Applying for a French visa in South Africa [fr]

Visa applications submitted in South Africa are processed by Consulates General of France in Cape Town and Johannesburg.

For general information and for preparing, submitting and tracking your application, log on to France-visas, the official website for visa application to France.

France-visas is a single portal with all the information you need process and help you every step of the way (preparing the application, entering details, submitting and tracking the application).

The main steps in applying for a visa

Do I need a visa?

PNG First, use “Visa wizard” to check, based on your situation, whether you need a visa and if so, what type. The wizard will also tell you what documents must be enclosed with your application, along with the relevant fee.

Complete your application online

PNG Once you have confirmed that you need a visa, you can complete your application on our online portal. You will be asked to create a France-Visas account, which you will need for each step of the process.

Submit your application to the visa centre.

Once you have completed your online application, all you have to do is submit it to your local visa centre. France-Visas will provide you with all necessary information on how and where to submit your application.

Follow your application.

PNG Once your application has been submitted, track its progress and see how and when you can collect your passport and how to prepare for your trip to France.


Waiting times for appointments and for processing applications will vary depending on your nationality and the time of year.

Users are therefore asked to submit their visa applications well in advance of their departure date. It takes about two weeks to obtain a short stay visa

South Africans don’t require visas for short trips to Reunion Island

Since March 2013, South African passport holders are no longer required to obtain a visa to travel to Reunion Island for short stays of up to 90 days.

To find out more about la Reunion, click here.

Foreign talents in France: The Talent Passport

What status, what visa is required for young foreign nationals, who after studying in France, would like to work or start a business here? How can the administrative red tape be reduced for foreign nationals with high potential who would like to work in France, especially those wanting to start a business?

Employees of big companies but also research scientists and artistic and cultural professions are eligible for this “Talent Passport”, which also serves as a residence permit that is valid up to four years. As a result, administrative procedures these foreign nationals have to do in France will be reduced.

The Prefectures will set up special contact points for these people to shorten the time it takes to issue the permits and provide a personalized service.
Spouses may also have a “Talent Passport” and enter France at the same time. They will also therefore have the right to work. For certain categories of foreign nationals, including scientists, this clarification is important (because researchers did not have the same type of residence permit as their families).

Lastly, talents with salaried employment will not be required to have a work permit to carry out their employment.

• The following people are eligible:

  • Business founders with an equivalent to a master’s degree;
  • Foreign nationals with at least an equivalent to a master’s degree and hired by an innovative start-up;
  • Foreign nationals wishing to invest in France (for a minimum amount of €300,000).

It is important to point out that this “Talent Passport” provides more protection for holders: If they lose their job, they will be able to stay for the period during which they benefit from unemployment subsidies.

• Lastly, it is easier for foreign students to obtain a residence permit:

  • The “Talent Passport” list of highly qualified degrees for students includes advanced technical degrees, specialized master’s degrees and Masters of Science from the Conférence des Grandes Ecoles.
  • In addition, the 2016 legislation facilitates the issuance of a temporary residence permit to foreign students after they have finished their studies, at the same levels in terms of degree (master’s or equivalent), if they find a job (related to their academic curriculum) or start a business. It is not possible to use the employment situation in France as an excuse to refuse. It is a strong signal sent to foreign students who have made the choice to study in France.

More information:

publie le 24/01/2023

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