20 April – 02 May 2020


For your information
Below are some travel reminders to assist you in preparing for your tour to Israel.

Remember to try and pack light. The infrastructure (transportation, public facilities, hotels, etc.) of some countries are of such a nature that you might struggle a bit if you cannot manage your own luggage. It is also a greater security risk if you require people to assist you all the time with your luggage. While carrying heavy suitcases might be great exercise, you might rather save your energy for sightseeing or for your business meetings. Remember all your toiletries!

Note: We can arrange luggage insurance for you at an additional cost. Feel free to contact us if you desire this option.

Your baggage allowance may vary depending on your class of travel, the airline and route you are flying. If you pack too heavy, you might need to pay an extra fee at the airport when checking in. To avoid this, try to keep your luggage under a 20kg weight. As we have said before, this may vary, so feel free to contact us.

If you prefer a particular seat in the plane, please inform us of this at the time of making your reservation. However, the airline does not guarantee that you will get the seat we have requested even if that seat has been confirmed for you. Nevertheless, we will do our best to ensure that you do get the seat you want.

In many cases travel insurance is essential to protect you from cancellation, medical, and personal expenses or loss and, at times, for failure of our suppliers to effect the services you have booked. We will assist you in choosing the best insurance for you. Have you taken out travel insurance for this journey? Credit Card insurance may be inadequate or in cases insufficient for all your needs. Please check exactly what you are covered for with the credit card company concerned, including the expenses payable. We can advise you on additional coverage, so please feel free to contact us.

Electrical transformers/plug adaptors
Most places in the world have different plugs and different power supplies. If you want to use your computer/modem/electric razor/alarm clock abroad, you will need to get equipment to translate from "your power" to "their power". Israel uses 220v.

Passports expire, so please make a mental note of when it will be time for you to renew your passport. If you are within one year of the expiry date, you might consider renewal or reissuing depending on your circumstances. When you are inside a foreign country, it is a good idea to always keep your passport with you. It is light and easy to carry. Unforeseen travelling surprises can occur at any time. Passports can also act as identification if your wallet gets lost or stolen.

Many countries require visas when visiting. Please feel free to contact us if you are not sure or if you would like us to assist you in obtaining visas.

Driver’s license
The Automobile Association of South Africa (AA) can issue you with an International Driver’s License. It is not expensive to obtain. If you are planning to drive in a foreign country, ensure that you have contacted the AA prior to your departure. Always keep your South African driver’s license with you when driving overseas, even though you might have an International Driver’s License.

Whenever you arrive in any country, whether it be by boat, plane or whatever, you are vulnerable. You will most probably have all your cash, cards, documents and anything else valuable on you right at that moment. There are always people who are willing to "help". Every precaution you take will help to avoid any potential problems.

Before leaving for your journey, it is always wise to gather some information about the country you are planning to visit. If you are not picked up at the airport by friends, colleagues, etc., and would like to go to your hotel, rather take the airport limousine, or the hotel pick up.

Never take a taxi that just seems to be hanging around, offering its services when there is a taxi queue available. Try to keep your wallet and valuables safely secured in a handbag or in your hand luggage. Change some money into the local currency before you depart. This gives you one less thing to worry about, and will ensure that you do not need to handle a lot of money at the airport on arrival. Keep a small amount of this local currency, easily accessible in a pocket or something, and away from the majority of your well-earned money. You will need sufficient finances for your ride into town, a tip (perhaps) and a little for unforeseen needs like toll ways or a bottle of water.

If you have not been able to find anything out about the airport that you are visiting then ask one of the airline staff, or the government tourism booth (if they have one at the airport) for some assistance, or tips on the best way of travelling. Most countries really are very safe, but in others it is really very advisable to take as many precautions as possible. No matter what, the most important is that you have a great holiday or business trip.

It is also a good idea to obtain the address and contact details of the New Zealand, Chinese, South African Embassy (or the country of your birth) in the country you are going to visit. The Embassies are more than willing to assist you in the case of an emergency. Know the local laws and abide by them.

If you haven’t left your valuables at home, leave them in your hotel’s safe.
Don’t draw attention to yourself, avoid wearing flashy jewelry and don’t display large amounts of cash. Carry only enough cash to make it through the day and leave the rest in the hotel’s safe. Avoid traveling alone.

Be careful about sharing your traveling plans with strangers.
Stick to the main roads and avoid taking shortcuts down narrow alleys and/or poorly lit streets.
Always be aware of what is going on around you.

Only use taxis, tours and other transportation services with official markings. Only select transportation from official pickup points at transportation hubs.
Be very careful if you are asked to sell or part with your personal items. Many countries have restrictions on items foreigners can sell or give away and you can get into serious trouble for violating those laws.

Never accept gifts or packages from unknown parties.
Don’t accept items from locals to carry out of the country and deliver or mail to someone they know.

Approach any "special deals" with caution, especially if you have to go off the beaten path to get them.
Know the laws about exchanging money. Only use official exchange facilities since this is another area that can get you into trouble fast.

How can I avoid being the victim of a pickpocket?
• Don’t travel in narrow alleys or poorly lit streets.
• When possible, avoid having crowds of people surrounding you.
• Carry a dummy wallet and put your money in your front pocket.
• Place a rubber band around your wallet, it will make it much more difficult to remove from your pocket without your knowledge.
• Carry your purse under your arm.
• Carry your money under your clothes.

How can I protect my health when I travel?
Note: We can arrange additional medical cover for you if you so desire. Feel free to contact us for this option.

If you have any food allergies, learn the names of those foods in the languages used in the countries you’ll be visiting. This way you’ll be better equipped to stay on the look out for them. Find out what types of diseases are common to the area you’ll be visiting and take actions to prevent your exposure to those diseases.

