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Please note that our courses are open to South African and non-South African citizens. We have a South African Rand account for our South African customers too – so please do enquire should you be interested.

In addition, you do not have to enrol to take the FGASA exams. It is also possible to join for the bush experience and the learning.

FGASA logo (The Field Guides Association of Southern Africa)The Field Guides Association of Southern Africa

FGASA is a separate association to Afreco Tours and the training schools and organisations we work with. The FGASA registration and exam fees are included with our 55 day and 1 year safari guide training courses. Contact details for FGASA if required are as follows:

The Field Guides Association of Southern Africa


FGASA Level 1 courses

Other FGASA accredited courses include:

FGASA Trails Guide courses

This is the walking side of safari guide training that comes after getting your FGASA level 1 qualification.


Birding qualifications

All participants will receive a certificate of participation on completion. However, should you wish to be assessed for the FGASA Regional Bird Guide qualification (FGASA birding slide/ sound assessment and the bird guiding skills practical assessment), please request this at the time of booking (FGASA Field Guide Level 1 is a minimum requirement, Level 2 is highly recommended). Additional assessment fees will apply.


Birding qualifications

If you want to attain the FGASA Advanced Rifle Handling qualification (ARH) qualification, you must:

  1. Have a full FGASA Level 1 Field Guide qualification (inclusive of a First Aid qualification)
  2. Have a PFTC (Professional Firearm Trainers Council) accredited Rifle Proficiency certificate before you arrive on course (www.pftc.co.za).

Useful information about FGASA and the qualifications

FGASA aim to promote a high standard of guiding, becoming a Nature Guide means that you are a spokesman and ambassador for the natural world. As such Nature Guiding should be regarded as a profession and a career path during which you are constantly broadening your knowledge and then imparting this knowledge to your clients. They should leave having had an eye-opening, educational and truly superb experience of the natural wonders of where you live and work. A Nature Guide should avoid becoming a “jeep jockey” concentrating only on the Big 5, as there is so much more to the wilderness experience.

You do not have to be a South African resident to belong to FGASA, as they do have international membership as well.

FGASA Level 1 is the basic qualification which everyone needs in order to register as a legal guide. This is your entry level qualification which will then allow you to apply for work as a nature guide.

To get a FGASA qualification you can join one of the courses offered by a FGASA accredited training provider – such as those offered through Afreco.

By attending a course you not only attend daily lectures to assist you for the theory exam, but you will also gain a lot of practical knowledge regarding all the different aspects of the bush. You will also be trained on what is expected of a nature guide who will be taking paying guests on a guided experience within the bush.

The courses Afreco offers are through training providers endorsed by FGASA, but working independently of FGASA and of each other. The advantage of being on a course is that the theory exam and practical assessment are taken care of at the same time, is that providing you pass, you will leave the course having obtained a Level 1 qualification.

In order to obtain any of the FGASA qualifications (Nature Levels 1, 2 or 3 and Marine Level 1) you will need to complete a written theory exam as well as doing a practical exam. You cannot obtain a completed Level 1, 2 or 3 without writing theory as well as doing the practical.

Theory Exam

75% is needed in order to pass the theory exam. When studying through a training provider, you will write your FGASA theory exam at the end of your course at the location where your course takes place.

Practical Assessment

On passing your theory exam at 75% or more then you can take the Practical assessment too, this will also be done on the course as well. The assessment is only one day and it consists of taking the assessor on a guided nature experience, in a limited geographical area (either with or without paying clients).

FGASA Level 2

Before you can move onto Level 2, you need to have 260 days worth of guiding experience written and signed off in your logbook. You will also have to submit a portfolio of evidence (the details of which can be found in the Level 2 learner support pack). However, even if you do not have the 260 days of guiding experience you can still purchase learning materials in order to start working on the workbooks. Your logbook has to be sent in to the office in order to be eligible for the theory exam, and your workbook (portfolio of evidence) has to be submitted to the assessor.

FGASA level 3

Before you can proceed to Level 3 you need to have 520 days worth of guiding experience logged.

You can only do the SKS qualifications once you are a Level 3 guide.
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DEAT (Dept of Environment and Tourism)

Once you have your full Level 1, FGASA will provide you with your certificate and a letter which will enable you to register with DEAT. This is who you have to be registered with in order to guide legally in South Africa. Please note that all assessment first come back to the FGASA office in order to be moderated. This takes a minimum of 3 weeks. Only once this has been done will you be issued with your certificate and DEAT letter from FGASA.

First Aid Certificate

A Level 1 First Aid certificate (covering basics such as shock treatment, CPR, basic sprains, burns, wounds, bleeding and bandaging etc) is needed before any FGASA certificates will be issued. You do not need to have this prior to joining FGASA, but you will need to get it either during study or once study is completed before you will be issued with your FGASA certificate.

Try organisations like the Red Cross or St Johns or any first aid training provider registered with the Department of Labour. You will then need to send us a copy of your certificate into FGASA.

Want to know more?

Give us a call, or contact us via email.