A new eVisa system is to be launched by South Africa. Minister of Finance, Enoch Godongwana, declared in December 2021 that the government will unveil its new-fangled eVisa (electronic visa) system in March 2022. The system will abridge international tourists’ visa applications to South Africa, and hence revitalize both South Africa’s tourism sector and its widespread economy.
At the period of launch, citizens of 15 nations will be qualified to apply for the eVisa. Explicitly, these will be travellers from the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Egypt, China, Cameroon, Kenya, India, Ethiopia, Mexico, Iran, the Philippines, Nigeria, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, and Uganda.
South Africa’s online eVisa to drive the arrival of tourists
Travellers from the aforementioned nations will no longer have to visit a South African embassy or consultant to acquire a visa before arriving here. Instead, citizens from these nations will be able to apply for the eVisa on online portals and receive the valid document by email, as per the South African page on Byevisa.com. This will hence save visitors time and effort as they brainstorm their trip, and so motivate more international tourism to South Africa.
Additionally, it has been declared that applying for the eVisa will merely take 20 minutes, and if the candidate is yet to amass all the essential supporting documents, then he or she can save their application to finish it later. This too facilitates a benefit to travellers over physically attending a conventional appointment at the embassy.
Mr Godongwana, the South African Finance Minister, made this declaration during his Medium-Term Budget Policy Statement (MTBPS) in November 2021.
South Africa’s Development of the eVisa since 2019 with Trials for Kenya and India
The South African government preliminarily commenced work on its eVisa system back in November 2019. At the time, President Cyril Ramaphosa stated that the South Africans must strive to inhibit the arduous and often unessential bureaucratic red tape that tourists who want to visit their nations undergo. This necessitates them to modernize their tourist visa administrations.
Since then, the country has efficaciously trialled its eVisa system for Indian and Kenya citizens. As a result, the nation is now ready to spread the digital entry scheme to more nationalities, and electronic document checks have been established at chief airports ahead of the eVisa’s unveiling.
Supporting Documents and the Length of Visit are Yet to be Revealed
Conspicuously, several details concerning the eVisa scheme are yet to be unveiled. These are inclusive of how long the online entry permit will let a traveller stay, whether it allows single or multiple entries and how long it is validated for. The government is yet to declare what supporting documents will be essential to apply. These details will be declared in the coming few weeks.