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ExpatCapeTown Newsletter, March 2018, Cape Town water restrictions and avian flu
March 31, 2018

Welcome to our Cape Town Living Tips

March 2018

Dear all,

this year is certainly different to all the years we experienced here before. Now our elder son is back home to visit for the first time since he is studying overseas. He confirmed to us that living overseas is not always where the grass is greener and he provided quite some 're-entry' culture shock experiences to underline this notion.

Cape Town and Africa is in our hearts as this is where we are all home now and where we enjoy living the most - even if far from the family. Now as our kids spread their wings, they realise how beautiful life in South Africa is and how much we are truly blessed to live in this beautiful country. Even if we encounter many challenges such as adjusting to the water restrictions. Well, not so much the water saving is an issue, but finding viable alternatives, especially when sourcing for plumbing kits and material as well as locating expert services.

In Cape Town, we are still limited in using water - 50 litres per person per day, but we are getting better and more creative at saving this precious resource. As mentioned in my last newsletter, there are many other cities worldwide in a similar dire water situation, so we actively need to share our experiences to help others learn from our challenges and successes to take the right decisions.

As alternative water sources are being installed throughout the city, the local aquifers have been tapped and brought online and the residents’ compliance with water saving measures seems to have increased. We now have been told by the city, that the dreaded Day Zero will not come - not this year. Nevertheless the drought in the Western Cape and several other provinces has been declared a national disaster.

We finally had some rain showers over the last week and expect increasing rainfall over the coming months, thus the water situation will hopefully improve, but depending on the amount of rain we receive, water saving measures will still be on for a long time. So let's continue to save water!

We have been told that the dams in the Mossel Bay area of the Garden Route region are finally filled up again due to the plentiful recent rains. Locals on the Garden Route can breath a sigh of relief. Many other areas in the Northern and Eastern Cape, as well as in the Karoo, are not so lucky and are still struggling with dried out dams and poor water supply. So keep on saving and encouraging all to spread the good news about the water crisis which has helped many to install water-wise gardens, rethink our water usage and implement more innovative techniques.

The Western Cape has recently announced massive funding of renewable energy resources, so the whole crisis might have finally helped to call on the specialists to have more say in the energy scenario and South Africa certainly is on the right track to become a ‘greener’ country.

Now enjoy our newsletter and have a great time in Cape Town or wherever you are!

Updates and News

This is what you will find in this ExpatCapeTown newsletter edition:

* All you should know: More about water saving in Cape Town - New water tariffs

* What's on in Cape Town: April events and school holiday fun

* Typical Slang Words: How to say hello

* Cape Town Insider Tips: Know where to go when...

Cape Town Water Restrictions

Cape Town water restrictions are still at level 6B. Day Zero, now has been successfully pushed to 2019. Read here our insights in regards to the water shortage, learn which areas in the Western Cape are affected by the drought and what you can do to last your 50 litres per day longer. Read our updated info below.

Read more about the Western Cape dam levels here.

Since 1 February 2018, new water tariffs apply - Read about the tariff increase here:

Read more about the new water tariffs 2018 here.

What's On in Cape Town?

There are many events happening in Cape Town as you will see on our ExpatCapeTown event calendar. Visit the various Easter festivals over this weekend and enjoy a day out at one of the many open-air markets, concerts and festivals. On our April event calendar you will also find the latest additions to Cape Town’s events.

Cape Town events in April

The Easter school holidays are here and kids will be home for the coming week - and sometimes longer, as some private schools may be closed for another week. As children like to stay busy during the school holidays, we have listed various holiday activities and workshops for kids on our site.

School holiday kids activities

Top 10 family fun activities

Spread the Love - Help a Good Cause

The penguin colony in Boulders Beach in Simonstown has been affected by some cases of the avian influenza (H5N8 strain), commonly known as bird flu. This viral disease spreads among seabirds, such as swifts, gannets and African penguins, but rarely affects humans. However, note that the virus can be spread easily, so you should take precautions when visiting the penguin area at Boulders Beach. The boardwalk is still open, but there will be no access inside the breeding area and to the penguin beach area. Please read about the amazing work Sanccob do here.

Typical South African terms

When living in Cape Town you will encounter many people speaking the local language isiXhosa. As in our previous newsletters, we have already shared typical South African terms with you, we now want to share also words that are commonly heard in conversations and are used in the daily routines of so many isiXhosa speakers.

How to greet in isiXhosa? To say ‘hello’, use ‘molo’ when addressing one person, male or female, but use ‘molweni’ when addressing a group of people.

What means ‘Molo, kunjani’? This is similar to ’Hello, how are you?’ You then can answer with ‘Ndiyaphila, enkosi.’ meaning: ‘I am fine, thank you.’ Enkosi means ‘Thank you’ and is thus a very useful word to remember, too.

South African Slang Words

Expat Cape Town Insider Tips

Easter egg hunts are scheduled to take place on Table Mountain over the Easter Weekend, as well as on Easter Monday at Vergenoegd Löw Wine Estate in Stellenbosch and at BugZ Playpark in Kraaifontein. Many wine estates in the Cape Winelands will have special treats for the whole family, as well as Easter egg hunts for the kids. Enquire with your favourite estates for more info.

Do you need more info on living in Cape Town? Make sure to like our Expat Cape Town Facebook page and join our ExpatCapeTown forum - a Facebook group.

ExpatCapeTown Facebook Forum

Take note: No ads in the forum allowed and please make sure to read our pinned post:-) Thanks!

Order our original ‘Living in South Africa’ handbook (hardcover book) at a special friendship price of R140 during the last week of February only. Local orders only. Contact us via the website.

Living abroad? Or do you want to give your family and friends from overseas some more insights on expat life in South Africa? Find out why we all love living here and simply order one of our e-books. ‘Living in South Africa’ is available in .pdf and .epub form.

Living in South Africa e-book

What’s coming in the Next Newsletter?

Be surprised! ExpatCapeTown brings you the most up-to-date stories and insights on expat life in Cape Town. Just rest assured, that the next newsletter will provide more insights and more tips! In the meantime, please do not hesitate to come back to us on the website, on Facebook or on twitter and share your tips and insights, all kinds of comments very welcome! Contact us here

Enjoy your life wherever you are! And Happy Easter to all who celebrate!

Best regards,


w: t: @expatlivinginsa | #expatcapetown f: Expat Cape Town | LivinginSouthAfrica

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