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New to Southern Africa

Useful information for Irish citizens who have recently arrived in Southern Africa.

If you have recently moved to Southern Africa, it can take some time to adapt to your new surroundings. It may be beneficial to meet with other Irish citizens who are part of a local organisation or business network that can provide you with general advice, information and guidance.

We recommend that Irish citizens intending to reside in South Africa, Botswana, Lesotho, Mauritius or Zimbabwe register with the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade’s Citizens Registration facility. This is a quick and easy process which can be done online. The register can help the Embassy assist you in an unforeseen crisis.

We would also recommend that you read our travel advice for the country to which you have moved. The travel advice is regularly reviewed and updated so we would suggest checking it periodically while you are staying in this region.

There are a number of Irish associations in this region, some of which are listed below:

Business Ireland Southern Africa

This business network for Irish people and those with a connection to Ireland was established in 2012 and has chapters in Johannesburg, Cape Town and Harare.

Irish South African Association

This friendly association has chapters in Cape Town, Durban and Johannesburg. They host many activities and events for the Irish in South Africa and those of Irish heritage.

Irish Association of Mashonaland

This lively association is based in Harare, Zimbabwe and they offer social activities and also address welfare issues for vulnerable Irish emigrants. It is among the oldest Irish expatriate associations in the world.

Matabeleland Irish Association

This valuable association is based in Bulawayo, Zimbabwe and supports vulnerable Irish emigrants in the city and surrounds. They also host social events and activities.

Advice to emigrants

Cross Care Migrant Project also provide advice to emigrants.

It is recommended that anyone intending to move to South Africa does as much research as possible.