The Zuma-appointed Inter-Ministerial Committee (IMC) reviewed the "unintended consequences" of the immigration rules regarding traveling, and these are the largely disappointing changes that were made.

Within the next three months

  1. The parental consent for a child traveling without any of his or her parents is now valid for 6 instead of 4 months.
  2. The parental consent affidavits for children traveling as part of a school group can be replaced by a declaration from the school principal.

From end of January

  1. Biometric capturing (fingerprints/digital photo) will be introduced at South Africa’s primary international airports. As a result, it may in future no longer be necessary for some or all travelers to have a Transit Visa. Hopefully, this will make the personal presentation at missions unnecessary for all visa applications.

No timeline given

  1. South African children’s passports will show the parents' details so that the unabridged birth certificate will no longer be necessary when traveling.
  2. A long-term multiple-entry visitor’s visa for up to three years for trusted travelers such as business people, academics and tourists.
  3. A 10-year visa waiver (or rather long-term, multiple-entry visa?) for BRICs countries has been introduced, but details remain blurry.

In summary, a case of trying to appease an irate travel industry with nice-sounding, but hollow or delayed actions.