Ireland visa application for South Africans

Ireland has long been a very popular destination for South African travellers. It’s got a lot to offer in terms of attractions from the many museums, churches and it’s famous Guinness Beer to it’s wide, open countryside and rugged coastline. But with more and more countries requiring South Africans to apply for visas to visit, it’s making travellers a little more wary about visiting the Emerald Isle. Here’s some info which should help:

Do I need a visa to visit Ireland?

As the holder of a permanent South African Passport, you don’t need a visa to enter the Republic of Ireland – that’s the part independent of the United Kingdom sometimes called “Ireland Proper” or “Southern Ireland”. You will just need:

  • A South African passport valid for at least 6 months from your date of return to South Africa (no temporary passports)
  • At least 3 blank pages in your passport
  • Sufficient funds for the duration of your stay (Ireland does not stipulate how much, but other EU countries say about R400 per person per day) – the immigration official may ask to see proof of sufficient funds in the form of foreign currency or credit card statement, though it is very rare that they ask for this.

What about Northern Ireland?

Northern Ireland is still part of the United Kingdom, meaning you need a UK Visa to enter that part of the island of Ireland. So be careful about flying into airports like Londonderry-Eglinton (Derry) or Belfast as these are in the United Kingdom. If you’re driving around Ireland and enter Northern Ireland, technically you will need a visa to do so. There are no border checkpoints on roads between the Republic Of Ireland and Northern Ireland but if you are stopped by police or immigration officials anywhere in Northern Ireland and are found not to hold a valid UK visa, you can be deported and may be denied future entry to the UK.

Flying via the United Kingdom

If you’re flying to Ireland and are transiting through the United Kingdom, as in flying via London, Manchester, Edinburgh etc to Dublin or any other airport in Ireland, you will need a transit visa for the UK. The UK only allows visa-free transit if you’re travelling to and are holding a visa for the USA, Canada, New Zealand or Australia.

Flying via other cities to Ireland

If you’re flying on a South African passport via any Schengen country, are not leaving the airport transit area there (also not changing airports) and are not staying longer than 24 hours in the airport, you’ll be fine to fly on that route, visa-free. Many of the middle-eastern airlines like Etihad Airways, Emirates and Turkish Airlines also fly to Dublin and on those routes, providing you’ll abide by the same rules as with the Schengen countries, you’ll be fine to fly visa-free on these routes too.

Cheap flights to Ireland

Travelstart allows you to compare all airlines on a single page to book the cheapest tickets to Ireland. If you’re looking for somewhere to stay, compare and book the most affordable Irish hotels on our site, we feature multiple establishments in many locations. For the best visa-free routes to fly, we suggest flying into Dublin, from there you can hire a car to explore the lush green countryside.

Our Readers Comments

  1. Hi My name is Renny,
    I am a south african passport holder who travelled to Turkey.
    I then decided i wanted to visit ireland for a few days but turkish airlines are refusing to grant me a pass at the airport and they cannot explain why.
    Please may you asisist

    • Hi Renny,

      Thanks for reaching out.

      This would be for immigration and you would need to take it up with the airline direct as they would have made the decision on their side.

      Sorry that we are not able to assist.

  2. When traveling from South Africa to Belfast (Northern Ireland -UK) via Heathrow, where do I go through customs? Heathrow or Belfast?

    • Hi Pierre,

      Thanks for getting in touch.

      You will be clearing customs at Heathrow as that is your first point of entry into the UK.

  3. Hi,

    we are from SA and would like to find work in Ireland. we have friends that are already there. what all would i need to get in order to get across please? i am clueless as we have never traveled.

    • Hi Michelle,

      Thanks for getting in touch.

      I’m afraid we do not specialise in work visa related queries. We recommend you contact the Embassy or official via handling agency direct they will advise what documents they will need from the company in Ireland which has employed you, along with any other documents you need to provide from your side.

  4. As a south african passport holder in ireland.after my 90 days in ireland,how long do I have to be back in south africa before I am allowed to return to Ireland again?

    • Hi Mike,

      Thanks for getting in touch.

      For this you would need to contact the Embassy direct. They would be able to advise accordingly.

  5. Hi there, can I get a UK visa while in Ireland if I decide I would like to spend a couple of days in the UK?

    • Hi Daisy,

      If your ticket already shows that you are travelling to the UK you will need to apply for a UK visa before departing South Africa.

      If your ticket shows you are only going to Ireland and you will then purchase a ticket while in Ireland to visit the UK, for this you would need to contact the Embassy direct to see if it is possible to apply for a visa while abroad. As they are the ones granting the visa’s they will be able to advise accordingly.

