How To Renew Your South African Passport

The secret to avoiding queues and making your South African passport renewal relatively painless is to get there early. That way, you won’t be left standing in the queue, wondering what happened in the 10 years since you last applied for your passport.

That said, I’ve just got back from renewing my South African passport and it was easier and more pleasant than I could ever have imagined. This is the story of my application …

Take One: South African Passport Renewal

Things got off to a sour start when I went to the Reserve Bank Building in the Cape Town CBD. The Home Affairs website lists the Reserve Bank Building in St Georges Mall, Cape Town as a place to get your South African passport renewed. Please note this is NOT the case. The Cape Town Home Affairs office is located in Barrack Street in the lower Gardens area.

South African Passport Renewal

After making this initial error, I decided to wait a while before trying again.

Take Two: South African Passport Renewal

Fast forward a few weeks and I was ready to go to Home Affairs and get my new passport. I took the following things with me.

What to bring

  • South African ID document
  • Passport photos – usually come in sets of 4 and cost about R35
  • Your old passport
  • Cash – R400 (March 2012) + R10 to buy a Coke from the vending machine in Home Affairs
  • A pen
  • Your patience and a good attitude (if you get there on a particularly busy day)

Like I said, I got there early and this was definitely key in helping me get in and out of there as quickly as possible. The Cape Town Home Affairs opens at 7:30am so I made sure I was already queuing by 7am – there were already 20-30 people in front of me.

When the doors opened sharply at 7:30 we all filed straight in and got given numbers. It seemed that everyone in front of me was there to do other Home Affairs related stuff as they just dispersed into other sections of the building as soon as we got inside… not that I was complaining.

I proceeded to passport applications in the back on the ground floor – there’s 4 stages apply, pay, fingerprint and another biometric process which wasn’t working when I went and officials told me not to worry about it.

Cape Town Home Affairs

Location of Barrack Street Home Affairs in Cape Town:


View Larger Map
Opening Hours:

Monday to Friday: 07:30 – 15:30

Saturday: 08:00 – 12:30 (Only for collections)

Address:

Faircape Building 56 Barrack Street Cape Town, 8001

Contact:

021 468 4500/5 or 0800 60 11 90 for national enquiries

Cape Town Home Affairs Office

Collecting your new SA Passport

I can’t tell you much about collecting your new passport as I’m yet to collect mine; it has only been 5 days since I applied. However, the friendly lady at Home Affairs told me the new South African passport can take up to 6 weeks to arrive but I think they just tell you this to be on the safe side as friends I’ve spoken to have gotten it in as little as 2 weeks. Take the receipt you received on applying + your SA ID book to collect.

Can third parties collect passport on applicant’s behalf?

If you’re unable to collect your new South African passport yourself then you can send someone on your behalf. Just provide them with the following documents:

  • A letter of consent, signed by you, stating that you’re giving your friend permission to collect on your behalf and a reason why you can’t collect it yourself
  • Your friend must take your original ID book with as well as his/hers
  • The proof of payment you received on applying for your new SA passport

Notes

  • If you’re travelling overseas and you only have 6 months left on your passport then it’s a good idea to renew it well before you leave. Most countries will only grant you entrance if you have at least 6 months left on your passport before it expires, so don’t let this little bureaucratic oversight become a hindrance to you and your travels
  • The same goes for the lucky folk that have passports that are nearly full of stamps. Rather renew your passport and have lots more empty pages to fill
  • If you travel a lot, then get a Maxi passport. The Maxi passport has more pages than the normal one and costs R600
  • If you have to renew your SA passport, but you still have a Visa that’s valid on your old passport that you want to use, then don’t worry. Simply take both your old and new passports with you when you travel
  • The latest version of the South African passport looks a little different then what it did in the past. It’s a security enhanced booklet with some new features that aren’t visible to the naked eye – I’ll report back on this as soon as I’ve taken a look at mine

Contrary to popular belief, renewing your South African passport isn’t the painful hassle it once was. If the Cape Town Home Affairs Department is anything to go by, then government has done remarkably well in cleaning up their act. The whole process seems a whole lot more efficient than it did when I last went in 2002.

Joburgers, Durbanites and everyone else, we’d love to hear about your South African passport renewal experiences. Please leave comments below; every tip helps.

Simply enter your ID number to check your passport application status.

Postscript: 27/03/2012

So my new South African passport arrived, ready for collection, exactly 2 weeks after applying for it. I got an SMS from Home Affairs saying Home Affairs: Passport for #MY-ID-NUMBER# is ready for collection at the office of application

Once again I was pretty much in and out when I went to collect the little green book. The new passport features 32 pages plus the biometric card at the back; and it’s handed to you in a little brown envelope. Make sure all your vitals are correct before you leave the department. All in all a positive experience, but I’d still get there early if you want to save time.

Our Readers Comments

  1. What if you’ve lost your old passport?

  2. Hi Ans,

    You don’t need your old passport to apply for a new one. I just put that in there because I tend to be a bit thorough. The most important things are the cash and your ID, and photos :)

  3. I applied for my passport just before the cost increased last year. The biometric process (which you mentioned in your article) wasn’t working on the day that I applied as well. That made me panic as well. My passport took exactly a month before it was ready for collection and again, to my surprise the passport looked very different to other passports I had seen. The photo is black and white. The “page” on which all your personal data is stored is now plastic, slightly thicker than your bank or store credit cards.

  4. I’m always happy with the service I receive from ZA government institutions, be it home affairs, the licencing department or even the traffic department. SIX days after applying to renew my passport I received an sms saying the new passport was ready for collection.
    Proudly South African

  5. On the biometric process: It’s when they take a live-capture picture of u and electronically scan your fingerprints.

    Those ID pics that u take and hand in with your application, that’s just for their records – if u had a live-capture picture taken then THAT is the pic that ends up in your passport.

    I applied for my daughter’s passport last year shortly before the price increase, took 2 weeks to be processed.

    She didn’t even come with me – i had her ID pics with me (as advised by a Home Affairs official) and that was used for the passport (she was only 4 months old and unable to sit up by herself so would not have been able to take a live-capture picture).

    The only other requirement for applying for her passport was a notarised letter of consent from her dad (even though we’re married, he still had to give a letter of consent for her to get a passport since he didn’t appear with me at Home Affairs when i handed in the application). Although i had the letter, nobody bothered to ask for it – go figure. Maybe it was because he had already signed the passport application beforehand?

    All in all, the passport process is a LOT smoother than what it used to be. And, since the price increase last year, the queues are a lot shorter.

  6. Hi Muneerah,

    Thank you for your comment. I guess the general consensus so far is that one doesn’t have to stress if the biometric process isn’t working, and our Home Affairs departments have jacked themselves up.

    That’s great information for anyone needing to apply for a child passport. If you don’t mind me asking, in which region did you apply?

