Having led the world champions to wins over three of the four Home Unions last November, de Villiers is desperate to ensure he and his squad are perfectly prepared prior to Ian McGeechan and co stepping off their plane in less than four months time.
The Lions may have been victorious against the Springboks 12 years ago but de Villiers still believes there is plenty to learn from his compatriots who found themselves on the wrong end of a 2-1 series defeat.
De Villiers has publicly stated that he has already courted the advice of Carel du Plessis, the man who held the reigns in 1997, and will continue to do so during the build up to this summer's tour.
"I've had a few meetings with Carel and will be talking to some of the players from that series," said De Villiers, who now has 18 weeks without a Test match before the first international against the Lions on June 20.
Just as the Lions will hope to draw on the inspirational achievements of the '97 touring party, de Villiers made it clear that the past would have an impact of some sorts on the Boks' planning and preparation also.
"I would like to get as much of the 1997 squad together with the current squad to get input from them," added de Villiers.