Concession for long term visa applicants extended

Wednesday, March 29, 2023

The Department of Home Affairs (DHA) has extended the blanket concession for long-term visa or waiver applicants who are awaiting outcomes of their applications.

This as the department attempts to address the impact that processing backlogs are having on applicants.

The DHA said the concession will last until the end of this year and applies only to applicants who have submitted an application via Visa Facilitation Centres (VFS) before or on 31 March 2023.

“A Directive to the Home Affairs Head Office, the Department of International Relations and Cooperation’s Consular Services and Visa Facilitation Centres has been issued to communicate this decision.

“The decision means that long term visa or waiver applicants are permitted to legally remain in the country until 31 December 2023, pending the finalisation of their applications. Those that are travelling on passports issued by countries that are not visa exempted, are required to apply for a visitor’s visa to return to South Africa until their applications have been finalised,” the department said.

The concession does not apply to those holding short term visas.

“All visitors on short term visas whose validity was issued for less than 90 days are excluded from the concession and are required to depart before or on the date of expiry of the validity period of their visas,” the department said.

More information is available under the notices tab on the DHA’s website on