  7. As far as I recall,when applying to renew your Passport,the form to be completed,called for the (OLD)existing passport number. If this still pertains,and some one has lost their passport,then there will surely be a problem in applying to renew a passport.?

  8. Hi Robert,

    In my recent experience I didn’t have to fill out my old passport number, nor was the old passport required in order to apply for the new one.

    Cheers :)

  9. Thanks Russell and other contributors, for this site – just what I was looking for!
    My passport has nearly reached its 10 yr expiry. I would like to revert to my maiden name before applying for a new passport and I understand this firstly requires a letter of confirmation from HA via the NPR (National Population Registrar), then a new ID and finally the passport. I’m wondering how long it would take. Any info on this, anyone?
    Also, can one apply at any HA office for a new passport, for example if you live in Joburg, can you apply in CT or any other province? Would you say the CT HA is faster/more efficient than others?

  10. Can one apply for passport renewal at any HAffairs office in the country?
    For example, I live in Joburg. Can I apply at Cape Town HAffairs? Or in any other province?

    • Hi Hannah! You can apply at any home affairs office in the country. This article was just written from the perspective of someone in Cape Town who went to apply for their passport there.

  11. is it possible for a third party to do a passport renewal for you or are you required to be there in person. (This is given that one has already filled in the necessary documentation, photos and fingerprints)….Are fingerprints necessary for passport renewal?

    • Hi Adrian,

      You’ll have to be there in person for the application. Third parties can collect on your behalf as per the above.

  12. Wow you guys are lucky in South Africa ur passports are ready for collection within 2 weeks,I renewed mine (london SA E mbassy)beginning of April and was told that the process takes 3 months, guess what I checked with Home affairs in Pretoria,my application has not been submitted at all its not in the system,what does that mean????????????????????.everything these days is done electronically.

  13. Nice article.
    I’m not so lucky – I applied for renewal in January from the UK and still haven’t received my passport back. Was told it would take 4 months. Ha! As a result, I am losing money on flight and other bookings.

  14. I reside in East london ,in Mdantsane township. I never travelled beyond South African Borders and I am interested in attending Olympics in London to give support to our local boxers who have made it to these games . I need assistance as to what do I need to do and what documents are required for one to apply for a visa.

  15. Vusumzi – you will need a valid South African passport and a UK visa to travel to London. Your passport must have at least 6 months left on it after your return date to South Africa. If you need a new passport, then apply in East London.

    For the UK Visa (Visitor) you’ll need the following:

    Your valid SA passport
    2 passport sized photos as per UK Visa
    requirements
    Valid return air ticket
    A letter from your employer saying you’re gainfully employed and intend to return to work after your trip to the UK
    3 months bank statements from your bank showing you have sufficient funds for your trip
    Invite from a friend living in the UK to say that you have accommodation cost covered while in the UK
    If you’re not staying with friends/family the you must include your confirmed hotel booking with your application
    Proof of address in South Africa (recent utility bills will suffice)

    Apply for the UK Visa online and please don’t take my advice above at face value. It’s always better to do your own research as your application is specific to your needs.

    Did you know? If you book your London flights with Travelstart you can take advantage of our Visa insurance policy. Just what you need if you’re worried about your UK Visa application being rejected.

    Read our UK Visa guide for more.

  16. I Live in the West Indies and want to renew my RSA passport how can it be done without me having to take a flight and doing it from the island that I live on?

  17. This post was is amazing. I renewed my passport this morning and applied everything I read in the above. It went so smoothly.

    • Hi
      My mum was to go to Hong Kong with us on 17th October.Her SA passport has expired.She has indefinitie leave to remain, and resides in the UK. My sisters are in Johannesburg.Whats the quickest way we can do this? Can she send stuff to my sisters and they go in for her?Please help?

  18. Thanks Russel, this was the most useful hit I got when googling how to renew my passport!

  19. Without an ID book I applied for a passport renewal in Wynberg (Maynard Mall), Cape Town, a month ago. A couple of things I learnt that may be useful to others:

    1. Prior to applying, the Home Affairs call centre is friendly but useless. I received three key pieces of incorrect information.

    2. Your ID book is not necessary for application if you don’t have it (mine was lost overseas) but you have to submit an application for a new ID book along with your passport application (not an actual new ID book).

    3. If you have lost or mislaid your ID you don’t actually have to get a police affidavit about whether or how you mislaid it. I did all that (thanks lovely people at Wynbery Police) and Home Affairs didn’t need my document.

    4. If your passport is current you have to pay double for a new one unless you can explain by affidavit why you no longer have it. Your passport belongs to the government.

    If your passport is expired you neither need to present it to Home Affairs nor pay extra to renew it. This is now clear to me, hope I’ve explained it properly.

    5. The “missing” biometric process mentioned above may be HANIS (Home Affairs National Identification System). HANIS happens in Pretoria and I think it’s great. From the little I know, photo bio-images are analysed and databased and it’s all good.

    It’s been a month since I applied for a new ID and passport and my ID was issued early, while my passport is not yet issued.

    6. Keep track of passport and ID processes by texting your ID number preceeded by P or ID to this number: 32551

  20. Wow Ann, that’s excellent info. Thank you for sharing :)

  21. After reading the article and all the comments, I also want to share!! It is great when you can get to a Home Affairs and have the patience to stand there, but it’s not that easy when you are already out of the country and have to get a travel document in a hurry. I had a situation where I was stuck overseas with no close by embassy/consulate near me! I didn’t know where to go or what to do and was pregnant at the time as well. In my desperation I searched on the Internet for companies that could help me but all the posts always said the same thing: “phone/find your nearest consulate/embassy” or the companies were all in SA and did not cater for SA’s abroad. It was a true miracle that I found SA Fast Track and I truly want to share this with everyone because you never know when you will need help which would not normally be available to you. This company helped me get a passport within 15 working days and all I had to do was print off the application documents, fill them in, scan and email them back to check, and then they sent a courier to me to pick up the documents! Within 15 working days I got my new passport. Instead of stressing and running all over the show and standing in queues and all that, I had the time to finalize the rest of my plans and get a plane ticket.
    Since then, I’ve been travelling a lot with my daughter and have used SA Fast Track’s services exclusively. This truly might help other South Africans abroad or in a hurry for a quick and reliable passport service.

  22. Hi there I already applied for my passport, but lost the number I need to phone to check if it is ready for collection, and I need it because they said if I waited too long, it would be destroyed? Can anyone help me?

    P.S. I totally agree about the painlessness involved in applying. I was at Wynberg and it was very smooth

  23. Hi everyone

    Very interesting to read the posts.

    I have found myself in a bit of a dilemma, I am currently on holiday in the UK and Europe and then heading off to Thailand to teach English. I decided to check my passport this evening and I noted that I only have 3 blank non-consecutive pages left in my passport which I am afraid will not be enough for all the visas I will need to obtain in Asia as I will need a tourist visa initially for Thailand, then I will need to do a border run in order to convert to a working visa. (I think this is how it works). And I will need a stamp in Hong Kong as I am flying via HK.

