1. Visa application process
All international Postdoctoral Research Fellows (PDRFs) are required in terms of section 11(1)(b)(iii) of the Immigration Act No. 13 of 2002 (Immigration Act) to be in possession of the appropriate valid visa. The PDRF must apply for a visitor’s visa or critical skills permit from the South African Embassy endorsed as follows: “For PDRF research at the University of Johannesburg” prior to entering the country.
It is advisable for PDRFs to apply for a visa 60 days prior to the expiry of the current visa when applying within South Africa through the VFS Global system. The link for lodging online applications is as follows: http://www.vfsglobal.com/dha/southafrica/. When applying through VFS, a corporate account should be selected from the system.
All International PDRFs applying for a visa outside South Africa can submit their applications at the South African visa issuing authority (Embassy, High Commission, Consulate, or Trade Mission) in their country of residence. If there is no South African representative in the country, PDRFs can apply at the nearest South African Embassy, High Commission, Consulate, or Trade Mission.
2. Documents to be submitted for visa application
During the appointment process, the PDRF Agreement is signed as a confirmation of appointment. The faculty representative has to send the signed Agreement (signed by the PDRF, Host, HoD, and the Dean) to the PDRF, together with the letter of acceptance.
International PDRFs may request a letter of undertaking from the International Office to apply for a visa. The following information and documents are required before the letter of undertaking from the International Office is issued:
- A letter of acceptance from the faculty;
- A signed Agreement with the commencement and end dates aligned to the letter of acceptance and the value of the fellowship awarded should be included;
- A certified copy of the passport;
- An address of the Embassy where the PDRF will apply for a visa;
- The South African address where the PDRF will reside during the tenure of the fellowship. Should the PDRF not have a residential address yet, they are welcome to contact our Property Management at email@example.com to apply for Campus residential accommodation.
Renewal of Fellowship and visa application
The PDRF and the Host must initiate the review process at least two months before the PDRF’s Fellowship tenure expires. The International Office will issue a letter of undertaking provided that the following documents are submitted to the International Office:
- A letter from the faculty confirming that the fellowship has been renewed for another year;
- A certified copy of the passport;
- A current residential address in South Africa.
3. Medical Aid Insurance
- It is the responsibility of the PDRF to pay the monthly medical aid contributions directly to the medical aid service provider. It is also compulsory in terms of the Department of Home Affairs regulations for an international PDRF to become a member of a South African medical aid service provider.
- The University requires proof of full medical aid cover with a South African-based medical aid scheme from the first day of the month in which a PDRF seeks registration to the end of the fellowship aligned to the PDRF Agreement.
- It is thus advisable that international PDRFs make the necessary financial arrangements for medical aid coverage prior to entry into South Africa.
- PDRFs can have any medical aid membership insurance with any of the South African service providers. UJ is recommending PDRFs make use of Momentum Health. An upfront fee is required at the inception of membership with Momentum Health, which is based on the appointment of fellowship with UJ.
- In order for the international block to be removed a medical aid membership certificate should be submitted. The membership certificate is issued by Momentum Health on submission of the proof of payment, letter of acceptance from UJ, or an Agreement together with a copy of a passport.
- PDRFs are encouraged to visit the Medical Schemes Council in South Africa website to explore other medical aid insurance options. The website address is
4. UJ Residential Accommodation
We currently have the Mayine residential building situated on the Bunting Road Campus (APB), in close proximity to the intercampus bus terminal and Campus Square Shopping Centre, specifically available for PDRFs. PDRFs are welcome to contact our Property Management: at firstname.lastname@example.org for residential accommodation placements. Available units range from bachelor units, two-bedroom sharing units, and three-bedroom sharing units.
Kitchen area, are not fitted with washing machines.
Bedroom (bachelor unit)
Bedrooms (two – three bedroom sharing units)