Travel Information

Visa Requirements

It is the delegate’s responsibility to investigate the visa requirements for South Africa and apply for a visa, if necessary.

Click here for the list of nationalities which do not require a visa for a stay of up to 90 days.

If your nationality does not benefit from a visa exemption, click here to find the South African Visa requirements. Requirements for visitor’s visas differ from country to country, and the requirements are subject to change.

While processing time depends from country to country, delegates are advised to apply for their visa as soon as possible, if required, to ensure adequate processing time.

While registering for WOC2020, you will be able to request an invitation letter stating that you will be traveling to South Africa in order to attend the 37th World Ophthalmology Congress. This letter will help facilitate the visa process. Please note that letters of invitation are only issued to registered and paid/approved delegates.

If you have any questions, please contact WOC@icowoc.org 

Please note that travellers entering South Africa from countries where yellow fever is endemic, are often required to present their yellow World Health Organisation (WHO) vaccination record, or other proof of inoculation. If they are unable to do so, they must be inoculated at the airport in order to be permitted entry.

Getting to Cape Town

Cape Town International Airport (CTIA) is Africa’s most award-winning airport. As Africa’s 3rd largest airport it processes over 8 million passengers annually with over 50 % of the country’s air passengers passing through the airport. It is the primary airport serving the city of Cape Town. Located approximately 20 kilometers (12 miles) from the city center, the airport has domestic and international terminals, linked by a common central terminal.

The airport offers direct flights from South Africa’s other two main urban areas, Johannesburg and Durban, as well as flights to smaller centers in South Africa.

Internationally, it offers direct flights to several destinations in Africa, Asia and Europe and many more via Johannesburg.

Click here to find out more on how to get to Cape Town.

To book discounted flights, please see the Airline Travel Discounts section below.

Safety Tips

Cape Town has been welcoming leisure and business travelers for many years, and its centre is considered safe. However, like in any big city, it is important to be mindful and take some precautions in order to have a pleasant experience.

Here are a few safety hacks for your stay in Cape Town:

  • Make sure no one can see you enter your PIN or transaction amount at the ATM.
  • Always leave at least one of your cards in the hotel safe.
  • Carry only the amount of cash you will need for the day.
  • Carry a copy of your passport with you, leave the original document in the hotel safe.
  • Do not carry any valuables.
  • Hike in a group, carry a map, and remain on the designated paths.
  • Use a reliable registered taxi service. See transport options in the section below.
  • Store emergency numbers on your phone.
  • Do not wear your badges outside the Congress venue or carry around conference bags. Both identify you as a foreigner.
  • Do not walk around alone at night, unless you are in an area with a lot of bars, restaurants, and people.

Here you can find safety information from the main tourism institutions of Cape Town and South Africa.

Airline Travel Discounts

oneworld® is pleased to be the official airline alliance of 37th World Ophthalmology Congress.

Attendee benefits

  • Discounts on flights for attendees and one travel companion.
  • Travel up to seven days before and seven days after the event.
  • Flights available from all oneworld member airlines and affiliates.
  • Enjoy a user-friendly booking tool showing the most convenient flight options.
  • 24-hour support via email or phone.
  • Earn rewards and tier status points on eligible oneworld flights.
  • Frequent flyer privileges including access to some 650 premium airport lounges worldwide, fast track at security lanes in selected airports and extra baggage allowance.*
  • Seamless connections and quality service on oneworld member airlines.

Take advantage today

Visit www.oneworld.com/events, select ‘Attendee’ and enter event code OW70A19 to access our online booking tool.

oneworld, the premier global airline alliance, brings together 13 leading airlines from around the world – American Airlines, British Airways, Cathay Pacific Airways, Finnair, Iberia, Japan Airlines, LATAM Airlines, Malaysia Airlines, Qantas, Qatar Airways, Royal Jordanian, S7 Airlines and SriLankan Airlines. Together with around 30 affiliate members, oneworld’s network currently serves more than 1,000 destinations in 150 countries. For more information please visit www.oneworld.com.

*Privileges depend on your oneworld tier status level. For more information visit www.oneworld.com/benefits.

Booking support

If you require any assistance to book your flights, you can directly reach out to oneworld for support:

Email: groups@tsiusa.com

Phone: +1 800 756 2987

Please note that customer support will request a registration confirmation before proceeding with bookings via phone or email.

Transport options

There is only one airport in Cape Town which operates both domestic and international flights. The main terminal building has three floors the departures are located in the upper floors and arrivals in the lower floors.

For more information, visit the Cape Town Airport website.

Airport Transfers

The option of booking Airport – Hotel – Airport transfers is available. You can book your transfer through our Accommodation, Tours and Airport Transfers link.

Other transport options at Cape Town Airport include shuttles as arranged privately with hotels or agencies, metered, Uber-style cabs, airport transfers in general, and the MyCiti mass rapid transport bus system which runs into town. MyCiti is convenient should you be travelling lightly. If not, a pre-arranged transfer, taxi or car hire are your best options.

It is an appealingly simple way to get around: just download the app, call up a car, and be on your merry way. You do not even need to carry cash (although that is now an option).

For more information regarding Uber, visit their website.

For more information regarding Bolt (Taxify), visit their website.

Transport to and from the airport is also provided by metered and authorized taxis. Travel time between Cape Town Airport and downtown is about 20 minutes. Taxis at Cape Town Airport can be found outside the Arrivals level (ground level).

Touch Down Taxis is the officially authorised airport taxi company and travellers. To request the service in advance, please call: +27 (0)83 652 0786 or +27 (0)82 569 7555. Opening hours: 24 hours.

For passengers’ convenience, it is better to pre-book a taxi.  It is one of the cheapest ways to get around in terms of private transportation. The ride should cost between R260.00-R310.00. There are various companies that provides the services as: Rikkis, Excite, Sport, Kestrel, among others.

Please, bear in mind that the taxi fares are based on the cab category and the location of the cab (if it is stationed at the airport or need to pick up passengers). A trip to downtown Cape Town from the airport cost between R 300.00 and 400.00.

Still a fairly new addition to Cape Town, the MyCiTi integrated rapid transport network offers an easy and affordable way to get around the city. These modern buses offer good public transport options for the city centre and a host of nearby landmarks. The service extends to the Cape Town International Airport.

The fares on the MyCiTi buses are calculated according to the distance traveled, and you’ll need to buy one of the MyConnect cards (available at the stations or select retailers) and load enough money for your trip. For more information, visit their website.

The sights of Cape Town are spread far and wide. For those who would like to explore the area at their own pace, one of the best option is to get around would be through car hire. There are numerous international and local vehicle rental agencies at the airport. These include Budget car hire, Avis, First car rental For more information on the car rental companies available at the airport, visit this webpage.