South Africa steps into the new age with eVisas in 2022
With the world moving more rapidly into a digital era, eVisas promise to be a more effective solution in eliminating complicated travel visa application processes and lengthy turnarounds.

After an announcement made earlier this week that eVisas would be available to travellers from 15 countries, South Africa’s Department of Home Affairs (DoHA) has opened applications to nationals from Cameroon, Egypt, Iran, Kenya, and the Philippines on its website.

During his Medium Term Budget Policy Statement (MTBPS) delivered this past Thursday, Minister of Finance for South Africa, Enoch Godongwana noted that, pending final approval of the list of participating nations, the eVisa system will be rolled out to 15 countries by March 2022.

The eVisa application process is expected to be a major benefit for business and leisure travel and takes only around 20 minutes to complete online, provided all necessary documentation has been correctly supplied.

Click to visit the Department of Home Affairs' eVisa portal
The Department of Home Affairs’ online eVisa portal
A long time coming

eVisas for travellers to South Africa have been on the cards for quite some time, with the Minister of Home Affairs, Dr Aaron Motsoaledi, reported to have first announced the move in a presentation delivered on 01 December 2019. Here he noted that eVisas would be “reliable, client-friendly and convenient for visa applicants, airlines, trading partners and Home Affairs officials”.

In recent months, the DoHA has also rolled out its Biometric Movement Control System, which is currently being implemented across South Africa’s three major international airports.

“Ten eGates are currently installed at Cape Town International Airport, with testing taking place on South African travellers entering and departing the country. The eGates project is aimed at improving passenger processing times and experience, whilst maintaining the security and integrity of the borders,” commented Dr Motsoaledi in May this year, adding that the DoHA was piloting the rollout of the Biometric Movement Control System at OR Tambo International Airport.

CURRENT TRAVEL RESTRICTIONS
According to Sky Scanner’s Covid-19 travel updates, an up-to-date tool that gives real-time insights into the level of travel restrictions in place for travellers from each country, South Africa currently has 76 major restrictions in place.
“Travel to these countries is not advised. Their borders may be completely closed to non-residents or non-nationals,” notes Sky Scanner on its website.

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