How the South African Traveller Declaration System works
The new online Traveller Declaration System will be introduced at all South African ports of entry with the phase 1 pilot of the system at King Shaka International Airport (KSIA) successfully implemented on 29 November 2022. The next phase for the implementation is planned at all airports, starting with Cape Town International Airport on 28 February 2023, O.R. Tambo International Airport on 23rd March 2023 and other airports in the second and third quarters of 2023, as well as land ports, namely Beit Bridge and Skilpadshek. The Cape Town Seaport is also in line to implement the system during the last quarter of 2023.
The system will continue to be used on a voluntary basis during the pilot phases until further notice. The results of the pilot project will be applied as we roll out the system in line with Customs legislation.
The system allows travellers, including South African citizens and residents, leaving or entering South Africa by air to complete and submit an online traveller declaration and receive electronic confirmation thereof before they travel. Travellers who are travelling with children or infants will also need to complete a declaration on their behalf. Watch our short Traveller Declaration System video on the SARS TV channel.
What to do once you’ve completed your declaration
Once you have completed the South African Traveller Declaration, a confirmation of your declaration will be emailed to you. It will contain instructions of what you need to do at the airport.
Remember to print it out or save it on your mobile device so that you may easily access it when needed. The same will need to be done for anyone you are travelling with, including children and infants.
Travellers are encouraged to use the online declaration system, which can be accessed via any device that has an internet connection.
What you will need
Keep the following handy when you fill in the declaration form:
|Passport details||Travel details||Contact details||Details of travel companion||Entity details for business travel|
Before you travel
Travellers can complete the South African Traveller Declaration
Travellers flying to and out of South Africa will need to complete a traveller declaration. The new traveller declaration process will collect your travel information and return a declaration confirmation via email. Upon arrival in South Africa, there will be instructions at the airport that will guide and inform you about what to do. Travellers leaving the country may follow the instruction received in their declaration with confirmation once they are at the airport.
The system may be used on a voluntary basis, as it is still being piloted. The results obtained during this pilot period will be used when we roll out the system fully in line with Customs legislation.
If you need assistance with completing the declaration, you may send an email to [email protected]. You can also visit the service counters at the airport if you need any help.
Complete your declaration
How to submit an online traveller declaration
Step 1: Book your flight to travel to or from South Africa.
Step 2: Once you have booked your flight, you are ready to submit an online traveller declaration.
Step 3: Select ‘Complete your declaration’, capture and submit your declaration. If travelling with family or friends, make sure a declaration is submitted for each person travelling. A valid email address must be captured by each traveller to receive a confirmation of declaration.
Step 4: Once you receive the confirmation of declaration via email, print it out or save it on your mobile phone for easy access when it is requested by customs officers at the airport.
Step 5: Undertake your trip to or from South Africa.
Arriving in or leaving South Africa
Arrivals – what to do when arriving at the airport
Step 1: On arrival at the airport, proceed to immigrations and collect your luggage.
Step 2: Next, proceed to the Customs Control area as per the instruction in your declaration confirmation.
Step 3: Exit the airport.
Departures – what to do when departing
Step 1: On arrival at the airport, proceed to the customs office to register goods for re-importation or go straight to the check-in area as per the instruction received in your declaration confirmation.
Step 2: Board your flight.
- Webinar on South African Traveller Declaration – If you missed the recent webinar on the online Traveller Declaration system, you can view it on the SARS TV channel. Or you can view the Traveller Declaration system presentation delivered during the webinar here. The webinar provided more information about the new traveller declaration system.
- Media release issued on 20 October 2022 – SARS takes a further step towards improving the integrity of trade and traveller facilitation as part of implementing Smart Borders.
- Travellers webpage
- Arrival in SA webpage
- Departure from SA webpage
- Inspections for Travellers webpage
- Duties and Taxes for Travellers
- Small Business Traders and Travellers webpage
- Prohibited and Restricted Counterfeit Goods
- Email the South African Traveller Declaration team at [email protected].
- See the Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) here.