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Moving to Cape Town

Your Guide to the Mother City

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Are you planning to move to Cape Town, the legislative capital of South Africa? Yes, South Africa has three capital cities and Cape Town is one of them. Other than being a capital, the Mother City offers scenic nature and beautiful beaches along with a very exciting city that won’t often disappoint. However, before you can enjoy it all, you’ll need to move to Cape Town! With Sirelo’s guide, that’ll be a cinch. So, read on for moving costs, visa, checklist, and even free removal quotes. We’ll have you moving with a smile. 😊

How Much Does It Cost to Move to Cape Town from the UK?

One of the first things that likely crossed your mind, other than whether or not you need a visa, is the cost of moving to Cape Town, South Africa. That is not a short journey! On average, you can expect to pay between £4,800 – £8,000 for a 3-bedroom house move from London to Cape Town.

Moving to Cape town will vary in cost due to a number of variables, and if you want to avoid any premiums or extra costs, then it’s wise to read more about international moving costs.

The main variable that will affect the cost of your removal is the volume of your move (consider calculating the volume of your move). Below is an estimate of the cost of moving from Cape Town, South Africa, to the UK by sea for different household sizes:

Household sizeCost
1 bed£2,100 – £3,500
3 bed£4,800 – £8,000
5 bed£7,000 – £12,100

On average a move from the UK to Cape Town will take around 4-7 weeks by sea. However, if you’re sharing a shipping container, you can expect it to take longer.

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The best way to save on the expense of your move is to compare removal companies. Fill in the form below and Sirelo will find you up to 5 removal quotes to compare so you can find the best price!

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Do You Need a Visa for Cape Town?

Unless you happen to be South African, you’ll need to apply for a visa to live and work in South Africa for over 3 months. In order to obtain a work permit, you’ll need to receive a certificate from the Department of Home Affairs. With this you can apply for a working visa in South Africa.

Of course, there are other visa that you can apply for, and you can find more information on this page from the South African High Commission in London.

Moving to Cape Town Checklist

Regardless of the destination, moving can be as stressful as it is exciting. Therefore, as you move to Cape Town, you likely could use some guidance, and that’s where our moving abroad checklist comes in. However, since that is a more general checklist, we have made more specific list for moving to the Mother City below. Happy reading!

✔️ Important Documents

While the importance of these documents needs no repeating, mentioning them here is warranted as you won’t want to forget a single one. Thus, keep them safe and consider making duplicates.

  • Passport
  • Birth Certificate
  • Marriage Certificate
  • Medical Documentation (including dental and immunizations)
  • University Degree(s) and qualification(s)
  • Police Background Check
  • Visa and Work Permits

✔️ Packing

Don’t forget you’ll need to pack, unless you only plan to move a suitcase or two. It takes time to pack and entire house, no matter how small! Be sure to take the time necessary, and we recommend starting a month in advance to avoid the most stress. If you want more advice, read our expert packing guide.

✔️ Healthcare

While South Africa has a robust public healthcare option, you might find it preferable to avail of the amazing private care offered in the country. So, when moving to Cape Town, consider taking out a private health insurance policy for great healthcare.

✔️ Tax

When moving to Cape Town from the UK, be sure to inform HMRC of your change of address for tax purposes, you don’t want to continue paying any unnecessary taxes when moving abroad.

Furthermore, as you’ll be resident in Cape Town, South Africa, you’ll need to pay tax there! So, don’t forget to register with the South Africa Revenue Service (SARS). You can find more information about tax in South Africa here.

✔️ Banking

You will probably need to open a local bank account while in Cape Town, unless you want to pay conversion fees and have difficulty accessing bank services. The biggest banks in Cape Town are:

✔️ Driving license

Your license should be up to date and then you can apply for an international driving license to be able to drive on Cape Town roads.

Living in Cape Town

Living in Cape town

Cape Town has much to offer from beautiful, natural landscape and a vibrant city centre, you’ll find yourself learning many new things and rarely be bored. While crime might be high, you likely won’t see it in day-to-day living. Just keep your wits about you and enjoy everything this wonderful city has to offer.

Cost of living

Something that is always interesting to compare the cost of living between countries. In Cape Town, the cost of living is cheaper than London, but that shouldn’t be too surprising. Overall, the cost of living is cheaper than that of the UK, but this is often also reflected in salaries as well.

MetricLondonCape Town
3-bed appartement City Centre£3,385£1,020
Price/m2 in the city centre£12,150£1,500
Monthly utilities for 85m2 apartment£200£75
Milk 1L£0.92£0.70
Bottle of wine£7.50£3.75
Chicken fillets£5.75£3.60

Working in Cape Town

One of many reasons to move to Cape Town is finding a job, since you’ll likely need one to be able to get a visa. If so, you might be interested to know that the most common sectors in which to find a job are: the media and advertising industry, IT, and asset management.

To kick start your job search, you can use the following links, but you should also try local newspapers in Cape Town and any connections you have to the city:

You will notice when moving to Cape Town that the work culture is generally quite relaxed, and relatively few companies require their employees to wear formal business clothes in the office. Be aware as the salary rates reflect the low living costs, so don’t expect to be paid as much as you are used to in the UK.

Ready to Move to Cape Town?

Phew! That was quite an informative read. Your thoughts might be racing with the excitement of a move to the Mother City, and by golly are you ready. So, apply for your visa, book your flights, and start your move to Cape Town today.

Of course, you might still want to know more about moving before you jump in. In that case, try clicking on one of the links below to start your journey. Otherwise, good luck with your move!