Travel Tips: Things Not to Say to a South African
Reeva Cutting is a South African blogger who now lives in Australia. We came across her blog on The South African, a website often read by South Africans living abroad. We thought it would be a fun read for visitors travelling to South Africa.
The Most Common Things that Annoy South Africans
Where is South Africa?
Seriously people. We come from a country where the geographical location is pretty much spelled out for you. It’s the SOUTH part of AFRICA. SOUTH AFRICA. Get it?
You can’t be South African – you’re white.
Apparently many, many people truly believe that only black people can be African. Never mind the fact that migration these days mean anyone of any race can be born and live pretty much anywhere.
Yes, we have white South Africans, Indian South Africans, coloured South Africans, black South Africans, Asian South Africans, Latino South Africans – we’re a melting pot of cultures and ethnicities and if you don’t know at least that about our awesome country by now, there’s no helping you!
Say something in South African.
Yes sure bru, because we speak Souf Efrican. No. Just no. We have 11 official languages but South African is not one of them.
Did you have a pet lion?
Of course! We all live in the bush, have pet lions and warthogs and we ride our zebras to school. Only rich people get to ride elephants to school because they cost so much money to maintain. We also have never heard of cars and clearly rode our zebras all the way to London/New York/Sydney dreaming of a life with electricity and running water and wifi!
Do you know my friend John? He’s from South Africa too.
“Oh John! Yeah he and I grew up on the same street! How do you know John?”
Come on people, we have a population of over 50 million people, you really think we’re going to know every other South African in the world?
Bonus points if they add “He’s from Africa!”
So please spread the word, spread this list, and try not to annoy a South African with these silly questions!