The Immigration Office at the Australian High Commission in Pretoria is receiving high volumes of visa applications leading into the peak season. The office has warned that the processing of visa applications may experience some delays.
To ensure that clients are able to travel by their intended travel date, agents are advised to lodge their visa applications as early as possible.
Furthermore, clients who are planning to visit Australia for a holiday during Christmas and New Year must lodge their application before Friday, November 30 for planned travel between December 21 and January 5. This needs to be done as soon as possible as late visitor visa applications lodged may not be processed until next year.
Incomplete applications being lodged by travel agents are identified as another cause of delays. In these instances standard supporting documents, such as copy of passport, evidence of funds, evidence of employment, invitation letter and health insurance (required for travellers 75+) are missing from the applications, or requirements such as biometrics or medical examinations not being undertaken in a timely manner.
To meet the growing volume of visa lodgements within committed time frames, the immigration office will no longer request standard supporting documents to be attached or make multiple requests for biometrics to be undertaken. A client’s visa application will be decided on the information provided at lodgement, but the office has warned that it may be adversely affected by incomplete applications.