South African Retirement Visa

South African Retirement VisaMany people are choosing to spend their retirement in South Africa. If you are one of them, the first step would be to see whether you qualify for a South African retirement visa.

To do so you can complete our free online assessment or do a telephonic assessment by calling our Cape Town office on +27 (0) 21 424 2460 or our Johannesburg office on +27 (0)11 234 4275.

You could also request a call back and we’ll contact you. In the meantime, get the ball rolling by familiarising yourself with the basic information and requirements around retirement visas.

What is a retirement visa?

A retirement visa is a means of immigration to South Africa for foreigners who want to spend their retirement, or part of it, in South Africa. It is based on the fact that the immigrant is not looking to work, study or do business in South Africa.

Who can apply for a retirement visa to South Africa?

Any person who wants to spend longer than six months at a time in South Africa can apply for a South African retirement visa. This is provided the foreigner meet the financial criteria.

Does South Africa welcome retired immigrants?

The South African government realises retirees create jobs and contribute to the economy during their stay, so they not only welcome but also value retired immigrants.

Is there an age restriction on a South African retirement visa?

There is no minimum or maximum age limit on the South African retirement visa. The criteria for the visa is not based on age but on assets, rental income and/or bank accounts generating income instead.

Do retirement visas extend to spouses and dependants?

The temporary retirement visa does not automatically guarantee acceptance of a spouse. Each applicant must be able to meet the financial criteria for the visa in their own capacity.

In cases where permanent residence is obtained, however, the spouse and/or dependants of the immigrant, i.e. children under 21, will also qualify for permanent residency.

How long is a retirement visa valid for?

A temporary South African retirement visa is valid for four years. After four years, the temporary visa can be renewed for another four years.

For the renewal to be successful, the immigrant must again meet the financial criteria. Foreigners who are looking to make the arrangement permanent, can apply for a permanent South African retirement visa.

What are the requirements for a South Africa retirement visa?

The main criteria for a South African retirement visa is financial. In essence, the applicant must be able to show that they can support themselves while in South Africa.

Does a retirement visa entitle the holder to certain rights and privileges in South Africa?

Immigrants with permanent retirement visas enjoy many of the same rights and privileges as South African citizens. Key exceptions are that permanent residents cannot vote in South African elections or have a South African passport.

How do I apply for a South African retirement visa?

Applicants must submit proof of their income as well as all other necessary documentation, as determined by the South African Department of Home Affairs.

While you can submit an application yourself, we recommend that you let a professional immigration company like Intergate Immigration handle it on your behalf. Our experienced team has helped thousands of individuals, families and corporates with immigration to South Africa.

In fact, since our inception in 2005, we’ve processed more than 9 000 visa and visa related queries. Our high standard of service has earned us ISO 9001 certification, making us the only immigration company doing immigration into South Africa with this internationally-recognised stamp of approval.

To speak to someone in our Cape Town team, you can call +27 (0) 21 424 2460. Our Johannesburg consultants can reached at +27 (0)11 234 4275. If you’d like us to call you instead, all you have to do is complete our assessment form or request a call back. One of our consultants will undertake to contact you within 24 hours.


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