How to Import Your Car Into South Africa

Most expats sell their cars in their home country when they leave and buy a new one in South Africa. But what if someone doesn’t want to give their car up? Maybe it’s a vintage model or a custom-made dream car, or maybe they’ve just grown attached to a specific model that isn’t available in South Africa. Whatever the reason for wanting to keep your current car, there are ways to make it happen.

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Applying for a South African Visa

If you’re an expat sent to South Africa by your multinational company, in all likelihood your visa is being sourced for you by the company lawyer, and all you have to do is gather the documents they tell you to gather (which, trust me, is painful enough). However, you might just decide to move to South Africa on a whim. Or join your fiance, who is South African (this seems to happen quite a bit, at least to the group of people who contact me for advice). Or join your expat spouse and decide you also want to work.

Let’s get some terminology out of the way first. The piece of paper or rather the stamp you need in your passport to enter the country is called a visa. That’s just to get in. If you want to work, you need a work permit. However, the new visa regulations issued this year apparently have ... 

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How Do I Obtain or Renew a Study Permit for a South African School?

I was astounded how much discussion my recent blog post about the scarcity of space at Johannesburg private schools spurred. While I was aware that this was beginning to pose a problem for expats in South Africa, I didn’t know how dire the situation had already become.

 But it also prompted questions of a more technical nature concerning attendance at South African schools, and I’d like to highlight one such question from my Facebook Page and some answers here. The QUESTION:

Does anyone have any experience ... 

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Retiring in South Africa

No, I’m not quite talking about retirement yet. We still have four kids to shepherd through college, so the prospect of us retiring anytime soon is about as unlikely as completing a customer service call with Telkom without being hung up on at least once.

Unless I turn this blog into a book that ... 

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Just Two Flimsy Pieces of Paper, Yet All that Could Stand Between You and a Prison Cell

For all those of you moving to South Africa or simply taking a trip here, I thought I would share this cautionary tale. It’s actually a gem of a story I just happened to stumble upon last night, and ever on the hunt for writing material, I was practically already writing it while I heard it told.

We were all at a “girl’s night out” dinner, and the food by the way was fabulous. Then our hostess made us all play a game, in return for the fabulous food, and the game was “write something no one knows about you on a piece of paper and pull someone else’s paper from ... 

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I’m REALLY pissed!

Just about a week ago, when musing about our upcoming South African visa renewals, I was joking – JOKING! – that maybe the Department of Home Affairs would make us go through the whole circus of police clearances and medical certificates again. But of course I was very secure in  my assumption ... 

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