Study Visa

TIME

Processing Time in South Africa for extension: 30-40 days

Processing Time if lodged abroad: 30 days

FEES

Government Fee in South Africa: R425

New Submission Centre Fee ( in SA ): R1350

Government Fee abroad: Dependent on Currency

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WHAT IS A SOUTH AFRICAN STUDY VISA?

All foreign students wanting to study in South Africa must apply for a South African Study Visa from the Department of Home Affairs. A Study Visa is also required for children who may be accompanying their parents to South Africa on temporary residence visas.

 

WHERE IN SOUTH AFRICA CAN ONE STUDY?

As long as it’s an approved institution by the Department of Education, a student can study at mostly any South African college, university, school, language school, or training centre.

WHAT ARE THE REQUIREMENTS FOR A STUDY VISA?

  1. A study visa may be obtained by a foreign student of any age.
  2. Full duration of the study period must be covered by the visa. 
  3. It is a requirement of The Immigration Act for students to take out medical insurance from approved insurers.
  4. Life partners/spouses and children with visas relevant to them may join the student who has obtained a study visa.

IMPORTANT GUIDELINES FOR OBTAINING A STUDY VISA:

  1. The student must first have verification of the granted study visa before departing for South Africa no matter if the student has already been accepted by an educational institution. It’s important to realize that acceptance to a school or learning facility does not mean the automatic issuance of a study visa.
  2. A student cannot enter South Africa with a visitor’s visa and then apply for a study visa.
  3. Students may earn income during the semester, but can work no more than 20 hours per week.
  4. A Study Visa cannot be obtained by correspondence based students. The student must be attending a physical location in South Africa to qualify.
  5. A Permanent Residence Visa cannot be obtained on the basis of holding a Study Visa

ACADEMIC RESEARCH IN SOUTH AFRICA:

If a student wishes to conduct research in South Africa or take an academic sabbatical, he or she must apply for an Extended Visitor’s Visa.

WHAT ARE THE REQUIREMENTS FOR A RESEARCH VISA?

  1. The individual applying must prove financial independence or have adequate sponsorship for the amount of time they will be staying in South Africa.
  2. Documentation providing details about the intended activities to be conducted in South Africa must be provided, as well as any affiliated organisations that may be sponsoring the extended stay.

AN IMPORTANT NOTE ABOUT STUDY VISAS:

When applying for a study visa, you MUST wait to hear the outcome of the application BEFORE departing for South Africa. Acceptance at a South African learning institution DOES NOT mean the automatic granting of a Study Visa.

Additionally, one cannot enter South Africa with a Visitors’ Visa and then apply for a Study Visa. It’s important to also understand the basic requirements for entering South Africa under the Visiting South Africa section.

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