How important are blank pages in your passport? If you’re a frequent traveller, they’re super important.
Most countries require a full, clear page in order to print a required visa in your passport, as well as six, clear blank pages in your passport. If you don’t meet these requirements, a sticky immigration officer can refuse you entry.
Traveller24 Tip: If you’re nearing your blank pages limit and happen to be in transit – you can ask the immigration officer to stamp on an already used page. In most cases they’re happy to oblige. However if not, the golden rule of travel applies. Never, ever argue with an immigration officer. Ever.
Biometrics enabled airports cannot come soon enough, right!? In fact South Africa is set to pilot biometric gates as early as March 2019, to accommodate a new e-passport roll-out announced by the department of home affairs.
UPDATE: What travellers need to know about SA's airport e-gates and e-visas pilots
Until then South African passport holders will need to apply for what’s known as a Maxi tourist passport.
This document has 48 pages (to provide for more visas) for frequent travellers and is issued to South African citizens of 16 years and above. It is valid for 10 years from the date of issue.
What you will need when you apply:
• Identity Document
• Two colour passport photos
Cost: R600 Time-frame: Takes about 10 days to process.
READ: What to do when your SA passport gets stolen
You can also do an online application for your Maxi Passport.
You will need to register, select own application (there is also the option to do a passport application for a minor, online), choose Travel Document application and select Maxi Passport from the list of travel documents you can apply for.
Click here to get started with your online application.
Passport safety 101:6 ways to safeguard your identity during travel
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