Getting a new South African passport in London


Hi there. I was wondering if anyone could help me. I have lived in the UK for 14 years - studied here and ended up staying. I have dual passports and now married and Englishman and changed my name so need to get a new SA passport. Reading through the official website is a nightmare so I need someone to help me clarify:- a) Is it correct that they are only taking appointments in June 09 for passport applications in London? b) How long will it take to actually get a new passport in my hands from the day I have the appointment? c) I have held dual passports for some 7 years I do not have any of my paperwork so cannot remember if I received a letter from SA saying I could hold both. So I am nervous that when I apply they will want to take away my SA passport. Can anyone shine some light on whether this is likely to happen? d) What do I need to complete for the application and why is it that I cannot talk to anyone at the Consultate/Commission in London - you just get automated messages... Does anyone have a number where you can actually talk to someone at the Consulate about this? Any help and clarity would be greatly appreciated.

AngelED replied on 04-15-2009 5:52 PM

Sorry..... I can't help but I know how you feel. I'll have a tall cold one for you, or maybe a nice cupa?!

Hang in there.

SAT Editor replied on 04-16-2009 9:23 AM

Dear  Kerry-Lyn

Find below the answer we received from Johannes K. Tiba who is head of immigration and civic services at the South African High Commission in London.

The answers to your questions are as follows:
Is it correct that they are only taking appointments in June 09 for passport applications in London?
Given the high number of applicants we have, prospects are that appointments until June 09 may have been set up by applicants.  We recommend that you apply for a new passport by post if you cannot get the appointment date you need.

How long will it take to actually get a new passport in my hands from the day I have the appointment?

A new passport is issued within 4 months.  

I have held dual passports for some 7 years I do not have any of my paperwork so cannot remember if I received a letter from SA saying I could hold both.  So I am nervous that when I apply they will want to take away my SA passport.  Can anyone shine some light on whether this is likely to happen?
The letter you allude to is no longer applicable.  Ensure that you have your full birth certificate so that we can see how you acquired foreign citizenship.

What do I need to complete for the application and why is it that I cannot talk to anyone at the Consulate/Commission in London - you just get automated messages... Does anyone have a number where you can actually talk to someone at the Consulate about this?
The forms that can be completed are available on our website: .  Click on Home Affairs and also on South African citizens.  From South African citizen click on passports.  It is worth noting that you can send a self addressed stamped envelope to this office so that we can post you the form that is not available online.

RV-buzz replied on 04-21-2009 9:57 PM

Hi there,

I see that you have replied to Kerry-Lyn and I just wanted to say a very big thank you! I am currently in the exact same situation and this has been the most helpful and useful information yet.

I have a couple of other questions that hopefully you will be able to answer too :

Firstly, I would like to make my application by post, as the dates that are available for appointments are very bad timing for me, and I stay quite far away from London.

1. If I request all of the ncessary forms to be posted to me, will I be able to have my documents certified locally (And will the Department of Home affairs accept them being certified by another source other than themselves?)

2. If my application is sent in by post, will I be required to only send certified copies or will they require  ALL of my originals (Including my British passport) as well as the certified copies. (I am aware that they do not keep your current SA passport whilst processing the new one, but am not sure as to whether they will require it initially)

3. Section 'B' of the passport renewal form Bl-73 says : 'For Official Use Only - Certification of particulars' . Would this section need to be filled out by the person certifying my documents if I am getting this done locally? or is it strictly for the use of the Dept. of Home Affairs? - I am a bit confused as it says that a person Authorised by the DHA may sign it.

4. Who are persons Authorised by the DHA ?

5. Lastly, can I definately make my entire application for a South African passport renewal by post / mail.

I know these questions may sound petty, but I want to get all of my ducks in a row before sending in my application, as incomplete applications will not be considered and I don't want to waste time.

Thank again ;o)

SAT Editor replied on 04-22-2009 1:10 PM

Hay RV

Mr Tiba at Home Affairs likes you. He reckons if your paperwork is fine, they can do the whole thing through the post.

But rather see his detailed answers below.

1. If I request all of the ncessary forms to be posted to me, will I be able to have my documents certified locally (And will the Department of Home affairs accept them being certified by another source other than themselves?)
Yes, we will accept documents that have been certified by a commissioner of oath or notary public.  

2. If my application is sent in by post, will I be required to only send certified copies or will they require ALL of my originals (Including my British passport) as well as the certified copies. (I am aware that they do not keep your current SA passport whilst processing the new one, but am not sure as to whether they will require it initially)
A certified copy of the photo – page of your passport will suffice.  Please hold on your current passport until we have issued a new one to you.

3. Section 'B' of the passport renewal form Bl-73 says : 'For Official Use Only - Certification of particulars' . Would this section need to be filled out by the person certifying my documents if I am getting this done locally? or is it strictly for the use of the Dept. of Home Affairs? - I am a bit confused as it says that a person Authorised by the DHA may sign it.
Law enforcement officials are allowed to complete it.  However, as the issues of passports do not falls within their remit, they do not want to complete it.  Please leave it open and we will attend to it.

4. Who are persons Authorised by the DHA?
Law enforcement officials, commissioners of oaths and notaries public.

5. Lastly, can I definately make my entire application for a South African passport renewal by post / mail?
Yes, you can apply for the renewal of your passport by post.

Kerry-Lyn replied on 04-22-2009 1:12 PM

Thank you so much for this information - it was incredibly helpful and I really appreciate the extent you went to to get the information.  I hope it has been helpful to others too.  Warmely KL

RV-buzz replied on 04-22-2009 10:22 PM

Hi there again,

That's brilliant! Thank you so very much for your help. The information has been very useful and I'm sure that I will now be able to make my application successfully by post.

Tell Mr Tiba I say thank you for his time.

I will definately be recommending SA Times to others in future.

RV :o)

Matthew replied on 04-27-2009 2:30 PM

I wonder if you could put your problem solving talents to another test. Two parts this time.

1. My mum. Born in Durban in 1931. Came to this country in the fifties, met my Dad, got married and stayed. Had a British passport after meeting (and getting married to) my Dad. Now has two passports (British and SA). The SA passport runs out in 2010.

We went along to Whitehall in March to renew Mum's SA passport. We were asked for the piece of paper issued by the British Home Office in 1960 or whenever it was to say that she could have a British passport. We said that they already had a copy of that, and that all Mum wanted to do was to renew her passport. No, they said, you have to show that you are entitled to an SA passport. But, we said, we have one right here.

