South Africa

Critical skills visa

This visa falls in the temporary residency visa stream and allows foreign nationals to legally live and work in South Africa for a period of up to five years.

Visas are granted based on the application being able to prove that they hold the experience and qualifications needed that in specific field of occupation as listed on the critical skills list more than 200 occupations for which this skills shortage exists.

The supplicant will not need a job offer on application and may apply for this visa without a job offer.

Under this visa the holder must secure employment in his specific field, for which this visa was granted, within 12 months.

The applicant need not bargain a letter of recommendation from the department of labour.

This visa also offers the bearer for straight away if the applicant can prove more than 5 years’ experience in their field of expertise.

Requirements for critical skill visa

Duly completed online form.The department of Home affairs does not accept handwritten forms.

Passport valid for no less than 30 calendar days after expiry of the intended visit.

A medical report not older than 6 months

A radiological report not older than 6 months

Marriage certificate or in the case of a foreign spousal relationship, proof issued by the authorities of the foreign country of the applicant (where applicable) is required for official recognition thereof.

The affidavit where a spousal relationship to a South African citizen or resident is applicable as well as documentation proving cohabitation and the extent to which the sharing offinancial responsibilities are taken up by the parties andfor  setting of the particulars of  the children in the spousal relationship.

Proof of a union recognised in terms of the recognition of customary marriages act, 1998 (act no. 120 of 1998), where applicable.

Divorce decree, where applicable.

Proof of court order awarding custody, where applicable.

Death certificate, in respect of late spouse, where applicable.

Written consent from both parents and/or sole custody parent, where applicable, with proof of sole custody.

Proof of legal adoption where applicable.

Legal separation order, where applicable.

Police clearance certificate issued by the police or security authority in each country where the relevant applicant resided for 12 months or longer after attaining the age of 18 years, in respect of criminal records or the character of that applicant, which certificate shall not be older than six months at the time of its submission: (provided that the certificate shall not be required from a foreign country in the case of renewal or extension of a visa but from the republic)

A yellow fever vaccination certificate if that person travelled or intends to travel or transiting through an endemic area of yellow fever: (provided that the certificate will not be required where that person travelled or intends travelling in direct transit through such area)

A written undertaking by the employer accepting responsibility for the costs related to the deportation of the applicant and his/her dependent members of the family, whether it should become necessary (where there isn’t an employer: proof of sufficient financial means of a minimum value of r3 000 in the form of three months bank statements)

A written undertaken by the employer ensuring that the passport of his or her employee is valid at any time during his or her employmentperiod (where there is no employer: a written undertaken by the applicant to ensuring that the passport of the applicant will be valid at all times for the duration of his or her temporary visa)

Proof that the applicant falls within the critical skills category by specifically indicating the occupation/critical skill for which the application is being made. The critical skills list must contain the occupation/ critical skill..

Proof of evaluation of the foreign qualification by SAQA and translated by a sworn translator into one of the official languages of the republic.

If required by law, proof of application for a certificate of registration with the professional body, council or board recognised by SAQA in terms of section 13(1)(i) of the national qualifications framework act;

A confirmation, in writing, from the professional body, council or board recognised by saqa in terms of section 13(1)(0)of the national qualifications framework act, or any relevant government department verifying the skills or qualifications of the applicant and  his/her appropriate post qualification experience (if unattached, VFS official is required to check directive 22 of 2014)

Proof of payment of the applicable fee


Requirements for general work visa

A duly completed application form as per the submitting embassy, consulate or Department of Home Affairs office.

The South African Qualifications Authority (SAQA)application.. This is one of the requirements for a general work visa whereby SAQA evaluates all foreign qualifications and converts them to a South African education equivalent.

For all applicants older than 18 years of age the Police Clearance Certificates are a requirement for a general work visa, which is a document provided by the police or security authority in each country you have resided more than one year and confirms the existence or non-existence of any prosecutions or convictions that may be registered against you.

Proof of Advertisement is necessaryin order to show evidence that a local candidate (South African Citizen or permanent resident) has attempted to be recruited to the role. These requirements for a general work visa needs to meet specific requirements in terms of where placed, size of advert etc.

Employer documentation that includes your contract of employment and a letter of under taking for the repatriation deposit.

Medical well being – part of the requirements for a general work visa application include proof that the applicant is in good health. Applicants will also have to submit a radiological report.

Certain professions in South Africa require foreigners to be registered with the professional organisation which have a presence in South Africa. For example, Engineers are required to register with the “Engineering Council of South Africa” (ECSA).

CV, proof or birth, marriage, divorce and passport are all included as your personal information.

Process involved

Assessing the applicants qualifications and credentials.

Establishing that the applicant truly meets the required standards of practice within their occupation.

To maintain discipline within your trade or profession.

You may be required to prove 3-5 years’ experience in your industry.

Visit VISA

A valid acceptable passport or travel document for your intended stay.

At least one blank page in your passport for endorsements.

A valid visa, if required

Sufficient funds to pay for your day-to-day expenses during your stay.

A return onward ticket.

Yellow fever certificates if your journey starts or entails passing through the yellow belt of Africa or South America.

Business VISA


Original passport valid for a minimum period of three months after the expiry date of the visa (passports issued more than ten years ago are no longer accepted) and one old passport if applicable plus one copy of the first and last page of the current passport. The passport should have 2 blank pages.

Visa application form should be filled and signed by black pen only.

2 recent photographs not older than 6 months, 35 mm X 45mm, white background, matt finish, not used for previous visa.

Confirmed hotel reservation.

Confirmed air ticket.

Original private bank account statement showing the turnover during the last 6 months, duly stamped and signed by the bank.

Income tax returns for the last 3 years.

Covering letter from Indian company addressed to –To visa, Consulate general of South Africa, Mumbai.

Letter of invitation from the South Africa organizers/hosts/companies stating the name passport number of applicant as well as purpose and duration of visit.Letter must include the physical address, as well as contact details of the host/ authorized signatures’s- name, designation and signature. For submissions at Mumbai, Ahmedabad, Goa, Pune, Bangalore, the invitation letters must be on the letterhead and attested with company seal/stamp. The host ID copy attested by Commissioner of Oaths/South African Police(latest 3 months)must be included in the submissions at Mumbai, Ahmedabad, Goa, Pune and Bangalore.

If the applicant is employed:

Pay slips for last 3 months.

Employment contract.

If the applicant is a company owner or self-employed:

Certificate of registration of the company plus 2 letterheads.

Time taken 12 days.

Dependent Visa