    Does anyone know if I could get my mother to apply for a new passport for me in SA on my behalf if she has my ID book, passport pics and fingerprints from me and a letter of consent? Or is it vital that I do it over there? I am just worried that since I am in the UK on a tourist visa I will not be able to do it here and after reading some posts it sounds risky as it takes too long and my visa wouldve expired in 4 months from now.

    Please help if you can :)

  24. Hi Russell,
    Thank you for an informative article, which I am sure will save many people a lot of time.
    You mentioned that renewing your passport did not require you to bring your old passport (Optional) when applying. How do they renew something that they cannot see, and how do they renew it? I was under the impression that they have to put something in your old passport to indicate that it is “renewed”. Can you please clarify. Thanks!

  25. My husband (UK Citizen) applied fo a visa.Left SA and got FINED,because it showed up on the system that he left SA over a 3 month period…This happeded 2 years ago and is STILL showing up on the airport.This was a mistake from home affairs and it was written in his passport.PATHETIC!!!!!!!We dont even live here?????????Although I’m South African!!!!!

  26. Hi
    Renewed my RSA passport which expired in 2009, today.
    I down loaded the forms from the Home Affairs website, filled them out at home.
    Arrived at the Pinetown Home Affairs office at 12h20 with the forms,a colour copy of my ID, money and photo’s.
    I walked out at 12h45!!!
    Did not expect that.
    Hoping the issuing period is that quick.

  27. The new passport price of R400 is outrageous!

    I have a passport that expired but guess what the”renewal fee” is also R400, the same as a new first time application. They might as well say no renewals only re-application.

    How are the poor supposed to afford this. There’s no mention of your first passport being free or a discount if you are renewing.

    I’m sure if someone investigates who is benefiting from this they will find corruption.

  28. I am enquiring on behalf of my daughter, Jean, about applying for a renewal of her SA passport. She lives in Weybridge, Surrey, and has a problem getting into London due to large work pressures. Is there a service where the application can be done in England please? Your reply would reach her at the above e-mail address. This is rather urgent and your reply at your earliest convenience would be very much appreciated!

  29. Hi Jean’s Mom,

    I have replied to your daughter with the email specified above.

    While Travelstart does not offer this type of service to South Africans living abroad, I did find some info which I have sent her.

    Cheers,
    Russell

  30. hey ive got a prob wi that my passport has only got 4 months left on it,my question is can i travel use my passport 2 travel 2 south africa wi ma british boy 4 holidays and hopefully while im there apply 4 a new passport and can i be able 2 travel back using ma old passport with probably 3 months left on it?

  31. Hi Dan,

    It’s not advisable to travel on a passport that has less than 6 months validity left on it.

    Russell

  32. Hi I’m living in Ireland and lost my passport on a night out if I apply for a new one here how long will it take to get it ?

  33. Hi,

    I’ve just had a mild heart attack, the gov site says R850.00 for a passport, is this right???? I’m renewing.

    • Hi Vee,

      I don’t think R850 is correct. Have a look here for updated prices

  34. I need help for a friend who requires a re-newed passport but has a small window of time before she is due back in afghanistan due to travel plans. How can we go abot sending in all the correctly filled in forms without her being here so that she can just pick it up when she is in SA which is only for almost two weeks? This is urgent. I need to help her. And if she can rather apply for a temp/emergency one is it then a computer generated document? because if it is then she can rather use that and await her passport in the normal fashion. Please HELP urgetnly.

    • Hello Nidia,

      To my knowledge you cannot apply on behalf of your friend as she will need to be there to complete the Biometric process (fingerprinting etc.), however, you can collect the passport on behalf of your friend.

      Maybe she should think about getting a temporary passport (takes about 5 working days) and then apply for her standard adult passport when she has more time.

  35. Hi thanks great website.I am a “dual-national”brit/sa living in the UK,and a grandma too. Can you please tell me, Why cant I simply visit SA on my BritPassport?,my SA Passport has expired, and its SUCH “a Mission” to renew it!!makes me feel I dont really want to if its SUCH a hassle. But I would like to visit SA for a week or two. I was treated quite rudely when I made inquiries at the desk here in London’s SA House.Hope you can help/reply??thanks,baie dankie/n’kosi.

    • Hi Annie,

      As far as I know you don’t need a Visa to visit South Africa if you’re travelling on a UK passport.

      If you’re living in the UK and travelling to SA on a UK passport I believe you can visit us down here for up to 90 days provided you have a return ticket (to the UK) booked.

      Hope this helps :)

  36. Wish renewing SA passports in Zimbabwe was as efficient. My wife applied in Harare 9/9/12 was told to check online in two months to track progress. I checked after two months to be told application is not in system yet. When I phoned Harare, I was advised that the application was sent to Pretoria 13/9/12, and that it could take 5 or 6 months. That doesn’t seem like good service. Any idea how I can find out what is happening. Harare don’t appear to be interested.

  37. Thanks for the post so that I could verify directions and timing. I’m heading off to CPT home affairs tomorrow morning to get a birth certificate. I’m expecting it to be a long and painful process. Passports, however, have become way faster. Took 6 months to get my last one back in 2009 and it rocked up with the wrong name! Now, as you said, they can take two weeks, great improvement. Wish me luck.

  38. Hi,

    I had to renew my passport as I ran out of pages. I was issued with a brand new passport, with new passport number and expirey date etc. as apparently Home Affairs no longer renews passports but just issues you with a new one. I was given my old passport back as it has a valid 10 year US visa – the old passport was not visibly voided in any way. So I now have the old passport, which has not expired and has 2 blank pages (so I can technically term this a valid passport) and a new passport. I have travelled only on the new passport for the last year or so but now need to use the US visa. I know that if your visa is in an expired passport you just take both with you; however I am nervous that because my old passport has not expired and has not been voided, presenting both passports may not go down well…some over zealous customs official may take issue that I have two ostensibly valid passports. I can’t apply for a new US visa as they won’t issue a new one unitl old one has expired.

    Does Home Affairs ususally ‘void’a passport in a visible manner? Does SA immigration systems naturally hold only one valid passport number per ID number, thereby making my old passport void even if it hasn’t visibly been voided?

    Thanks,
    Rochelle

    • Hi Rochelle,

      That’s correct. Home affairs issue a brand new passport with enhanced security features.

      To answer your questions – I am not aware if Home Affairs “visibly” void your passport, however, when I travelled to the UK and Europe this year I was in the same situation as you – I carried my old “invisibly voided” passport with my valid Schengen Visa, as well as my new passport and I didn’t encounter any problems. That said, I would contact Home Affairs directly to make sure.