Does my Mum (who is 78 this year) have to go through the whole process of applying for an SA passport again, when all that she wants is a renewal?

2. Me. Born in England in 1964. I'd quite like to obtain a South African passport. I gather from reading the rules that I am entitled to one by descent. We are told that we have to have an interview at Whitehall and are given an e-mail address presumably at the High Commission in London. It's First e-mail that I sent did not get a reply, second one bounced back as there being no such address.  Getting through by telephone to the Consulate General is impossible and letters to them are sent, received and not replied to.

Question. Who do I speak to at SA House and how can I contact them?


Matthew Knight

SAT Editor replied on 04-28-2009 4:33 PM

Dear Matthew

1. Mr Tiba at Home Affairs to your rescue again. His anwers can be seen below (in bold):

My mum. Born in Durban in 1931. Came to this country in the fifties, met my Dad, got married and stayed. Had a British passport after meeting (and getting married to) my Dad. Now have two passports (British and SA). The SA passport runs out in 2010.

We went along to Whitehall in March to renew Mum's SA passport. We were asked for the piece of paper issued by the British Home Office in 1960 or whenever it was to say that she could have a British passport. We said that they already had a copy of that, and that all Mum wanted to do was to renew her passport. No, they said, you have to show that you are entitled to an SA passport. But, we said, we have one right here.

Does my Mum (who is 78 this year) have to go through the whole process of applying for an SA passport again, when all that she wants is a renewal?
A: The British Home Office letter in question is inapplicable in this regard as the applicant already has British nationality by descent and has been in possession of it for years.  The British Home Office letter is applicable to those people who are South Africans in the UK with permanent residency status. The confusion in this regard is deeply regretted.  The website will be amended so that it can be clear to all applicants.  Regarding your mother, she still have to go through the normal process of passport application. Kindly furnish us with her e – mail address so that arrangements can be made to assist her.

2. Me. Born in England in 1964. I'd quite like to obtain a South African passport. I gather from reading the rules that I am entitled to one by descent. We are told that we have to have an interview at Whitehall and are given an e-mail address presumably at the High Commission in London. It's First e-mail that I sent did not get a reply, second one bounced back as there being no such address.  Getting through by telephone to the Consulate General is impossible and letters to them are sent, received and not replied to.

Question. Who do I speak to at SA House and how can I contact them?

A: Given the high volume of calls we receive, we recommend that you send the enquiries by e – mail to  Concerted efforts are made to answer all the e – mails within 24 hours of receipt.  Concerning the issue of citizenship, please complete the determination of citizenship form ( and send it to together with your full birth certificate.  We will determine your claim to SA citizenship and once we have confirmed that you have it, your birth will be registered in RSA and you will be allowed to apply for a passport.

Nina replied on 05-12-2009 4:14 PM


I am living in Cardiff now and need to apply for my SA passport which expires in June. I'm planning to do this by post and have had a look at the website to try and understand the process.

I settled in Cardiff last July to start university studies but have been in and out of the UK before that since Sept 2005. I have dual citizenship (I was born in SA and grew up there, my Dad is from Europe so I have both passports) and have a letter of permission for this.

Do I need a letter from the British Home office?

Also, I am sending a letter to SA House requesting a BI9 form. Can I get fingerprints done at a police station in the UK?


LizD replied on 05-13-2009 11:59 AM


I have dual citizenship (SA and British) and will be travelling to SA in Dec.  My SA passport will still be valid, but it has my maiden name on it. 

Is it possible to simply have my marriage certificate on me if any queries come up re my name? 

I have not changed my name with the SA authorities - is this a problem?

Many thanks for all the other fantastic information on this thread.



TillyB replied on 05-19-2009 11:40 PM

Dear Editor,

Can you help?  What is the definition of commissioner of oaths? Who can sign and certify documents when applying for a renewal on a south african passport. For the UK, you are able to approach a director of a private company, your GP etc... Could you clarify this for me please?


RV-buzz replied on 05-20-2009 11:17 PM

Hi All,

I finally made my application by post.

This is what I did :

1.Requested all of the below 3 forms from the following address:

BI - 73 (Passport Application Form)

BI - 529 (Determination of Citizenship Form)

BI 9 (Fingerprint Form)


South African High Commission
Home Affairs Consular Section

15 Whitehall


2. Fill in all of your forms and have yor photographs taken

3. Take all original docs, all forms and photos to a police station that has a fingerprint bureau

4. The charge for the fingerprints is £63, but they will also certify all copies and forms for this charge

5. Enclose the below when posting  application :


Supporting documents :

2x Certified copies of  current passport

2x Certified copies of  Identity document

2x Certified copies of  full unabridged birth certificate (If British my descent)

2x Certified copies of British passport (Note : No British visa required, due to being a British passport holder)

2x Certified recent photographs

Prescribed fee of postal order ( in British pounds)

Also enclose a fully paid, stamped and self addressed special delivery envelope. (To post the new passport if you are not collecting it)


I hope it all goes smoothly now. Does anybody know whether I will be notified once they have received and are dealing with my application?

Good luck to everyone else who's trying! ;o)


thebosh replied on 05-21-2009 2:08 PM

Hi everyone,

It's still not 100% clear to me what I need to do... (apologies if I am going over stuff that has already been answered!)

I am a dual citizen - Born and bred in SA, now living in UK, and have a UK passport through both my parents. I'm going home for Xmas, so need to RENEW my SA passport. I have decided to bite the bullet, and ring the premium number to get an appointment.

So my questions are:

1. Do I need to fill out the BI-529 form, even though I have a UK passport?

2. Will I need certified copies of my parents birth certificates? Surely the fact that I have a UK passport is enough evidence?

3. Since I'm going home for Xmas (7 months away) and new passports can take up to 4 months to process, does anyone know how soon I am likely to get an appointment?

Thanks in advance for any help.


Anonymous replied on 06-02-2009 9:00 PM

Hi all

This is about the best place I found where I might get an answer to some , if not all, of my question.  Thank God for the Internet!

I'm 26.  Was born in Johannesburg in 1983.  My mother is German and my dad is British. I still have a Sister living and working in South Africa to this day.  I left SA when I was 15 with my parents.  Since then my parents organised that I got a German Passport. 

