MTN vs Telkom at Zebras Crossings Very Private Lodge

Zebras Crossings

How do you continue to be part of a connected world in a private boutique lodge set in the untouched bushveld of the Waterberg in Limpopo? As a smartphone enthusiast and an Instagram junkie do you just stop being “always switched-on” tourists?

But, there is no way one should be worried about such questions.

It seems South Africa’s mobile phone operators are busy extending their networks to far flung areas of our country as they see value of tourists being connected to the digital world.

Luckily, I armed myself with all the necessary gadgets to be connected to the digital world when I drove up to the luxurious Zebras Crossings Very Private Boutique Bush Lodge.

The lodge offers an exclusive South African experience from which unforgettable memories are created.

I took my iPhone 8 powered by MTN’s network and my Telkom integrated data sim card to be able to connect to the Internet anywhere and anytime in the bushveld. To ensure that I was really covered and connected, I also took my Telkom LTE router.

Driving to Zebras Crossings is less than two hours from Johannesburg and just few minutes’ drive from a picturesque small town of Modimolle.

Once you are at the lodge you can ‘break-away’ from reality as it feels like you’re far away from everything as you enjoy peace and nature.

The bush lodge really provides a refreshing break from concrete jungle. It’s a land of peace and tranquillity.

What a way to relax and recharge myself after the festive season.

At the lodge, my iPhone 8 didn’t lose the network signal and I was thankful to MTN’s wider network coverage. So I was excited because that meant no “FOMO” for me when it comes to connecting with people on social media.

I decided to run a speed test of both MTN and Telkom’s integrated data sim card and Telkom’s LTE router. See results below:

Telkom LTE Router:

MTN 3G Sim card:

Telkom Integrated Data Sim card

The tests were conducted on 8-9th January, using an iPhone 8 and a Lenovo laptop running the Ookla Speed Test App.

The results showed that both Telkom and MTN had the best coverage. We didn’t test Vodacom, Cell C and other service providers. I am sure that Vodacom will also have a good 3G coverage in the Waterberg.

I was impressed with MTN’s 3G network quality. I was  also thrilled with the quality of network provided by both Telkom’s integrated data sim card and LTE router.

This shows that the operators are serious about investing in their network quality in rural areas.

Last December, MTN SA announced that it will boost its network capacity in tourist hotspots and expand coverage in rural areas. The mobile phone operator recently said that its capital expenditure programme meant its 3G network would cover 98% of the country’s population by the end of 2017, while its 4G network would cater for 73% of the population, up from 43% in early 2016.

With both network coverage provided by MTN and Telkom I was able to continue to use my smart devices as a personal travel companions.

I was able to snap up great images showcasing the sunsets littered with zebra and giraffe at the watering hole.

Clearly, South Africa’s mobile phone operators are playing a role in tourism in the bushveld.

That said, the place has free Wi-Fi.

Zebras Crossings
Zebras Crossings (Photo Credit: GooGoo Lourie, taken using an iPhone 8 powered by MTN’s network)


The place is really ideal for family set up and located close to Modimolle town for convenience.

It is a peaceful location for relaxing with your family and friends.

This well maintained and customer oriented lodge provides a relaxing yet wonderful connection with nature.



  1. How can you support MTN? People need to know that MTN is a corrupt and unethical company that pays bribes, evades tax, over-charges its customers, steals data, and shows complete contempt for the public. I have cancelled my MTN contract as I will not support a corrupt, unethical company. Here is just a sample of the type of things that MTN gets up to:

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