How much flights to US will cost and other secrets South Africans should know
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Fully-vaccinated travellers will get to visit the US from today. Here’s everything you need to know.
Jennifer Morris, the owner of Travel Savvy, said there were no mandatory vaccine requirements for the US. However, Pfizer/BioNTech, Moderna, AstraZeneca, Janssen/Johnson & Johnson, Sinopharm/BIBP and Sinovac Covid-19 vaccines were accepted. She said all travellers require a negative PCR test taken 48 hours before departure and upon arrival back to South Africa.
“You will need to present your completed vaccination certificate with a QR code to travel,” she said.
Flights from Joburg to Newark in New Jersey start from R15 000.
What to do
“The beauty about the US is that it is so vast and each place is so different, that every person finds something to cross off their bucket list. It depends on what you’re into,” Morris said.
US travel expert Sheryl Nance-Nash said there were a few hidden attractions worth seeing.
“Try to get beyond the typical tourist sites. Venture into neighbourhoods, as that’s where a city’s real flavour is,” she said.
“The Apostle Islands in Wisconsin, for example, boast stunning rock formations and six historic lighthouses. The Apostle Island National Lakeshore is a chain of islands. You can kayak, hike and even camp. Boat tours and sailing charters are available,” she said.
Nance-Nash also recommended visiting Lincoln City in Oregon for its sandy, spacious beaches that stretch from Roads End to Siletz Bay. Here, travellers can go “crabbing, clamming, kayaking and paddle-boarding”. She also suggested Carova Beach in North Carolina, but a visit there requires a 4x4.
“The area is home to more than 320km of coastline. There are no paved roads, and wild Spanish Mustangs still roam freely on the beaches. Forget about mega-resorts. There are no hotels, but you can rent one of the beautiful homes.
“Corolla, the town you’ll hit before you reach Carova Beach, will be your go-to for restaurants and shops,” she said.
Nance-Nash said travellers should use public transport, especially in big cities like Los Angeles, New York, Nashville, Houston and Oklahoma City.
“Take the trains, subways or buses. You will get a more authentic experience.
“If you don’t feel comfortable doing that, then use a rideshare app like Uber or Lyft to get around. Travellers don’t have to worry about driving. Rental cars are hard to get and expensive,” she said.
Nance-Nash said travellers should use debit or credit cards instead of travelling with cash.