I really would like to get back to my roots and restart my own life in South Africa but obviously its a lot more comlicated than that. 

So my questions are:

1)  Being born and raised in South Africa.  Does this give me any advantages when it comes to getting all the relevant documentation I need in order to get back?

2)  Does having a Sister out there help?

3)  Given my particular situation.  What path should I take?  Is Dual Nationality even an option?

Any help would really mean the world to me! 

Thanking you in advance


chuck replied on 06-03-2009 9:24 AM


I agree 100 percent with you about the whol palava of renewing a SA passport. I am in the same position and  renewing a UK passport is 1000 percent easier. This business about finger prints was not addressed in your article above. The problem is doing it by post means having, I think, to go to the local police station who charge nearly 70 pounds!

To phone and make an appointment is a con trick on their part as the SA passport office charge 1 pound per minute. I can only imagine it taking half an hour on the phone to arrange it.  As they complicate everything I can only imagine being put through to a dozen different people and by then I will have rung up a phone bill for a year.

What stops me entering SA on a British passport?

I cannot being doing with chaos and intense hassle over a passport and lastly why on earth does it take 4 months! I just renewed my British passport and I think it was the same day or no more than a day or two.


pete replied on 06-08-2009 1:51 PM

Hi Buzz,

Which police station did you go to. We live in london and our only place was New Scotland Yard. When we went for the fingerprints they refused to use Bi-9 form only there own one. We paid the £63 charge and now found out we can not use this form only the Bi-9 will be allowed. any help would be greatly recieved.

Regards Pete

SAT Editor replied on 06-08-2009 4:50 PM

Hang in there. The Home Office promised some specific answers. I'm hoping to get them this week.

RV-buzz replied on 06-08-2009 11:17 PM

Hey there Pete,

Actually, I stay about 3 hrs from London, so going up to apply was a bit of a schlepp for me which is why I did it by post.

I went to the Ferdown Police station in Dorset, which has a fingerprint bureau. They took prints on both the BI-9 as well as their own form. It also cost me the £63.00 but they certified my documents aswell. They were surprisingly quite helpful.

I just sent in both forms with my application.... only problem is that home affairs have not notified me that they are in receipt of my application. I know that they received it though because I checked the postal tracking number but it would be nice to know if they are actually dealing with it.

I would say, If you are in London then it's probably better and easier to apply in person unless you can't get an appointment soon enough.

When you went to the police station in Scotland yard, maybe they would be more easy going if you asked them to do prints on both forms - at least then you're giving them the pleasure of having it done on their own form and just say that home affairs requires their own form aswell for official purposes. That way both parties are satisfied.

Have you thought of going back to them and telling them the scenario? After all you did pay for it. It's worth a try... hopes that helps a little.

Well I hope you manage to get it sorted. ;o)

dramsell replied on 06-09-2009 11:34 AM

Hi there,

I hope someone can help, I am literally tearing my hair out here! :(

I applied for my passport renewal in January this year. I havent heard a peep out of anyone about it at all. I went onto the Passport Enquiry page, entered in my ID number, and I got taken to "this page cannot be displayed" or something along those lines. I sent a text message to the number they say, but that can only be sent from an SA number (as I realized today) and I'm in the UK. I have tried calling the 3 numbers on the South Africa House website - first number just rings and rings, no reply, the other 2 numbers dont work. I have also sent an email to Mr Tiba, but had no response.

Today, I got a friend of mine in South Africa to text the number on the Passport Enquiry page, with my ID number, he got a reply saying that no application had been received!? This is 6 months down the line? How is that possible? I have had multiple holidays planned and had to cancel them as a result of not having a passport. I am due to come back to SA for a couple of months on holiday in December, but I'm worried about buying a ticket when I don't even have a passport!? And the longer I leave it, the more expensive the tickets get!

Please, if anyone has any advice for me, it would be greatly appreciated! It is so frustrating not being able to get hold of anyone at home affairs!

Thank you in advance!

dramsell replied on 06-09-2009 3:33 PM

Just thought I would update...

I eventually got through, after letting the phone ring until someone got annoyed enough to answer! Got put through to someone else, I explained my situation, she asked for my date of birth and surname - "your passport is ready for collection" - ummm...excuse me!?

After numerous calls, emails and being told via SMS that my application hasn't been received, I get told that my passport is sitting there waiting for collection!? I have cancelled holidays because I've not had my passport!? I wonder how long it's been waiting!?

Some advice for those of you who have applied and not heard anything - don't expect to hear anything! You do not get contacted (and I have seen this on numerous forums). Best thing to do, ring and hold on the line until someone eventually answers!

Good luck to all those applying, it truely is a memorable experience! My sympathy goes out to you!

pete replied on 06-09-2009 6:29 PM

Advice to anyone who needs fingerprints done for a passport renewal: do not make an appointment with the fingerprinting service at New Scotland Yard in London. They refuse to use the South African BI-9 form - they only use their own form (NF03) to take fingerprints. They assured me that they have done this for a lot of people and that there had been no problems, but I have now been told by two SA High Commission officials that my Scotland yard fingerprint form will not be accepted and will result in my application being rejected. I have wasted £63 and precious time... when I called Scotland Yard to tell them that their form is not accepted by the SA High Commission, they would not believe me. They still insisted that their form is fine and that I'm simply being overly cautious!

RV-buzz replied on 06-10-2009 11:09 PM

Hey Dramsell,

That's exactly what I'm dreading. They say it takes 4 mths to process a passport, but a month down the line and they have not even acknowledged receipt of my application. I'm just really worried that in 4 mths time they will turn around and say that they never received it - then what?

Could you please give me the number that you eventually got though on? I see on the SAHC  Home Affairs website they have a link, where you can check the status of your application. But when I type in my ID number, it just says : This service is not available.

I'd appreciate it. Thx


dramsell replied on 06-10-2009 11:24 PM

Hi B

Rule Number 1 - Don't expect them to acknowledge receipt of your application, they don't! They don't acknowledge receipt of your application, and they do not let you know when your application is being processed, and they do not let you know when your new passport has arrived and is ready for collection!

Rule Number 2 - Don't expect the Passport Enquiry link on the webpage to doesn't! Don't expect the SMS number on that same page to work - you can only text to that number if you are in South Africa, and even then it's pointless because I got a friend of mine in SA to text for me, and he got a reply saying that my application had not been received (meanwhile, back at the passport was back in England awaiting my collection...)

