Clubbing in Cape Town: a survival guide

Going out on the town in Cape Town is generally safe but, like anywhere in the world, there are some do’s and don’ts you need to know before you hit the town.

Don’t drink and drive

Like much of the rest of the world, South Africa has a strict drink-driving policy. Unfortunately its public transport services are not as world class! If you do plan on drinking make use of a taxi service, of which Uber has the best reputation. Promo codes available in some Cape Town clubs and bars can make your Uber trips even cheaper.

Beat the queues

Clubs all over the world hold the queues outside for as long as they can, just to make it seem vibey inside, and Cape Town is no different. But with cheaper entry prices before a certain time, getting there early can bring down your costs for the night and make sure you beat the queue. Don’t drink too much early on, though, because Cape Town clubs only really get going around 11pm!

Take your ID

Never leave home without your proof of identity. Being bounced from a club or bar in Cape Town is never fun.

Form a wolf pack

If you can, going out in a group is clever, not only for a good time but also because there is safety in numbers especially when adventuring to different clubs and bars on the same night.

Watch your drinks

Ladies (and gents too), be sure to watch your drinks. While generally safe, spiking of drinks can and does occassionally happen.

Stay clear of ‘friendly gents’

The Long/Loop street nightlife is the liveliest in town, but it’s also synonymous with stolen cellphones and friendly gents on the street offering all sorts of substances you can’t get at the 7Eleven (we’re talking drugs, the illegal kind). If someone comments or compliments you on an item of your clothing, tell them to get lost and keep walking!

Keep an open mind

It’s highly recommended that you head out with an open mind because Cape Town has so much to offer. From Bob’s Bar and Shack, where dress code is non-existent, to clubs like ERA and Shimmy Beach Club where what you wear definitely matters, you’ll find a place that suits your nightlife style.