      I would assume your theory of “one valid passport number per ID number” sounds about right, however, I would advise to check directly with the embassy for your own peace of mind.

  39. Very informative article.Thank you.
    I will be going to Home Affairs tomorrow. Not sure whether Wynberg or CPT city will be better…I’ll decide in the morning. :)

  40. Thank you so much. Everything I needed to know. Going to renew mine this week.

  41. Hi

    Thank you for the very informative article. I would like to know how soon can I renew my passport if my present one only expires in September 2013, I am presenly resident in Oman.Thanking You Kindly

    • Hi Ahmed,

      If you carry an SA passport then I’d put getting a new passport one of the priority items on your New Years resolutions list. Most embassies require you have at least 6 months left on the passport (before expiry) to travel across borders, so that means any time between now and March will be a good time to apply for your new passport.

  42. I have been out of the country for over 10 years and have a british passport. Would I be able to renew my old SA African passport
    Please advise
    thanks

    • Hi Brenda,

      The Department of Home Affairs website contains relevant information regarding citizenship: http://www.home-affairs.gov.za/Citizenship.html
      I suggest taking a look at the sections pertaining to dual-citizenship.

      Regards,

      Aaron

  43. I have trouble with the fingerprinting machines. This has happened with my visas for both UK and USA, and now my driver’s license as well. I suspect it will be the same when I renew my passport as well. What’s the solution??

  44. I hold a SA passport, live in the US(California/ Nevada) and need a Schengen visa for Italy.
    Can you give me the information I need to do this and where the interview will take place?
    Thank you

  45. How do I revert to my maiden name when applying for a new South African passport?

    • Hi Stacey,

      Please contact Home Affairs for the relevant information: 0800 60 11 90

  46. Although taking your old passport is listed as ‘optional’ you’ll need your passport number so it’s probably a good idea to take it along.

  47. OK heads up – you do, in fact, need to take your old passport with you.

  48. I have applied for a new south african passport from Australia and it has still not arrived, however my existing passport expires in july of this year. South africa neither australia require the 6 month validity period. BUT heres my question, south africa has issued me with a new passport but it has been despatched and no-one can tell me when it will come, so is my existing passport still valid????

    • Hi Nicci,

      You should check with the South African embassy you are renewing your passport with before travelling.

  49. please i need help, my aunt wants me to visit her in canada in three weeks(21days) maximum time i have to live SA.i dont want to pass through the hussle and tassle of getting passport in our home affairs,can somebody give me information to get a fasttrack SA passport in less than 21days without me going to these home affairs robot offices.i need a fast tracktrack agent to help me please!!

  50. My SA Passport expierd on 08-06-1994, must I start all over again or can I just renew it. also can I get the forms in ZEERUST? Is there a Home Affair’s office in ZEERUST? I do need a valid SA passport like yesterday! Thanks

    • Hi Rita,

      Here is the contact information for the Department of Home Affairs District Office, they will be able to provide you with all relevant information:

      Zeerust District Office
      Tel: (018) 363 3853/648
      Fax: (018) 363 3179

      Mr. L. Reader
      Lobatse/Zeerust Road,
      Lehurutshe,
      2880

  51. How do i track the status of my new passport online. At home affairs in Malmesbury they gave me a number to sms which does this but i have had no response sio would like to know online where to do this. Thanks. Russell Blair

  52. Hi there. Not sure if Aaron actually works for the department of Home Affairs, but i have a long story of potential woe to share with you. Being the good mother that I am , i went into the Dept of Home Affairs in Wynberg [ Cape Town ] to renew my daughter’s passports. My one daughter who is currently 15 yrs old is going to Thailand end of June, and as her passport was expiring in Dec this year, i thought i would renew it. When I was there, i was informed that once she is 16 [ she turns 16 in Mid April ] she would not be able to use her child passport and it would be invalid, even though date wise it is still valid. I was told that I could however, get permission to get an adult passport before she turned 16, but they could not guarantee this, so i renewed her child passport anyway. I have now phoned the Dept of Home Affairs toll number 5 x and each time i get a different story. 1st person told me that i can only apply for an adult passport once she is 16 and the next person said I could ask for special permission from a Supervisor, but they could reject it at Head Office etc etc. BUT I can only apply for an adult passport once she had an ID, and can only do this when she is 16. It takes 2 – 3 months to get the ID, by which time it would be too late to get the adult passport. I was then told I could apply for a temp passport , as no ID is needed, but Thailand Embassy said they don’t always accept Temp Passports. So now feeling stumped and seeing all that money paid for Thailand flying out of the window, I phoned the Belgium Consulate as my daughter has a EU passport with them. They said that the EU child passport only expires with the date of expiry, and suggested that as the dept of Home Affairs is being so unhelpful, to travel out of SA on a temp SA passport and enter Thailand on her EU passport and the same on her return. All good and well, but how on earth can the dept of Home Affairs be so inflexible ? What if my daughter never had an EU passport ? What do people do if their child turns 16 the day before they travel overseas ? How can a valid passport which only expires in 5 yrs be rendered invalid just because of an age ? Surely there must be some leeway with this ? I am so frustrated and feeling totally let down by my own bloody country. If anyone has some valid or useful input here it would be highly appreciated.

    • Hi Kathi,

      I’m part of the Travelstart family – not employed or associated with the Department of Home Affairs in any way.
      Sorry to hear the problems you encountered, unfortunalety when dealing with many government agencies we often encounter ridiculous regulations and red-tape.
      It is a good thing your daughter has an EU passport – have a great trip to Thailand!

    • Hi Kathi

      Sorry to hear that you experienced this. It is very peculiar. I traveled with my child passport to Switzerland and Germany after turning 16 (I actually traveled when I was 18 and had obtained the passport at age 15). Unfortunately it expires today and so I have to get a new one before my travels to Turkey next month.

      Are you dead certain that this is the case? I am sure I have understood you correctly, but I had absolutely no issues obtaining a Schengen Visa and spending two months in Europe with my South African child passport after turning 16.

      Anyway, best of luck. I hope all goes well.

      Chenise

    • Age is based on application (ie. if she is 15 at the date of application she applies for a child passport regardless if her 16th birthday is in a week or two). If it is still valid (current as far as expiration) then she can use her child passport for the trip (even though she turned 16 by the time she leaves). A passport has nothing to do with the person per se, it is simply a document that gives a country abroad permission from your home country to have you, the Visa is the opposite, giving permission from the country abroad to have you there. The key is the expiration, as long as that is valid, that is the permission time frame the government has granted. She can apply for an adult passport when she returns and once she has her ID.

  53. I got my passport in 2 weeks when I applied in Cape Town for it, it was a breeze! They sms’d me to tell me it was ready for collection. Originally when I lived in Joburg things took FOREVER, anything official was a hassle and it took ages. So far everything I have applied for in Cape Town – passport, Driver Licence, police clearance has been painless and very quick. Just one of the many reasons I love living in Cape Town :)

  54. My 15yr old daughter needs a renewal passport. Any special notes that we should be aware of. her previous passport was issued when she was 3years old. it expired about 6yrs ago.

