South Africa Will Launch Its New eVisa System in 2022

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The South Africa eVisa has now been launched. The online visa became available for visitors from 14 countries in February 2022. Eligible travelers, including Chinese, Egyptian, Mexican, and Saudi passport holders can now apply.

The new South African electronic visa system has been confirmed to launch in March 2022.

This new South African travel permit will be available to 15 countries, with the possibility of adding more in the future.

This follows an announcement in March 2018 that they would pilot an e-visa scheme, in order to boost tourism and economic activity in the country.

Shortly after this announcement, President Cyril Ramaphosa commented on this decision by saying:

“We must reduce the onerous and often unnecessary bureaucratic red tape that tourists who want to visit our countries face. This requires us to streamline our tourist visa regimes.”

After being hit hard by the pandemic, South Africa is aiming to encourage tourism with this new system.

The new eVisa will make travel permits more accessible to those wanting to visit the country, who have perhaps been discouraged by the lengthy and sometimes complicated old visa process.

After trialing the online visa procedure in Kenya, the Department of Home Affairs (DHA) then expanded the scheme to China, India, and Nigeria.

The DHA has now deemed the new eVisa ready to implement in a host of other countries.

South African has reopened its borders for tourists, while still following new COVID-19 travel restrictions. Passengers entering the country must complete a Travel Health Certificate, as well as provide either a negative test result or a recovery certificate.

Travel restrictions are subject to change, and it is recommended to check current official guidelines before embarking on international travel.

Who Will Be Eligible for the New South Africa E-visa?

The eVisa will be available to citizens from certain countries. Eligibility for the electronic travel document depends on the applicant’s nationality, as well as the specifications of their visit.

At present, there are already 4 nations that are eligible for the South Africa eVisa. Citizens of Kenya, China, India, and Nigeria have all been able to apply for the electronic travel permit since 2020.

Once the new countries are added, these original nations that were used in the pilot phases will continue to have this visa option too.

What New Countries Will Be Accepted for the South Africa eVisa?

The full list of countries that would qualify for the new eVisa is provisional. The nations that have been announced are subject to approval by the South African government.

Countries that are set to be eligible for the electronic visa include:

  • Cameroon
  • DRC
  • Egypt
  • Ethiopia
  • Iran
  • Pakistan
  • Philippines
  • Mexico
  • Saudi Arabia
  • Uganda

Once the electronic system is active, it will be possible to check the current visa policy for South Africa to find out if a certain nationality qualifies.

What Type of Visit Does the eVisa Cover?

The new eVisa will allow holders to travel to South Africa for short-term visits of 90 days or less.

The electronic travel document will permit them to enter the country for tourism or business purposes.

Applying for the New South Africa eVisa

Once the electronic travel permit has been rolled out and is ready to applicants, it will be quick and easy to apply for.

The application process will be completely online. Applicants simply need to complete an online form and wait for the approved eVisa to be sent by email.

How Will the New eVisa Help the Economy?

The new electronic system will be quick and straightforward to use. This will encourage more visitors to the country, as the process for obtaining a travel permit can often be laborious and time-consuming.

The faster turnaround times will also boost tourism, as applicants will no longer have to wait for a long period of time to receive their approved visa.

Arriving in South Africa with the new eVisa will also save time. All major South African airports are implementing new smart technology facilities that will speed up electronic document checks.

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