Exchange Visa (Student)

Overview

Exchange permits may be issued to foreigners who are not older than 25 years of age and wish to participate in cultural, economic or social exchange programmes administered by an organ of the State or a public higher educational institution in conjunction with an organ of a foreign state.

Documents Required

    • Duly completed online form. Handwritten forms will not be accepted by Department of Home Affairs.
    • Passport valid for no less than 30 calendar days after expiry of the intended visit.
    • A medical report.
    • A radiological report.
    • Marriage certificate or in the case of a foreign spousal relationship, proof of official recognition thereof issued by the authorities of the foreign country of the applicant (where applicable).
    • The affidavit where a spousal relationship to a South African citizen or resident is applicable as well as documentation proving cohabitation and the extent to which the related financial responsibilities are shared by the parties and setting out the particulars of children in the spousal relationship.
    • Proof of a union recognised in terms of the Recognition of Customary Marriages Act, 1998 (Act No. 120 of 1998), where applicable.
    • Divorce decree, where applicable.
    • Proof of court order awarding custody, where applicable.
    • Death certificate, in respect of late spouse, where applicable.
    • Written consent from both parents and/or sole custody parent, where applicable, with proof of sole custody.
    • Proof of legal adoption where applicable.
    • Legal separation order, where applicable.
    • Original Police clearance certificate issued by the police or security authority in each country where the relevant applicant resided for 12 months or longer after attaining the age of 18 years except for South Africa, in respect of criminal records or the character of that applicant, which certificate shall not be older than six months at the time of its submission: (Provided that the certificate shall not be required from a foreign country in the case of renewal or extension of a visa)
    • South African police clearance will be validated upon biometric enrolment at the VFS center effective as of 01 October 2016 at a fee of R175 (Inclusive of Vat) Per Applicant
    • Biometric enrolment fee applicable: Yes
    • a yellow fever vaccination certificate if that person travelled or intends travelling from or transiting through a yellow fever endemic area: (Provided that the certificate shall not be required where that person travelled or intends travelling in direct transit through such area)
    • Proof of payment of the applicable fee

    In addition to the above requirements, in the case of a learning institution in the Republic, in conjunction with a foreign education and training institution or a foreign state institution organising or administering the programme, submit a letter from:

    • proof of a valid return air flight ticket or written undertaking by the organ of state or learning institution accepting responsibility for the return or deportation costs of the applicant, as the case may be
    • proof of medical cover for the duration of the exchange period with a medical scheme registered in terms of the Medical Schemes Act.
    • the Department of Basic Education or Higher Education and Training or a learning institution in the Republic confirming that it is responsible for organising or administering the existence of the programme, outlining the activities, terms and conditions and duration thereof and accepting full responsibility for the student while he or she is in the Republic; and
    • the foreign state institution or education and training institution confirming the particulars of the applicant, the applicant's enrolment with the foreign education and training institution, and the date on which the programme shall commence.

    In addition to the above requirements, in the case of a programme of cultural, economic or social exchange organised or administered by an organ of state or a learning institution, in conjunction with a foreign education and training institution or a foreign state institution, submit a letter from:

    • proof of a valid return air flight ticket or written undertaking by the organ of state or learning institution accepting responsibility for the return or deportation costs of the applicant, as the case may be
    • Proof of medical cover for the duration of the exchange period with a medical scheme registered in terms of the Medical Schemes Act.
    • The organ of state or foreign education and training institution confirming the existence of the exchange programme; or
    • The foreign education and training institution confirming the enrolment of the applicant or the foreign state institution conducting the programme, as the case may be.

    In addition to the above requirements, in the case of a foreigner who is under 25 years of age and has received an offer to conduct work for no longer than one year

    • Proof of a valid return air flight ticket or written undertaking by the employer accepting responsibility for the return or deportation costs of the applicant, as the case may be
    • Proof of medical cover for the duration of the exchange period with a medical scheme registered in terms of the Medical Schemes Act.
    • A written undertaking by the employer to—
      1. Pay such foreigner remuneration which complies with applicable legal requirements;
      2. Provide for the welfare and the needs of such foreigner while in the Republic under the aforesaid visa; and
      3. report to the Director-General the failure of the foreigner to comply with the terms of his or her visa or to depart when so required;