Rule Number 3 - See rules number 1 & 2 above, and learn not to expect anything from these people!

I was pleasantly surprised when I went into London to apply for my passport how quick and painless it was...but that is where it ends!

The number I rang is on the SAHC sight - there are 3 numbers, 2 that dont work (no surprises there), and 1 that does. The one that works is: 020 79258930

But just remember - just because the phone rings, doesn't mean they are going to pick it up...

a) hang on the phone until they get irritated by the ringing phone and answer it,

b) or until you get disconnected, and if you get disconnected, repeat this step until a) occurs!

c) when you eventually get to this step, tell the person at the other end of the phone that you have a passport enquiry, and they should (fingers crossed), put you through to someone who may be able to help (fingers crossed)

Good luck!

Ren replied on 06-13-2009 10:06 AM

Thanks for the brilliant info SAT Editor! I live hours away from London and I have been trying to find out if I could renew my South African passport by post. I have had no success enquiring at South African consulate by phoning, e-mailing and good old fashioned writing to the them (including sending an SAE in the vain hope that they would be motivated to reply if I addressed the envelope for them and paid the postage!).  Perhaps the consulate could put a link on their useless website directing all inquiries to this forum.....  Thanks agan.

Clemhorn replied on 06-14-2009 6:12 PM

SAT Editor,

Thank you so much for all your help and everyone else that has entered there experiences into word so that people like me can read it and think before I ask a question.

I have been I the UK since June 05 and have only made it back to SA for family visits twice now. I am not a dual citizen but I am however married to a European national, I have a residence permit and I am working but unfortunately my passport will expire in April /2010 and need to start moving to apply for a new passport now I think.

I don't have a ID document anymore, but only have a police certified copy of it and my birth certificate is in SA with my foster parents, how will it affect my application??

Please tell me :-/ 

Now, my questions:

- What application forms do I need?

- How do I get them?

- Do I need to send off my current passport when I apply even If my work includes loads of travel. ( If I do, then it will affect my current job)

Nou wat nou?

Clemhorn replied on 06-14-2009 6:18 PM

Hey there,

Thank you for the helpful info. Its better to come here then to call the consulate.

Hope your application is a success. Tell me quick, where do I need to go to get the application forms for a new passport??

I am not a dual citizen, but I am married tho with a residence card stamped in my passport. How will I managed to keep my current residence card whilst my passport is sent off, or don't I need to send it off? I  don't know.

Please help....

Clemhorn replied on 06-14-2009 6:24 PM

I can tell that you have been there done that and got irritated!!!!!

Thanks again. Im going to ring that number and see if  can get any help. 

By the way, how did you o it? Did you ring em, told them what? and then you managed to get a passport, that simple?

Need some info here.

Please help me understand.

dramsell replied on 06-15-2009 8:51 AM

Hi Clemhorn

If you are referring to my post, it definately is not as simple as phoning a number and getting a passport. If you are applying in person, in London, you need to make an appointment (good luck with that too), by phoning 09065 540 799 (NB...CALLS COST £1/MIN FROM A LANDLINE - RIPOFF!!!!!!!!! I say this as I spent close on 20 minutes on that line, listening to announcements from 2007 (if I remember correctly) and if you make a mistake, it is a mission to correct, waisting even more time and money!) - That's the address where you get the info on the forms you will need to fill in. If you are going to go into London to apply, then you don't need to worry about fingerprints as they do them there for you (at no charge). Or you can post your application, in which case you will need to get your fingerprints done (which, by the sounds of things, costs around £60...)

Once you're applied, you wait for them to get back to you to let you kno the progress of your application...only they dont get back to you! So thats when you read my post above to try find out where your passport is after you've applied for it and waited for 6months with no word from them (like I did...)

pete replied on 06-15-2009 10:34 AM

Hi Clemhorn

I would advise you to go to london than do it by post. It will take about six weeks to get a appointment. Remember it takes four months to get a new passport. We were going to get a new passport now for traveling in december as my wife passport runs out in april 2010. We have now found out that British border control don't require six months left in the passport,you can use it until it runs out. So we will get one on are return and go through sa house as there is no where in london to get fingerprints

extremeafrica replied on 06-16-2009 6:28 PM

I am dying to go home to SA after 10 years in the rain and cold. I left SA in 99 for the big pary with every intention of returning....... But I now have a British passport and my old SA one expired many years ago, so how can I get my Saffer one back. I am applying for jobs back home, but all the potential employers want to know if I need a visa, still have residency rights or still a citizen? I still have my old faithful ID book.

Please can someone help, the stuff on the intranet does not help that much (most of it is about renewing your current passport, or making changes to it), and the consulate never seems to answer when I call.

I have also been out of work due to this global economic downturn, so now is the best time for me to make the move home.


brensara replied on 06-21-2009 2:11 PM

Hi there,

I wonder if anyone can help me, I am in the process of applying for a SA passport (what a mission). I recently had my finger prints done at a local Police Station cost me £15.50. The thing is the officer who did it made a few mistakes and placed the incorrect finger prints in the wrong place on the form, she crossed out and replaced what finger print was placed in there and wrote an accompanying compliment slip for the SA High Commission explaining what she had done wrong. I am just concerned that if I send it in like this it will get rejected and from seeing the posts on here about them never letting you know when a passport has been received and ready for collection I am dubious to send it in and have it rejected and they never tell me. Has anyone had this problem and does anyone know if it will or will not be rejected, I have written to Mr Tiba but waiting for a response which I might never get!!When I went to get my prints done I thought that I would be able to get my documents certified by a police officer but was told otherwise and that I must find a Commissioner of Oaths in my local area of Chesterfield, I went to the registrar office as I was told there might be one there but was met with an very unhelpful woman who told me that there wasn't one and that i must go to a solicitor as they are one and the same, I did and was quoted £5 per document with a chance on the day of having the first document charged at £5 and therafter £2, I just feel that this is a rip off and can't understand why the officer didn't/couldn't certify my documents as she clearly certified my photograph as a true copy. Please and help would be much appreciated. Also if anyone has applied through the post, could you let me know what required documents i need to send in so that I know what documents exactly i will need to get certified.

Thank yu in advance.

ijjvanvuuren01 replied on 06-22-2009 11:48 AM


I also have to apply for a new passport and  had a look on the southafricahouse website today and they state the following changes as from 01 September 2009:


South Africans will no longer need appointment to apply for passport and related services rendered by the Consular Section. 


