#Travel: 3 Reasons why you should go shopping in South Africa

shopping south africa

When in South Africa, go shopping.

South Africa is known for its scenic wonders, the adventure capital of the world, amazing weather, close encounters with wildlife, world-class facilities, a place of tremendous heritage and history, and…a shoppers’ paradise!

This dynamic and vibrant country is a fusion of many cultures, and South Africa’s thriving middle-class economy reflects in unique shopping experiences second to none on the continent of Africa.

Here are 3 reasons why you should shop in South Africa:

Lower Prices

The relatively developed infrastructure and institutions in the country inspire many multinational companies to establish their retail businesses using South Africa as a hub before expanding to the rest of the Sub-Saharan African region – benefitting the industry through efficient distribution of goods, and thus passing on savings to consumers. As competition increases, companies are being driven to introduce more efficient supply chains and advanced technology to reduce the cost of doing business and enhance the customer experience.

The Rand started 2016 by trading low with other currencies after President Jacob Zuma dismissed the country’s finance minister Nhlanlah Nene, following the news that the country’s credit rating had been down-graded. The weak South African currency translates to more buying power for visitors.

Wider Range of Products and Quality Assurance

From trendy boutiques to traditional South African craft stores, from luxurious shopping malls and outlets to the bustling street markets and festivals, you can find everything from the latest designer fashions and electronics to best-value collectibles and antiques.

South Africa has benefited from a boom in shopping centre development and retail trade sales have been rising over the years. The strong and developed retail industry provides higher quality assurance to customers thanks to established best practices, and developed customer service. Increased competition translates into more power and choice for consumers.

General consumer tastes are more discerning than other countries in Africa thanks to the strong retail sector that’s been established for many years. The continent’s most sophisticated economy is already the biggest retail market in sub-Saharan Africa, and the 20th largest in the world, with a wide array of shopping malls and retail developments.

There are many international high street brands and luxury African brands with flagship retail spaces in South Africa. In addition, for some retailers, it may not make economic sense to sell certain products in some countries in Africa due to their higher price points limiting consumer demand. Thus, retailers may choose to offer more exclusive products in their South African stores, which consumers are not able to purchase in other stores in Africa.

Get Your VAT Refund

As a visitor to South Africa, you can spend as little as R250.00 on goods intended for export, and claim a VAT refund. The user-friendly procedure allows you to claim your money and receive your pre-loaded VISA electron cash card with foreign currency (to be used outside the country) before you even leave South Africa.

A  VAT refund is only eligible within 90 days from the date of purchase and only original Tax Invoices will be considered for refunds. Since the goods must be presented for inspection by a VAT Refund Official upon departure at the airport, make sure you pack all of your purchases conveniently in your luggage. Collect all your Tax Invoices and insure the receipts have the following:

  • A Tax Invoice number
  • The seller’s VAT Registration number
  • Date of Issue of the Tax Invoice
  • The seller’s name and address
  • The buyer’s name and address
  • A full description of the goods purchased
  • The cost of the goods in Rands
  • The amount of 14% VAT charged or a statement that VAT is included in the total cost

After inspection, present your endorsed invoices to the VAT refund office and collect your return. You can conveniently track the status of your claim and obtain the balance on your VISA electron cash card online at  www.taxrefunds.co.za



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