Tips For Travelling To South Africa With Kids

Planning your next holiday especially one that involves travelling across international borders can require plenty of admin. While you may already aware of that fact when making travel arrangments for yourself, however, with kids, these details and planning includes a little-added complexity and needs its own checklist.

If you’re planning to visit South Africa with your children for the first time this guide will give you all you need to know before arriving on our shores.

Travelling with kids to South Africa

South Africa’s regulations

It is important to note that all children under the age of 18 – both local and foreigners – are required to travel with a valid passport and an unabridged (full) birth certificate stating both parents’ names. If the child is travelling alone or with only one parent, then the child must also carry an affidavit filled out by the missing parent/s.

What documents do you need?

Firstly, let’s look at the documents you need for children are travelling into the country with both biological parents, you need a:

  • Valid passport of travelling parent and child
  • Visa, if required
  • Birth certificate listing both parents (note: these must be the original documents or certified copies of the originals).
  • A child travelling with just one of the parents listed on his or her birth certificate must also present:

If the child is legally adopted then proof of adoption is needed through an adoption certificate, as well as an unabridged birth certificate (UBC)

What is an unabridged birth certificate (UBC)?

In South Africa, a UBC is an extract from the Birth Register containing the particulars of a minor and those of his or her parent or parents. They are official documents issued by the Department of Home Affairs.

All birth certificates containing the details of a child as well as the parents of the child shall be accepted for the purposes of these Requirements as UBCs, regardless of the country of issue.

However, if your country does not issue a UBC, then you will need to attain an ‘Equivalent document’ comprising the details of the child and his or her parent or parents, issued by the ‘competent authority’ of your country.

What does a child need if travelling with only one parent?

You will need a:

  • A valid passport, and
  • An unabridged birth certificate (or Equivalent), AND
  • Parental Consent Affidavit granting authorisation for the travel by the non-travelling parent (ie. the other parent who is registered as a parent on the birth certificate).
  • What details must the Parental Consent Affidavit contain?
  • The Parental Consent Affidavit must include full contact details and copies of the identity documents or passports of the parent/s or legal guardian of the child.

You can get your Affidavit attested free of charge at any South African Embassy or mission in your country of residence.

Important contact information and links

Here are the important contact information and links you will need to help makes this process easier. If you have applied for an unabridged birth certificate and are planning to travel, and have not received documents:

Visit any office of Home Affairs to request a document that will allow you to travel with children through South Africa’s ports of entry.






Contact Department of Home Affairs: Toll-free hotline – 0800 60 11 90 / email

  • All information on this page sourced from South Africa’s Department of Home Affairs.

Health precautions

With travel comes health concerns, rest assured that there is good quality medical care available within our cities.

Here are some tips to help

  • Seek medical advice about vaccinations months before your trip; not all are suitable for children or pregnant women.
  • Specifically, seek medical advice on malaria prophylactics for children if you’ll be in malarial areas (including Kruger National Park and the low veld).
  • Regardless of malaria, insect bites can be painful, so come prepared with nets, repellent and suitable clothing.
  • In drought-struck areas such as Cape Town, drink bottled or treated water in preference to tap water.

Time to pack

So there you have it a complete guide on how how to prepare for you family visit to South Africa. Now that is armed with the relevant information, travelling with kids has never seemed easier and we hope to see you visit us very soon. 

Speak to a professional

We are able to help you with all Visa Applications in South Africa. We also feature a Free Online Assessment to help you determine your current status and which steps to take next. Contact Le Roux Attorneys today to assist you in applying for your South African Holiday Visa. 

Contact Le Roux Attorneys, South African Visa specialists about your visa application. Start by selecting one of the enquiry options below

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