For all those parents with trips booked to or from South Africa during the July holidays, who were suddenly thrown into panic by the new law requiring that children (kids up to the age of 18) travel with an unabridged birth certificate…there’s good news from the Department of Home Affairs (DHA).

Camps Bay South Africa
Popular South African tourist destination Camps Bay. Photo: Riaan Beckles‎

Realising the impact this new law will have on all those who have already booked their flights, the DHA has decided to delay the implementation of the new law until the end of September 2014, granting families a “grace period to allow children to travel with parents or guardians without an unabridged birth certificate” until 01 October 2014.

According to a statement on the DHA’s website “this means that families will be able to travel with children even for the coming school holidays as some would have made the necessary arrangements ahead of the commencement of the Immigration Amendment Acts of 2007 and 2011 and the new Immigration Regulations.”

The Amendment Acts and the new Regulations came into effect on 26 May 2014.

From 01 October 2014, the requirement for an unabridged birth certificate for children travelling with parents will come into effect for the safety of children, including their protection from child trafficking, abduction and kidnapping.

The DHA urges citizens and foreign nationals to heed the call to apply for unabridged birth certificates for children. An unabridged birth certificate of the child reflecting the particulars of the parents is required in terms of the Immigration Regulation 6 (12)(a) for children travelling with parents.

Click here for more information about the new laws concerning travelling with children.


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