Portugal Visa Requirements for South Africans

[Updated August 2018]

So, you’re plotting a trip to the land of sun, sea, delicious local wines and seafood? Here’s what you’ll need to know, as a South African, about applying for a Schengen visa for Portugal. Follow this step-by-step guide on how to apply for a Portugal visa (Schengen visa). We’ve included everything you need to know to help eliminate the stress of applying for your tourist (short-stay) visa.

South African passport holders do require a short-stay visa for Portugal, but luckily the process can be relatively painless with this informative guide! You will need to submit your application through VFS Global, located in Johannesburg, Pretoria, Cape Town and Durban. Always apply for your short-stay Portugal visa at least 90 days before you travel to allow for ample processing time (and to spare yourself some stress!)

Please note this process is available to South African passport holders.

Image courtesy of @annachiara_libralon via Instagram

Types of Visas:

Tourist visa – Ideal for people who wish to visit Portugal for pleasure, visit family, attend a summer school or a work seminar.

Business visa – For people who intend to visit Portugal for business.

The Validity of a Portugal Visa

The short-stay visa (tourist and business) is valid for stays no longer than 90 days within a six-month period. These visas allow for either one, two or multiple entries.

How Long Does it Take to Get a Portugal Visa?

The processing of a Portugal visa can take approximately 15 days. It depends on several factors and it is best to make sure to hand in all required documents to allow for a problem-free process.

How to Book an Appointment?

All Portugal visa application appointments must be scheduled on the VFS Global website. Register online and the earliest available date will be shown.

Travelstart Portugal Visa

When to Apply:

No more than three months prior to departure of your trip, no less than five full working days, longer is highly recommended. The Consulate General recommends that all applicants apply well in advance in case of unforeseen processing delays.

Cost of Visa:

The cost of a Portugal visa is listed below:

Visa Category Visa Fee in ZAR
Schengen Visas (C Visa – Short-Stay) R942
Schengen Visas (Children between 6-12) R550

Note: The visa fee is according to the current exchange rate. It is subject to change. The fee is non-refundable.

Take note of the VFS South Africa service charge of R440 which is applicable per application in addition to the visa fee.

The only accepted methods of payment are credit/debit card (only at the Visa Application Centre) and cash deposit at Nedbank (the deposit slip will be your evidence of payment when submitting your application at the Visa Application Centre).

VFS Bank Account Details:

Branch Name: Corporate Client Services
Account No: 1037647270
Use your Passport Number as Reference.

Courier Services

In the event that you’d like to have your processed documents couriered back to you, you can arrange it at the time of submitting your application. All documents will be sent to you through Fedex Express courier service at a fee of R150.

Travelstart Portugal Visa

Portugal Visa Requirements:

Requirements for the Portugal Visa are the same as with any other Schengen visa, you will need:

  • South African passport, valid for 6 months beyond date of return with at least 3 blank pages.
  • One recent passport photograph (specify to the photographer that it must meet the Schengen Visa Requirements)
  • Completed original application form.
  • Return flight tickets from South Africa to Portugal.
  • Proof of pre-paid accommodation (hotel or backpackers) – if you’re staying with friends or family there, an original letter of invitation from a resident stamped by police or relevant local authority and certified copy of passport or Portuguese ID is required. A proof of residence may also be requested.
  • Proof of sufficient funds (usually in the region of €40-€50 (R620-R775) per person per day if accommodation is pre-paid), this should be evidenced by proof of foreign exchange purchase or credit card statement in your name showing suitable limit.
  • Travel insurance covering a minimum of €30,000 (R470,000) which covers medical treatment, repatriation and 3rd party liability.
  • Fee for the visa in Rands, cash on the date of application – enquire with consulate on the date of application as to current rate.

Get a free quote with VisaBox – our go-to visa experts to assist you with your tourist visa application.

Where to Apply:

All Portugal visa applications must be done at a VFS Application Centre. You must apply in person to have your biometrics recorded.


Address: VFS Application Centre

1st Floor Rivonia Village
Corner Rivonia Boulevard and Mutual Road

Contact: 012 425 3000
Opening Hours: Monday-Friday: 08:00-16:00

You can take a taxi, bus or cab to the Visa Application Centre. If you’re driving by car, you can find parking at Rivonia Village.

