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Study Visa

The University is not permitted to register you until you have produced your VALID Study Visa. It could take at least 6 to 8 weeks for your Study Visa application to be processed. It is also important for you to note that your Study Visa is issued to study at one institution and you would have to apply for a change of conditions, should you want to change institutions.

The holder of a study visa for studies at a higher education institution may conduct part-time work for a period not exceeding 20 hours per week. Immigration Amendment Act 2011, Act No. 13 of 2011.

PASSPORT HOLDERS WHO ARE EXEMPT FROM VISAS FOR SOUTH AFRICA, are required to obtain a study visa for full degree studies.

Apply for a study visa

Please note that your Study Visa is issued to study at one institution and you would have to apply for a change of conditions, should you want to change institutions. This can be done in the city applicable to the new institution of study.

You are required to apply for a Study Visa at the South African High Commission, Embassy, Consulate or Trade Mission in your country of residence. If there is no South African representative in that country, you must apply at the nearest South African High Commission, Embassy, Consulate or Trade Mission.

The following are the current requirements to be submitted to the South African Embassy/Consulate in your country to obtain your Study Visa:

  • A passport valid for not less than 30 days after intended studies
  • Payment of the prescribed administrative fee
  • Full Birth Certificate
  • Proof of South African medical cover renewed annually for the period of study with a medical scheme registered in terms of the SA Medical Schemes Act
  • An official letter from the Institution confirming provisional or acceptance of that learning institute and the duration of the course
  • Undertaking from the Registrar or Principal of the learning institution with the Institutions official stamp to undertake to notify the Director-General:
    • To provide proof of registration as contemplated in the relevant legislation within  60 (sixty) days of registration; or
    • In the event of failure to register by the closing date, provide a notification of failure to register within 7 (seven) days of the closing date of registration;
    • Within 30 (thirty) days, that the applicant is no longer registered with such institution; and
    • Within 30 (thirty) days, when the applicant has completed his or her studies or requires to extend such period of study

The undertaking letter is facilitated by the International Students Office

  • Medical Report (less than six months old)
  • Radiological Report (less than six months old)
  • Yellow Fever vaccination certificate, where applicable
  • Relevant certificates if married, widowed, divorced or separated
  • Details regarding arranged accommodation while in South Africa
  • Proof of sufficient funds to cover tuition fees, subsistence and incidental costs. Bank statements date stamped by the bank, for a period of three months or bursary. If sponsored, written undertakings from the sponsor, with an official company stamp
  • Proof of educational qualifications, academic results for the previous years (certified copies)
  • Police clearance certificates in respect of applicants 18 years and older, in respect of all countries where a person resided for 12 months or longer since the age of 18

You are advised to submit the documentation as soon as possible to the South African High Commission, Embassy, Consulate or Trade Mission – DO NOT send the documentation to Wits University. We, however advise that you keep a copy of your submission and all receipts safely.

Extension / renewal of existing visa

If you are in South Africa visa applications are submitted to DHA through VFS Global www.vfsglobal.com/dha/southafrica.

You are permitted to apply for the following:

  1. Renewal of existing visa
  2. Change of conditions of visa. This is not applicable to short term Visitor’s Visas.

Applications must be submitted 60 days prior to expiry of current visa. Ensure that all the supporting documents are collated as per the checklist issued by VFS Global before the date of submission.

Apply for change of conditions

If you are in South Africa visa applications are submitted to DHA through VFS Global www.vfsglobal.com/dha/southafrica.

You are permitted to apply for the following:

  1. Renewal of existing visa
  2. Change of conditions of visa. This is not applicable to short term Visitor’s Visas.

Applications must be submitted 60 days prior to expiry of current visa.  Ensure that all the supporting documents are collated as per the checklist issued by VFS Global before the date of submission.

Any international person on a short term Visitor’s Visa will not be permitted to change the visa type and conditions unless in exceptional circumstances

  • In the case of an emergency life saving treatment for longer than three months
  • Is an accompanying spouse or child of a holder of the business or work visa who wishes to apply for a study or work visa
New Passport and Transfer of Visa

Lost/Stolen Passport 

If a passport is stolen or lost, the incident must be reported to the South African Police in order to get an affidavit and also to Campus Protection Services if the passport was lost/stolen on campus. The International Students Office will assist with a copy of the passport (the biopage) and a copy of the study visa. The student should then proceed to their embassy to apply for a new passport.

Passport renewals

Passport renewals are done at the Embassy, High Commission or Consulate of your home country in South Africa.

Transfer/Rectification of visa

When the passport is available, the application for the transfer of the study visa is to be submitted to DHA through the VFS Global Office.  For information on the requirements to transfer-rectify a visa go to http://www.vfsglobal.com/dha/southafrica/.

Some of the documents required for the replacement visa:

  • New passport
  • Affidavit
  • Copy of stolen passport
  • Copy of Study Visa and
  • Confirmation of registration from faculty

 

Medical Aid Requirements

MEDICAL AID

In terms of the Immigration Act No. 13 of 2002 as Amended and its Regulations any prospective student to the Republic of South Africa, must provide proof of medical cover with a medical scheme registered in terms of the Medical Schemes Act, 1998 Act 131 of 1998.

Although you might be able to secure a study visa with other types of medical products, be they South African or otherwise, the University of the Witwatersrand only accepts South African Medical Aid products.

To comply with the regulations, the University requires a membership certificate as proof of full Medical Aid cover with a South African based medical aid scheme for the full calendar year, until 31 December of that year.

To avoid unnecessary complications, please make the necessary financial arrangements with the medical aid provider prior to your entry into South Africa. Should you rely on sponsorship, please ensure that you advise your sponsor of this requirement as soon as you get sponsorship or acceptance. The required medical aid cover fee must be paid directly to the Medical Aid Company, separate to that of the tuition fees.

Students will not receive a Clearance Certificate unless they can show a membership certificate as proof of a valid and comprehensive medical aid cover for the duration of the academic year (until 31 December), without a Clearance Certificate they cannot register at the Institution.

Students who are members or dependents on a South African based parent/guardian/spousal/work medical aid are required to present a recent membership certificate for the annual registration. The membership certificate must reflect active membership for the current year.

Medical Aid providers with weekly consulting hours on Wits campus:

COMPANYWEB ADDRESSE-MAIL ENQUIRIESCONTACT NUMBER
CompCare Wellness Medical Scheme www.studentplan.co.za student@universal.co.za 0861 222 777
+27 (0)11 867 4450
Momentum Health www.ingwehealth.co.za studenthealth@momentum.co.za 0860 102 493
+27 (0)12 671 8511
The above products have guaranteed that cancellation of coverage will not be refunded without written communication from the International Students Office confirming the student’s deregistration/completion status.

For other SA Medical Aid Products to be considered:

  • The certificate/letter confirming membership must be for the current year.
For more details about all Medical Aid providers in South Africa, contact:
SA Medical Scheme Council www.medicalschemes.com
0861 123 267
+27 (0)12 431 0500
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