New requirements for travelling with children

Jun 9, 2015 | 2015, News

Director-General Mkuseli Apleni called for a briefing to clarify a few issues ahead of the 1st of June 2015 implementation.

There has been much hype leading up to the implementation of these requirements. In summary, children leaving South Africa are required to produce parental consent affidavits and unabridged birth certificates, where one parent or another person is travelling with somebody else’s child. Due to the backlog of +/- 4000 applications for unabridged birth certificates, Director-General Apleni has relaxed these requirements, by allowing those who have applied for unabridged birth certificates, who are planning to travel, and who are still waiting for their unabridged birth certificates, to travel, subject to a visit to their nearest Home Affairs office to obtain a ‘letter of consent’.

The Director-General noted that –
“We do not understand the claims that our requirements are unique, not applicable elsewhere, and would have consequences for tourism and the economy in general. Our regulations were benchmarked even with countries attracting more tourists. SA citizens are also required to have these documents when going to some countries of the world. It was also due to requirements expected of our citizens by other countries that we decided to move towards issuing the unabridged birth certificate with the child’s and parent(s) particulars in it.”

The hype surrounding these requirements continue and “the concerns may not be unfounded. Reports emerged last week that Air China had cancelled the launch of direct flights to South Africa over the regulations”

Minister Jeff Radebe commented on the regulations, stating that –
“We are looking at all issues that have been raised pertaining the visa regulations. Despite the noble intentions of these immigration policies, they have had an unintended consequence which needs to be addressed”