Johannesburg South Africa Travel
A local’s guide to visiting Johannesburg on the cheap
May 27, 2015
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I’m not afraid to admit that I can be a bit of a cheapskate when I travel. I mean, who doesn’t like a good bargain? I’m always on the hunt for a good deal and value for money travel offerings.

South Africans often think that Johannesburg is expensive city to visit but really it needn’t be. You just need an insider’s guide to visiting Joburg on the cheap. Of course if you’re travelling with US dollars or Euro, you’ll be smiling all the way to the bank!

Joburg jump

Good deals make me happy, and when I’m happy I like to jump 🙂


So the folks at Cheapflights asked me to do a guide for them on visiting Jozi on the cheap, I was happy to oblige!

Joburg street art

Appreciating Joburg’s street art is one of my favourite pastimes… and it’s for mahala!

A cheapskates guide to Johannesburg

Travel needn’t break the bank.  Budget for your stay, look out for free and cheap activities and before you know it you’ll be saving for your next trip. The article covers free and cheap ways to explore Joburg, from art galleries and museums, to markets, Happy Hour deals and cheap sleeps.

I’ve included a few excerpts from the guide below.

Cheapskates guide to Johannesburg

Mzansigirl joburg art

Visiting art galleries is one of my favourite things to do in Jozi.


everard read gallery

I may not be able to afford the art but looking is for free 🙂

Budget joburg

Open streets – visit Braamfontein on a Saturday for some great vintage clothing deals.


To read the rest of my  guide on visiting Johannesburg on the cheap click HERE! 


Getting around Joburg on the cheap

The one thing I neglected to mention in the article is hot to get around Joburg as a tourist (actually this desreves a blog post on it’s own).

I have to admit Joburg’s public transport is not ideal. Of course we have the Gautrain rapid train service and Rea Vaya buses, but their services are limited to certain areas. On the whole  Joburg can be a maze to navigate as a newbie relying on public transport alone. Hiring a car is generally your best option – Aroundabout Cars has some great deals!

As a tourist, new to the city I highly recommend the Citysightseeing Joburg Hop-on Hop-off Bus to orientate yourself. It’s only R150 for a day pass, and you can get to most of Jozi’s key attractions including Apartheid Museum, Constitution Hill, CBD, Newtown and Braamfontein.

Citysightseeing hop-on hop-off bus Joburg

Image credit: Citysightseeing Joburg


The next best thing in Joburg, when it comes to getting around Jozi is Uber.  It’s super easy to use, cheap and convenient. If you’re not on Uber already, here’s an Uber code for you – 6bs8f – Use it to get R150 off your first ride 🙂


If you’re feeling a bit more adventurous, try the local minibus taxis. Check out this great blog post about travelling by minibus in South Africa for some tips.

Joburg market

Cheers to Joburg! If you have any cheapskate Joburg tips, let me know in the comments below 🙂



About author

Meruschka Govender

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There are 13 comments

  • Di Brown says:

    Great read. Hoping to come to see “your” Jozi in June or July. Getting to love your city

  • Lani says:

    Hiya lady!
    I have been following your blog for ages… I’d love to have coffee in Braamies with you sometime.
    You seem like a really wholesome and interesting person to chat with – even for just an hour.

    Let me know if you are keen!
    Love this blog post btw.

    • Meruschka Govender says:

      Hi Lani. Thanks so much for your support! I’d be happy to have a coffee sometime. Will email you my contact details. Alternatively, send me your’s via the contact form here or on a message on my Facebook page.

  • Peter says:

    Of all the places and things you happen to see and do in Jozi, you missed an opportunity to travel just as cheaply in your very own Tuk Tuk, which operates around the innercity of Jozi. Next time though….

    • Meruschka Govender says:

      Hi Peter! I’ve seen the tuk tuks around, and they seem like a great and affordable way to get around. I just haven’t had a chance to use one yet, as they don’t really operate in my area. How long do you have to book them in advance? It would be great if they were available in real time.

  • Susan says:

    Hello there! I’ve been reading your blog and trying to absorb all the information on SA.

    I’m planning to travel from India in December, really contemplating on whether we should hire a travel agent or just plan it on my own. What do you think? For 10s days long trip, what would be an ideal plan…& I surely want to witness Johannesburg, wildlife and end the trip at cape town.

    • Meruschka Govender says:

      Hi Susan. Thanks for reading my blog. I think if you’re comfortable booking yourself, it is quite do-able. However 10 days isn’t much for SA, and you are covering quite a large area. So it might be easier and less hassle using a travel agent especially if you require ground transfers. If you’re self driving, and an independent traveller I think booking yourself would be fine. There are lots of resources out there. If you’re coming in December I suggest you do your bookings as soon as possible. It is our summer holiday and peak season here so the better options get booked out fast. Honestly, if it’s your first time in SA, and you are able to stay longer I would consider at least a 2 week trip.

  • David says:

    “In your A cheapskates guide to Johannesburg ”

    You didn’t share your experience about cheap accommodation Johannesburg.

  • Sheena says:

    I cannot wait to visit South Africa! It looks dope as hell!

  • scootersteve says:

    I wish we could rent scooters easily in JHB. But you need a licence to ride a bike in SA! However, as a local I ride around on my gomoto 150cc yesterday scooter. I love exploring this amazing city. Last week I found the best samosa ever in Fordsburg. Where are you favourite samosas?

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