Study Visa

Applications for permanent residency in South Africa are considered in terms of Section 26 (Direct Residency Permits) and Section 27 (Residency-on-Other-Grounds Permits) of the Immigration Act 2002 (Act No 13 of 2002), and read with Regulation 33 of the Immigration Regulations.

Study Visa

signature contract person signin

A study visa allows a foreign national to reside in South Africa whilst studying at a South African institution of primary, secondary or tertiary education. Study visa’s will however only be issued where the learning institution is approved by the Department of Higher Education and Training and short term technical courses for example will not qualify an applicant for this visa type .

There are various requirements stipulated in the regulations which differ slightly depending on whether the applicant is over the age of 18 or under the age of 18. As a basic requirement persons must have been accepted or have been provisionally accepted, pending the outcome of the application, at a learning institution. It is however important to note that the Visa will lapse if the holder failed to register at the learning institution or is deregistered at any point during the period for which the visa has been issued. It is further important to note that an overriding consideration of the department is that the applicant must not displace a South African citizen/resident at a local institution.

A study visa can be issued for the duration of the applicant’s studies at the learning institution concerned. If the applicant changes schools, then a new study visa must be applied for. Although study visas are issued for the duration of study, a maximum period of 8 years for primary school education and 6 years for secondary school education applies. In respect of tertiary education, the duration of the visa is only limited by the duration of the degree, diploma or certificate concerned.

There is no limit on the number of times a study visa can be renewed

Working on a study visa:

Persons residing in South Africa on a study visa may work for a maximum of 20 hours per week provided that they are studying at tertiary level. Should one wish to work more hours per week a work visa must be applied for and can be done in county by way of a change of status application.

Please take note that family members can join you whilst on a study visa by acquiring a visitors visa to accompany a spouse or parent.


Frequently asked questions:

In the case of foreign countries that do not issue unabridged birth certificates, a letter to this effect issued by the competent authority of the foreign country should be produced.

All documents should be originals or certified copies thereof.

Police Clearances:

Police clearances are required for all long stay visa types (ie any stay in South Africa longer than 3 months).

Contact us for advice on which police clearances you will need to secure and how to go about getting the certificate.

Contact us

Drop us a line or give us a ring. We love to hear from you and are happy to answer any questions.
64 Waterfall Avenue Craighall
+27 76 886 1181