There are several greeting styles in South Africa depending upon the ethnic heritage of the person you are meeting.
. When meeting foreigners, most South Africans shake hands while keeping eye contact and smiling.
. Some women don't shake hands. They may nod their head, so it is best to wait for a woman to extend her hand.
. Men may kiss a woman they know well on the cheek in place of a handshake.
Gift Giving Etiquette
. In general, South Africans give gifts for birthdays and Christmas.
. Two birthdays - 21 and 40 - are often celebrated with a large party in which a lavish gift is given.
. If you are invited to a South African's home, bring flowers, good quality chocolates, or a bottle of good South African wine to the hostess.
. Wrapping a gift nicely shows extra effort. and gifts are opened when received.
If you are invited to a South African's house:
. Arrive on time if invited to dinner.
. Contact the hostess ahead of time to see if she would like you to bring a dish.
. Wear casual clothes. This may include jeans or pressed shorts. It is a good idea to check with the hosts in advance.
. In Johannesburg, casual is dressier than in other parts of the country. Do not wear jeans or shorts unless you have spoken to the hosts.
. Offer to help the hostess with the preparation or clearing up after a meal is served.
South Africa has variety of different customs throughout their different countries and culture so below we list a few of the main ones and a few facts that could help you on your travels.Facts and Statistics
Ethnic Make-up: black 75.2%, white 13.6%, Coloured 8.6%, Indian 2.6%
Religions: Christian 68% (includes most whites and Coloreds, about 60% of blacks and about 40% of Indians), Muslim 2%, Hindu 1.5% (60% of Indians), indigenous beliefs and animist 28.5%
Time - South Africa is +2 hours GMT.
South Africa has 11 official languages. English is the language of administration and is spoken throughout the country. The other official languages are: Afrikaans, Ndebele, Northern Sotho, Southern Sotho, Swazi, Tsongo, Tswana, Venda, Xhosa and Zulu.
The currency used throughout South Africa is the South African Rand. Often seen on converting sites as ZAR.