The fee for a new adult South African passport is due to increase from R400 to R600 if you’re applying within SA and to three times as much – R1,200 – if you’re applying abroad, which will come as a shock to South African expats who currently wait months for new SA passports, whilst those at home can usually get a new passport within a couple of weeks.
When making the announcement, Home Affairs Minister Dr Aaron Motsoaledi did not mention whether any of the extra fees will be used to improve the service for South Africans abroad, who will be paying double what locals pay. He did explain however that the government has, until now, been heavily subsidising the production of passports.
Dr Motsoaledi said the fee amendments for passports and other travel documents come in consultation with the Minister of Finance. The new fees – the first change since 2011 – were published in the Government Gazette on 6 October and will come into operation on 1 November 2022.
Why have South African passport fees been increased?
The Minister said the fee increase is partly due to a comparative study with other countries which discovered that SA tariffs were up to three times lower.
It has also been triggered by the fact that production costs are much higher than what people are paying for passports. Until now the Government has apparently been “heavily subsidising” passport holders, when such a subsidy is not realised for ordinary ID applicants.
“We believe that the people who are able to travel out of the country are financially better off than ordinary citizens and they don’t need to be subsidised in the manner we have been doing,” said Minister Motsoaledi.
New application fees for a South African passport / travel document made within the Republic of SA:
- Adult passport R600 for 32 pages (current fee R400); R1 200 for 48 pages (maxi, current fee R800).
- Child passport R600 (current fee R400).
- Official passport R600 (currently no charge).
- Diplomatic passport R600 (currently no charge).
- Document for travel purposes R600 (current fee R300).
- Crew member certificate R600 (current fee R350).
The fees payable in respect of applications for a South African passport or travel document made outside of the Republic, at Missions, Embassies or Consulates, are as follows:
New application fees for a South African passport / travel document made outside of the Republic of SA, at Missions, Embassies or Consulates:
- Adult passport R1 200 for 32 pages (current fee R400); R2 400 for 48 pages (maxi, current fee R800).
- Child passport R1 200 (current fee R400).
- Emergency travel certificate R140 (current fee R140).
There is NO Emergency Passport
“Once more, we wish to advise our people that there is nothing called an emergency passport. The emergency travel certificate mentioned above is a document available only to South Africans stranded abroad. It helps them to come back home and when they arrive, the usefulness of the document lapses.
“There is no emergency travel certificate for South Africans who need to travel abroad,” said Minister Motsoaledi. – SAnews.gov.za