The purpose of this article was to review and compare the international guidelines and surveillance protocols for post-nephrectomy renal cell carcinoma (RCC). PubMed database searches were conducted, according to the PRISMA statement for reporting systematic reviews, to identify current international surveillance guidelines and surveillance protocols for surgically treated and clinically localized RCC. A total of 17 articles were reviewed. These included three articles on urological guidelines, three on oncological guidelines and 11 on proposed strategies. Guidelines and strategies varied significantly in relation to follow-up, specifically with regard to the frequency and timing of radiological imaging. Although there is currently no consensus within the literature regarding surveillance protocols, various guidelines and strategies have been developed using both patient and tumour characteristics.