Traveling to a country like South Africa is one thing, and to stay safe in South Africa is another thing. Are you preparing to travel to South Africa or you reside there already? Are you bothered about the news you’ve heard concerning the xenophobic attacks over there?
Well, while the media may give the impression exaggerated to a native South African, it shouldn’t be to tourists and people of other nationalities traveling there – and more so to Nigerians. When the killers of the renowned reggae performer Lucky Dube were arrested, they admitted they had followed him from the airport before they shot him close to his house. They were thinking he was a Nigerian.
Nigerians need to stay safe in South Africa. It is correct that citizens from all races have been suffered crime in South Africa, but it seems Nigerians have been targeted more as victims of hate crime in recent times. This is a more reason why our citizens living over there need to stay safe in South Africa.
Whether as a Nigerian or citizen from other nationalities, you must take extra caution when traveling to South Africa for the first time, to settle down for business or to raise a family.
The following are some of the guidelines to stay safe in South Africa:
- Stay safe in South Africa #1 Know where to go and where to avoid
If you stay in Johannesburg, it is safer to avoid places like Hill brow, Yeoville, and Berea because their crime rates in all these places are very high both in the day and at night. They must be avoided at all cost. Except you’re going with a group that is well-known to you and who are aware of the dangers in these areas. Another area you can avoid if you want to stay safe in South Africa is Alexandra, it is next to the road that takes you from the airport to Sandton. This place is very dangerous and even locals or natives don’t go there for no reason unless they are prepared to face off with hardened criminals.
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- Stay safe in South Africa #2 Do not fight daylight robbers
If you get confronted by criminals in broad daylight at the angle of any streets, do not fight it. It is advisable to simply hand over your valuables and try not to negotiate or play smart. Record of high crimes in South Africa are carried out by criminal groups and they are often deadly when they strike in the day or at dusk, so learn to be cooperative so that you can stay safe in South Africa.
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- Stay safe in South Africa #3 Don’t flaunt your valuables
Nobody needs to tell you this one for you to stay safe in South Africa. That majority of attacks, murders, and other crimes are concentrated in a few areas plagued by drug use or destabilizing factors. Therefore, be very careful how you display your credit cards or flaunt cash when using the ATM machine or carry yourself when leaving a shopping mall or restaurant.
- Stay safe in South Africa #4 Live closer to your own people
When you live among people that are of the same nationality to you this will make you stay safe in South Africa. If you’re a Nigerian, live in areas dominated by Nigerians; if you’re American, live in placed dominated by Americans; if you’re Chinese, stay and do business in areas dominated by the Chinese.
- Stay safe in South Africa #5 Be conscious and be ready for emergencies
You must be ready for emergencies by always having your mobile phone with you. This will always help you in contacting somebody in case you’re in trouble. You should call the numbers 10111 if you’re ever in an emergency and need police response. This is the same as 911 and always leave original documents in a safe place and keep valuables locked away with hotel management. All these will make you stay safe in South Africa and also enjoy your stay there.