SOUTH AFRICA: 90-Day Visa Waiver for New Zealand Passport Holders Withdrawn

The South Africa Department of Home Affairs have recently announced that they will withdraw the 90-day visa waiver/exemption for New Zealand passport holders, with effect from 16th January 2017.

Due to the reciprocal visa waiver that has been in place since 1996, New Zealand passport holders have been privy to visa-free travel into South Africa for general visits. These have included business, leisure or family visits for stays of up to 90 days. Due to the construction of reciprocity, South African passport holders have also been privy to visa-free travel into New Zealand within the same visa categories.

On 19th September 2016, the New Zealand High Commission officially informed the South African Government that they would introduce visa requirements for all South African nationals intending to travel to New Zealand; this came into effect on 21st November 2016.

The Department of Home Affairs in South Africa have decided to reciprocate and impose visa requirements for all New Zealand passport holders with effect from 16th January 2017.

This means that all New Zealand passport holders (including diplomatic, official and ordinary passports) that intend to travel to South Africa for business, leisure or family visits will be required to apply for Port of Entry Visas in advance of their travel to South Africa.

The application process will need to be done in person, at the South African High Commission in Wellington. Please note that any New Zealand national who intends to arrive in South Africa on or after 16th January 2017, without an appropriate entry visa will be refused entry.

It is important to note that this does not directly impact foreign nationals requiring Visitor”s Visas with a Section 11(2) work authorisation. This is because the Section 11(2) visa already requires a Port of Entry Visa, which is applied for at the respective South African High Commission, prior to any travel. 

If you require any additional information regarding the above please contact a member of our team at

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