of the situation.
  • Do not resist unless you know that such resistance will lead to your escape.
  • If your instincts are to physically resist - do not hold back.
  • If circumstances dictate that you must not resist, concentrate on noting the physical description and other notable features of your accoster.
  • In a robbery or hi-jacking situation - do as you are told.
  • Do not argue or challenge your accoster and do not look directly into his eyes.
  • Keep your hands still and visible.
  • If you need to undo a seatbelt - ask first.
  • Remember you can replace your valuables and your vehicle, but not your life.

Umhlanga Emergency Numbers

  • SAPS Durban North (031) 560 8004 or (031) 560 8009 031 or (031) 560 8101
  • Flying Squad 10111
  • Crime Stop 0800 111 213