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/ 26 Aug 2015

Travel to South Africa with Children

Recent changes (from 1 June 2015) have made travel to South Africa more complicated if you travel with minor children.

The rules now require that if both parents are travelling with the child then they must have with them an “unabridged” birth certificate naming them as parents. By unabridged we assume they mean a long form birth certificate. The rules say that this certificate must either be the original or a certified copy.

Unfortunately Crown Copyright attaches to UK birth certificates and they should not be photocopied. The birth certificate you received from the registrar is in itself a Certified Copy. If the child is adopted then the adoption order must be carried.

If only one parent is travelling with the child then the birth certificate must be carried as well as an “affidavit” from the non-travelling parent giving their permission for the child to travel. . If one of the parents has died then a certified copy of the death certificate must also be displayed to the authorities. (Crown Copyright applies to all certificates supplied by local registrars or the registrar general).

If the parents are divorced and one parent has been granted full parental responsibility then the authorities will require a copy of the court order granting such authority.

If the child is travelling with a person who is not a biological parent of the child then the unabridged birth certificate will be required plus an affidavit from a parent or guardian of the child giving permission to travel and copy of the passport of the parent or guardian granting permission and contact details for that parent or guardian (mobile phone numbers may be required).

None of the affidavits of permission mentioned above can be more than 3 months old.

The country has produced an explanatory leaflet which can be found at by clicking here.

Our Notary Public can draft and attest the appropriate affidavit that are required in the new rules and you should contact David Taylor on 0207 228 0017 or by email by clicking here

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