Your Smart Phone and Laptop

Help Center

Your Smart Phone and Laptop

Bringing Your Phone and Laptops From Home

  • Smartphone and Laptop Necessity: You’ll need both a smartphone and a laptop during your time in South Africa for work and leisure.
  • Bring Your Own: We strongly recommend bringing your own devices from home.
  • Check Phone Compatibility: Inform your network provider about your travel plans and ensure your phone can work with a local South African network SIM card.
  • Unlock Your Phone: If you phone is network locked, you will have to speak to your network provider and unlock it so that you are able to connect to the local South African Network.
  • Insuring your electronics:: It’s a good idea to insure your phone, laptop and other valuable electronics to safeguard against damage, loss, or theft.

Important Apps to Download and Set Up Before Arrival

  • Essential Apps: Uber and WhatsApp are crucial for city navigation and staying connected with VACorps staff and fellow interns in Cape Town.
  • Download Before Departure: To avoid any issues, download and set up these apps before leaving home, as some mobile networks may restrict app downloads and activation from outside your home country.
  • Activation is Key: It’s vital not only to download but also to activate and set up these apps, including entering payment details.

Buying a Phone in South Africa

  • Local Phone Option: Upon arrival in South Africa, you can opt to purchase an affordable smartphone with basic app functionality.
  • Theft Considerations: Due to potential phone theft and pickpocketing incidents in certain areas, many participants choose to leave their expensive phones in their accommodations and use backup phones for outings.
  • Continuous Access: This approach ensures continued access to services like Uber, calls, texts, etc., while reducing the likelihood of losing your phone in high risk areas, such as Long Street at night.
  • Purchase Locations: You can buy a phone from stores like Cash Crusaders, Incredible Connection, or TAKEALOT.COM.  Please chat to us during orientation if you need more information about this.