President of South Africa reiterates the prioritising of launching the e-Visa programme in 2019

On 07 February 2019, during the State of the Nation address by President Cyril Ramaphosa, the ongoing commitment to introduce a world class e-Visa system in 2019 was confirmed.

Who is affected

This will affect all Citizens from visa non-exempt countries travelling to South Africa for holiday or business purposes. A list of the countries who are exempt from obtaining a visa before arrival to South Africa can be found here.


On 19 September 2018, the South African Government announced that a number of changes will be made to make it easier for tourists, business people and academia to travel to South Africa. More detail on this announcement is available in our South African Immigration Update published on 25 September 2018. This announcement during the State of the Nation Address confirms that this is still a high priority and we can expect to see this introduced as a matter of urgency.


The introduction of an e-Visa system will have a positive impact on the tourism industry as a whole in South Africa leading to more visitors and opportunities for local business. The goal is to reach 21 million tourists by 2030, up from 10 million in 2018.

What is an e-Visa

An electronic visa or e-Visa is an alternative to the traditional visa endorsed in your passport before your travel to South Africa. The application will be done online as opposed to a physical application submitted to the relevant Foreign Mission.

Once adjudicated and approved, the e-Visa can be printed and presented at port of entry upon arrival in South Africa.

Although the process has not been confirmed, New Zealand has been identified as the location to pilot the e-Visa process. It will initially be rolled out to only facilitate the issuing of visas to tourists and business people.

How Santa Fe Relocation can assist:

Santa Fe Relocation support businesses on any Immigration compliance and advisory issues concerning your expatriate population. We can review current employees’ visas and if it is found that the correct work visa is not in place we will assist with necessary corrective measures or solutions to ensure compliance.

We keep your business updated on ongoing developments on all South African immigration matters and will advise on any changes requiring your attention.

Should you have any questions, please contact:

Terence Rover

Immigration Manager – Africa
Santa Fe Relocation
Johannesburg, South Africa
D: +27 (0) 10 442 8933
M: +27 (0) 72 279 9606


Paolo Longo

Regional Immigration Director – Africa
Santa Fe Relocation
Johannesburg, South Africa

D: +27 (0) 10 595 2337
M: +27 (0) 83 677 7949

 Soumeya Messadi

Head of Immigration – Asia Pacific, Middle East & Africa
Santa Fe Relocation

D: +65 6398 3520
M: +65 9169 6061

Thinking Relocation? Think Santa Fe.

To read more immigration updates, click here

About our Immigration Services

Our immigration services manage thousands of visa applications every year for a multitude of international companies. Our experienced immigration experts and migration agents handle the immigration process for you and provide simple reporting and guidance on immigration matters.

About us

Santa Fe Relocation Services is a global mobility company specialising in managing and delivering high-quality relocation services worldwide. Our core competence is providing services that help corporations and their employees relocate and settle in a new country, assisting them with immigration, home and school searches, language and cultural training, property rentals, and domestic and international household goods shipments. We provide these services to a consistently high standard, locally and globally. A key strength is our ability to manage these services through our own operations around the world. Santa Fe Relocation Services is wholly owned by the Santa Fe Group, which is listed on NASDAQ in Copenhagen, Denmark. For more information, visit us at

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