Visitors’ visas are for international visitors (citizens of other countries) who have a permanent address outside of South Africa and wish to visit the country for a period of 90 days or less for tourism or business.
A visa merely means that your application has been assessed by a consular officer at a South African embassy, mission, or consulate and that you are eligible to enter the country for a certain purpose.
The visa will allow you to go to a South African port of entry, where an immigration official will assess whether you are permitted to enter the country and for how long you are permitted to stay. Visitors are limited to the activity or purpose for which they were granted a visa.
A visa is considered a visitor’s permit when entering South Africa. The validity of the permit is determined from the date of arrival into the country and will be stated on the visa label under the heading “conditions.” You must make certain that you apply for the appropriate visa or permit. If the reason of the visit is not declared accurately, entry into the nation may be denied.
The conditions for visitor visas vary by country (click here to learn which countries are currently excluded), and they can change at any time. Because each application is handled individually, you should check with your nearest South African mission or consulate overseas, as well as any Department of Home Affairs office, to determine if you need to apply for a visa.
Remember that there is a fee for issuing a visa, and you should double-check the price with the office because it changes every year. In different nations, the charge is paid in different currencies.
Visas are not issued at South African ports of entry, thus airline staff must insist on them before boarding passengers. If you enter the nation without a visa, immigration agents must place you on a flight back to your own country.
Foreigners having long-term status (work permits/permit residence) in neighbouring countries who pass the Republic on their way back to their place of employment or residence are not required to get a transit visa if they provide proof of their status.
South African visitors’ visas may be granted for:
- visits to family or friends and also for tourism purposes
- business purposes
- spouse to join a spouse who is in South Africa on a work or study permit
- children to join parents who are in South Africa on work or study permits
- fiancée/ fiancé to join his or her partner with the intension of marrying within 90 days
- study purposes (max stay 3-months)
- charitable or voluntary activities
- to work in the production of an movie or show (i.e. in the entertainment industry)
- for medical purposes (max stay 3-months)
- sport events
Documents required to apply for a visa
- 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 TWO unused page for entry / departure endorsements
- A completed Form BI-84 (application for a visa)
- 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 in South Africa, you will need to provide the following additional documents
- Proof of guardianship or custody or
- Consent from the guardian in the case of an unaccompanied minor
- 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
- Medical cover or
- Cash available (including credit cards and travellers’ cheques)
Requirements for entering South Africa
You will need the following if you wish to visit South Africa:
- A valid and acceptable passport or travel document for your intended stay
- At least one blank page in your passport for endorsements
- A valid visa, if required
- Sufficient funds to pay for your day-to-day expenses during your stay
- A return or onward ticket
- Yellow fever certificates if your journey starts or entails passing through the yellow fever belt of Africa or South America.
Read More: TRAVELING TO SOUTH AFRICA WITH CHILDREN
How Long Does It Take to Get an Visa for South Africa from Ghana?
It can take up to 3 business days for the traveler’s eVisa to come through email once they submit their South African online eVisa webpage.
When a traveller obtains an eVisa, they must bring a printed copy with them to present South African Immigration officers when they arrive at a port of entry in South Africa. If the tourist is accepted for entrance, an entry stamp will be placed in their passport, allowing them to enter South Africa for the duration specified on the approved eVisa.
Traveling to South Africa from Ghana
While travelling in South Africa, travellers must maintain a copy of their eVisa with them at all times. The eVisa may be valid for a stay of 30 to 90 days in South Africa, depending on the nationality of the tourist. The traveler’s accepted eVisa will specify the maximum period of stay.
Travelers must depart South Africa at least a few days before their eVisa expires. This is to ensure that there are no concerns with overstaying one’s visa, which is prohibited in South Africa. Overstaying a visa in South Africa can result in a five-year ban from the country and placement on an International Immigration Control List.
South African Embassy in Ghana
No 1, 3rd Soula Street,
Labone North, Accra, Ghana