Effective the beginning February 2020 there will be some changes regarding the Schengen visa application rules and pricing. South African passport holders who frequent Schengen countries and have a positive visa history may qualify for visas with an extended validity period of up to five years. The validity of the visa will be at the discretion of the Issuing Authority. South African Passport holders will also be able to apply up to 6 months prior to travel rather than the 3 months that are currently permitted. We can also expect a slight increase in the visa fee from 60 – 80 Euro.
UPDATE ON SARS REQUIREMENTS FOR DECLARING VALUABLE GOODS
Following much confusion, the South African Revenue Service (SARS) has now advised South African residents travelling abroad that they are not required to declare their personal effects (including laptops, phones, or other valuable items) when leaving the country, or when they return.
SARS says no traveller can be penalised for not declaring or registering their personal effects upon leaving the country.
It is possible, however, that when re-entering the country a Customs officer will ask for proof of local purchase or ownership to ‘prove’ that this item/s were not purchased overseas. In this instance, travellers will need to be able to provide proof of ownership such as an invoice or an insurance record. It would be at the discretion of the Customs officials to determine if the proof is sufficient or questionable. Without such evidence, if the Customs official feels that the item may be being imported, penalties could be imposed for non- or false declaration. Travellers can also choose to pay a security amount to cover duty and VAT, in the event that he or she wants to retain the item. This amount is refunded to the traveller once the proof of local purchase or ownership is presented to Customs.
Travellers who want to avoid the inconvenience of having to explain ownership upon returning from travel abroad can choose to complete a TC-01 (Traveller Card) before their departure.
Process for the TC-01 or the Registration for Re-importation:
– Go to Customs before you check-in. It will be located in the departures hall.
– To declare goods: complete a TC-01 (Traveller Card) notifying your intent to register goods for re-importation. Provide device type and serial number.
– Present this to the Customs Officer who will then capture this online on a Traveller declaration system (TRD1).
– You will need to authenticate the declaration by signing on a digital signature pad.
– You will be provided with a printed copy to retain as proof of registration.
Following this process saves the traveller the burden of having to be questioned on their personal effects when they return.
Travellers who travel frequently would see their Registration for Re-importation process remain valid for six months
Thankfully, it is no longer necessary to stand in long queues to apply for your South African passport or your Smart ID card. Rather, you can get the ball rolling from the comfort of your own home via the eHome Affairs website.
All you need is internet banking and an online connection to complete your application, submit it to home affairs and make your payment. You will then go to a Home Affairs branch to capture your biometrics (fingerprints and photograph) and return to collect your passport.
If you live in Cape Town, Johannesburg or Pretoria and are clients of either ABSA, FNB, Standard Bank or Nedbank you can make an appointment to have your biometrics done at one of their designated branches where you will also collect your document .
How, exactly, does this work?
Step 1 – Account Registration & online application
You first need to register an account on the eHome Affairs website.
• Create a profile (you will need to provide your name, ID, email address and a password as well as answers to a few security questions).
• Capture your application by filling in the online form
• Attach supporting documents (if required)
• Make payment (see FAQ for more info)
• Schedule appointments at Home Affairs enabled Bank branches
EHome Affairs allows you to complete your application and save it should you wish to submit it at a later stage.
Step 2 – Record Your Biometrics
Here you have two options:
Option 1: Home Affairs Branch
• Once the Department of Home Affairs has registered your payment you can proceed with your biometrics data – two thumbprints, a photo and your signature.
• You do not need to make an appointment at Home Affairs. Simply go to your local branch to have your biometrics done.
• You will need to take your ID book with you to the Home Affairs branch.
Option 2: Home Affairs Equipped Bank Branch
• Once payment is registered on the eHome Affairs site, Cape Town, Johannesburg nd Pretoria residents can make an appointment for their biometrics at one of their bank’s designated branches
• Select a time slot from the options provided
• You will receive a confirmation SMS and email which you need to take with you as evidence of your appointment.
Step 3 – Collecting your passport (and/or ID card)
Once you have been advised that your document is ready you simply take your ID card/book back to the branch where you will sign for and receive your brand new passport. You will also be required to provide a thumb print for verification purposes.
How much will this cost me?
Passport applications are R400
Smart ID Card applications are R140 (first card free for pensioners)
How do I make payment online?
• You will need to enter your bank account details on the eHome Affairs site. This does not take the money from your account but initiates the payment!
• You will then be required to log in to your internet banking where you wil authorise the payment by going to the “My Bills” option under “Payments”.
• Once you add the Department of Home Affairs as a beneficiary, the payment instruction you initiated from the eHome Affairs site will appear under “My Bills”.
• Finally, you will enter your reference number and approve the R 400 payment to the Department of Home Affairs.
What do I need to take with me?
• Your ID book or card
• Passport fee (if you have not paid online – note that if you apply via a bank you MUST pay online as they may not accept payment at the branches).
• Your old passport
Where are the Biometrics Equipped Bank Branches?
