Cape Town - Travelling to Angola will soon be an effortless experience for South Africans.
Wesgro officially welcomed the decision by the South African and Angolan governments to exempt each other’s ordinary passports from visa requirements.
From 1 December 2017, citizens from both countries travelling to each other's countries will be able to enter for a period of 90 days per year, provided that each visit does not exceed 30 days in total.
A boost for tourism in the Western Cape
Wesgro says this development will have a positive effect on business and leisure tourism, adding that it will also open the door for future trade and foreign direct investment.
Cape Town Air Access helped make this possible, with a partnership between Wesgro, the Western Cape Government, the City of Cape Town, Airports Company South Africa, South African Tourism and Cape Town Tourism which helped secure direct flights from Luanda to Cape Town on TAAG Airlines.
The airline currently flies to Cape Town three times a week on a Boeing 777-300 and soon will become a daily flight for the summer season, from 1 December to 15 January 2018.
With this visa-free exemption, the agency hopes to see this direct route grow even more, bringing many more tourists to our shores.
SEE: Visa-free travel: Where your South African passport can take you
“Wesgro is thrilled about this very important decision taken by the South African and Angolan governments," says CEO Tim Harris. "Easing up on travel restrictions like this will provide new markets for tourism, and help take the Western Cape economy to new heights."
'The African passport'
South Africa's Department of Home Affairs (DHA) has been taking steps towards the 'Africa passport' dream, including recent negotiations on a visa waiver between the country and the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).
Recently, Home Affairs spokesperson David Hlabane told Traveller24 that while the free-travel passport is not yet in effect, “all regions will start working towards that process” to reach the goal of a visa-free Africa passport.
Hlabane adds that while this process has begun, working “towards the integration from regional level” the process “needs to happen progressively, one step at a time”.
SEE: #AfriTravel: Namibia takes big step toward visa-free travel for Africans
African countries that are visa-free
There are many African countries that South Africans can enter without a visa, but it is important to remember that holiday visas are easier to obtain and if one intends to work – even if you are just volunteering - it may require a work visa. Double check the requirements before booking and planning your trip.
Rwanda also recently joined the ranks of African countries that are easier to visit. From 01 January 2018, nationals of all countries will be able to get visas upon arrival without prior application. South Africans will have to pay $30 (R423.61 @R14.12/$) for a visa on arrival in Rwanda.
SEE: #AfriTravel: SADC passport on the cards?
African countries that area visa-free for South Africans:
Benin, Botswana, Gabon, Kenya, Lesotho, Malawi, Mauritius, Mozambique, Namibia, Saint Helena, Senegal, Seychelles, Swaziland, Zambia and Zimbabwe.
African countries that require visa on arrival:
Cape Verde, Comores, Egypt, Ethiopia, Madagascar, Tanzania, Tongo, Tunisia, Rwanda and Uganda.
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