Study in South Africa: Student Visas & Scholarships

All students who are not citizens of South Africa are required to obtain a South African student visa in order to be permitted entry to the country for studies. First thing you should do is contact your nearest South African Embassy or Consulate in your home country and make a visa application.

The visa form in that case is called BI-1738. The procedure can take up to eight weeks, so make sure to start your application as soon as possible when you get your letter of acceptance from your university.

The South African student visa allows students to work while pursuing their studies. However, as an international student, you are allowed to work up to a maximum of 20 hours per week until the expiration of your student visa. 

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South African Student Visa: Necessary Documents

Along with your BI-1738 visa application form, you will need to provide the following documents. Make sure you have gathered all the required documents on time, along with the necessary translations in English. 

  • A valid passport.
  • Proof of payment for the visa application.
  • The letter of acceptance from the university with all the relevant information about the course. 
  • Confirmation of registration to your selected program.
  • A vaccination certificate (for example yellow fever vaccination certificate), if required. 
  • Proof of sufficient funds that will cover your expenses during your studies. This could be proven through bank statements, available cash or cheques. 
  • Health insurance.
  • Police clearance certificate issued by a security authority from your country of origin. 

In case you are interested in a South African visa for your family members, different rules might apply. Visit the Department of Home Affairs official website for more detailed information. 

Study in South Africa - Overview

Over 45,000 international students choose South Africa as their study abroad destination every year. Click here to learn why.

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Education System

Want to learn about how the higher education system works in South Africa? Both public and private universities offer programs in English language and focus on academic excellence.

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Housing & Living Costs

Housing and cost of living in South Africa are relatively cheap, especially when compared with other countries in Europe. You can choose to either live in a private or shared student accommodation.

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Tuition Fees & Scholarships

Tuition fees for degree programs in South Africa vary and is based on a credit system charge, but education for international students is still lower than in many other European countries.

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Language & Culture

South Africa has 11 official languages and is a country rich in history and culture. Find out more about what the country offers in terms of language, culture, and more!

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Application Process

Entry requirements in South Africa vary from university to university. Here you can find more information about the application process for people from around the world.

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Ready to look at education in South Africa? Use our search engine to find and compare top programs in South Africa today!

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Last update: 29 Jun 2021


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