8+ South Africa Review Blog Posts

The time has come to wrap up my series of South Africa posts after two months.
I cannot wait to return, and I am so grateful for the opportunity.

If you have not seen my previous South Africa posts, read and save them below.

Why I am Traveling to South Africa

10 Lessons Learned First Solo International Trip

Places to Stay in South Africa

6 Things to Do in Cape Town

36 Hours in Johannesburg

Carry-On Travel Experience

Why I love Qatar Airways

My Essence Music Festival Experience

Mango Airlines Flight Experience

My Amazing South African Experience as a Foodie

As a final post in the series, I am incorporating my rounded up expenses.

I budgeted $2000, and I did pretty well...for the most part.

I failed to budget for the bills that would be deducting additionally, so it felt like more money lost than saved. All I know is if I was to ever go to a place like Cuba, where I won’t have such easy access to an ATM. After this lesson, I am more than prepared.

I learned that I could save money by:

  • Not returning to Johannesburg (that was an extra couple of days of accommodations, food, and transportation)
  • Booking the local in-country flight months in advance when I spotted the cheaper price on a different airline
  • Not eating out just so I can be in the presence of other people; I knew damn well I had another country to go to afterward, however, being on a solo trip can get lonely at times, so my yearning for social engagements lost over the “strict” budget I was on at times.
  • Mapping closely the distance from my Airbnb from my places of interest (I could have been a wee bit closer to save on transportation)

Keep in mind that at the time that I went, the Currency Rate was 1 USD=13 ZAR(Rand)

Here’s the breakdown my expenses as a way to give you a sense of what to expect and what not to do:

8+ South Africa Blog Posts | Zaakirah Nayyar


South Africa + Germany Flight on Qatar Airways: $393

Insurance via Priceline: $37

Flight ATL to NYC: 5,000+ points on SouthWest Airlines only paid $5.60 tax

Flight from Berlin to NYC: $369 (had to upgrade $100 just to pay for a checked baggage and food on low-cost Norweigan)

Flight from NYC to BNA via Southwest Airlines: $139

Flight to Cape Town via Mango Airlines: $94

Flight to Durban via Mango Airlines: $67

Flight to Johannesburg via Mango Airlines: $51

TOTAL: $1155.60



Airbnb Johannesburg: $105 (4 nights)

Guest House Cape Town: $176 (4 nights)

Airbnb Durban: $233 (4 nights, plus service fee, plus some food)

Airbnb Johannesburg: $28 (1 night)




Nashville MegaBus to ATL Airport: $27

Metro NYC to and from Airport: $9

UBER: $235.77

Gautrain (Johannesburg train system): $45.51


(Eating Out-smh-but the food was good): $341.70

Groceries for my accommodations: $30.77


(With an incredible exchange rate, I couldn’t resist):

Clinique from TruWorths: $177.48

Skirt: $25.72

White Shirt from H&M $5.80

Sandals: $23

South Africa Flag Magnet: $2.22

South Africa Map: $7.39

Total: $241.61



Free Walking Tour Tip: $1.85

Hop On Hop Off Cape Town: $20.05

Queenie Johannesburg Tour: $55

Beach Party: $20

Essence Festival: $33

Total: $129.90

GRAND TOTAL: $2,758.83

SO what lesson did YOU learn from this post? Chime in below!

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8+ South Africa Blog Posts | Zaakirah Nayyar