The office will be opened from 8:30 AM to 12:30 PM Monday to Friday except on public holidays.


Collection of issued documents will also be moved from the present time of 15:00 - 16:00 to 08:30 - 12:30 Monday to Friday except on public holidays.


Telephonic enquiries will be accepted by the office from 2 PM to 4 PM.

Does anyone know what this means?

Would we be able to apply in person or will it only change to post (As this works our very expensive)?

Would this increase the turn around time?

Will they be able to issue passports in London (Is that what all the changes are about)?

Anyone have more info?


Ren replied on 06-22-2009 11:38 PM

Hi,  Can anybody tell me how long it takes to get the fingerprint form from SA Consulate in London as it is more than three weeks since I sent an SAE asking for  the form.  As a South African citizen but British resident for the last ten years I have had to get a Confirmation of non-aquisition of Citizenship from the British Home Office at the cost of £75.00. in order to apply for my South African passport to be renewed.  SA consulate requires that this letter is no more than 4 months old when applying to renew your passport so I am eager to get hold of the fingerprint form and get the whole process started before the four month deadline has passed.  Can't believe what a nightmare it is trying to renew your passport!

Bloublasie replied on 06-25-2009 11:18 PM

when you sent for the forms, did you include a self addressed envelope? and how long did it take to get the forms? i have sent a letter requesting the form 2 weeks ago and still havent heard anything yet... thank you for your help

Ren replied on 06-26-2009 12:45 PM

Today is four weeks since I sent a self addressed envelope and I have recieved the B1-9 fingerprint form in todays mail.  Now the hunt is on to find a police station in my area (Norfolk) that is willing to do the fingerprinting and rubber stamp my documents.

brensara replied on 06-26-2009 10:14 PM

I had to send off for the fingerprint form again as the police officer didn't do it right the first time, I sent off requesting the forms, I got them in the post 2 days later, this time around I requested them 22 June and received them today in the post and for some reason sent a few extra copies of the annexure to BI 9 and also a few extra copies of the covering letter you need to take with you to the Police Station, if anyone requires any of these,I would be more that happy to send them over to you as i have seen some people weren't given the letter when they requested the forms. I managed to get the fingerprints done again correctly this time free of charge as it was their mistake. I sympathise with everyone who is trying to get their passports and going through all the hassle i've been through, it's an utter nightmare.

I'm now preparing to send my application form off by post, god only knows if i will ever see it again. Does anyone know if they actually email you to let you know it is ready and if it is don't they send it back to you in the return special delivery envelope  you enclose, will I need to go and physically collect them in London????

Thanks and GOOD LUCK!!

moniquebrogan replied on 06-28-2009 2:52 PM

Hi all,

A few more questions on this topic:
Apologies if this has already been covered but I am due to go into SA House and renew my passport at the end of July but am terrified of missing something out and then having to make another appointment!

Firstly, I see you need 2 certified copies of your British visa but the main reason I am able to stay here is that I have an Irish passport; do I then need 2 certified copies of that? If so, do they certify them at SA House or should I do this beforehand? I already have a letter from the Irish embassy detailing that I have an Irish passport etc, so will that be enough? Also, does one need to get one's photos certified?

Also, it seemed a bit garbled on the website but do they certify the copies of your bio-data page of your passport for you when you get to South Africa House or do you need to do this beforehand?


southpaw replied on 06-29-2009 5:37 PM

I'm in same boat re application, SA passports expires in October. They way i read this new announcement regarding no appointment required is that i'm going to have to get to SA house at say 4am 1 day to get to front of queue and get the application sorted in 1 day.

Anyone else know if that sounds about right? If it is i don't mind it, 1 early morning to get it all sorted in 1 go is probably worth it, can't be any worse than when visiting the UK passport service in Croydon many years ago for my wifes UK passport application, that was hell.

Keeto replied on 07-02-2009 7:16 PM

Ja. What can we say? Welcome to the new SA, even here in the UK...

So. I'm on my merry way to South Africa House (note: NOT White Hall) for a passport renewal the 15th of July - maybe I'll see some of you okes there and we can have braai while we wait for these useless civil servants. Make the most of the sunshine! He-he! Anyways.

Today, just to be on the safe side I checked the useless website again. And low and behold or should I say "Eish..." they have made changes again. See if you can spot the difference in the documents required for the application:

  1. 4 X passport size photographs.

  2. 6 X passport size photographs for applicants 15 ½ years of age / who are not in possession of a 13 digit Identity number.

  3. 2 X certified copies of bio – data page of passport or ID book. This is a page showing your face and all your particulars. Requested copy of the ID book or passports of applicants making applications in person will be certified accordingly by Consular staff. Applicants not having ID number must provide their RSA birth certificate and form BI 24 notice of birth.

  4. 2 X certified copies of marriage certificate – if applicable.

  5. 2 X certified copies of divorce decree – if applicable.

  6. 2 X certified copies of foreign birth registration or naturalization certificate – if applicable.

  7. Original police report – if your passport is lost or stolen / case number and form CMO217.

  8. Sworn statement detailing how your passport was destroyed or damaged – if passport is damaged or destroyed.

  9. Written consent from both parents (If applicants are under 18 years).

  10. 2 X certified copies of valid British Visa.

Eish! No more letter required to tell the lovely civil servants that I have not applied for pommie citizenship yet!!! Ag, come on. I surely could have spent that 75 quid on something better than a letter that I had to fill out MYSELF and that was returned with some stupid signature and a little stamp from her majesty...75 quid can buy a LOT of boerewors for that braai at South Africa House in 2 weeks time...

Mr Tiba and his team in short is taking the p***. I'm not going to even attempt to tell you about the emails we exchanged. I swear, these people just sit and laugh at us every day!  It's nice to have a seat on the Gravy Train...toot-toot...So my fellow saffers, good luck man, and I'll see some of you in 2 weeks time. And hopefully some of us will be successfull with our applications, but because it's the last day at South Africa House to apply I'm willing to bet a TON's worth of Blue Rock Butchers Boerie that our applications will be lost in the move back to Whitehall...and we will all meet up again....

Eish....Howa....Welcome to South Africa....enjoy your day.

