COVID-19: Overstaying visa conditions in South Africa

On July 8, 2020 / by Sherone Lewis / Leave a comment

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After South Africa moved into the first phase of lockdown level 3 expats and tourists still stuck in the country might find it somewhat easier to travel home. The Department of Home Affairs recently published a new directive focusing on travel restrictions in level 3 of lockdown. Here’s everything you need to know:

The risk adjusted strategy to the easing of lockdown regulations will now allow for international travel in specific circumstances. This will only apply to the return of a South African national or permanent resident to his or her place of employment, place of study or residence, if they are outside of the country. The regulations now also allow for the repatriation of foreign nationals to their country of residence.

Those intending on crossing South African boarders will need to have the following on their trip to the Home Affairs:

  • Copy of your passport
  • A letter of confirmation of admissibility or the validity of the visa or permit, issued by the relevant diplomatic or consular mission or authority of the receiving country where transiting through another country, proof of permission to transit through that country
  • Ticket or proof of the existence of your ticker along with the date on which you plan to leave the country

South African’s returning to South Africa will, as is the case in every other world country, be quarantined for a period of 14 days and examined for signs of the novel coronavirus.

Level 3 rules also make provision for people in South Africa on an expired visa. Visa centers are expected to open in lower lockdown levels All visa submission centres for South African Immigration are closed at this stage. According to level 3 regulations while no one is able to collect or submit visa/Permanent Residency applications right now the immigration industry anticipates centres opening once lockdown levels are adjusted to a lower level. Visas issued after 15 February are valid until the end of July

Government gazette regulations states that existing long-term visa holders in South Africa will not be penalized for overstaying the conditions of their visa if they were unable to submit renewals or extensions due to the nationwide lockdown.

If you’re looking for some visa or immigration assistance, make sure you get in touch with one of our qualified immigration consultants today!

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