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How to Call South Africa from USA: A Comprehensive Guide

How to Call South Africa from USA, Making an international call might sound daunting, especially when you have to consider country codes, area codes, and proper dialing procedures. If you need to call South Africa from the United States, don’t worry! This article will break down the steps you need to follow, making the process hassle-free for you.

Understanding the Basics

Before diving into the dialing process, it’s important to understand the components involved in making an international call:

  • Exit Code: The code used to exit the calling country.
  • Country Code: The code for the country you are calling.
  • Area Code: The local code for the area within the country.
  • Phone Number: The actual number you’re dialing.

Here’s a quick table to summarize:

ComponentDescriptionExample for South Africa
Exit CodeCode to dial out of the country011 for USA
Country CodeCode for the country you are calling27 for South Africa
Area CodeLocal code for the areaJohannesburg: 11
Phone NumberThe individual number you’re callingXXX-XXXX

Dialing the Exit Code

First things first, you’ll need to dial the exit code for the United States. The exit code is “011.” This code tells the telecommunications systems that you’re making an international call.

Dialing the Country Code

After dialing the exit code, the next step is to dial the country code for South Africa, which is “27.”

Area Codes and Phone Numbers

The next sequence involves dialing the area code and the individual phone number. Here are some common area codes for major South African cities:

CityArea Code
Cape Town21

So, putting it all together, the complete dialing sequence will look something like this:

\text{011 (Exit Code) + 27 (Country Code) + Area Code + Phone Number}

For example, to call a Johannesburg landline, you’d dial:

\text{011 + 27 + 11 + XXX-XXXX}

Useful Tips

  • Time Zones: South Africa is 6 or 7 hours ahead of the U.S., depending on the time of year. Keep this in mind to avoid calling at odd hours.
  • Call Rates: International calls can be pricey. Check with your service provider for rates or consider using VoIP services like Skype or Zoom.
  • Check Connection: Always make sure you have a good signal before making an international call to avoid dropped calls and extra charges.


Calling South Africa from the USA is not as complicated as it might seem. All you need to remember are the four key components: the exit code, the country code, the area code, and the phone number. With this guide at hand, you can make your call with confidence.

Whether you’re dialing for business or to catch up with friends and family, understanding the correct procedure can save you time, effort, and money. Happy dialing!