South African Visas

COVID-19 TRAVEL ADVISORY

South Africa has been placed on an adjusted Alert Level 3 with effect 28 December 2020, imposing stricter measures in response to the second wave of the COVID-19 pandemic.

No additional restrictions have been placed on international or domestic travel at this stage.

A compulsory curfew, among other measures, has been imposed with effect from midnight on 28 December 2020 that prohibits movement between 21:00 hrs and 06:00 hrs. However, if you arrive in South Africa during the curfew period you are permitted to travel from the airport to your place of accommodation.

Please note that it is now compulsory to wear a cloth mask or similar covering over the nose and mouth when in public and non-compliance is a criminal offence.

Visa exempt nationals may enter on their respective visa exemption periods for holiday purposes, no prior approval is required. Australian citizens/permanent residents are required to obtain approval from the Australian authorities to leave Australia.

All persons entering South Africa should be in possession of the required negative COVID 19 Test Results and subject themselves to whatever screening and health related requirements are in place in South Africa at the time of arrival.

  • On arrival, travelers will need to present a negative COVID-19 test results obtained not more than 72 hours before the time of departure from the country of origin (i.e. at the time of departure the COVID-19 negative test certificate must not be older than 72 hours)
  • This PCR (polymerase chain reaction) test that is not older than 72 hours must have been conducted by a certified medical practitioner and should have the details (including name, official stamp and signature) of the practitioner/laboratory who conducted such test. The test must be an original certificate (SMS or EMAIL confirmation is not accepted). The test results should have the name of the passenger as it appears on the passenger's passport. Please make sure that you travel with more than one printed copy of your test results.
  • All travelers will be subjected to screening by Port Health Officials upon arrival and departure.
  • All travelers detected with symptoms will be required to remain in quarantine until a repeat COVID-19 test is conducted at their own costs.
  • All travelers to complete Traveler Health Questionnaire prior to arrival or upon arrival at the port of entry. This will be provided by the respective airlines.
  • Every traveler must have mandatory travel/health insurance.
  • All travelers should wear masks at all times whilst within the Ports of Entry controlled area;
  • Port officials to ensure that port users adhere to social distance as part of queue management protocol;
  • We encourage the international travelers who intend to visit the country to download the APP so that they are able to monitor and minimize their risk of exposure to the COVID-19 virus.
  • Travelers will also need to provide proof of accommodation address should they need to self-quarantine at the time of arrival in the country.
  • Kindly note that the South African Department of Health has advised that children 5 years and younger are currently not required to produce negative test results, but will be subjected to the necessary health screening on arrival. However, it would be advisable to check with the relevant airline whether they require the children under the age of 5 to be tested or not.

Applying for a South African Visa

Visitors' visas are for international travellers (citizens of other countries) who wish to visit the country on a temporary basis for tourism or business purposes for a period of 90 days or less.

The visa will allow you to travel to a South African port of entry where an immigration official will then determine if you are allowed to enter South Africa and for how long you can stay for that particular visit. Visitors are restricted to the activity or purpose for which their visas were issued.

On entry to South Africa, a visa is considered to be a visitor's permit. The permit's period of validity is calculated from the date of entry into the country and will be set out under the heading "conditions" on the visa label. You must ensure that you apply for the correct visa/permit. Entry in the country may be refused if the purpose of visit was not correctly stated.

Requirements for visitor's visas differ from country to country and the requirements are subject to change. Remember that there is a fee charged for issuing a visa.

All visa applications have to be lodged in person at the mission in Canberra by prior appointment only to book an appointment please call the mission or email: immigration.canberra@dirco.gov.za

Persons who are in Australia on short term visas (holiday, etc.), will not be accommodated for visa applications as they must apply for visas to visit South Africa from their countries of origin.

Please check if you need a visa to travel to South Africa:  List of Visa exempt countries.

Check to see if you need to pay for your visa: Visa Fees

You need a yellow fever immunization certificate if you traveled through one of the following countries: Yellow Fever Countries

Visa Categories:

  1. Visitor's Visas Less than Three (3) Months
    1. Visitor's Visa under section 11(2) of the immigration act - Authorisation to conduct work for a short period.
  2. Visitor's Visa - Section 11(1)(ii)(dd), 13, 14, 15, 17, 19, 22
    1. Visitor's Visa under section 11(6) – Spouse / Life Partner of South African citizen. Reside with SAC and work / conduct business.
  3. Transit Visa
  4. Study Visa
  5. Exchange Visa
  6. Intra-Company Transfer
  7. Business Visa (existing business)
  8. Business Visa (new business)
  9. Work Visa
  10. Medical Visa
  11. Retired Person Visa (non working)
  12. Relatives Visa
  13. Academics, Researchers, Sabbaticals - Section 11(1)(B)(III)
  14. Volunteer Visa - Section 11(1)(B)(II)
  15. Critical Skills Work Visa
  16. Medical Elective Student
  17. Treaty Visa

Permanent Resident Applications

Anyone wishing to apply for permanent residence in South Africa should contact the Mission for forms to be posted to them.

Please view our contact page for our Consular hours.

For forms and further information, please contact us via our contact page.

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