What is expected when traveling to South-Africa

Three major airports for international travel

South Africa has re-opened three major airports for international travel. These airports are Cape Town International, OR Tambo in Johannesburg and King Shaka International in Durban.

Expectations upon arrival

This welcome announcement has generated a lot of questions from travelers about the different requirements for traveling to South Africa.  This article answers any grey area questions and explains what you can expect upon arrival.

Adhere to procedures

On arrival in South Africa, all travelers will need to adhere to the following procedures:

  • Present a negative Covid-19 test result not older than 72 hours from time of departure; this includes infants and children.  Covid-19 tests must be from a registered health practitioner or laboratory.
  • Where a traveler has not done a Covid-19 test prior to departure, they will be required to remain in mandatory quarantine at their own cost for the period of ten (10) days.
  • All travelers will be subjected to screening by health officials upon arrival and departure.
  • All travelers detected with symptoms will be required to remain in mandatory quarantine facilities and have a repeat Covid-19 test conducted at their own cost. The approximate cost for a COVID test ranges from R850.00 to R1300.00 per person.
  • Every traveler must have mandatory travel insurance.
  • All travelers must complete a Traveler Health Questionnaire prior to arrival or upon arrival.
  • Beside the health protocols, travelers will still be subjected to other formal border processes. All travelers should wear masks at all times whilst in the controlled airport area and adhere to social distance as part of queue management protocol.
  • Travelers must travel with their accommodation confirmations.
  • Travelers must download the South African COVID Alert App.  The app uses Bluetooth contact-tracing technology to let people know if they have been in contact with someone who has Covid-19. It gives everyone the chance to understand their exposure to the virus.

Depending on the airline used, when departing from South Africa, travelers will require another Covid-19 test taken 48 to 72 hours prior to departure.

According to the World Health Organization guidelines, South Africa is travel ready with the majority of establishments putting strict health and safety measures in place. Travelers can take comfort in the knowledge that the South African tourism industry is reviving, and the safety of tourists is undoubtedly priority number one. Accepting that safety is a shared responsibility, South Africa welcomes back the many pleasure that tourists have missed for so long.


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