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Trip Paperwork Covers all documentation, carnets, customs and country requirements, how to deal with insurance etc.
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Old 28 Sep 2009
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Entering South Africa without Carnet

We are entering South Africa fairly soon with our Oz registered vehicle.

Is it possible to enter South Africa without a carnet? Can you complete a temporary import permit at the border?

We will actually import the vehicle into SA once we get there, but I'm trying to avoid using my Oz carnet to enter because of some stupid Oz rules (our rego expires soon and the carnet is not valid without current rego etc - to get a new rego we need a road worthy certificate and checklist with loads of other sh1t!!!! - try getting that from an African goverment office without spending weeks there!)

So, is it possible to enter SA without a carnet?

Also, is it possible to complete paperwork at the border to show that I will be importing the car permanently, therefore not having to use a carnet??

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Last edited by Pumbaa; 28 Sep 2009 at 10:43. Reason: Add more questions
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Old 28 Sep 2009
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SA without carnet

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Originally Posted by Pumbaa View Post
Is it possible to enter South Africa without a carnet? Can you complete a temporary import permit at the border?
Nope, only for SADEC countries, not Aus.

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Originally Posted by Pumbaa View Post
We will actually import the vehicle into SA once we get there, but I'm trying to avoid using my Oz carnet to enter because of some stupid Oz rules (our rego expires soon and the carnet is not valid without current rego etc - to get a new rego we need a road worthy certificate and checklist with loads of other sh1t!!!!
Just enter with the Aus carnet, the South African customs won't know this.

Then the fun and games will start.

You will first need to obtain an Import Permit from ...:: International Trade Administration Commission Of South Africa ::...

Then a LOA from the SABS, then you will have to take this to customs and pay taxes and once you have done this they will stamp your carnet out. Bargain on this taking 3-4 months!
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Old 26 Oct 2009
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don't know of this helps and of it is still an option but novemer 2007 me and a mate crossed the SA/Botswana border at a really small crossing called Derdepoort, (had to look it up in my passport) my botswa exit stam says sikwant of maybee sikwane.

the interesting thing was that we tried to get our carnets stamed in on the SA side but they told us literly: :"no vehicle crossing at this border" and said we could cross with the motorbikes but they just wouldn't stam the carnets. we really tried because we where worried about getting problems when leaving the country. but the just kept repeating again and again with really bored voices: no vehiicle crossing the border" so we just corssed the border wtih te bokes but without getting the garnets stamped. they just didn't care.

maybee this helps, no garantee of course but as a last ditch....
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Old 27 Oct 2009
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Thanks for the replies all.

We ended coming in on our Carnet. The customs guy on the Bots side refused to stamp it out of Bots, but I managed to have it stamped in to SA. We crossed at the Lobatse/Zeerust crossing - I think it is called Skilpadshek.
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Old 15 Nov 2009
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We arrive in SA last year April. Yesterday 18 months later my bike was finally registered on the South African Natis register.

Get your LOA and your ITAC permit BEFORE you leave on your trip if you intend importing the vehicle to SA on arrival.

As a "returning resident" you can import a vehicle for Zero duties if you owned it for longer than a year; or was it 2...check.

At the border on entering the SADC!!! region you don't use your Carnet. You declare and pay custom and exices. Make sure you get a block stamp on the back of your SAD500 form and get a reciept even if it is for a zero amount. We didn't which is why my wife's bike is still not registered and the fight continues...

We don't know about the SADC thing and had quite a issue getting the Namibian border to exit stamp our Carnet on entering SA as they are not a SADC entry point at Noordoewer/Vioolsdrift. I asseum that's the same reason why the Bots guys didn't want to exit you.

As you have now entered SA on the Carnet I would imagine that as with everything in Africa they will find another unofficial way of getting your car imported and registered. Just act ignorant, or drive back up to Bots and have another go.
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