Persons wishing to attend school, university or other institutions of learning in this country can obtain a South African study visa. The studies need not be full-time, and holders of a study visa for higher education may take up part-time work of up to 20 hours per week. Amongst the requirements introduced in May 2014 are that only studies at schools registered in a particular way qualify, and that students need to provide medical aid cover by a provider registered in South Africa. Please contact IMCOSA for further details in this regard and exceptions to this rule. Study visas are now issued for up to 5 / 8 years, case depending (previously 3).


Vocational Training, Internship, Articles, Practical Year

Finding the correct visa category in South African immigration laws for practical work that is part of training or studies has been problematic and hotly debated for years. According to the respective office’s or official’s interpretation of the law and the type and length of the intended activities, an application for a visitor’s (with or without an authorisation to work), exchange, study or work visa will be requested. A uniform and consistent interpretation has not been found as yet, and we recommend an individual consultation for the above cases.


Research & Academic Sabbatical

Persons wishing to spend an academic sabbatical or conduct academic research in South Africa may obtain an extended visitor’s visa valid for a period of up to 3 years, provided they have sufficient financial means to support themselves during their stay.


Permanent Residence Permit – Studies, Education, Research

There is no possibility of obtaining permanent residence on the grounds of studies, education or research.


Contact us to find out more about obtaining a study visa in South Africa.

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