#Zexit: Stronger rand is good news for travellers

2018-02-16 15:30 - Unathi Nkanjeni
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Cape Town - The rand has strengthened against the dollar, providing a great opportunity for saffas who want to find their escape abroad. 

Fin24 reports that the rand started showing signs of increasing on Monday after speculation around #Zexit started circulating, pushing the rand to a peak last seen in mid-2015 to the dollar - See full coverage here

At the time of writing this article, the rand was peaking at R11,59 to the dollar.

But what exactly does this mean for travellers? Well with the rand in a good state at the moment, one of the best things is that you can go overseas without fearing for your bank account getting downgraded to junk status.

ALSO SEE: #FindYourEscape: 5 Reasons why you CAN afford to take an overseas holiday

On the other hand, Business Tech reports that a stronger rand may not be such good news for tourists and travellers coming to South Africa’s shores, but for South Africans who have come down with a case of wanderlust, it presents itself as an opportunity to travel abroad.

But where, you ask? Well, flight and travel agency Travelstart has listed five top holiday destinations where the South African rand can buy you more bang for your buck.

While direct currency conversion may not give a good indication of the general cost of living, Travelstart has looked at five top destinations and broken down and compared the cost of food, drinks and travel compared to what you would pay locally.

Philippines 

The Philippines are made up of more than 7 000 islands located between the Philippine Sea and the South China Sea at the very eastern edge of Asia. Many wonderful beaches make up one of the world's longest coastlines.

Exchange rate: R1 = 4.51 Philippine Piso

Expenses: Budget about R700 per day for a dorm bed or single room, local food for lunch and dinner and a local beer and a tricycle ride.

Visa: South African passport holders don’t need a visa to visit Manila, or anywhere else in the Philippines, for up to 30 days. Always check that your passport is valid for 6 months after your return date and that you have 3 blank pages available for entry stamps.

ALSO SEE: Philippines: It's time to break the mould on tropical island escapes

Vietnam

Officially the Socialist Republic of Vietnam, this is a thin country in Southeast Asia. Its neighbouring countries are China to the north, Laos and Cambodia to the west.

Vietnam is a land of staggering natural beauty and cultural complexities, filled with dynamic megacities and hill-tribe villages.

Exchange rate: R1 = 1954.89 Vietnamese Dong

Expenses: Budget about R350 per day for budget accommodation, street food and cheap public transport on scooters and buses.

Visa: You will need to obtain a visa beforehand in South Africa, please allow at least 5 days for processing.

SEE: Find Your Escape: Vietnam

Bali 

The island of Bali is year after year voted by travellers as one of the most enchanting travel and holiday destination in the world.

The province includes the island of Bali and a few smaller neighbouring islands, notably Nusa Penida, Nusa Lembongan and Nusa Ceningan.

Exchange rate: R1 = 1164.55 IDR

Expenses: Around R950 for a basic budget day of food, accommodation and transport. Airbnb is a wonderful way to rent an affordable villa for the whole family.

Visa: South African visitors are given a free visa on arrival for 30 days. 

ALSO SEE: 8 Things to do in Bali (again and again)

Cambodia 

As the Kingdom of Cambodia, the country is a Southeast Asian nation bordered by Vietnam to the east, Laos to the north, Thailand to the northwest, and the Gulf of Thailand to the southwest.

Known for its impressive temples, the country used to be the Khmer empire who built these stunning structures.

Exchange rate: R1= 344,88 Cambodian Riel

Expenses: R300 per day for a dorm bunk, street food and transport

Visa: South African passport holders can obtain a 30-days tourist visa on arrival in Cambodia. Please verify with the Cambodian Embassy in SA for the latest visa developments when planning your trip.

ALSO SEE: Explore more of Asia with Qatar Airways' flight expansions in 2018

Malaysia 

Malaysia boasts one of south-east Asia's most vibrant economies, the fruit of decades of industrial growth and political stability.

Consisting of two regions separated by some 640 miles of the South China Sea, Malaysia is a multi-ethnic and multi-religious federation of 13 states.

Exchange rate: R1 = 2.98 Malaysian Ringgit 

Expenses: Budget about R470 per day for a dorm bed, street food meals and admission to National Parks.

Visa: South African citizens must have a passport that is valid for at least six months beyond the date of their arrival in Malaysia. No visa is required, for stays of up to three months.

ALSO SEE: Maylasia Tourism unveiled the ugliest logo prompting social media backlash

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