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It’s time to discover some of the hidden, fun getaways our beautiful country has to offer now that safe local travel has been given the green light.

Help boost the local tourism industry by supporting local travel enterprises. They in turn are offering plenty of budget-friendly special deals  Look out for local getaways that are safe and fun.

places with spaces

South Africa has open spaces and fresh air in bucket loads. We have more than 3 000 kms of coastline to explore. A safari is another way of enjoying the outdoors away from the crowds. Consider hiking trips or mountain escapes and explore the Drakensberg if you’re close to Durban, or the Cederberg just outside Cape Town.

hit the road

Instead of hopping on an aeroplane,  pack the boiled eggs and coffee flask and embark on an old-fashioned road trip. Self-drive destinations, such as Sun City and the Garden Route, are popular. Make sure you have plenty of snacks for your journey.

safety first

Airbnb has introduced stringent cleaning policies to assure guests that their accommodation is safe. For some travellers, the minimal person-to-person contact which Airbnb accommodation offers provides an additional layer of protection. This is not to say that hotels are not safe. Most have made a significant effort to ensure that the health of guests is paramount by adhering to the Tourism Business Council of South Africa (TBCSA), World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC) and World Health Organization (WHO) guidelines.

Sun International says an independent epidemiologist signed off its COVID-19 protocols. A stay in one of the group’s hotels is “safer than staying at your home”, says Chief Operations Officer for Hospitality, Graham Wood. Many hotel groups have also relaxed their cancellation policies to accommodate possible changes to government regulations.

the great outdoors

Camping is back in vogue, thanks to the allure of being able to enjoy nature at a socially-distanced campsite. Check that the ablution blocks are sanitised regularly. Clean your hands thoroughly after touching communal surfaces.

Top tips for savvy travellers

  • Pack an extra mask. Many airports now have vending machines with masks.
  • Always travel with hand sanitiser and wet wipes to clean surfaces.
  • If possible, bring your own utensils in a sealed container.
  • Carry your own water bottle.
  • Keep your toiletries in a bag instead of packing them out on the counter when you’re at a hotel.
  • Check on the “Opus4business” app which allows businesses to record and keep track of their compliance with health regulations. The Travel Safe-Eat Safe Certification, which verifies that social distancing, cleaning and health screen procedures have been followed, is linked to the app.
  • Check whether the accommodation or restaurant you are planning to visit is certified before you arrive.