Find out what types of vaccinations you will need to enter the country, there may also be medications you’ll need to take before, during and even after your trip. Get your vaccinations early in case you have a reaction and need some recovery time. We at Go Africa Travel can assist you with such information.

You should consider a dental appointment if you haven’t had a checkup in a while.
Be careful what you eat and drink. If possible, especially if you are planning to visit third world countries, carry complete health information with you on your trip. Health travel centers will also provide you with everything you need to know with regards to your heath during travelling. Feel free to visit the following website: - The World Health Organization’s Geographical distribution of potential health hazards to travelers web page. This site contains information, divided by regions of the globe, on potential health hazards for travelers within that region.

How can I protect myself from traveler’s diarrhea while traveling abroad?
• When you are traveling abroad, don’t forget that drinking another country’s water can be dangerous!!
• Stick with bottled or boiled water.
• Remember that the ice in your drink turns into water, so order them with out ice.
• Wipe off the tops of cans before you drink from them, or better yet, bring some straws to use for drinking.
• Avoid raw foods, as they can also be a good way to get sick.
• Only brush your teeth with bottled water and keep your mouth shut when you’re in the shower. Rather be cautious, especially when visiting underdeveloped countries.

Jet lag
Whether you are travelling for business or pleasure, you stand a chance of experiencing jet lag. Some people never seem to be affected however for others jet lag can be quite severe and something that we really would prefer to avoid.

Some people say that it takes the body one day per time zone that we cross to fully recover. This is why it is so important to actually minimise the effects jet lag has on us, after all if you are travelling on business you need to arrive fresh and ready for the heavy schedule, if you are on vacation, well you deserve every minute you can get right?! Let us look at a few ideas, that should help to ease the strain.

With increased air traffic a lot of airlines especially on their long-haul services have actually introduced twice daily flights, one which normally departs in the evening and another daytime. The airlines will sell you the advantages of both and it is true that they both do have very strong support. However, it very much depends which direction you are travelling in, and whether you are an active flyer or a 'wake me up when we land' sort. Let's use the Hong Kong to London route as an example, which a lot of airlines offer two flights a day. If you leave in the evening you will arrive in London in the early morning however if you take the daytime service, you will arrive late evening in London.

This means with the daytime service you have 13 hours or so to fill, sleeping is not really advisable as you will need to do that when you arrive in London in the evening. As we all know airline movies can be good but the chances are if you travel frequently, or watch movies a lot then you may have already seen most of them. You can work of course but does the airline you are flying with have laptop electric supplies, otherwise you may be restricted to a couple of hours or so ? This is where the initial problem lies, because if you do fall asleep then chances are you will find it difficult to get to sleep that evening in London, this would then worsen the jet lag effect and possibly ruin the next day for you, due to fatigue.

The opposite is of course true for the evening service, you can sleep as you are aided by the fact that your body clock is saying that you should. Then when you awake you will hopefully be refreshed and ready to work after a nice hot shower.

Today, airlines are going out of their way to ensure that you have a comfortable flight, and that you arrive as fresh as possible, at the other end. The leading airlines offer a total bed experience, which is where the seat will go all the way back and flatten out, duvets, and pillows are offered, plus pajamas etc. You can enjoy this luxury when you fly First Class with Singapore Airlines and British Airways who are among the first to offer it. Virgin is also in the process of installing seat/beds, and being Virgin they are taking it one step further and will have double/seat beds for couples. The airlines also offer arrival lounges compared to the standard departure lounge, which are for first and business class passengers. These arrival lounges have full shower facilities, so that you can arrive and freshen up without even having left the airport! All these services are a great help but what is there that you can do to help yourself?

Firstly avoid alcohol in flight, with the pressurized air in the cabin your body dehydrates substantially, and alcohol affects the body clock by not giving you a full and refreshing sleep. In fact, try to drink as much water as possible. Just ask the steward (ess) for a large bottle and keep it by your seat so you can take sips whenever you want.
Drinking a lot of water will also help in other ways. It is highly recommended to move around when in-flight, walk up and down the plane, do dome stretching exercises, to keep the blood circulating, and stop the joints from stiffening. While seated, swirl your ankles around from time to time.

Again, depending on which direction you are travelling whether east or west, and how much sleep you require, you should set your watch to the local time of your destination as you board, and sleep according to that. This helps your body to start the change in its body clock, which is so important when combating jet lag. Let's say for example that you are flying from Johannesburg International to Atlanta, then when you board the plane you should set your clock to Atlanta time and try not to sleep until it is close to sleeping time in Atlanta .

When you do arrive at your destination, and it is day time, try not to go to sleep, no matter how tired you are. Instead try to go outdoors and into the sunshine if possible, this helps to alter your body clock, and will mean you will be back to normal a lot quicker. One of the first hotels to offer a jet lag service was the Okura Hotel in Tokyo. They would offer the guests, a special bright light in their rooms, special food designed to help the body clock, massages and a whole load of other things, all so that you could be refreshed and ready to go as soon as possible.
If you can't resist and your eyelids are drooping and you feel more and more tired, then set your alarm for four hours time, have a very hot bath, and then jump into bed.

On behalf of Dr. Abri Brancken & Team we wish you “happy travelling!”
Please contact us for any information or assistance you might need for your upcoming Israel tour.

(Just a friendly reminder, check in time for international flights is three hours before departure. Failure to report in time can result in you being refused boarding.

It is vital that you reconfirm your onward or return travel by contacting the local office of the airline concerned at each point at least 72hrs prior to departure. Failure to do this may lead to the cancellation of your reservation)