    • South Africa do not renew passports, they re-issue them (brand new application). If she is still 15 when she is standing in home affairs, then she would apply for a new child passport. If she has turned 16 by the time she applies, then she would have to apply for an ID first, get the ID and with that apply for an adult passport valid for 10 years.

  55. I applied for my passport at Pretoria and it took exactly one week. This was without using an agent. Yay

  56. I have a new passport with a new number. I still have my old passport which I want to use till its full(about 3 pages left). If I go abroad with my old passport and I’m refused to use it somewhere during my travel abroad, can I just change to my new passport whenever I want to as I travel with both. Its a bit confusing as the old one expires 2016 and I have two different passport numbers now. I was told that both passport is valid.

    • Hi Tino,

      As far as I know when you renew your passport your old one is cancelled. When I went to apply for a new passport last week that is what I was told at Home Affairs in Cape Town.
      Although your old passport could well be accepted when you are travelling I strongly suggest that you ensure you have your new one with you to be safe.

    • If it has not expired it is valid. Entry and exit stamps must be in one passport (ie. you cant exit on the old and enter with the new). Personally that would be too much trouble for me, I would just use the new one and throw the old one in the drawer, then all bases are covered if you come across an official that woke up on the wrong side of the bed that day and refuses to stamp the old one.

  57. Hi, Is it easier/quicker to go to Malmesbury for a possport renewal. Any idea if those offices are open on a Saturday?

    • Hi Theiyba,

      According to the Western Cape Government website they are open on Saturdays from 08:00-12:00.
      I cannot say whether it is quicker to renew your passport there – all applications are sent to Pretoria for processing.

  58. Thought I’d share my secret re home affairs. The best time to go is 15 min before closing time. There’s no queue at all, in and out in 5 min! I am forever indebted to the passport photo guy for this gem :-)

  59. Why are u so nice russel ? Just read all these comments and glad to hear about SA fast track. Gonna try this from Cali hope it works as I don’t have an SA Id besides my passport.

  60. Hi, im turning 18 this year and still have a passport from when i was about 4, i want to renew it…but think its been expired for quite some years. i live in Boksburg Gauteng. please let me know is anyone knows anything about this asap please>>>> :-)

    • You will need to apply for a new Passport with your current ID.

  61. Does home affairs in Johannesburg (Plein & Harrison Str)open on a Saturday?

  62. Hi, I’m from the Netherlands and stay now 9 years in South Africa. I had a lot of delayed temporary residence visas. Most of them took 2months more than just the 30 days. But I had never problems with lots applications etc.
    My last application was done on the 15 th of jan 2013 at Cape Town office. After a week of application still no SMS so I went back.they told me there is a delay and I must be patient. On the 13 th of Feb I received the SMS en on the 28 they smsed me that the outcome of the visa is ready for collection. (Temporary spousal permit with attached work permit)

    Now I just got one problem and maybe someone has experience with that.
    I just had major surgery and am not able to travel until mid April.
    Is there a time limit within you have to collect the visa?
    Can someone else collect it for me?

    I tried to phone cape-town office. Can’t get through to find out.
    Their free toll number advices me to contact office of application to speak to the office supervisor. They can’t even give me a name or email address! They say it private information (no really). Anyone a direct number to immigration or the name of the office supervisor?

    Great thanks

    Ps the new number system works great. If there are a lot of people in front of u just take a walk outside…

  63. How do i go about getting my son 5yrs old onto my SA passport? What documents do i need and where do i go? how much will it cost?

  64. My passport has expired last year, untouched like a virgin, do I also need to re-apply or get a new number even if I’m planning to go visit Namibia and do I also need to pay a fee? Sounds like Home Affairs a pleasure, looking fwd to. Thanx

    • Yup, you need to get a new one unfortunately.

  65. Great article, thank you!!!

    If I’m traveling overseas for an extend time (to one country) and my passport only expires 2016 but I may be there longer, do I need to get it renewed and will they renew it now even although it’s only 2013?

    • You can apply for a new one at the South African Consulate in that country. (it costs a lot more though).

  66. Hi

    I need advise please. I have a US tourist visa in my old visa and now need to renew my visa. Can I just take my old passport and new one into the US? They are a bit of a sticky nation?
    Any suggestions would be great.
    Thanks
    PS. This blog is fantastic.

    • My husband has a new passport with US visa in the old passport and has travelled to the US numerous times without any problems carrying both of the passports.

  67. Hi!

    My boss is going to Tailand in June, his passport expires in May. How long does it take to renew? Would he need to get a temporary one?
    He lives in Rondeboch in Cape Town, where is the nearest place he can go?

    Thanks
    Letitia

    • He can apply for a temporary passport if he has to travel within one month (it’s a certificate)… countries are starting to refuse temporary passports so best to find out from the Thai Consulate if they would accept that.

  68. Hi, I am planning a trip to Thailand in August and my passport expires 25 September this year. Do I need to get another passport or will this be good enough? Where is the offices located for Pretoria?

    • Hey Devaksha, I would suggest getting a new passport. Never a good idea to travel with a passport that has less than 6 months left on it.

  69. Thanks for the info, was looking to call them and you answered my question.

  70. HI , I live in canada, my passport is expire in the end of April. the web page say it take from 6 month to a year for a new one. My sister is vising me in canada, Can i send her my old pasport with the apication forms and id book to hand it in her self in south africa and bring it back to me in canada. Please help me with advice
    THank you.

  71. Has my passport arrived yet it’s been more than 3 weeks and i have not yet recieved any reply or sms or even a letter through the post. I did my application in MITCHELLS PLAIN.
    ID NUMBER 7804195173081.

  72. Hi i hope you can help me…
    I have my passport on my old surname and when i got married i changed only my id and drivers license to my new surname but I’m also divorced and not yet re-married but engaged.
    My passport having my old surname stated on it is still valid for more than a year. Should i have a problem if me and my fiance want to travel in June to Pakistan? Can i still travel on my passport? I have never traveled overseas before, this will be my first time. Please help, it’s really urgent because the only time we have this year to go is June.
    I would really appreciate if someone can reply.

  73. Does Joburg Home affairs do passport applications. If so where is offices.

  74. Just renewed my passport at the Randburg office and it took me just an hour (including Computer down time. They are situated om Malibongwe Drive. Midday seems to be quiet.

  75. Hi

    im sibusiso, i applied for a passport on, friday the 17th of may 2013, so i lost my reciept i got at the home affairs, so im stressing if, could i still be able to colect my passport vvithout the reciept but jst my ID. Please Help!.

