Weak rand good news for South African Safari Holidays

The struggling rand is welcome news for travellers contemplating a safari holiday to South Africa this year. The currency has plummeted following the fall in the value of significant exports such as platinum, gold and diamonds and whereas a year ago a pound would have bought 12.45 rand, today you’d receive 18, adding spending power to your holiday purse. In a country known for its fine wine and excellent cuisine, this means visitors can not only travel relatively inexpensively but dine out very comfortably indeed.

Our South Africa expert, Albee Yeend, is a frequent visitor to the country, where she has a home in Plettenberg Bay. “I have visited South Africa every year for 16 years and always found it to be an inexpensive place to go relative to other destinations. However, the last year in particular has seen significant changes. Clients travelling in January this year, for example, reported enjoying a gourmet four course meal including wine at a five star hotel for 545 rand per person, just £29. An equivalent meal at a similar standard London hotel would cost in the region of £87.”

The difference is also demonstrated in the overall cost of a holiday. A 12 night holiday including flights, car rental and stays in Cape Town, Franschhoek, Hermanus, Plettenberg Bay and the Eastern Cape would have cost £2,965 a year ago. The same holiday itinerary today is £2,255.

The fall is welcome news for local tourism and fringe industries that depend on visitors for their income and is expected to lead to a rise in visitor numbers in 2014.

For more information on holidays to South Africa, including South African safaris, contact our Africa expert, Albee Yeend on +44 (0)1242 787800.