Automatic Visa Extension: Who does it apply to?
Are you in South Africa on an expired tourist visa or unable to leave the country before its expiry? Take a deep breath. As per Directive of 26 March, all short-term visas that have expired since 15 March 2020 are automatically extended to 30 June, and their holders can leave the country by that date without being penalised for not holding a valid visa (this excludes visas issued after 15 March 2021). Those holding long-term visas (valid for more than 90 days) that have expired since 15 March 2020 or are about to expire, may apply for an extension or change by 31 July.
NOTE: Holders of expired long-term visas do not appear to enjoy the benefit of penalty-free exit by 30 June. If they do not intend to apply for an extension of their stay, they need to leave the country by 31 March 2021 or be declared undesirable for up to five years!
Any questions? We are happy to help as always.