What is a retirement visa for South Africa
A retirement visa in South Africa allows a foreign national to live and retire in the Republic.
A Retired Person Visa is issued to someone who wants to retire in South Africa. The applicant needs to meet the financial criteria set out in the relevant legislation.
South Africa offer potential retirees the high quality lifestyle, value for money and climate that they’re looking for and it comes as no surprise that there’s been an increase in the number of retirees settling in the rainbow nation.
Who is a retirement visa for?
A retired visa is granted to immigrants wishing to spend their retirement years in South Africa. For immigration to South Africa, under the category of a retired permit, the criteria is based on the premise that the immigrant is not looking to work, study or carry out their own business.
However the immigrant will need to have assets and equity to sustain themselves for the duration of their retirement.
How do I qualify for a South African retirement visa?
One would need to have access to either a pension, an irrevocable annuity or retirement account which provides you with at least R37,000 a month for the rest of your life or until you leave South Africa.
Alternatively, your cash or a combination of assets must generate the equivalent amount per month. While the financial requirements must be certified by a chartered accountant.
The Department of Home Affairs tends to accept a total amount available in your bank account covering one for up to 6 months. There is no minimum age restriction to this visa category.
For what duration is a retirement visa South Africa valid?
The Retired Person’s Visa can be only applied a period longer than 3 months or a period of up to 4 years.
The financial regulations are required to be met for the whole period (up to 4 years) that the applicant intends to reside in South Africa.
The Retired Person’s Visa can be extended beyond the 4 year period as long the requirements are maintained.
Any spouses or life partners intending to join the applicant will be required to meet the requirements and qualify to apply for the Retired Person’s Visa in their own right as the requirements are specific to an individual applicant.
A retired person’s visa can be extended as long as the requirement of R37,000 per month, though a pension, irrevocable annuity or retirement fund, can be continually met for the duration of the requested term.
Can I work on a South Africa retirement visa ?
The Department of Home Affairs may authorise you to conduct work on your retirement visa under certain terms and conditions deemed suitable by the Department of Home Affairs.
Visit South African Tourism for more information on Where to Go and What to Do.
Pros of a retirement visa
- New experiences – you’ll have fun, which is linked to healthy ageing, providing physical, cognitive and social benefits.
- Realize dreams – you will fulfil your dreams to travel, pick up a new sport or enjoy a special hobby.
- Weather – pick your paradise, whether it’s a warm, sunny beach or a tropical rainforest.
- It can be cheaper to live
- Healthcare is cheaper
Cons of a retirement visa
- Distance – depending on where you go, a long, expensive flight could be between you and your friends and family.
- Language and cultural difference – are you up for learning a new language and immersing yourself in a new culture?
- Medicare will stay at home
- Home ownership is more complicated
Permanant Residency Option
Apply for a Retirement permit if you’re looking to retire in South Africa on a permanent basis