  76. Regarding Kathi’s quandry with her daughter travelling on a child passport, incase any others have the same query – my daughter also applied for a passport just before she turned 16, which was valid for 5 years, being a child passport. She has travelled to Mauritius, the UK and done a European Contiki all on the child passport and now at almost 21years has just applied for her adult one. She had no problems travelling on the SA Child passport from 16 to 20 years of age.

  77. Thank you for your amazing blog on passport renewal. You should really get into blogs for travel. I think you’d do a brilliant job. It was almost exciting getting my passport this time. thanks again

  78. Quick question.

    Does anyone know the expected processing time for SA passports applied for outside of SA? I’m applying for mine from Thailand.

    Thanks in advance!

  79. Hi,

    I am currently working in the Caribbean and we do not have a consulate on island. I have a few questions please:

    1) New York is a good option as i can courier everything and get the renewal done there. They do however suggest that it takes 6 months. Some information indicates that you have to submit your passport with your renewal application. I cannot do without my passport for that period for a bunch of reasons. Can anyone confirm if you do in fact have to send your passport with the application and if the processing time is really 6 months?

    2) Can i have a family member submit my application in Cape Town and then have them collect my passport once complete. I would complete all the required documentation as required for a overseas renewal?

    Thanks,
    Joe

  80. Hi there. Great post!!
    Is it true that you have to hand in your old passport when collecting the new one?

    A random person at Home affairs Centurion told me that, but i believe it to be a lie?

    Thank you
    Lourens

  81. Pp photos : colour or black & wh?

    • Color, glasses off, don’t smile.

  82. i apply my travel decoment in cape town when i send my id no to this num 32551 they send me back no current application what can i do?

  83. Hi

    Do I need to wait for my passport to expire before I get a new one or can I apply for a new one before it expires so it doesnt expire while I am away?Can you book a trip for a date after your passport expires and then apply for a new one once its expired and use it?

    Thanks,
    jessica

  84. hi I live in the u.k my passport expired in 2008,anyway I have send my application form to an agent in s.a on the 11 of june, today 24 june im still waiting hopefully it wont be long as im planning to visit s.a after a long time,the s.a embassy in London told me it will take 6months that’s when I decided to use an agent!

  85. Hiya, I’m currently in SE Asia now and about to run out of pages in my passport (FYI – even small countries now use two pages in your passport, one for a full page visa and another for entry & exit stamps – this was new to me!)

    Has anybody had experience in applying for a new passport overseas? How long does it take?

    Andy

  86. Hi travel start team, your blog post is so helpful!! Thank you! I just wanted to find out if you can get a rush on a maxi passport? I’m only in SA for a month and need a new passport asap so I have enough time to get a UK, schengen, czech and croatian visa (all of which i need in my new passport) and each visa might take a while. Any hope this can all be done in a month? Thanks!

  87. We applied for my son E.A.N. Torres-Mercado ID 921023 525 0087 passport three weeks ago at Home Affairs Centurion. We want to know if the passport is ready but if we phone the number 012 664 5820 that we were given it says that this numer does not exist. ???? Please Help

  88. I need a new I’d with my names spelled correctly, how do I go about this

  89. I apply my passport on the 28 june 2013 for the visit to Netherlands at Potchefstroom home affairs, still i hevent receive it yet. Am have to leave next month and i still have to apply for visa and Travel health insuarance on time. I try to track my application status but i cant go through. Please help me to find out, what is going on with my passport because its been 6weeks now.

  90. I am currently living in the UK, but am visiting SA in September. My passport expires 14 Jan 2014, but it takes 4 months to get a new one over here.
    Can I renew in September, fly back to UK on my old passport, and then get my parents to collect and DHL the new passport back to me?
    I.E. Do they cancel old passports which have not expired?

    • Hey Ryan,

      I think they cancel passports when you apply for a new one. Also, you’re usually restricted from travelling unless your SA passport has at least 6 months validity remaining on it.

      Cheers,
      Russell

  91. Thanks Russell, Im not travelling, Im a resident in the UK. Can anyone confirm Russell’s comment? I did email a company Q for you, and they said that HAs wont necessarily cancel my old one, particulary as I have a very good reason for holding onto it.

    • Hi Ryan. I’m in a very similar situation and was wondering whether you were able to find the answer about travelling on your “old” passport while the renewal process is underway. I’m visiting SA right now (Sept). My SA passport expires in March. I have EU dual citizenship so entering the UK isn’t an issue. However, if I try to renew my SA passport now while in SA, will I still be able to exit SA in 10 days time using my current SA passport?

    • Your old passports are not cancelled. I have 2 “active” passports and travel on either one.

    • As Mandy says, passports aren’t cancelled, they expire. If it’s valid it’s usable. They may refuse passports with less than 6 months left only if you borderline the stay (ie. if you have six months left and will only travel for a week or two you should have no problem)

  92. This is the perfect blog for anyone who wants to know about, how to renew your South African Passport. Thank you for sharing!

  93. Hi there

    I am wanting to renew my passport in durban- does anyone know where to go?

    Thanks

    • You can try 031 308 7900
      Or just ask people in your area, I’m sure you will stumble on someone who has applied in Durban ;-)

  94. Hi there, is there a way to speed up my passport I have one week until I leave and my passport is still “being processed” as per the dha website. I am desperate here. Thanks in advance for your advise

    • Hi Michele,

      If it’s getting too close for comfort then you should apply for an temporary/emergency passport.

  95. Hi there,

    My passport has expired and I urgently need to book an international flight. I am only leaving 2 December, so I’m sure my renewed passport will have arrived by then.

    However, I need my new Passport number to book the flight. Can I renew my passport, and also ask for an emergency passport at the same time. So I can go and book my flight so long?

    Thanks so much for your help and answering all our questions – such a relief to know there’s someone who can help. Thanks Travel Start!

    • Hi there,

      My passport has expired and I urgently need to book an international flight. I am only travelling next year April, so I’m sure my renewed passport will have arrived by then.

      Can I book a flight with my old number and then change it once I get my new passport?

    • You can apply for both at the same time, pay for both but use the temporary / emergency one for flight. Note though that temporary / emergency passport (travel certificates) are being phased out. To apply for a temporary / emergency passport you need to provide proof of emergency (death, illness, etc)… vacation or ordinary visits are not seen as an emergency.

  96. Thank you !!!!!!!!

  97. I just want to leave a msg to say how amazing the Home Affairs Office in Durban is. I went at around 11 o’clock, presumably the busiest time of the day! But I was in and out in an hour! All done with no help of an Agent. They also have a tracking service (free of charge) and said it will only take about two weeks!!! Felt I should share some good news, instead of complaining!

  98. I’m dissapointed about Home Affairs, I have applied for a Passport 4 weeks back and I didn’t receive it yet. And I must laeve this weekend to Botswana and they said I won’t get it these weekend. Please help me what must I do.

