South African Tourism (SA Tourism) acting CEO, Sthembiso Dlamini, has welcomed the news that international minors travelling to South Africa no longer require Unabridged Birth Certificates or consent letters when travelling with their parents.
The announcement made by the Home Affairs Minister, Dr Aaron Motsoaledi, yesterday comes into effect immediately.
All ports of entry, as well as the airline and maritime industries, have been informed following the signing of the waiver by Minister Motsoaledi on Friday.
“The news will certainly be welcomed by all in the tourism industry, both in South Africa and around the world,” commented Dlamini.
“In all our markets, family travel is a key driver for arrivals and we compete with many other destinations for the share of family travel. The waiver announcement will allow us to proactively and aggressively market South Africa as a family friendly destination again.”
“Following our recent roadshows to UK, Central Europe and North America, some of the feedback received was that we were starting to lose ground on the family travel market as families were choosing other destinations ahead of South Africa due to the regulations around travelling with minors. With this changed, we can now work on regaining this market,” explained Dlamini.
South Africa is an ideal family destination with convenient long haul connections from all parts of the world. The country is also malaria-free making it an attractive option for families wanting to experience safaris and wildlife without having to take medication. Accommodation establishments across the country also cater for the needs of families.
“There is an abundance of fun to be had in South Africa for families travelling with children of all ages and certainly enough experiences to leave lasting memories in both parents and children.”
“As we look to achieve the goal set by President Cyril Ramaphosa, of 21 million arrivals by 2030, waiving the Unabridged Birth Certificate for international minors will certainly prove to be a catalyst for us to achieve the goal,” concluded Dlamini.