Any local without an ancestral visas or dual citizenship knows travelling on a plain old green South African passport is no joke.
Before even thinking about entering most countries around the world, we are required to pass the ultimate endurance test: a visa application.
Yet, the South African passport is the most powerful African passport, the latest data published by the Henley Passport Index shows – a list of world passports, ranked from the most powerful to the weakest, based on how many other countries one can visit with that passport visa-free or with a visa-on-arrival/e-visa.
As of January 2019, South African passport holders can travel to 104 world countries without the need to apply for a visa prior to their trip.
South Africans can travel to and enter 69 countries without any type of visa. There is another 35, which they can enter by obtaining a visa on arrival at the port of entry of their destination country.
Visa requirements for South African citizens
Visa requirements for South African citizens are administrative entry restrictions by the authorities of other states placed on citizens of South Africa. As of February 2018, South African citizens had visa-free or visa on arrival access to 102 countries and territories, ranking the South African passport 53rd in terms of travel freedom according to the Henley Passport Index.
Where visa-free access is permitted, such access is not necessarily a right, and admission is at the discretion of border enforcement officers. Visitors engaging in activities other than tourism, including unpaid work, may require a visa or work permit.
Regionally, South Africa ranked third in Africa, below Mauritius (28th overall, with visa-free access to 145 countries) and the Seychelles (24th overall, with visa-free access to 154 countries).
These are the countries South African passport holders can access without a visa:
|Mozambique||British Virgin Islands||Costa Rica|
|Malaysia||Senegal||Dominican Republic||Falkland Islands|
|Ireland||Zimbabwe||St Kitts and Nevis||Panama|
|Kosovo||Cook Islands||St Lucia||Paraguay|
|Russia||Fiji||St Vincent and Grenadines||Peru|
|Angola||Micronesia||Trinidad and Tobago||Uruguay|
|Botswana||Niue||Turks and Caicos Islands||Venezuela|
|Lesotho||Antigua and Barbuda||Belize||Israel|
Visa on entry