how long does it take to get a south african passport

How long does it take to get a South African passport?

Getting a South African passport is an essential document for citizens who wish to travel internationally. However, many people are unaware of the timeframes involved in obtaining this important travel document. In this article, we will discuss the process and time it takes to get a South African passport, ensuring you have all the information you need before planning your next trip.


A South African passport is a vital document for international travel, and knowing how long it takes to obtain one is essential for efficient trip planning. This article provides a comprehensive guide on obtaining a South African passport, giving you insights on the process and expected timelines.

Step 1: Gathering the required documents

how long does it take to get a south african passport

Before applying for a South African passport, you need to gather all the necessary documents to support your application. These documents typically include your South African identity document (ID), your original birth certificate, and two ID-sized photographs. Furthermore, you may need additional documents such as proof of residence, marriage certificates, or divorce decrees depending on your circumstances.

Step 2: Completing the application form

Once you have collected all the required documents, the next step is to complete the South African passport application form. This form can be obtained from your nearest Department of Home Affairs office or downloaded from their official website. Make sure to fill in the form carefully and accurately, providing all the necessary details and supporting documents.

Step 3: Submitting the application

With your completed application form and supporting documents, you can now submit your passport application. Visit your local Department of Home Affairs office and present your application to the relevant authorities. They will verify your documents, capture your biometric data (such as fingerprints), and process your application.

Step 4: The waiting period

Once your application is submitted, the waiting period for your South African passport begins. The time it takes to receive your passport can vary depending on various factors such as the volume of applications, administrative procedures, and the efficiency of the processing center. On average, it can take anywhere between four to six weeks to receive your passport.

Step 5: Collecting your passport

Once your South African passport is ready for collection, you will be notified by the Department of Home Affairs. You can then visit the same office where you submitted your application to collect your passport. Remember to bring your ID document and any relevant receipts or notifications received during the application process.

Expedited passport service

If you require your South African passport more urgently or have exceptional circumstances, you may be eligible for an expedited passport service. This service aims to fast-track the passport application process, ensuring you receive your passport in a shorter time frame. However, expedited passport services may come with additional fees.

In conclusion

Obtaining a South African passport is a crucial step for citizens planning international travel. While the average waiting period is between four to six weeks, it is advisable to apply well in advance to allow for any unforeseen delays. By gathering all the necessary documents, completing the application form accurately, and following the application process diligently, you can ensure a smooth and timely issuance of your South African passport.

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