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Welcome to Moving South Immigration

A personalized immigration service to private individuals as well as corporate companies.

  • Sue-Allan Mehl

The differences between a tourist, business visit and short-term work visa


Every South African visa has an activity attached to it and today we would like to list the purposes of the following short-term visas as it appears there is still some confusion regarding these visas.


Tourist visas:


Tourist visas are for applicants who are visiting family or friends in South Africa and simply allow tourism activities. This visa is usually issued for 30 to 90 days. Passport holders from visa exempt countries obtain tourist visas upon arrival at the airport. Individuals from visa restricted countries need to apply for and obtain a tourist visa from the relevant South African mission before flying to South Africa. Employment on a tourist visa is prohibited.


Business visit visas:


A short-term business visa is usually issued to travellers who need to attend business meetings in South Africa. It is similar to a tourist visa, but the wording 'business' or 'business meetings' on the entry stamp or visa usually justifies the purpose of this visa. Individuals from visa restricted countries need to apply for and obtain a short-term business visa from the relevant South African mission before flying to South Africa. Visa exempt nationals can obtain this visa upon arrival at the airport. This visa is usually issued for 10 to 90 days. Employment on a business visit visa is prohibited.


Short-term work visas:


A short-term work visa, also known as the Section 11 (2) visa is issued to individuals who need to conduct short-term work in South Africa. This is applicable to special projects with a maximum duration of 90 days at a time.


Unlike the tourist and business visa, the Section 11 (2) visa must be applied for by the applicant at the South African mission before flying to South Africa. It is a special authorization to work on a tourist visa and the authorization cannot be obtained at the airport. Work is only allowed once the authorization of same has been added on the visa.


We hope the differences between these short-term visas are now clear and welcome anyone to reach out to us with any further questions. We can be contacted via our Contact Form on www.movingsouthimmigration.com or alternatively we may be reached on +2773 5357 534 or sue@movingsouthimmigration.com



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