Tickets to the 2010 World CupTickets for the World Cup are on sale now, but getting a ticket is complicated. The final Ticket Sales Phase is the “Last Minute Sales Phase” and will take place from 15 April to 11 July. South Africans can now buy tickets in South Africa (non-residents may do so as well. Tickets can be bought in person at Shoprite stores and First national Bank branches. For fans living outside South Africa, you can buy tickets online with a credit card as long as they are still available.
It's best to check FIFA's web site for all these ticketing details and how to apply online.
To make things easier for you, there are official tour companies that have had to go through a special lottery system to get tickets. They are listed on page two and offer 2010 World Cup packages that include match tickets, accommodations and flights.
What Teams are playing in the World Cup?32 teams qualified to play in the World Cup. Teams have been split into 8 groups and they will play each team in their group during the first round of the tournament, known as "the Group stage". Here they are:
Group A - South Africa, Mexico, Uruguay and France
Group B - Argentina, Nigeria, Korea Republic and Greece
Group C - England, USA, Algeria and Slovenia
Group D - Germany, Australia, Serbia and Ghana
Group E - Netherlands, Denmark, Japan and Cameroon
Group F - Italy, Paraguay, New Zealand and Slovakia
Group G - Brazil, Korea DPR, Cote d'Ivoire and Portugal
Group H - Spain, Switzerland, Honduras and Chile
When to book flights to South AfricaCurrently 2 airlines offer direct flights to South Africa from the US, Delta and South African Airways. Several European airlines fly direct to South Africa from London (BA and Virgin Atlantic), Amsterdam (KLM), Frankfurt (Lufthansa), and Paris (Air France).
If you get a package tour together then this will usually include a flight and that way you should be able to guarantee yourself a seat.
If you're really stuck getting a flight into South Africa, try flights to Windhoek in Namibia (via Frankfurt) or Gaborone in Botswana (via London), both of these cities are a bus ride away from either Cape Town or Johannesburg. You can also try flying in to Nairobi (Kenya) and catching a regional flight down from there on Kenya Airways or South African Airways.
For more regional possibilities, check out my African Airlines pages for ideas.
Where Will the Matches Take Place?The 2010 World Cup will play out in ten stadiums across South Africa (see map). Many are currently under construction in Cape Town, Durban, Johannesburg (2 stadiums), Mangaung/Bloemfontein, Nelson Mandela Bay/Port Elizabeth, ">Nelspruit, Polokwane, Rustenburg, and Tshwane/Pretoria.
Look for accommodation and flights into Johannesburg if you want to see matches in Johannesburg, Rustenburg, Pretoria and Nelspruit. These are all situated in the north of South Africa and the stadiums won't be more than a 3 hour drive away. Polokwane (Pietersburg) is about 5 hours from Johannesburg and is considered one of the safest towns in South Africa. Click here for information about getting to and from Johannesburg's international Airport.
Bloemfontein is in the middle of the country and will host several matches in the Free State Stadium. Bloemfontein is a small city of approximately 370,000 people and the judicial capital of South Africa.
Durban lies on the warm Indian Ocean coast, it has fantastic beaches, excellent surfing, lots of culture and a good nightlife.
Cape Town, one of the world's most beautiful cities is on the southern tip of the country where the Atlantic and Indian oceans meet. You can fly directly into Cape Town from several European destinations... read more
Port Elizabeth lies in between Cape Town and Durban on the coast in a region called the Eastern Cape. This is a popular tourist area and there are lots of domestic flights available. A perfect place from which to explore the popular Garden Route.
Getting Around to MatchesAll the towns and cities that will host World Cup matches have airports close by. South Africa's domestic carriers include:
- South African Express offers 13 South African domestic flights.
- Airlink offers mainly domestic flights within South Arica but is starting to branch out regionally as well.
- Kulula is a low-cost airline operating domestically as well as regionally. Routes include Cape Town, Durban, George, Harare and Lusaka.
- Mango Airlines launched in December 2006 and flies to several destinations within South Africa including Johannesburg, Cape Town, Pretoria and Bloemfontein.
- Venture Air offers scheduled domestic destinations and charter services. Scheduled flights include Kruger, Cape Town, Plettenberg, Johannesburg and more.
- 1Time offers low-cost flights within South Africa and to Zanzibar.
Renting a car is a good option if you're planning to attend matches in different cities. South Africa's roads are among the best on the continent and there are many car rental options to choose from. Read more...
Minibus Taxis, coaches, and regular buses will be plying the routes from hotels to stadiums. Thousands of extra vehicles will be in place during the event.Vuvuzela and head to one of the official 2010 World Cup fan parks. You can watch all the action on big screens along with 20,000 fellow football fans.