Sunday, 14 May 2017

SOUTH AFRICA: Do New Zealanders Need A Visa To Travel To South Africa?

According to Tim Clyde-Smith, SAA’s Country Manager for Australasia, new visa rules came into force on January 16 of this year

South African Airways has issued a warning to remind travelers about the need for New Zealand passport holders living in Australia to obtain a visa before visiting South Africa.

“While the majority of New Zealand passport holders do get the necessary documentation and obtain their visas, we are seeing quite a few incidents when people are unaware of the requirements,” Tim said.

“The new rules apply to all diplomatic, official and ordinary passport holders of New Zealand. If they do not have a visa, an airline cannot check them in for their flight to South Africa, meaning added expense and inconvenience, not only to the traveler but also to the travel consultant and their agency,” he said.

Further information on visa requirements for New Zealand passport holders and required documentation for any persons under the age of 18 years travelling to South Africa can be found at dha.gov.za to find out about supporting documents.

For travel agents, details on both document requirements are in Timatic located in GDS.

Alternatively, the South African High Commission in Canberra can be contacted on 02 6272 7300.

“SAA is urging our travel partners in particular to ensure their customers know the new rules. Even if the tickets were issued before its introduction on 16 January, please be professional about your relationship with the customer and inform them of the new requirements to avoid the heartache they will experience at check-in,” Tim concluded.

The South African government just made it a bit easier to gather those documents needed when a minor is traveling to its country.

The South African Department of Home Affairs recently announced changes to South African entry requirement for minors born in the country who have a current South African passport.

According to Tim Clyde-Smith, South African Airway’s Country Manager for Australasia, people under 18 who are South African citizens and hold a valid passport will no longer require birth certificates which contain parental details to enter the country.

“This new arrangement, effective immediately, applies only to minors who have SA citizenship travelling from other countries (including Australia and New Zealand) to South Africa and who will not need the additional paperwork required until now,” Tim said.

“Those travelling and travel agents and partners should note that all other current arrangements for minors travelling remain in place and must be complied with in accordance with South African laws.

If in doubt they should contact the South African High Commission in Canberra on 61 2 6272 7300 for further information,” Tim said.