South Africa visa requirements |
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Visa requirements for visiting South Africa

  • When travelling to South Africa, it is essential that you meet the country's entry requirements before leaving your home country. Continue reading to learn what visitor visa requirements may apply to you.

    Please note, the following information is for South African visitor visas. Visitor's visas are only for international travellers who wish to visit the country on a temporary basis for tourism or business purposes for a period of 90 days or less.


  • Who needs a visa to visit South Africa?

    Not all nationalities need to have visas in order to visit South Africa. If you have dual citizenship in South Africa and another country, and have a national South African passport, you will not require a visa to enter the country.

    • Citizens of the following countries are exempt from visa requirements for stays of less than 90 days:

    African Union; Andorra; Argentina; Australia; Austria; Belgium; Botswana; Brazil; Canada; Chile; Czech Republic; Denmark; Ecuador; Finland; France; Germany; Greece; Iceland; Israel; Italy; Jamaica; Japan; Liechtenstein; Luxemburg; Malta; Monaco; Namibia; Netherlands; New Zealand; Norway; Panama; Paraguay; Portugal; San Marino; Singapore; Spain; St Vincent & the Grenadines; Sweden; Switzerland; Tanzania; Trinidad & Tobago; United Kingdom; Uruguay; Venezuela; United States of America; Zambia; and Zimbabwe.

    • Citizens of the following countries are exempt from visa requirements for stays of less than 30 days:

    Antigua and Barbuda; Bahamas; Barbados; Belize; Benin; Bolivia; Cape Verde; Costa Rica; Cyprus; Gabon; Guyana; Hong Kong; Hungary; Jordan; Lesotho; Macau; Malaysia; Malawi; Maldives; Mauritius; Mozambique; Namibia; Peru; Poland; Seychelles; Slovak Republic; South Korea; Swaziland; Thailand; and Turkey.

    • If you do not require a visitor visa, you will still need the following when entering South Africa:

    • A valid and acceptable passport or travel document for your intended stay

    • At least one blank page in your passport for endorsements

    • Proof of sufficient funds to pay for your day-to-day expenses during your stay

    • A return or onward ticket

    • If you have children (minors) travelling with you or joining you in South Africa, you will need to provide additional documents. Please see the section below - Children travelling in and out of South Africa - for more information

    • Yellow fever certificates if your journey starts or entails passing through the yellow fever belt of Africa or South America.

    • If you are not a citizen from one of the countries listed above, or your stay in South Africa extends beyond 90 days, you will need to apply for a visa before travelling to South Africa.


    What to submit with your South African visa application form

    Citizens from countries that require a Visitor Visa to be issued before travelling to South Africa need to apply for the visa in-person at the relevant visa processing centre, consulate or embassy in their country of origin and collect that visa in person.

    • In order to be issued a South African visitor's visa, you must submit certain information and documents, including:

    • A passport or travel document valid for no less than 30 days after the expiry of your intended visit

    • Your passport must have at least one unused page for entry / departure endorsements

    • A completed Form BI-84 (application for a visa). Original application forms must be obtained from the relevant visa processing centre, consulate or embassy

    • Payment of the prescribed fee

    • A yellow-fever vaccination certificate (if required)

    • Statement and/or documentation confirming the purpose and duration of your visit

    • Two colour passport photographs

    • A return or onward ticket if you are travelling by air

    • If you have children (minors) travelling with you or joining you in South Africa, you will need to provide additional documents. Please see the section below - Children travelling in and out of South Africa - for more information

    • Proof of financial means to pay for your living expenses while in South Africa in the form of: Bank statements; Salary advances; Undertakings by the host(s) in South Africa; Bursary; Medical / Travel insurance; or Cash available (including credit cards and travellers’ cheques)


    Children travelling in and out of South Africa

    Whenever an adult travels with a child, he or she must produce (amongst other documents - see below for details) an unabridged birth certificate in respect of that child at any South African port of entry. This requirement applies to:

    • South African nationals travelling internationally and returning to South Africa from another country;

    • Foreign nationals travelling to and from South Africa who require a visa to visit South Africa; and

    • Foreign nationals travelling to and from South Africa who do not require a visa to visit South Africa

    • In the instance where both parents are travelling together with one or more of their children, they will need to produce:

    • A passport and/or visa for each traveller, including every child; and

    • An unabridged birth certificate of each child.

    • In the instance where only one parent is travelling with a child, he or she will need to produce:

    • A passport and/or visa for each traveller, including every child;

    • An unabridged birth certificate of every child; and

    A recently dated letter or affidavit of consent from the other parent registered on the birth certificate of the child authorising him or her to enter into or depart from South Africa with the child;

    • In the instance where it is not possible to produce a letter or affidavit of consent, the parent must alternatively show either a court order granting full parental responsibilities and rights or legal guardianship in respect of any child to the travelling parent; or a death certificate of the other parent.

    • A child that is unaccompanied by his or her parents or legal guardian, will need to produce:

      • A passport and/or visa for each traveller, including every child;

      A letter or affidavit of consent from one of or both his or her parents or legal guardian granting permission to the child to travel into or depart from South Africa;

      • Where only one parent provides proof of consent, that parent must also provide either a copy of a court order in terms of which he or she has full parental responsibilities and rights in respect of the child; or a death certificate of the other parent.

      • The contact numbers of the parents or legal guardian of the child.

      • If the child is travelling alone, a letter from the person who is to receive her or him in South Africa containing that person's residential address and contact details in South Africa where the child will be residing;

      • If the child is travelling alone, a copy of the identity document or valid passport and visa or permanent residence permit of the person who is to receive the child;

    Please click here to view and download the Department of Home Affairs' suggested format for a parental letter of consent.


  • This South African Visitor Visa information is correct as of 1 August 2015. However, regulation is subject to change at any time.

    It's highly recommended that you consult the South African embassy in your home country, in order to ensure that you meet all relevant criteria. Alternatively, consult South Africa Home Affairs for more information on visa requirements for entering South Africa.

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