Important law changes for travelling with children in South Africa

Important law changes for travelling with children in South Africa

Just recently the DHA has released a statement according to the requirements of travelling with children which gives us a flicker of hope that the government backs away from the very strict Immigration Law they implemented a year ago.

Firstly parental travellers from visa exempt countries, like the UK, USA or Germany, do not need a birth certificate additional to the passport anymore. However, the parent should take a consent from the other parent in case of travelling with the child alone.


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This loosening of those restrictions does not apply to travellers from visa restricted countries, like India, Russia or China, as the Cabinet opines that providing a birth certificate is international standard.

The requirements for unaccompanied minors will remain the same and there will still be needed a copy of the identity document or valid passport and visa or permanent residence permit of the person who is to receive the minor.

Likewise the requirements for South Africans travelling with their children will stay. They will still need proof of parental relations and an unabridged birth certificate, as well as a parental consent.

Another very important reform which one can read in the statement is that in countries like Russia and China travel agencies may become accredited to apply for Tourist Visa on behalf of the applicant. In this case travellers would not need to go to the South African mission in person anymore -which is in case of Russia only Moscow. Of course this is only to strengthen the South African Tourism and does not affect long term visa.

However, this changes are a good sign that the South African government finally realized the downsides of the new Immigration Law and is going to improve it.

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