DHA increases airport staff for the 2016/17 festive season

Minister Malusi Gigaba announces plans that the government has put in place to deal with the large capacity of people entering the country over the festive season.

In a media briefing that took place at the O.R Tambo Airport on 8 December, Malusi Gigaba discussed the mandate for facilitation of travellers during the 2016/17 festive season.

O.R Tambo International Airport

As the busiest airport on the continent, an operating model for the festive period has become a critical requirement.

In recent months, there have been many complaints about the biometrics capturing systems causing delays in South African airports, read more about it here.

92 additional staff members have been employed to work two shifts per day, covering the two busiest times of the day; this is in addition to the current staff working their normal 12-hour shift.

With the additional staff, the all counters will be functioning during peak hours.

The Minister admits that this is a temporary solution and a long-term sustainable solution for this problem in needed.

Other South African Ports of Entry

The Border Management Authority (BMA) has implemented a similar plan to efforts made for the Easter holiday season 2016.

The plan outlines accountability and reporting requirements from all departments at the ports of entry and daily assessments by the National Border Management Coordination Committee (NBMCC) to assess the border control processes.

From 8 December 2016 to 14 January 2017, scheduled extended hours at ports of entry will facilitate the seasons movements.

The schedule of the extended hours can be seen here.

Birth Certificates

The requirement of a birth certificate for all travelling minors has caused a lot of confusion.

A birth certificated is needed for all minors travelling in and out of the country. Where a visa has been issued, a certificate is not needed as it would have been provided in the visa application process.

If a birth certificate has been applied for but cannot be obtained in time for the travel dates, an official letter obtained from a Home Affairs office, prior to travelling, can be used.

Affidavits confirming parental consent will be required if the one parent is not travelling with the minor.

The birth certificate is used in an addition to a valid passport and visas where applicable.

Read the full media briefing here.

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