General Information A-Z


Cape Town Airport standards are world-class and the airport was ranked the leading airport in Africa for 2012 and 2013 at the World Airport Awards. OR Tambo International Airport in the city of Johannesburg came in second place, and King Shaka International Airport in Durban was rated 3rd. A central terminals connects both the international and domestic terminal of Cape Town Airport. Many airlines offer direct flights to Cape Town from various locations around the globe. All airlines operating in South Africa fly to Cape Town Airport which is located 22 km away from the city center.

On arrival, access to ground transport is simple and convenient, with taxis and coaches the most obvious options. Modern public transport system conveniently connect the city with the MyCiTi Bus service.

Airport Transfer

MyCiTi Bus Service

The MyCiTi airport-to-city service runs between the Cape Town International Airport and the Civic Centre bus stations via the N2 and Nelson Mandela Boulevard. This service will operate between 20 and 24 hours a day at a cost of R 61.50 one way from the airport to the congress center (ca. EUR 4.20). It will depart every six to 30 minutes, depending on demand.

By Taxi or Coach

Luxury air-conditioned coaches and shuttle buses will move delegates between the airport, hotels, the CTICC and their functions. Metered taxis are also available.

Banks, Currency and Exchange Offices

Foreign currency can be exchanged at commercial banks and at various Bureaux de Change. The Rand is the official currency in South Africa. On Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday banks typically open between 09:00 and 15:00; on Saturday opening hours are between 09:00 and 11:00.


The Cape boasts typical Mediterranean climate – warm summers and mild and cool wet winters. Summer temperatures range between 15 °C (59 °F) and 27 °C (80.6 °F). Winter temperature ranges between 7 °C (44.6 °F) at night and 18 °C (64.4 °F) by day.

Culture and Entertainment

Cape Town has consistently been voted as one of the world’s favourite tourist destinations. The city’s global profile as a modern and convenient city, secure high delegate numbers.

The region is one of the wine capitals of the world, and the renowned Cape Winelands is both within the city and on its doorstep. The destination’s many restaurants serve traditional or contemporary Cape and international cuisine. Cape Town and the Western Cape is a cosmopolitan destination, where cultural diversity is welcomed. Immigration from Europe and Africa has lent the city in particular an exciting vibrancy, adding to its creativity. A wealth of artistic and musical talent, opera, ballet, drama and comedy are always on offer.


An international driver’s licence is required when driving around South Africa. Driving is on the left and speed limits are in kilometres.


240 volts AC. For small appliances, a plug adaptor may be needed for three pin sockets.

Emergency Numbers

Fire: 021 480 7700 or 021 590 1900
Doctor: 10177
Police: 10111

There are two private emergency units within 5 minutes of the CTICC offering emergency medical care, i.e. Chris Barnard Netcare and

Cape Town Medi-Clinic. The city is served by two state run level one trauma centres (Groote Schuur Hospital and Tygerberg Hospital). There are also 9 regional emergency centres in the city. Cape Town CBD is served by METRO EMS ambulance service and three private ambulance services. They are Netcare 911, er24 and Life.

Food and Drink

The region is one of the wine capitals of the world, and the renowned Cape Winelands is both within the city and on its doorstep. The destination’s many restaurants serve traditional or contemporary Cape and international cuisine.

Health and Medicare

Cape Town has no risk of tropical diseases. It is not a malaria area. There are no current vaccine recommendations for the general public (adults) and tourists. Visitors are encouraged to visit their doctor before travelling to Southern Africa (especially if they are visiting various regions or connecting via different African countries)


If you are intending to attend the World Library and Information Congress in Cape Town, South Africa, from 15 to 21 August 2015, and have concerns about Ebola, we encourage you to check with the health department in your country for suggestions and instructions on how to deal with hygiene while travelling internationally.

More information about Ebola and its risks can be found on the following WHO webpages:


Attendees are advised to arrange their own adequate travel and medical insurance against medical treatment, accidents, cancellation of bookings, etc. No responsibility will be accepted by the Congress Organisers.


South Africa offers a sophisticated internet network and Wireless (Wi-Fi) is readily available throughout the city. Most of the hotels will offer Wi-Fi connectivity.

Mobile Phones

A variety of mobile networks are available in South Africa and local Sim cards are available at airports and major shopping centres.


While French and German are becoming increasingly common with immigration from Europe as well as West and Central Africa, the business language of Cape Town and the Western Cape is English. Most South Africans are bilingual; Afrikaans and Xhosa are two official languages most spoken in the Western Cape.

Lunches and Refreshments

Lunches and refreshments are not included in the registration fees. However, attendees can purchase a variety of food and beverages in the various food courts at the Congress venue.

Passports, Visas and Letters of Invitation

Visas are issued by the South African missions abroad and must be affixed in the applicant’s passport before departing for South Africa. Visas are not issued on arrival at South African ports on entry. Many nationalities do not require a visa to enter South Africa, it is best to check with your travel agents if this is enquired.

For detailed information, please visit:

However, it is the sole responsibility of the attendee to take care of his/her visa requirements and it is best to consult your local consular office for the latest information with regards to entering South Africa.

Attendees who require an entry visa must allow sufficient time for the application procedure. Attendees should contact the nearest embassy or consulate to determine the appropriate timing of their visa applications. It is recommended to apply for a visa at least 3 months in advance of the Congress.

Postal Services

Approximately 2 km from the CTICC you find the next post office at Communicare Building, Coen Steytler Ave, Cape Town, (Tel. +27 (0) 21 421 4670).

