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What should I bring with me?
Toiletries and any personal medication.
Plug adaptors for your i-Pod and camera chargers. South Africa uses 230V AC, 50Hz,
15 amp, three pronged (round pin) plugs for electricity.
Sunscreen, sunglasses and a hat or cap, especially if you are not used to being in the sun.
Shoes suitable for walking up Table Mountain (eg sturdy trainers or hiking boots).
Extra toiletries and clothes can be easily and fairly cheaply bought in Cape Town so do not overpack!
You do not need to bring bedding or bed linen.
Please bring your own towels including a beach towel in summer

What is the weather like in Cape Town?
The average winter temperature is 18 Celsius and the average summer 25 Celsius.  Summers are dry and very hot while winters can get intermittent rain and have mild temperatures. South African houses seldom have airconditioning or heating, so bring warm clothes in winter.

What accommodation will I have?
You will not be in dormitory or bunk-style accommodation. You may have to share a room and bathroom with another volunteer.

How will I get around?
Volunteers Direct will collect you from the airport on arrival and take you back on departure. We will also take you to your projects in the morning. You will be transported back from the full day projects in the evening. For the half day projects you will use public transport to get back to the volunteer accommodation. Transport to other activities not included in the project fee are for your own account.

What about meals during my stay?

We will provide you with the groceries to make your own breakfast and lunch. During the week you will be served healthy home cooked evening meals. On weekends you will be provided with food to prepare at your convenience.

What about my special dietary requirements?

Please indicate on your application form if you have any special dietary requirements which we will try and accommodate.

Do I have to have any vaccinations?

No, unless you intend to travel to the rest of Southern Africa (yellow fever and malaria prophylactics recommended).

How much money will I need to bring with me?

All costs connected to your volunteer project are covered in your fee. How much money you bring depends on how many other activities you want to experience on weekends and before or after your project. Also consider how often you would like to go out in the evenings or to restaurants.

Is it safe?

Cape Town successfully hosted nine 2010 Fifa World Cup matches without serious incident. But, as with all big cities across the world, it is wise to take commonsense precautions. Do not venture into unlit areas at night, do not carry larges sums of cash and be aware of your surroundings. Do not leave your possessions unattended when in public, like on the beach or out at night. The legal drinking age in South Africa is 18.

What happens if I get ill?

Cape Town has world class medical and dental facilities. We will take you to the doctor if you get ill but please ensure that you have adequate medical insurance when you travel.

Will I have Internet, email and telephone access?

There are many Internet cafes in Cape Town, which charge about R20 per hour (approximately 2.5 dollars, 2 pounds, 2 euros) to use the Internet and access your email.

Can I rent a car or scooter?

If you are over 18 (the legal driving age), have an international driver’s licence, a credit card in your name and the relevant insurance.  Volunteers Direct takes no responsibility for volunteers who choose to drive themselves. South Africans drive on the left and the standard of driving is very variable.

Who does my laundry?
You will do your own laundry. Some of the homes are equipped with washing machines and dryers. Laundromats are inexpensive and close to all accommodation.

Do I need a visa?

Most international passport holders will get a 90 day tourist visa on entering South Africa. For more information check http://www.home-affairs.gov.za/visa_schedule.asp

What will I do when I am not my project?

Cape Town has many cultural and sport activities, as well as historical places of interest. In addition to exploring the city and surrounds, you may want to catch up on your studying or simply relax on the beach. We encourage you to make the most of your time here and to be independent on weekends when you are not working.