  6. Hi I’m a South African Citizen and my Parents and family are UK citizens.
    We are travelling to Ireland next year for my cousins wedding, we are looking to land in Dublin from Johannesburg stay one or two nights and then travel on to Derry in Northern Ireland were will be staying again for a few nights for the wedding, before departing for Liverpool, were we will be staying with family for a bit. Before coming back from England to stay in Dublin for a few nights and then to fly back to SA.

    Will I need to apply for a VISA to travel through?

    • Hi there,

      Thanks for getting in touch.

      If you are travelling via the UK in transit or visiting the UK you will need to apply for a UK visa when travelling on a South African passport.

      holder of a permanent South African Passport, you don’t need a visa to enter the Republic of Ireland – that’s the part independent of the United Kingdom sometimes called “Ireland Proper” or “Southern Ireland”. You will just need:

      A South African passport valid for at least 6 months from your date of return to South Africa (no temporary passports)
      At least 3 blank pages in your passport
      Sufficient funds for the duration of your stay (Ireland does not stipulate how much, but other EU countries say about R400 – R600 per person per day) – the immigration official may ask to see proof of sufficient funds in the form of foreign currency or credit card statement.

      For the most up to date information on visa requirements we do ask you contact the Embassy direct or official visa handling agency as visa requirements could change at anytime.

  7. Hi

    I am Michael from South Africa and wishing to travel to Ireland I have a valid South African Passport do i need a Visa and how much in cash should I have so that I can be allowed entry into the country. And what other documents do you need from my side.

    Regards

    Michael

    • Hi Michael,

      You welcome to read our Blog: Ireland visa application for South Africans

      Below I have provided the link:

      http://www.travelstart.co.za/blog/ireland-visa-application-for-south-africans/

      For any further info we recommend you contact the Embassy direct to get the most up to date information. As rules can change at anytime.

      The Irish Embassy (Pretoria)
      Telephone No : (012) 452 1000
      Fax No : (012) 342 4752
      Street Address : 2nd Floor, Parkdev Building, Brooklyn Bridge Office Park, 570 Fehrsen Street, Brooklyn 0181, Pretoria
      Postal Address : P.O. Box 4174 Pretoria 0001
      Email Address : pretoria@dfa.ie
      Web Address : http://www.embassyofireland.org.za
      The Irish Embassy (Liason Office) (Cape Town)
      Telephone No : (021) 419 0636/0637
      Fax No : (021) 419 0639
      Street Address : 19th Floor, LG Building, 1 Thibault Square, Cape Town

  8. I’m Angel I m a South African citizen I want to go and visit my aunt in Ireland what do they need

    • Hi there,

      Thanks for getting in touch.

      You welcome to read through our blog: Ireland visa application for South Africans https://goo.gl/jQF1tP

      All information on this blog page was correct at the time of publishing and may change at any time without prior notice from the original source, so we do recommend you contact the Embassy direct to get the most up to date information.

  9. Hello,

    I will be travelling to Dublin on 28 April 2018.

    In addition to my passport and bank statement proving I have the means survive (R400 per day on average – no?), is there any other documentation or information that I should keep on hand / print?

    Advice would be appreciated.

    Thanks

    • Hi Julian,

      One will need:

      Return airline ticket
      Proof of accommodation. This can be a letter of invitation if the traveller is staying with friends or family. The letter need to state the contact details of both the traveller and the host. If the traveller is staying at a hotel, a paid and confirmed hotel booking for the entire stay in Ireland needs to be presented.
      Bank statement showing you have sufficient funds for the duration of the stay. (please contact the Embassy to see how much is required per day)
      Passport must be valid for 6 months before the date of return. Must have 2 blank pages
      Medical/Travel insurance

  10. Hi dear sir/ miss just want to know I got southAfrica passport want to visit irland what requirements I need in order to satisfy immigration and which airport I should use thanx ?

    • Hi there,

      Thanks for getting in touch.

      Please contact the Embassy direct for the most up to date info.

      It is up to the immigration officer discretion if they are satisfied with info presented before letting one in.

  11. I am from Drcongo,in south Africa 10 years as an asylum seeker I would to ask a help to resettle me and my family to Ireland please.

    • Hi there,

      Thanks for getting in touch.

      I’m afraid we do not specialise in that area. For this you will need to contact the Embassy direct.

      They will be able to advise you on the correct procedures to follow.

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