PS - Just got a response from Mr Tiba about this - but what did I expect? It's a useless one, he is palming my question of to some other Gravy Train passenger...because according to him I have already applied for my jy iets word, word net wakker.

Hmmmmm, is that boerie I smell braaing????

Ren replied on 07-02-2009 7:36 PM

Oh, goal posts on the move again!  I have also just spent £75 on a letter confirming that I am not a British Citizen and now I don't need it anymore....  The whole process of trying to renew your South African passport is a nightmare.

pete replied on 07-02-2009 8:08 PM

I think this is a error on the website. I am sure you do need this letter

Keeto replied on 07-02-2009 10:59 PM

Hi Pete,

I sure do hope it's an error. In my email to them this morning I asked them if they perhaps just made a mistake and inadvertently removed it...but the response I got from Mr Tiba was not even relevant to the initial question...God help us.

So anyone up for this boerie braai at South Africa House? We can park the braai right there underneath the golden Springbok. He-he!!

Keeto replied on 07-03-2009 11:03 AM

Just got some feedback from South Africa House, and guess what!

I quote:

I have only received your email from Mr. Tiba this morning. We are dealing in very high volume of emails and hence the delay. Please accept my apologies.

The answer to your question is, since the British Home Office is charging you enormous amount for this letter, it is no longer mandatory to provide this letter for a renewal passport application. However it is a mandatory requirement for a Retention application.


Thanks hey. I've already spent the £75 on your stupid letter. So my fellow Saffers, I have just saved you £75...unfortunately the idea of posting this change on the website probably didn't cross the mind of any of the Gravy Train passengers....Eish!

Clemhorn replied on 07-07-2009 3:42 PM

Could you tell me,

Would it be a problem to apply to renew my passport if I dont have an ID document anymore??

Please, I need to know this as I would like to submit my application as well.


Keeto replied on 07-07-2009 8:18 PM


As far as I know, you need your ID number to complete the documentation. Not your ID book. However, with these muppits that's running the place, you never know. Personally, I'm taking mine along with several photocopies as well...

JenWag replied on 07-11-2009 6:06 PM


This is my first post to this forum! Thanks for the really useful info I have already found!

I would like to post my passport renewal application but I'm still confused about a few things... I have a further questions around question 3 above...

1) I have had a local sollicitor certify copies of my passport, marriage certificates, etc. - so first question is - is I presume that that is acceptable?

2) I have had my thumbprint done at a police station - am I correct in my understanding that this WILL be okay and that I don't need to fill in Section 'B' of the passport renewal form Bl-73?


cristell revill replied on 07-21-2009 9:26 AM


The same thing happened to me, went to the head office in derby (police) and got my finger prints taken and the officer  did it the wrong way around by accident.  They did however certify my documents (not understanding why exactly it had to be done)  for free.  I hope and pray that everything will  be ok, we booked our tickets and we r going on the 9 th of December,  You need to send a copy of youre;  passport or birth certificate, british visa or permit, marriage certificate if you are applying in youre spouses name, and i think that is it? i hope so! all the info is however on the web site, just double check.  can you tell me how you find out if they recieved youre application?  can you ring them?  i did that check where you type in youre id number, but it said that they have no application made in my name.  WHAT A NIGHTMARE!!!

hope it helps, and if any advise for me plse give.

bakermidge replied on 07-24-2009 12:19 PM


You needed to apply for retention of SA citizenship before you got your Uk passport. You would need to get a visa to live and work in SA. There is also a form for re-instatement of SA citizenship.

Easier option would be to try renewing your SA passport in SA


Dual nationality

Prior to 2004, South Africa in principle did not recognise the multiple citizenship of its nationals unless the citizen applied for an exemption or permission letter under a 1995 law permitting South African citizens to travel using foreign passports.

Since 2004, South African dual nationals may travel without hindrance as long as they enter and leave South Africa on their South African passports. Dual nationals may petition for temporary, emergency or "permanent" South African passports for this purpose.

However, a South African citizen who by a formal and voluntary act acquires the citizenship of another country, automatically loses his or her South African citizenship unless they apply for, and receive permission to retain their South African citizenship before acquiring the citizenship of another country.[1]

South African citizens under the age of twenty-one (21) years are exempt and do not require permission as long as they acquire the foreign citizenship before their twenty-first (21st) birthday. They automatically retain their South African citizenship for life unless; once they have reached the age of 21 and they then wish to acquire a further foreign citizenship. They will then have to apply for prior permission to retain their South African citizenship - failing to do so, they will automatically lose their South African citizenship

bakermidge replied on 07-24-2009 12:27 PM


It will still be valid. Suggest your airline ticket has your maiden name on it as well. My sister has travelled to SA under her maiden name for the last 5 years with no problems.

slbarrie replied on 07-28-2009 12:42 PM


Im really loosing the will to live and have been close to tears from pure frustration!

Can anyone tell me please if i can enter south africa on a british passport (im going home for xmas). It took 10 days to get my british one, but it is taking MONTHS for me to even work out how to get the stupid south african one.

Can i just surrender my SA passport and give them two fingers?? 

Everyone else sounds equally as frustrated as me! but lets look on the bright side - at least living in the uk we only have to deal with these muppets once every 10 years when we have to renew and not everyday!!

Any advise would be fab!

Wendy replied on 08-03-2009 5:15 PM

hi there

I have read your reply to Kerry and i was just wondering about a few thinsg as everyone has said the web site is pretty shit!

i have downloaded all the forms and got a chartered accountant to certify all my copies.

Do i have to send all the originals in too like my actual passport and work permit or are the certified copies ok?

They dont say anything about finger prints other than we have to send a special delivery envelope to them? so what do i do about the finger prints?

Tobe honest i would rather do this in person but when i called this no today 02074517299 they said that i dont have to make an appointment i shoudl do it all by post.

so if i am taking the post route then what do i do about he finger prints and teh original documents.

If i am applying in person(which is what i want) what no do i call to make that appointment?

i woudl be so grateful if anyone could help me?


Keeto replied on 08-03-2009 6:04 PM


Mr Tiba and I exchanged a few emails regarding the fingerprint thing. In short, the cops here (in the UK) are NOT too willing to do it for you. However if you follow this thread there are a few cop shops that did it, and not only did they do it, they did it for free! So the situation regarding the fingerprints and what cops will and won't do it is, to say the least, VERY inconsistent. Because of this, I eventually asked Mr Tiba if there is really a thing like applying for your passport via the post and his response, typical civil servant style, was: "If all your documents are complete then you can post you application....." Hey, thanks that is soooo helpful!! At the end of the day I just went to London and was pleasantly surprised at how quick the whole process went, 45mins....done - SA retention application and passport application...just hoping and praying that my documents aren't going to get "lost" in the move back to White Hall.