  99. where can i download an application form for a South African passport (NOT a renewal). it won’t let me download one from the gov web site.

    • Printed online forms are not accepted. You will get the forms at home affairs (takes 5 minutes to fill them in).

  100. Hi

    I’m 16 and moving to my mom in the U.K in Feb. I don’t have a passport yet and my mom needs my passport number for the visa or something.

    Is there a way I could speed up the process when I apply for my passport? Maybe pay a bit extra?

  101. i have applied for ID 3 weeks ago since then i have not heard anything from the department of home affair in limpopo even a confirmation a sms to show that my application is valid ……please anyone with any information help to find my id application status

    • Go to home affairs – collections, and ask them to check on the system. This is not unusual for ID’s, they do extra checks for duplicates and / or identity theft. My wife waited 3 months, then when she went to collect, they couldn’t find it (lost), she re-applied, we moved, asked them to send it to our local home affairs office… they lost it again, she has applied again.

  102. I have been trying to track my application online. At first it said 60, then 73, now 90. What do these codes mean. Also does anyone know if singapore accepts temporary passports

    • Hi Shaz,when did you apply for your passport and did you do so within S.A?My passport status says the same thing “090”.I wish I had a clue as to what stage this refers to.Did you find out what the code means as yet?

  103. lorna i also hav 2 leav 4 botswana 2moro n im stil waitin 4 my passport. wer did u apply 4 it? kg bsides death n ilnes wat els qualifies s n emergenc? anotha q wat prove is needed?

  104. Hello, I have a question:My SA passport expired a few months ago and I plan to renew ti but I see on this advice blog that one is required to take along SA I.D book? What do I do if I don’t have one? I have been living abroad actually and haven/t had one in about 15 years that I can think of.

  105. When does the home affairs in Barrack street open in the new year?

  106. What does status 090 mean.
    I just want to know how long till I get my passport but instead I get random numbers. Why do they have to make everything so dam hard, when it should be something really simple.

  107. Can anybody assist me with the passport status codes.
    I have applied for a new passport and am trying to track the progress, site give me a status code of 075 ???? What is the use of having this site if one cannot actually get a progress report??? These codes don’t mean anything to the man on the street.

  108. Hi All.
    My daughter is back in SA for a visit from New Zealand where she has permanent residence status. Her passport expires mid March and I have been informed that she can’t leave SA without at least 6 months validity on her passport. The Home Affairs website gives this period as 1 month. Given the time of the year and the short time available till she is due back (mid Jan) to continue her studies here, I am getting very nervous! Any comments/advice would be most welcome.

  109. I have tried calling Home affairs to find out what code 075 means and nobody can tell me or they have no idea what I am talking about. Short of making a trip to home affairs office can someone help.

  110. Hi there,

    Just a quick question. Did they do anything to your old passport when you went to renew it? Clip it, punch it?

    I have a valid US visa in my current one, but badly need a new passport, but I read online that if they damage the US visa in any way that it is no longer valid.

    Thanks for your awesome post!

  111. Can anyone give me an idea of how long their passport application in the Cape Town area has taken recently?

  112. If my passport expires in August, I understand i do need to apply for a new one, When I go to apply, will I still be able to keep my old passport to use , while the new one is being processed. As I am traveling to Serengeti in April. regards rory

    • Hi Rory,

      To be safe, for all international travel your passport should have at least 6 months remaining on it from date of return to SA.

      You are able to use your old passport while your new one is being processed provided the old one is still valid. In other words, Home Affairs won’t cancel your passport just because you are applying for a new one.

      Cheers.

  113. I applied for my passport in 2011 at the Pretoria main home affairs. Up to this day it still hasnt come out. I am even put off to apply for a new one.

    • What happens if you do not have the receipt for the passport that was ordered. Can you collect it by furnishing your original ID booklet?

  114. I’m flying back to South Africa at the end of this month and want to renew my expired SA passport. I have dual citizenship so flying back is not an issue. Will i be able to do the DHA-9 finger print form at the Home Affairs Offices on the day i plan to go on, or is this something you need to have ready and done before you arrive.

    • Hi Drew, I have the same problem, my SA passport expires while I’m in the States. I also have dual, so I can get back home (heading home in June), but was wondering if the process of renewing my SA passport would be more complicated if it’s already expired. I’d be really interested to know if you have any more details. Thanks, Kim

  115. I renewed (got another) my latest passport in 2011 at the Potchefstroom Home Affairs office. There wasn’t much of a queue (maybe I was lucky haha) but it was a painless morning. They did also ask me to add my mobile number for a notification by sms and said it would take 6 weeks.
    This was going to cut it fine as I was due to start a solo expedition in 7 weeks – I got the sms 3 weeks later that my passport was ready! Awesome! I could now apply for visas in 2 embassies at the same time haha
    Soon, I’ll have to be applying for another one again.
    Thanks for a great blog.

  116. Very 1st passports for us, got it all done in 2 1/2 hours in port Elizabeth. Went in at 2pm, out at 4.30pm.

  117. Hi Russel

    Thanks for this post. When renewing your passport, do you have to hand in your old one and they return it with the new one? Or do they let you keep it?

    Thanks very much
    John

  118. I have about 9 months left on my current passport before it expires. I need to apply for a visa asap before travelling, however once I get to Canada I need to apply for a work permit. Am I better off applying for a new passport now and pray that there are no major delays, or shall I take the risk and apply for the visa with current passport. I have read that applying for new passport from abroad can take up to 6 months…..Phew!

  119. I am travelling back home to the natal I have a temporary sa passport. Where can I go to get a permanent passport I will be kliving in pennington natal

  120. I applied at Maynard Mall just over six weeks ago. I have checked my status and it seems it is “received, being processed”. So six weeks is the minimum and don’t try phoning for any information as they do not answer their phone or respond to e-mails. Chaos! My husband applied in Edenvale, Joburg, and got his within two weeks.

    • Hi there. I have been struggling to find the number that you sms to see check the status of your passport!could you please help me out :)

  121. I would like to knw if i can apply a passport for my child who was born here in South Africa although iam a Zimbabwean.i already have a birth certficate for him.

  122. Hi Do you know if a mother can apply to renew her childrens SA expired passports withought the kids being with her?

    • No you can’t. they want to see the children and if they’re under 16, you’ll need their father to be present as well. It’s quite a schlepp but that was my experience un a March this year

  123. Hi there,

    Great article! It really helped me when applying for my SA passport. I applied for a renewal of my passport on 24 March 2014 and it has been 7 weeks since then. Sadly I haven’t heard anything from them. Should I just go to Home Affairs with my ID book and try my luck? Do you know of a number I can call to find out how far my passport it? That website you put up at the end of your article was invalid so I am at a dead end.

    looking forward to hearing from you

    Greg

  124. My passport is valid until 2017 but I have about clean 5 pages left. What’s the deal? Totally new passport… or can they add in pages?
    I travel a bit, so time is of the essence in getting a renewal before I have to travel again… and I don’t want to be told, when I arrive somewhere in East/ West Africa, that I can’t proceed because my current passport doesn’t have enough free pages.