    EXCHANGE VISA - RENEWAL

    • Duly completed online form. Handwritten forms will not be accepted by Department of Home Affairs.
    • Passport valid for no less than 30 calendar days after expiry of the intended visit.
    • A medical report.
    • A radiological report.
    • Marriage certificate or in the case of a foreign spousal relationship, proof of official recognition thereof issued by the authorities of the foreign country of the applicant (where applicable).
    • The affidavit where a spousal relationship to a South African citizen or resident is applicable as well as documentation proving cohabitation and the extent to which the related financial responsibilities are shared by the parties and setting out the particulars of children in the spousal relationship.
    • Proof of a union recognised in terms of the Recognition of Customary Marriages Act, 1998 (Act No. 120 of 1998), where applicable.
    • Divorce decree, where applicable.
    • Proof of court order awarding custody, where applicable.
    • Death certificate, in respect of late spouse, where applicable.
    • Written consent from both parents and/or sole custody parent, where applicable, with proof of sole custody.
    • Proof of legal adoption where applicable.
    • Legal separation order, where applicable.
    • Original Police clearance certificate issued by the police or security authority in each country where the relevant applicant resided for 12 months or longer after attaining the age of 18 years except for South Africa, in respect of criminal records or the character of that applicant, which certificate shall not be older than six months at the time of its submission: (Provided that the certificate shall not be required from a foreign country in the case of renewal or extension of a visa)
    • South African police clearance will be validated upon biometric enrolment at the VFS center effective as of 01 October 2016 at a fee of R175 (Inclusive of Vat) Per Applicant
    • Biometric enrolment fee applicable: Yes
    • a yellow fever vaccination certificate if that person travelled or intends travelling from or transiting through a yellow fever endemic area: (Provided that the certificate shall not be required where that person travelled or intends travelling in direct transit through such area)
    • Proof of payment of the applicable fee

    In addition to the above requirements, in the case of a learning institution in the Republic, in conjunction with a foreign education and training institution or a foreign state institution organising or administering the programme, submit a letter from:

    • Proof of a valid return air flight ticket or written undertaking by the organ of state or learning institution accepting responsibility for the return or deportation costs of the applicant, as the case may be
    • Proof of medical cover for the duration of the exchange period with a medical scheme registered in terms of the Medical Schemes Act.
    • the Department of Basic Education or Higher Education and Training or a learning institution in the Republic confirming that it is responsible for organising or administering the existence of the programme, outlining the activities, terms and conditions and duration thereof and accepting full responsibility for the student while he or she is in the Republic; and
    • the foreign state institution or education and training institution confirming the particulars of the applicant, the applicant's enrolment with the foreign education and training institution, and the date on which the programme shall commence.

    In addition to the above requirements, in the case of a programme of cultural, economic or social exchange, organised or administered by an organ of state or a learning institution, in conjunction with a foreign education and training institution or a foreign state institution, submit a letter from:

    • Proof of a valid return air flight ticket or written undertaking by the organ of state or learning institution accepting responsibility for the return or deportation costs of the applicant, as the case may be
    • Proof of medical cover for the duration of the exchange period with a medical scheme registered in terms of the Medical Schemes Act.
    • The organ of state or foreign education and training institution confirming the existence of the exchange programme; or
    • The foreign education and training institution confirming the enrolment of the applicant or the foreign state institution conducting the programme, as the case may be.

    In addition to the above requirements, in the case of a foreigner who is under 25 years of age and has received an offer to conduct work for no longer than one year

    • Proof of a valid return air flight ticket or written undertaking by the employer accepting responsibility for the return or deportation costs of the applicant, as the case may be
    • Proof of medical cover for the duration of the exchange period with a medical scheme registered in terms of the Medical Schemes Act.
    • A written undertaking by the employer  to—
      1. Pay such foreigner remuneration which complies with applicable legal requirements;
      2. Provide for the welfare and the needs of such foreigner while in the Republic under the aforesaid visa; and
      3. Report to the Director-General the failure of the foreigner to comply with the terms of his or her visa or to depart when so required;

Processing Time

All temporary visa applications accepted at the Visa Facilitation Centre will have a minimum average processing time of 8 - 10 weeks for the decision to be returned from Department of Home Affairs. You can track your application online on VFS Global website to determine status of your application.

Visa Fees

Category

DHA Application Fee

VFS Service Fee

Exchange Visa

425

1350

Premium Lounge (Optional Service)

 

 500


All fees are inclusive of VAT and to be paid in South African Rand. Above listed fees are non-refundable once the application is received by VFS Global and Department of Home Affairs.

Once all supporting documentation is available as per the documentary checklist kindly proceed to complete the online application form. You will be required to pre-pay a minimum amount of R1350 in order to secure and schedule your appointment online.

Payment to secure your online appointment can be made in three methods:

  • Online payment via Debit/Credit card through the secure online portal
  • Pre-payment at Standard Bank by downloading and completing the online generated bank receipt and depositing the cash into the nearest Standard Bank
  • EFT payment through the secure online portal

Note- When selecting the pre-payment option, after payment has been done you are required to visit your online application form after 3 working days to proceed to schedule your appointment.