Johannesburg safety questions

Old Apr 16th, 2024, 04:09 PM
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Johannesburg safety questions

Aloha,
I値l be spending 2 nights in Johannesburg (City Lodge) before heading to Botswana next month and hoping one of you can shed some light on safety concerns? Will spend bulk of time in hotel recovering from loooong flights but we did want to do a bit of daytime shopping (some of that beautiful African fabric and quality crafts). However, after reading travel advisories I知 concerned about safety. I am female and travel partners include one female and one male.
Appreciate any advise as well as if safe, best place to shop.

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Old Apr 18th, 2024, 06:45 AM
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Originally Posted by live_aloha
Aloha,
I値l be spending 2 nights in Johannesburg (City Lodge) before heading to Botswana next month and hoping one of you can shed some light on safety concerns? Will spend bulk of time in hotel recovering from loooong flights but we did want to do a bit of daytime shopping (some of that beautiful African fabric and quality crafts). However, after reading travel advisories I知 concerned about safety. I am female and travel partners include one female and one male.
Appreciate any advise as well as if safe, best place to shop.

I've never had a problem in about three stays there. I took normal taxis, but mostly taxis set up by the hotel. I even drove into the CBD to look around and take a few photos (I'm not recommending doing that). We went to Soweto with a private driver and walked around and ate lunch.

KIM SACKS might be the best-curated shop for handcrafts from all over sub=Saharan Africa. Her wares are very different than the ones you will see in the various "handcraft markets," or "African markets," But both are fine, and safe. Kim Sacks has fixed price and is not what I would call cheap, but here wares are spectacular the the sales persons are willing to share lot of information...

https://kimsacks.com
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Old Apr 19th, 2024, 12:03 PM
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Thank you so much for your response and information….much appreciated!
Interestingly last trip (2020) we took Uber to the Apartheid Museum, had a great driver with no problems or concerns whatsoever. Don’t think I read as much on safety concerns prior to departure as I did this time…..So you can manage my concerns now. Guess the same could be said for many US cities though and probably better to be aware than clueless. Again, thank you for taking the time to share your experience. Aloha!
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Old May 2nd, 2024, 11:00 PM
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For the most part I would say you are safe especially if doing shopping in Sandton and Rosebank
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Old May 3rd, 2024, 05:04 AM
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I would think that last post is certainly true.
One things you might reconsider if you are an easily morning jogger. A pilot friends of ours was jogging very early in the morning and had a threatening experience.

When I walked in the CBD I felt fine but I knew not to wander around too far from whee our driver has parked and was waiting for me...I wanted to get a feel for that area.
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Old May 4th, 2024, 05:35 AM
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Aloha, and many thanks for your responses. We are now in Johannesburg and just had an unsettling experience I wanted to share. Took the Gautrain from airport to Sandton and Rosebank which was fine until we exited the Games store to head across the street to enter Rosebank. A very professionally dressed man ( white shirt, black suit) holding a walkie-talkie told us we needed to go with him to get a security clearance to enter Rosebank as the president was in the mall. We followed him until our gut instinct told us better (and we saw where he was leading us….down the street with 2 men waiting). Fortunately we averted an incident, but thought I’d share with readers. We spoke to one of the very nice security guards at Gautrain who told us scammers have also been known to get the same type of vests with “SECURITY” printed on the front and back to look like what they wear. So glad we’re headed to Botswana tomorrow!
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Old May 5th, 2024, 03:12 AM
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Oh, no...that's the kind of thing I am afraid of.
I do remember being at OR TAMBO and trying to use the rest room when a group of girls just shoved and pushed their way in front of me....I was too annoyed but did nothing.

Enjoy Botswana....things like that should not happen there.....one hopes!!!

Aloha!!
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Old May 5th, 2024, 09:09 AM
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Originally Posted by ekscrunchy
Oh, no...that's the kind of thing I am afraid of.
I do remember being at OR TAMBO and trying to use the rest room when a group of girls just shoved and pushed their way in front of me....I was too annoyed but did nothing.

Enjoy Botswana....things like that should not happen there.....one hopes!!!

Aloha!!

Also, O R TAMBO is rife with scammers. Dressed in fake uniforms, they try to lead you this way and that, offering to "help" you check in, carry luggage, offer assistance in tackling (non-existent) paperwork....that airport is not a pleasant place and if you can, or want to, hire a "fixer" the has been recommended by a reliable local, I might advise doing just that...the price to pay for the lessening of anxiety just might be worth it.

Last time we had a flight to Botswana, we booked a day room at the hotel across the street (very expensive and something I rarely would even consider) but its was a help since the hotel sent a staff member to accompany us into the terminal and almost to the check in. But even then, when he had to leave, the creeps descended. On another trip we stored our luggage in the dedicated room for that, another less-than-ideal experience. Have you ever seen more people having their bags wrapped in those machines that dispense plastic "security" sheathing than you've seen at TAMBO?

I'm seeing in the not terribly far future a possible return to Zimbabwe for game viewing and I'm thinking about trying to secure flights via Harare, although I've no idea about the scene at THAT airport!
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