Various countries require different travel documentation and visas. It is the sole responsibility of the guest to identify and obtain all required travel documents for their entire vacation and have them available when necessary. The appropriate, valid travel documents - passports, visas, family legal documents and inoculation certificates - are required for entering other countries.
Guests who do not possess the proper documentation may be prevented from boarding their flight or ship or from entering a country and may be subject to fines.
The Unabridged Birth Certificate:
A new immigration law comes into effect 1 October 2014. Under the new law, all minors (children under the age of 18 years) will be required to produce, in addition to their passport, an Unabridged Birth Certificate (showing the particulars of both parents) when exiting and entering South African ports of entry.
It is the responsibility of passengers to ensure their children have the correct documentation or risk being denied boarding. The new law will be enforced by airlines and immigration officials across the board (land, sea and air).
In all cases an Unabridged Birth Certificate will be required for minors departing and arriving in South Africa. They will not be allowed to travel without it.
Application process for Unabridged Birth Certificates Apply at your nearest Home Affairs office where your Biometric information will be verified. You will need your ID book, as well as your child's ID number. All documents submitted must be originals or certified copies. Certified copies of documents are usually valid for 6 months only.
The Unabridged Birth Certificate currently costs R75.
It can take up to 8 weeks to acquire an Unabridged Birth Certificate from the date of application.
Sign passport, and fill in the emergency information: Make sure you have a signed, valid passport, and a visa if required, and fill in the emergency information page of your passport.
Leave copies of itinerary and passport data page: Leave copies of your itinerary, passport data page and visas with family or friends, so you can be contacted in case of an emergency. It is a good idea to do the same with your credit cards and driver's licence.
Check your overseas medical insurance coverage: Ask your medical insurance company if your policy applies overseas, and if it covers emergency expenses such as medical evacuation. If it does not, consider supplemental insurance.
Familiarize yourself with local conditions and laws: While in a foreign country, you are subject to its laws. Investigate safety, customs and other information about the countries you will visit. Also check if you will be traveling over any festivals of public holidays.
Take precautions to avoid being a target of crime: To avoid being a target of crime, do not wear conspicuous clothing or jewelry and do not carry excessive amounts of money. Also, do not leave unattended luggage in public areas and do not accept packages from strangers.