Opening times are from 09:00 until 16:00

Scenery and Nature

One of the reasons Africa gets under the skin. The region offers unparalleled natural wonders, from the magnificent Table Mountain to pristine beaches, the big skies of mountains and semi-deserts and the most diverse of the world’s six botanical kingdoms. Cape Town is the jewel of African tourism with Robben Island, a World Heritage Site, where Nelson Mandela was imprisoned for 18 years. Cape Floral Kingdom, another World Heritage Site, 7,000 plant species at Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens; the idyllic beaches of Camps Bay, Llandudno, Clifton, Fish Hoek, Muizenburg, Strand and Gordon’s Bay.

Shopping and Opening Hours

The destination is recognised internationally as one of the most affordable business tourism and incentive travel destinations in the world.

Shops are typically open on Monday to Sunday between 9:00-17:30, although the V&A Water-front and Canal Walk shopping centers are open until 21:00.

Simultaneous Interpretation

Simultaneous interpretation services will be available in seven languages: English, French, German, Russian, Spanish, Chinese (Mandarin) and Arabic. This service will be available for the Opening Ceremony and the Closing Session and other selected sessions. Please look for the SI mark in the Congress Programme.


South Africa’s International dialing code is +27.


Majority of goods sold in South Africa is subject to a 14% Value Added Tax (VAT). Tourists are not exempt from paying VAT. However, they can claim back the VAT portion if the value of the goods bought exceeds a certain amount – currently, R250. To claim the VAT, the goods must be taken out of the country within 90 days from the date of purchase. The goods must be presented for inspection on departure and accompanied with a tax invoice. The invoice should contain the usual information (name of the seller, seller’s VAT registration number,

description of goods, the price and the VAT amount). If the value of the goods on any single invoice exceed a certain amount (currently R2,000), the buyer’s name and address should also appear on the invoice or on the credit card payment slip.

Visitors who wish to claim VAT should go to the VAT refund administration office or customs official at the port of exit before going through customs. If a tourist leaves South Africa without claiming a VAT refund, it is still possible to do it, but the procedure is more involved. Such a claim must be lodged within three months from the date of export.

There is no VAT exemption on eating, drinking, or going out in South Africa; goods consumed or services rendered in the country do not qualify for VAT refunds.


South African Time is set at GMT +2. There are no time zone differences within South Africa and there is no daylight saving system in summer.


A 10% tip is standard in restaurants. Tables of over eight people often have an automatic service charge added to the bill. A tip of R5 to R10 per piece of luggage is acceptable for porters in hotels and at airports. In some shopping areas, uniformed attendants will either take a fee or offer to mind your car for a tip.

It is not obligatory to tip an informal ‘car guard’ for services rendered. If you choose to tip, that is permissible, but informal guards are not allowed to ask for money, either before or after the service is supplied. A tip of R1 to R5 is acceptable.

When parking in metered bays in the CBD (Central Business District), parking marshals wearing luminous bibs will approach you and ask you how long you intend to stay. You can pay by the half-hour in advance, and pay the balance upon your return if necessary. Ignoring the marshal is a popular local pastime, but, then again, so is imposing fines on motorists.

Tourist Information Office

Tourist Information Office The Pinnacle Building
Cnr Burg & Castle Streets
Cape Town 8001

Reservation Centre
Opening Times: 08:00-21:00
(South African time, every day)

For Telephone Enquiries
Reception/General Enquiries
Tel.: +27 (0) 21 487 6800 or +27 (0) 86 132 2223

For more information
Please visit the destination website at:


By Car

Cape Town offers a wide selection of car rental companies with good road systems. An international driver’s license is required and driving will be on the left hand side of the road.

By Train

Cape Town station is situated within walking distance of the Westin Grand South Africa Arabella Quays Hotel, and the functional Metro Rail system connects the city centre with the northern suburbs, southern suburbs and Cape Flats.

Hop-on / Hop-off Tours

This service visits the major attractions around the city and is a convenient way to experience Cape Town’s many varied attractions. The bright red “Hop-on Hop-off” city sightseeing service comes complete with nine multilingual commentary channels, plus a “kiddie’s” channel and is an ideal and convenient method of travelling to and viewing the most popular attractions in and around Cape Town. Tickets can be bought on board the bus or online by visiting http;// or from the Cape Town Tourism Visitor Information Centre in Burg Street.

MyCiTi Bus

The MyCiTi inner-city bus service provides convenient transport to hotels, accommodation nodes, restaurants, entertainment areas, parking areas, and places of interest. Each journey costs R10.00 and buses depart every 10 to 30 minutes and operate between 20 and 24 hours a day.

Public Transportation

The new Integrated Rapid Transit (IRT) System offers international visitors a scheduled bus service between the city centre, the airport, and select suburbs in Cape Town. By consolidating existing rail, bus, minibus and metered taxi services, the IRT will provide an efficient and robust transport network. The first phase of transformative development will focus on offering a safe high-quality bus-based (Bus Rapid Transit) system that delivers fast, comfortable, and cost-effective urban mobility in the city centre with competitive prices. CCTV surveillance cameras and security personnel are available to ensure commuter ’s safety and security is prioritised. Infrastructure is wheelchair friendly.

A staggered development will see the completion of the network in 2018, an initiative that will dramatically improve customer experience.


The regions superior water supply infrastructure guarantees some of the best water in the world. Spring water is available bottled.

Wide Variety of Activities and Tours

Cape Town and the Western Cape offers a wide variety of tours and activities to suit all visitor’s tastes. Tours range from visit to the Winelands, Cape Point, and Table Mountain to shopping in one of the local markets or simply enjoy a leisurely stroll through the wide variety of world class shopping areas. The region is also a paradise for sports and adrenaline fanatics and offer, amongst others, word famous golf courses, hiking, fishing, kite-flying and mountain-biking in and around the Peninsula.

Last update: 9 December 2014