I recently had to apply for a new South African passport, and found the process to be a lot quicker and less daunting than expected.
As your old passport expires you must apply for a new one – the old one cannot be extended – and the cost of this at present is R400. You need to apply at your local Department of Home Affairs and bring with you:
- Your old passport
- ID book and a photocopy of your ID
- Two colour photographs that comply with the specifications
- Your R400 (cash only no cards)
You will fill in a DHA-73 form on arrival – don’t try to save time and download this online as that will not be accepted and you will need to fill the form in again anyway.It was Friday the 13th and so this did seem to cause some gremlins – the receipts printer did not work for the first hour and a half, and a short power cut (literally a minute) caused all the systems to go off-line and necessitated a re-boot. So a process that took 2 hours would have been substantially quicker if these issues had not been present.
3 weeks to the day an SMS notification was received that the passport was ready for collection.
Just a note – when sitting in the queue people asked me where are you going on holiday. To which I replied nowhere, my passport is expiring in 6 months time so I need to renew it. In order to travel your passport needs to be valid for a minimum of 6 months from your date of return, so don’t wait until your passport has expired to renew. If you suddenly need to travel urgently you may not be able to have your passport processed in time, and although you can apply for a temporary passport, some countries do not accept a temporary passport. So rather be safe than sorry and always have your passport up to date – you never know when you may need to travel!