South Africa Visa and Passport Requirements

IMPORTANT INFORMATION FOR TRAVELLERS TO SOUTH AFRICA.

Travellers to South Africa need to have a passport that is valid for at least 30 days longer than the length of their intended stay. There should be no less than two blank pages in your passport. Passengers travelling to South Africa with passports which do not comply with these requirements, will either be stopped from boarding the aircraft or risk deportation upon arrival in South Africa.

Visitors who stay in the country after the expiry of their permit will be declared "undesirable" for between one and five years; essentially barring them access to South Africa for as many years.

The new regulations require visa and permit applicants to present their application in person. Agents may still accompany you through the submission process but cannot undertake the submission on your behalf any longer.

It is mandatory for visa and permit applicants to have biometric information collected either upon admission to South Africa or upon application for a visa or permit while resident in South Africa.

Yellow Fever certificates are required on entry to South Africa if you have previously visited a Yellow Fever risk country.

Children Travelling to South Africa

Visitors to South Africa as well as South African citizens leaving or entering South Africa with children under the age of 18 need original or certified copies of documents that prove the children are either travelling with their parents, or with the consent of their parents. The specific documents required depends on where the child is from, who the child is travelling with or any other special circumstances (adoption, foster care, whether both parents are still alive, etc). A valid visa and passport may also be presented.

a) Travel documents needed when a South African child is travelling with both biological parents

  • Valid Passport
  • Copy of a birth certificate / equivalent document OR a passport containing the details of the parent(s) of the child

b) Travel documents needed when a South African child is travelling with only one biological parent

  •  Valid Passport
  •  Copy of a birth certificate / equivalent document
  •  Parental consent letter - not older than 6 months
  •  Copy of the passport / identity document of the absent parent
  •  Contact details of the absent parent
  •  Copy of a death certificate of the deceased parent (if applicable)
  •  Copy of a court order granting full parental responsibilities and rights or legal guardianship in respect of the child (if applicable)

c) Travel documents needed when a South African child is travelling with a person who is not the child's biological parent

  • Valid Passport
  •  Copy of a birth certificate / equivalent document
  •  Parental consent letter(s) - not older than 6 months
  •  Copy of the passport(s) / identity document(s) of the parent(s) / legal guardian(s)
  •  Contact details of the parent(s) / legal guardian(s)
  •  Copy of an adoptive order / death certificate of the deceased parent(s) or legal guardian (if applicable)
  •  Copy of a court order granting full parental responsibilities and rights / legal guardianship in respect of the child (if applicable)

d) Travel documents needed when a child is in possession of valid South African visa

  •  Children in possession of valid South African visas are not required to produce the documents already submitted as part of their visa applications when travelling to / from South Africa
  •  Although not required, it is advised to travel with the documents submitted as part of the visa application process.

e) Travel documents needed when a child from a Visa Exempt Country is travelling with both biological parents

  •  Valid Passport of child

f) Travel documents needed when a child from a Visa Exempt Country is travelling with only one biological parent

  •  Valid Passport of chilld

g) Travel documents needed when a child from a Visa Exempt Country is travelling with a person who is not the child's biological parent

  • Valid passport

 

The requirements for access to South Africa differ from country to country. Ideally, one should check with the South African embassy in your country of origin.

You may also consult this list of Countries exempt from South African Visas but it is better to double check with your local authority in the wake of recent changes.

Visas are the responsibility of the traveller. It is best to consult with the high commission of the country being travelled to in the country being travelled from as requirements vary and change constantly. Siyabona Africa will not be held responsible for any incomplete or incorrect information regarding the visa process gathered by the traveller.

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