How do you guys love the new points system introduced today? Seems we going to wait 10 years to be able to travel to Europe with no hassles! GREAT! I love this government.

Wendy replied on 08-04-2009 9:00 AM

hi there

thank you for getting back to me, so in other words the best thing to do is go to London and get it doen there and then.

the only problem with that is i need to make an appointment before i can go to London! what number do you call on to make an appointment so that i can get it done?

are you serious about having to wait 10 years for the passport?

How rubbish! i am so close! 2 years!

thanks and i look forward to yoru reply

MSR replied on 08-04-2009 11:43 AM


Perhaps someone here can assist??? I am frustrated to my wits end... I have been trying to clarify what happens in the case of visas being in the old passort (its not expired, just no more pages left) and getting a new passport - do I need to get a new visa inserted by the (UK) Border Agency again into the new passport or do I just carry around 2 South African passports? No one can seem to give me an answer...

I have also had a friend who was told to staple both passports together on either end... is this still the case?

Any help would be hugely appreciated.

Thank you

Ren replied on 08-04-2009 11:55 AM

I have just been to Norfolk Constabulary HQ and had my fingerprints taken and documents endorsed for £63.00.  The Norfolk Constabulary website had a section saying that they will do fingerprints for passport applications by appointment, provided a number to call and stated that the cost would be £63.  I rang and was offered an appointment two days later.  They were really helpful and when I left they said that if there are any problems from the South African Authorities I must feel free to come back to them and they will help where they can.  A fast, efficient and friendly service and well worth the £63 considering that it saved me the hassle and cost of making/waiting for an appointment, travelling to London etc. 

Will post all my documents off tomorrow and then the real wait begins!!

Wendy replied on 08-04-2009 12:08 PM

Hi there

thanks for saying the above about getting your fingerprints done, as i have an appointment this weekend.

i would liek to know how you got yrou B-9 form for the finger prints as alot of people are saying that Scotland Yard wont use the Home Affairs form adn only their own which is not accepted when applying for your passport?

i am going to post a letter to South africa house asking for that form today?? hopefully it will arrive soon.

when you post yrou stuff to them, are you putting yoru original passport in teh post and your original ID book?

look forward to the reply

thanks Wendy

Wendy replied on 08-06-2009 11:38 AM

Hi there

i am filling out teh passport appliaction form and in Section B it says that the officer of teh department of home affairs muct sign it and write their address. i am getting my documents certified by a bank manager as im doing my passport appliaction by post.

Must i get the bank manager to sign that and adn put his address there? also where am i going to get a thumb print from for this section b where it says Left thumb print? i know that i need thumb prints and i am getting that done at Scotland yard this weekend but that is not for this form? i will just bee sending my thumbprints with all my documents by post to the consulate.

please can someone help as i am so confused as to what to do with Section B????

sorry one last thing, the address to post your appliaction off to is it :South African High Commission
South Africa House
Trafalgar Square
London WC2N5DP

thanks so so much


Ren replied on 08-06-2009 2:27 PM

Hi Wendy - you have to send a self addressed envelope requesting a copy of the B1 9 fingerpringt form to:

South African High Commission,
Home Affairs, Consular Section,
15 Whitehall,
London, SW1A 2DD

Looking at the website for SA High Comm and reading the list of documents  required it doesn't look like you need to send the original passport and ID book because you have to include the endorsed copies of the bio-page of your passport.   Then again, I don't think they even know what they want!  I tried ringing them today to ask but..... all three numbers on the webpage have a BT message saying that they are out of order.

As for Section B on the application form, I took mine along when I had my fingerprints taken at the police station and the fingerprint officer filled in Section B, took my thumbprint and stamped the form.  I had all my endorsements done by the fingerprint officer (included in the £63) - I took along copies of my passport bio page, fingerprint form and the annexure to BI9, B1-73 application form, copies of my marriage licence, form B1-529, copies of my residency visa for the UK and my photos. 

Hope this helps you and good luck!

Wendy replied on 08-06-2009 2:40 PM

hi Ren

thank you for the information provided above, however i have another question.

the address you have given me is different to the one that i have? since they moved from Whitehall to South Africa house, i am not suer where to send all my documentation? could you please let me know where i must send my passport application to?

also, i spoke to a lady at Scotland Yard and she said that there has been a problem regarding the fingerprint form as the conculate likes to use their form and Scotland Yard only uses their own form too but this lady said that she always sgives the applicant a front letter that goes with teh finger print form saying that mr Tiba said that it's ok to use the Scotland yard form? do you think that will be ok?

i need to post this application off as soon as possible but i am not sure on teh address.

i look forwardto your reply


wrkent replied on 08-11-2009 9:56 AM

These answers are very helpful.  My question is this.  My 6 year old daughter and I am travelling to South Africa in 4 months and saw that our SA passports have expired (we both have dual nationality.  I am British by descent and she is South African by descent).  So I am  bit concerned that I will not get the new passports back in time if I apply for full passports (still waiting for my BI 9 to come through the post) .  Am I best to go for a temporary passport for both of us and am I able to apply for both a full and temporary passport at the same time using that same forms (i.e. ticking 2 boxes)?

Any help would be greatly appreciated


Barbara replied on 08-13-2009 11:46 AM

Hi Kerry-Lyn,

You just need to get them to send you the application forms,  fill them in  and return with your payment.  The big prolem though is to a) get through on the phone

b) get your passport back in reasonable time ( mine has taken a year so far and I have  my PM helping me!)

It is better for you to go in and collect  your application, take 4 photos with you, and be prepared for them to take your fingerprints. Take a box of quickies or KFC hand towels ( little square packet) to get the ink off your fingers.

That I am told is the best way to handle it .

There does not seem to be much light in the tunnel  of passport applications at present.