ABSA Centurion Lifestyle Centurion Centurion Lifestyle Centre, c/o Old Johannesburg Road & Lenchen Ave
ABSA Tower North Johannesburg 180 Commissioner Street, Johannesburg
ABSA Ghandi Square Johannesburg Ghandi Square, Johannesburg
FNB President Street West Johannesburg 47 Pixley Ka Isaka Seme Street, Johannesburg, 2000
FNB Merchant Place, Rivonia Johannesburg 4 Merchant Place, Cnr Rivonia Road and Fredman Drive
FNB Centurion Lifestyle Centurion Centurion Lifestyle Centre, c/o Old Johannesburg Road & Lenchen Ave
FNB Lynwood (The Grove Mall) Pretoria The Grove Mall, Lynnwood Rd, Pretoria, 0081)
Standard Bank Centurion Centurion Standard Bank Building, 1263 Embankment Rd
Standard Bank Killarney, Rosebank Johannesburg Killarney Mall, c/o Riviera Road and Killarney Ave
Standard Bank Canal Walk Cape Town Shop 599LL, Canal Walk Shopping Centre, Century City Dr
Nedbank Sandown Johannesburg 135 Rivonia Road (c/o Rivonia and Maude Street)
Nedbank Lakeview, Roodepoort Johannesburg 16 Constantia Dr
All information was correct at the time of publishing and may change at any time without prior notice from the original source. Denim Travel is not affiliated to immigration authorities or their application centres and will not be liable for loss or inconvenience arising from the use of information from this website.
The unfortunate reality is that international travel very often means the need for a visa, especially for South African passport holders. Visa regulations and requirements change on an almost daily basis so we recommend the use of visa professionals. By clicking on the link below you will be taken to the Visas and Passports Unlimited page where you can obtain all the visa and passport assistance you need.
While Denim Travel will gladly assist with visa information it remains the legal responsibility of the traveller to obtain and travel with the correct paperwork.
Foreign nationals are expected to have an Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA) to fly or to transit through Canada. The online application is available here:
Whilst every effort is made to ensure the Child Visa Checklist app is kept up to date, Denim Travel cannot be held responsible for travel delays or curtailment due to changes in the regulations made by the Department of Home Affairs.
Children under the age of 18 travelling to/through South Africa need to be in possession of an unabridged birth certificate. Furthermore, if not travelling with both parents, further documentation may be required. Find out which documents you’ll need when travelling in or out of South Africa with your children.
At Denim Travel we firmly believe that peace of mind is key to the success of any trip – work or pleasure. Part of this involves knowing that in the event of an unforeseen emergency, there is a plan in place to manage associated challenges and costs. To this end we recommend that you always take out adequate travel insurance cover. For a quote to suit your individual needs, please contact us.
Through TIC, we have the added convenience that allows you to select and purchase your own travel insurance policy by simply clicking on the link below :
We want to make it easy for you to book with us and that means making payment easy too. By downloading the free SnapScan or Masterpass app on your smartphone and linking to a bank card of your choice , all you do is scan our code, enter the invoice amount and hey presto, payment is done!! Fast and secure!
Please read the following booking conditions carefully, as they set out the terms and conditions of the contract between you and Denim Travel. We act as booking agents for the suppliers of the component parts of the holiday we organise, and as such, bookings for their services will form a direct contract between you and the relevant supplier, and will be subject to that supplier’s standard terms and conditions.
You will be required to submit an electronically signed terms & conditions acceptance form to process your bookings.
In collaboration with Plum Accommodation, you can now book your hotel accommodation by using our hotel online booking engine. This gives you the freedom to view live rates for hotel rooms sourced from various suppliers, book the room and hotel you want and then pay for it using your Visa or MasterCard. All hotel booking conditions are displayed so you can see exactly what you are booking up-front.
Book your car hire online with special offers and discounts on car rental THROUGHOUT South Africa
Dubai airport has implemented new state-of-the-art baggage handling equipment which means bags must have a flat surface to be checked in. Why is your favourite old giant duffel bag no longer allowed? Well, apparently because they get stuck in the baggage system, which can break the machine and cause flight delays.
Now it’s easy to manage all of your travel plans in one place. View your itinerary with real-time updates and check in for your flight!
Whether you are travelling or following the progress of a loved one’s trip, we think this app is amazing. With real-time, animated views of the aircraft, you can now know the status of just about any flight. There is a free version which has pretty good cover and a more comprehensive app which does not break the bank. Alternatively, you can play around with browser version on your PC!
For me, one of the biggest benefits of business class travel is the comfort of the business class lounges at the airport, especially if I have a long connection time. Now you do not need to pay for a business class ticket to enjoy these privileges. For a relatively small fee (prices start at £13.50 depending on the lounge and airport), you can book your entrance to a lounge at one of 250 airports worldwide and enjoy business class service and style!
Lots of people ask “how much spending money do I need for my trip?” Of course, this is difficult to answer as we all have a different idea of how much is ‘enough’. To help answer the question, this web site gives a great idea of costs of all sorts of things in any given city – see what it costs to buy a meal, take a taxi or drink a beer!