We applaud South Africa for taking a stand against child trafficking. New entry rules however could mean families travelling to and from SA with children face tracking down documents and paperwork. Planning a family holiday to Cape Town? This could affect you!
For children travelling with both parents
From October 1, 2014 parents travelling to and from South Africa with a child (defined as anyone under the age of 18) will need to produce an unabridged birth certificate that shows the names of both parents and with a sworn translation if the original is not in English.
For children travelling with one parent
Single parents or those travelling without their spouses or partners could be even more put off by the idea of booking flights to Johannesburg with these new rules. They will need to produce and affidavit* in which the absent parents gives consent for their child to travel as well as a court order granting that parent full parental responsibilities or legal guardianship of the child. If the child’s other parent has passed away, a death certificate will need to be presented.
*This affidavit should be no more than three months old from the date of travel
For children travelling with an adult other than their parent(s)
If children under the age of 18 are travelling with someone other than their parents, that person must also carry the child’s birth certificate, affidavits from both parents or legal guardians, copies of identity documents or passports of the parents and their contact details.
For children travelling alone
Children travelling alone will need to have their original birth certificate as well as proof of consent from both parents or legal guardians to travel solo to South Africa. The child will also need their contact details and information regarding where and with whom they will be staying with while in the country.
- For more info on this topic, check out: Rules and regulations for kids travelling alone
All documents must be originals or approved copies.
South African Airways, the country’s national carrier, said in a statement it would be implementing the new regulations on all flights starting October 1st. The airline will refuse to check-in passenger if they cannot produce the necessary documents. For more information, check out the FCO’s advice on travelling to South Africa.
Do these new visa rules affect you? Are you put off booking a trip because of them?