Climate change-related perceptions and communication are important factors influencing people’s support for climate change policies and individual behavior. Since research on both climate change-related perceptions and communication is biased towards Western countries and standardized research methodologies, this paper investigates perceptions across South African communities using a deductive-inductive qualitative approach. 20 individuals in three communities of a South African town were interviewed about their climate change-related perceptions and communication. Results show that for individual concepts of climate change, interviewees’ perceptions differed across the communities: higher educated communities had more differentiated and diverse conceptions of causes and consequences of climate change and potential countermeasures. Most interviewees, across the communities, stressed that they considered climate change as an important problem, although other social problems seemed more pressing. Interestingly, all three communities most frequently encounter the issue of climate change through new and traditional mass media, but their self-assessed knowledge about it varies widely.