    • The same thing has just happened to me. I took the passport application in for a new maxi passport, paid R600 with 2 photos, in 350 Umgeni Road Durban, was in and out in 5 minutes, and told it will take approx. 4 weeks. I have kept my old passport, but from the day I take delivery of my new passport, my old one is cancelled. However I can still use it when I travel to UK or USA as it has my 10 year visas in it.

  125. Hi. I thought I’d share today’s experience of trying to apply for a passport for my 9-year-old daughter in Pietermaritzburg. We arrived at 7.30am – they open at 8.30am – and we joined the already very long queue. We stood there (outside the actual building) until 12.30. By this stage we were about 15 people away from the entrance. At 12.30 the security guards shut the doors and said no more people would be attended to. 5 hours of standing! Could someone not have come out at 10am and said we’ll only be able to process up to this point in the queue? This sort of treatment makes for very unhappy citizens.

  126. Very helpful and encouraging post. Thank you :)

  127. I recently applied for a passport in upington and this was my first time applying for passport. I imagined it would take maybe hours, so I decided to go apply at 10:30 yesterday (22 March 2014). To my luck, there was hardly anyone there. So they sent me to pay and collect 2 receipts. Then sent me to a counter that gave me a sticker with the number 21 (assuming I was the 21st person there that day) and after that they took me to a booth for photos. After I accepted the picture, I had to sign a electronic pad, and then headed for the queue. Just as I sat down, my number got called, so I proceeded to the counter. Answering a few questions, giving my personal details and doing my finger prints on this small square box with a green laser, I finally ended with yet another electronic signature. All this in under 10 minutes, with only a damage of R400. And of course a R5 coin for the guard watching my vehicle.

  128. My husband and I went to renew our passports on 13th May (2 weeks ago). We went to Home Affairs in Wynberg, Cape Town. Got there at 7.20am and were out by 9.30am. We both got an sms on 22nd May – 9 days later to come and collect. OMG!!!!

  129. I’ve recently applied for a new passport and I still haven’t received it. My old passport is still valid for another six months. Can I still use my old one to travel or is it cancelled because I’ve applied for a new one.

  130. I’ve applied for a new passport and I still haven’t received it. My current passport is still valid. Can I still use it to travel or is it cancelled because I applied for a new one?

  131. Hi Guys

    I applied for a passport Saturday for the 1st time in my life hahaha… I got offered a job in Dubai and I am kinda scared that time is against me. I need to be in Dubai end of July. They told me at Home affairs that it take 3-8 weeks to get the passport. Only then will be able to apply for a Visa which also takes time… Is the perhaps any way of speeding up the process to get my Passport or do I have to wait out the time given which is 3-8 weeks??? Thanks in advance for much needed info.

  132. Applied for my passport on the 24th March and its the 16th June and no luck.

    Is there a possibility of getting my passport after this long???????????

  133. Must the photos be black and white or can you use coloured ones?

    • Elizabeth, we used x2 colour photographs per passport.

  134. Hi Guys

    I recently got married and am contemplating the right time to apply for a new passport which will expire soon. The new passport will automatically be issued in my married name – as my ID has already changed.

    However, I am traveling to the UK at the end of August and the UK Visa is on my maiden name in my current passport also on my maiden name. My flights are also booked on my maiden name.

    If I apply for a new passport on my married name before I leave will I still be able to travel on my current passport in my maiden name. Is the current passport only voided once the new passport is collected?

    • I’m also in UK, with visa in passport with maiden name but I have a new passport in married name. This has not been a problem (I’ve entered the UK several times with these). Just take both passports and you marriage certificate

  135. What a great post. Thanks, it’s very helpful. I hope things are still improved now, in 2014!

  136. I need to have a new passport (renewed) by March 2015. When is the earliest I can apply for the renewed passport?

  137. I have applied for the renewal of my passport at the Paarl office on 31 March 2014.I did not receive it as yet and is becoming a concern now.On the Home Affair website the status is: Received to be processed. How long can this take?It is scary.

  138. My wife went to Randburg to get forms. She was told by a very nice lady that, if she is in a hurry, she should go to Wynberg where it takes 2-4 weeks as opposed to 6-8 in Randburg. That was very nice of her. So, we went to Wynberg, spent about 45 min to do necessary (my photos weren’t used, I had to take new ones on site). After 4 days I got sms that ID is ready and after 10 days same for passport. Excellent service, very happy with it.

  139. I waited SEVEN years for my daughter’s full unabridged birth certificate… Each time I had to fill out new forms and pay the required R20.00. By the time we received it, two of the witnesses had died and one had moved overseas. My daughter received hers in May last year… No apologies from Home Affairs.

  140. hi,ek is by home affairs in belville. ek was beroof en aangerand en het my I.D verloor. ek en Jodine Pekeur het n baba maar wil die kind se van Theron maak maar hulle wil my nie help nie. ek het n sertifiseerde copy van my I.D en n avidavit maar nog steeds wil hulle my nie help nie. hoe kan ek die kind se van Theron maak.

  141. My wife who is South African left SA 14 years ago but returned to live here permanently earlier this year. She is trying to import the car she had in the UK and we are told that unless she can produce her passport exit stamp from 2001 (!) she will not be allowed to do so. She no longer has that passport. It expired and was in her maiden name. So how can she prove she left the country on that date???

    • Hello Terry, thank you for contacting us! We are unable to answer your question as we only have limited knowledge when it comes to Visas. It would be best to contact Home Affairs to assist with this – Almene

  142. You don’t need to get passport photos anymore, as they have digital cameras and take their own photos. No charge.

  143. Hi,
    Thanks for the article
    What would take process be if I would just like to change my surname as I am now married
    What is the waiting period for that.

    Thanks a mil
    Laurie

  144. Well I have applied for my Official passport on the 10th of October 2014, I pray that I get it within next week… Which will be the 2nd week since I’ve applied for it. Wish me luck… My sister applied for hers and got it within 3 weeks. SA is making travelling more convenient. Thank you @HomeAffairsSA

  145. Hi Guys

    I need HELP

    My ID and My passport were stolen. I have an affidavit for the crime as well as certified copies made for my ID and passport my only HARD copy of identity is my drivers.

    I am going to india in 3 months time and need to urgently go and apply for a new passport and ID. Will my certified documents be ok as well as my drivers.

    I am stressing as I feel like I have “no identity” now.

    Any advice would be grand.

    Thank you

    • Hi Jenna, this should be okay, so long as you have the affidavit and all those certified copies with you. At the end of the day though, it’s up to Home Affairs, but I don’t see what else you could bring with you.

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