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South Africa Transit Visa

Newbury, United...
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South Africa Transit Visa


I’m an Indian passport holder, residing in the UK. I have urgent business travel planned to Botswana and my flights are via Johannesburg. I’ve been advised to obtain a South Africa transit visa, as I’m travelling to a neighboring country.

The embassy website states the following -

“If you are a non-visa exempt passport holder who is in transit in the Republic of South Africa enroute (by air, road or rail) to a country that shares a border with the Republic (Lesotho, Swaziland, Namibia, Mozambique, Botswana and Zimbabwe) must apply to be issued with a visa at a South African Mission abroad, before proceeding to the Republic of South Africa". I also have a colleague with an Indian passport who was denied travel to Botswana as he did not have a South Africa transit visa.

However, the visa agency (VFS) insists that applicants who are transiting by air from the following South African airports are exempt from obtaining a transit visa:

1. O R Tambo International

2. Cape Town International

3. King Shaka

4. Lanseria

Is anyone able to confirm this please? Many thanks.

Destination Expert
for Zambia, Selous Game Reserve, Ruaha National Park
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1. Re: South Africa Transit Visa

I know someone from another forum who is Indian and a regular Botswana visitor. He was very excited to find that last December, the need for transit visas was scrapped, and he traveled to Botswana in January.

So I think your visa agency is correct, but this is a relatively recent change so it's not surprising you are finding some conflicting information on the internet.

I just hope the airlines are up to date with the change, as it is they who can deny boarding. When was your colleague denied travel? If it was before December last year, then at that time a transit visa would have been necessary.

2. Re: South Africa Transit Visa

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