After an agreement was signed on November 9th, Kenyans will be able to travel to South Africa without a visa for up to 90 days per year.
The arrangement, which took effect on January 1st, 2023, was declared during the first official trip of South African President Cyril Ramaphosa to Kenya in November.
As a result, Kenyans need not apply for an e-visa or a regular visa before going to South Africa for business or pleasure. They only need an invitation and a ticket back, proof that they have been vaccinated against yellow fever and Covid-19, and proof that they can afford to stay in South Africa for the time that tourists are supposed to be there.
“Our officials will speed up the processes to implement it. This dispensation will be available to Kenyans over a 90-day period in a given year, meaning that, yes, you can use the 90 days, ten days, 20 days or whatever. Kenyans will have a full 90 days to be able to visit South Africa and we would be able to review this and get reports from our ministers within a year and see how this is functioning,” Ramaphosa said during a joint press briefing with President Ruto in November.
In addition, Kenya and South Africa came to an agreement on a return policy in the event of a violation of immigration laws and regulations. In this scenario, the cost of deporting citizens who are caught overstaying their visas is shared by both nations.
“People who abuse the system…don’t deserve to be in South Africa, and they don’t deserve to be in Kenya. This agreement will be implemented to ensure the bad elements that try to infiltrate our countries are dealt with firmly and decisively,” President Ruto said.
Kenyans will also be able to transit through South Africa’s airports without needing a transit visa as long as they do not leave the terminal.