Cape Town

Address: VFS Application Centre

47 Strand Street
5th Floor
Cape Town

Contact: 021 824 2393
Opening Hours: Monday-Friday: 08:00-16:00

You can take a taxi, bus, train or cab to VFS Global Centre in Cape Town. If you’re driving by car, you can locate parking on the adjacent roads, including Long Street, Loop Street and Bree Street (there’s also a parking lot here).


Address: VFS Application Centre

Unit 101A 1st Floor
91-123 Cowey Road (Problem Mkhize)

Contact: 012 425 3003
Opening Hours: Monday-Friday: 08:00-16:00

Taxis, cabs and buses are available to transport you to the Visa Application Centre. There is a parking lot in front of the building for your car, should you be driving.


Address: Portugal Application Centre

1st Floor
Cherry Lane Office Park
114 Fehrsen Street
Nieuw Muckleneuk

Contact: 012 425 3000
Opening Hours: Monday-Friday: 08:00-16:00

There are various methods of public transport to get you to the Visa Application Centre, including taxis, buses, and cabs. If you’re driving with a car, park at the Cherry Lane Shopping Centre.

Travelstart Portugal Visa

Image courtesy of @odele_souza via Instagram

Where to Print Photos and Forms


Minuteman Press

Address: Rivonia Village Centre
Rivonia Blvd
Contact: 011 803 7319
Opening Hours: Monday-Friday: 09:00-18:00
Saturday: 09:00-12:00

Cape Town

Parkade Print

Address: 18 Long Street
Cape Town City Centre
Cape Town
Contact: 021 419 1802
Opening Hours: Monday-Friday: 08:30-17:00
Saturday: 09:00-12:00


PostNet Cowey Park

Address: Shop 6
Cowey Park
Problem Mhkize Road
Contact: 031 208 0166
Opening Hours: Monday-Wednesday: 08:30-17:00
Saturday: 09:00-12:00


PostNet Brooklyn

Address: Shop 4
Brooklyn Design Square
309 Veale Street
Contact: 012 460 1484
Opening Hours: Monday-Friday: 08:30-17:00
Saturday: 09:00-14:00

Cheap Flights to Portugal:

If you’re looking for the cheapest flights from South Africa to Portugal, visit Travelstart where you can compare all available airlines and book the option which suits you best! We list all major airlines and low-cost carriers in South Africa as well as hotels and car hire to allow you to book the best deals around on our site.

Now that you have an efficient guide to getting your Portugal visa and know where to get the cheapest flights to Portugal, you’re ready to explore this wonderful country and all its beautiful gems! Sign up for our newsletter and discover the best flight specials to Portugal and other incredible destinations.

Have you applied for your Portugal visa? Share your application process with us in the comments below.

All information on this blog page was correct at the time of publishing and may change at any time without prior notice. Travelstart is not affiliated with immigration authorities or their application centres and will not be liable for loss or inconvenience arising from the use of this volatile information.

Featured image courtesy of @magnanaturae via Instagram

Our Readers Comments

  1. Please can you confirm the following :

    Is there such a visa as a partner/visa for female to immigrate to Madeira with a male who has a Portuguese passport and parents who are resident and living there ?

  2. Hi
    Please could you send me information on what my 14 year old daughter would need for a visa travelling to Portugal on holiday. What documentation would be required when applying?

    • Hi Natercia,

      Thanks for reaching out.

      You welcome to read through our blog: Portugal Visa Requirements for South Africans to see what the visa requirements are. However as this blog was posted in 2018 we ask that you contact the Embassy or official visa handling agency for the most up to date information. They will advise on the correct procedures to follow, what documents are required and the cost.

  3. If instead of staying for the 10 days i want and decided to extend my stay by another week do i have to notify the the Portuguese home office

    • Hi Charles,

      Thanks for contacting us.

      If one overstays their visa this will be held on record. So next time you apply for a Schengen visa through any of the Schengen countries this information will show.

      Should you wish to stay longer you will need to see if the Embassy would grant you this, and if not you would need to leave on the original dates the Embassy granted you.

      We do recommend you contact the Embassy before departing to see what they advise.

