Frequently Asked Questions

Please click below if you are having trouble with downloading any of the documents.

South Africa allows for hunting year-round, but we recommend the cooler months from March through to September. The winter months of April, May and June are the ideal time of year for an African safari due to the rut.

Yes. Personal firearms from the USA are easily imported to South-Africa with no government fee required.

A) Export Rifle Form

You need to complete the export US Customs 4457 Form for each firearm.

  • The US Customs Form 4457 is a document that registers personal items for international travel. Other countries use the 4457 as the accepted “USA gun registration “.
  • The 4457 is a simple fill in the blank handwritten form the includes your name, address, signature, item description, and date. The form you fill out is validated by a US Customs agent with their signature and US Customs inked stamp. There is no charge for the 4457.
  • You will be carrying your rifle into the airport to the Customs office and this is perfectly legal. Place the rifle in a locked hard case with the bolt removed and definitely no ammunition. You will not be challenged.
  • You don’t have to present the form when you check your gun case in at boarding at departure but you will have to present the form at destination and when you retrieve your gun at the Customs kiosk in Atlanta upon return to the States.
  • Keeping up with the 4457 during your travel is as important as keeping up with your passport. Do not lose it.
  • Make 5 good quality color copies of the form and have them among your important travel documents. Make a small personal watermark on the copies so that you don’t confuse them with the original.
  • The 4457 form has an expiration date on it. Make sure that the expiration date on the form they provide you totally encompasses your trip dates.
  • A photograph of the 4457 will be one of the required documents that Roland’s cousin will need to process your pre-approval for a firearms permit.
  • You will be in possession of the only 4457 form for your firearm. The US Customs does not retain a copy of this form. Information on the form is not recorded by any US government agency.

You can download the US Customs 4457 Form here

B) Import Rifles Form

You need to complete the SAPS  520 Gun Import / Export Permit Application Form.

We suggest filling in the SAP520 beforehand to save time.

Instructions for completing the SAPS 520 form:
(Use black ink only)

Not all pages of the 8-page SAP 520 form are used for the importation of a firearm for hunting purposes. All dates on the form need to be formatted year-month-day.
Sections that need to be completed are:

Page 2 –D; 5, E; 2.1 (passport), E; 4 through 22 – Natural person’s details

Page 4 – G 1 through 5, 9.1, 9.2 – Import/Export details

Page 5 – I 1.1 through 2.1.2 – Details of firearms & ammunition

Page 6 – Print full name section I; 4.1, date (year-month-day) section I; 4.2, sign full name section I; 4.3, date (year-month-day) section I; 4.4

Print full name section J; 1, date (year-month-day) section J; 2, sign full name section J; 3, print your home address town -state-USA section J; 4

PLACE – indicates your location when filling out the form

Only scan the pages of the SAP 520 form that you have filled out. Do not scan the blank pages.

You can download the SAPS  520 Gun Import / Export Permit Application Form here

C) Hunters Permits Africa Letter of Permission.

You need to complete this permission letter to grant the service company (Hunters Permits Africa) the right to apply for the gun permit on your behalf.

You can download the Letter of Permission here

Yes. Please enquire about the variety of calibres available.

We recommend a group no bigger than 4 hunters to ensure individual attention and top-quality trophies. The main based camp can however accommodate 13 people.

While we do not handle the taxidermy process of your trophies ourselves, we work with trusted partners in the industry.

Our team handles the field preparation of your trophies (skinning, drying, and salting) free of charge.

Thereafter your trophies will be sent to our taxidermist for dipping, packaging, and export.
You will be invoiced by the taxidermy company directly for these costs.

You will receive your trophies within 7-12 months with some shipments taking up to 18 months.

Yes. We hunt concessions in Mozambique and Botswana as well.

We have an amazing chef, catering for a traditional African experience from bush braais to fine dining. We serve 3 meals per day including snacks, soft drinks and liquor.

We also do field to table catering, preparing lovely meals from the venison of the days hunt.

You will receive a form to complete prior to your safari regarding any dietary restrictions and preferences.

A deposit secures your booking. You will receive a final invoice on the last evening of your safari. Your balance can either be paid in cash, with a card machine (only Visa and Mastercard accepted) or via an electronic transfer.

Gratuities are excluded from all packages. It is not obligatory but are at your own discretion and to be given in cash.

You can download our gratuities guidelines here GRATUITIES GUIDELINES

The duration of the safari depends on the list of animals being hunted but generally we recommend a minimum of 7 days hunting and 2 days traveling.

Unfortunately, wounded game will be paid in full. However, we try our utmost best to ensure that you do not find yourself in this position.

You will be flying to Johannesburg International Airport (OR Tambo).

Delta Airlines offers a direct flight from Atlanta to Johannesburg International Airport (+- 16 hours).

United Airlines has a direct flight from Newark to Johannesburg International Airport (+- 16 hours).

Chartered flights are available on request at your own account.

We will personally meet you at the airport and assist with collecting your bow/rifle(s) if you are traveling with any.

You can download our Traveling/Flight Step-By-Step Guide here

We always advise clients to get a Global Rescue membership for 24/7/365 emergency assistance, evacuation & advisory services and worldwide field rescue should you become ill or injured while traveling.
Please visit their website,, for more information.

    • Copy of passport (South-Africa does not require a visa)
    • Copy of flight itinerary that includes return flight
    • Letter of invitation from Stirling Safaris

(Stirling Safaris will send you the Letter of Invitation when visiting dates are agreed upon and finalized.)

    • Rifle documentation if you are traveling with personal firearms:
      1. Copy of US Customs Form 4457 for each firearm
      2. Copy of SAP 520 form
      3. Copy of Letter of Permission that you grant the service company (Hunters Permits Africa) the right to apply for the gun permit on your behalf.

Though probably not needed, bring the original paperwork that you scanned for the PDF email just in case a problem arises.

Stirling Safaris has an agreement with a Johannesburg based company, Hunters Permits Africa, that assists the hunter with VIP meet-and-greet when you step off the plane in the Johannesburg Airport. This company also submits paperwork for pre-approval of your South Africa Police gun permit.

The VIP meet-and-greet service consists of having someone meet you when you step off from the plane and that representative will walk you through every step of the entry process. This representative is very well versed in the entry process and use of this service will take all guesswork and apprehension out of dealing with entry officials.

This service will have submitted all documentation necessary for pre-approval of the gun permit. Their representative will walk you through the South Africa Police (SAP) procedures that are required for bringing hunting firearms into the country.

Current fees for VIP service is $100 and gun permit service is an additional $160 for a total of $260.
This service generally needs 30 days prior to your arrival to process the paperwork.
If paperwork from you is submitted less than 30 days prior to your arrival there will be a $50 expediting fee added. These fees are added to your Stirling Safaris invoice and you do not pay these fees directly.

We know packing for an African safari can be a bit overwhelming and can be a daunting task for first time travellers, therefor we put together a recommended packing list as a guideline.

You can download our Recommended Packing List here