Piet van Niekerk replied on 08-13-2009 5:52 PM

Hope this link helps.

moniquebrogan replied on 08-16-2009 3:00 PM

Hi all,

I am not sure if this has been covered yet but I am keen to find out when I am due to get my renewed passport back as I am looking to go back to SA and need to make plans and wondered if anyone knew who I could contact to find this out.

fishie replied on 08-21-2009 11:15 PM

Dear dramsell,

Exactly the same thing happened to me, with texting and internet. Then in utter desperation I went to the SA embassy (after someone told me I don't need an appointment)  When I showed them my receipt,  ... they handed me my passport.

Maybe it is worth a try, although without a receipt I am not sure, just take proof of identity.

Good luck

wiebogrobler replied on 08-24-2009 12:29 PM

Hey Fishie

What receipt are you reffering to? I applied for my new one through the post. Do you mean the bankers draft receipt or something else? Also how long did it take to get your new passport the full 4 months?


Keeto replied on 08-24-2009 12:45 PM

By the way, received my SA citizenship retention documents on Friday...let me count the days...27 working days....and I quote from the website:

"All applications will be finalised within 15 working days."

But, I should probably just say thank you, because at least I got for the long wait for my passport....15 days=27 days? So 4months=7 1/2  months....I hope not.

Edie replied on 08-26-2009 1:21 PM

Dear Editor SAT

Thanks so much for this very comprehensive information on do and don'ts of renewing SA Passport,  which I also found in the SAT magazine!

I have an important question:

I am Portuguese by birth and we lived in SA from 1973,  I was 10yrs old.  My father said that I gained SA citizenship when I turned 18 as we were still living in SA ( until 2000).   I do not have proof of naturalisation in SA/registration certificate. I remember my father saying it happened automatically as we had been in SA so many years.  All I have is my Portuguese birth certificate and a copy of document of entry permit to SA in 1973 as a child.  

I need to renew my SA passport  by January 2010.  I have had a SA passport since 1980, and have renewed it a couple of times.  But do not remember having the need for a registration certificate nor proof of how I obtained SA citizenship. I have had dual citizenship  (South African and Portugues) since 1988 at least which was the first time I applied for SA Passport.  I have a valid  SA ID book and SA Passport as well as Portuguese passport,   I use all these documents when travelling to SA.

What documents do I need for renewal of SA Passport?

Can all the documents be certified at the SA consulate in London at the time of applying,  or must we do this beforehand?

I really hope that I do not need any other documents as this will delay my application. I hope you or anyone else can shed some light on my dilemma.



SAT Editor replied on 08-28-2009 10:01 AM

Hi Edie

See the answer from the High Commission below:

Regarding your question, we recommend the applicant to proceed to apply for a new passport and also to apply for a duplicate naturalization certificate as it will be needed for any future passport application the applicant will make.  Concerning certification of documents, documents will be certified by consular staff during a visit to the office to apply for a new passport.  
Yours respectfully,

Head: Immigration & Civic Services
South African High Commission

SAT Editor replied on 08-28-2009 5:07 PM

Message from SA House:

Thank you for your support in disseminating information about our service.  I do not know whether you are aware of the changes that will be taking place with effect from September 01, 2009.  Please note them below and inform your readers accordingly:
South African citizens no longer need appointment to apply for any services that concern them.
Issued documents will be collected from 8:30 am to 12:45 pm. 
Applicants for visas and permits must set up an appointment to hand in their applications or send their applications to this office using special delivery post. 

Edie replied on 08-28-2009 5:14 PM

Dear SAT Editor,

Thank you so much for this information and quick response.

Regards,  Edie

Wilhelm replied on 09-02-2009 8:16 PM

Dear Editor SAT

I was wondering whether anyone could offer any assistance with regards to how to find out when a passport is ready for collection from South Africa House?

I had an appointment at South Africa House in May 2009 (beginning) and filled out all the appropriate paperwork, fingerprints etc. and was told that I would be informed via e-mail when my new passport will be ready for collection. I was also told that it shouldn't take more than two months, although no longer than four at the most.

As I've not heard anything I've tried contacting them via their phone numbers on the website to no avail. I've also tried the other numbers listed on this site and the numbers either no longer exist or are faulty. The weblink provided that is suppose to give you an update with regards to passport applications also does not work.

Can anyone advise on how best to contact them and find out whether my passport is ready for collection? I desperately need my passport as am due to go to the USA in two weeks.




Edie replied on 09-05-2009 11:25 PM

Dear SAT and anyone applying for renewal of passport,

We have been to the SA Consulate in Trafalgar Square and what a painless procedure that was :)

We went to consulate without appointment as is now the way to do it,  arrived there at 0800 to stand in line,  doors opened at 0830,  we filed in and spoke to the receptionisi who was polite and helpful,  any additional forms were given ie form for finger prints.  I was no 24 in the cue.   We did make sure that we had all the documents and 2 photocopies of each as is required,  including 4 passport photos.   The photocopies were certified by the officials at the consulate,  take your originals to show the officials.  We had our fingerprints taken and paid the £14.00.  We were prepared to wait as is normaly the case in these departments but by 1030  we were finished and out the door!!  One of the officials said that it was a quiet day, so maybe we were lucky.  Everyone was really polite and helpful.  What a surprise - thankyou!

We were told that we would get and e-mail to say when the passport is ready,  and that it can take 2-3months.  We were given back our old passports,  so can still travel.

The SAT magazine and this site was really helpful in providing information.  But always read the South Africa House website carefully. 

Thank you and this experience has restored some faith in the beaurocratic process.  Now...need to wait for the new passport.


Ilfiore replied on 09-07-2009 7:34 PM

Dear Editor SAT,

Firstly I would like to say how incredibly helpful this forum has been, I find find all the feedback very encouraging as I am in quite a predicament myself.

I have unfortunately lost my passport a short while ago, and am now trying to re-apply for my passport.  I am currently planning a trip to South African House in London to reapply for the new passport this week, however I am quite concerned if I will have everything required for this, and even though I call South African House daily, I have had no luck getting through (only an automated voice system).

Will 2 x recent photographs, a case number the police office supplied and my ID be sufficient?

Other requirements such as "2X certified copies of valid British Visa," - surely I can only apply for the re-issue of my visa when I have a passport?  What is a CMO 217?

Any advice would be appreciated tremendously,


judy replied on 09-23-2009 5:00 PM

Thank you for this valuable information.

Is it necessary to get a thumb print if I am applying for a passport renewal by post? If so how can this be done?

I am residing in the UK on a spousal visa. Do I need to also fill in the B1-529 form? How do I transfer my UK visa to the new passport?