  4. Hi there,

    I am flying to Portugal in June but I can’t get an appointment! It’s all booked up until June.

    What should I do?

    • Hi Lexi,

      Sorry to hear this. Maybe try contact the Embassy or official visa handling agency to see if there is any cancellations.

      We hope you come right.

  5. Hi Clinton

    Just want to find out if there is anyway to get an emergency schengen visa within a week.
    Have been sponsored to attend a karate world tournament in armada portugal.

    • HI Clinton,

      Thanks for getting in touch.

      For this you would need to contact the Embassy direct or official visa handling agency.

      They will be able to advise if this would be possible or not.

  6. We applied for our Portuguese visas through VFS on 18 July 2018. We received tracking SMSs the next day that the passports arrived at the Consulate of Portugal. We have been waiting since without any progress. Our flights are scheduled for next week (21 Sept) and I still have to buy my Euros. I have phoned VFS numerous times – they say they can’t help. I have tried to get hold of someone at the Portuguese Embassy, but haven’t succeeded yet. I’m starting to panic and I’m reaching out here for any advice. I really hope our applications haven’t gotten lost! Any advice?

    • Hi Francois,

      Thanks for getting in touch. I’ve gone onto travel info to see what information I could find on visa’s being delayed.

      “Delay: According to the common visa code signed by the Schengen member states, the processing time for an admissable visa application must not exceed 15 calendar days. This period may be extended up to a maximum of 60 calendar days in cases where additional documentation or scrutiny is needed. A visa can have one, two or multiple entries depending if you need to travel outside the Schengen area and back again during your visit. If you apply for two or several entries, this must be justified. Embassy’s of the Schengen States advise to start applying up to three months prior to travel to avoid disappointment.”

      I can understand the frustration caused. You can follow up again to see if they are to give any further information on your visa application.

      We hope you receive your visa in time.

  7. Does the bank statements have to be stamped. Just realized i have all the documentation but my statement doesn’t have a bank stamp on them

    • Hi there,

      Thanks for getting in touch.

      To my knowledge it should be stamped. However you can contact the Embassy direct to get the most up to date information as they are the ones accepting the documents and granting the visa’s.

  8. Hello,

    Im wanting to book flights to Portugal, and i was just wondering if you now have pay the VFS fee when trying to get a schengen visa in Cape Town? I phoned the embassy where I went for my previous visa for Portugal and they said i need to phone VFS.

    I was there a year and a half ago and got my visa easily from the Consulate, has this process changed? All this extra fees thanks to the green mamba….

    • Hi Candice,

      Thanks for getting in touch.

      I have found the following information on Travelinfo under the Visa section for Portugal.

      If the Embassy have confirmed you need to apply through their official visa handling agency, this would be the correct procedure to follow. Visa procedures can change at anytime.

      Note: Visa applications are to be submitted in person at the VFS Visa Application Centre in Johannesburg, Durban, Pretoria and Cape Town. All applications for Johannesburg, Durban and Pretoria will be assessed by the Consulate General of Portugal in Johannesburg. Cape Town applications will be assessed by the Consulate General of Portugal in Cape Town. The Portugal Visa Application Centre offers the option of courier service for return of documents submitted directly to your doorstep.

      VFS therefore under no circumstances accept nor receive couriered or mailed applications. They shall be forced to return the couriered or mailed application at the senders cost via the same courier or mail company.

      VFS work is primarily administrative in nature, and they have no say on whether the applicant will be granted a visa and how long exactly it will take to process it, as this is entirely the perogative of the Consulate of Portugal in Johannesburg and Cape Town.

      Applicants are to visit the Visa Application Centre in person, with an appointment and, submit their completed visa application form along with required supporting documents. The submission officer will advise you on total payable amounts and will guide you on payments using a debit/credit card payment to be paid in local currency (ZAR). A receipt will be provided for all payments made at the Centre.

      The issue of Schengen visas is discretionary and depends on examination of each individual case, including purpose of visit and intention to return. The applicant can be requested to come for an interview at any time.

      Experience the benefits of the SMS update service which is an automated confirmation feedback message sent to the applicants mobile phone, at various stages of the visa application process. This service can be purchased for ZAR20 (VAT incl) during the time of submission of the visa application.

Have something to say...