Acceptable Turn Around Time For Embassy Passport Applications

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I have applied for my SA maxi passport at the Hague Embassy (The Netherlands) because I travel a lot for work and have run out of space for visas. I was told by the embassy over the phone it will take 3 to 4 months turn around time, only to find out 4 months later, they respond with "20 to 30 weeks before we receive them back from South Africa. Unfortunately, the months December and January being holiday months need to be discounted." This is ludicrous, South Africans need support all over the world, how can this department be paid to only serve us expats 10 months of the year regarding our processing of documents, there is NO WAY that the world stops, we need to travel and we need the support of our government to do that.

There is no transparency in the process, nobody can provide any answers as to how far passport applications are. The consular hours are extremely limited in terms of being able to call and get "no answers". If I flew home and applied for a new passport in SA, it would take me 1 week to 10 days but abroad up to 7 months?!!!!! 

I am still without passport and I need to travel to earn my income but there is nothing I can do: no timeframes can be given, no answers, no support, no expediting of anything and no temporary documents can be issued, so in short I am at the mercy of the Department of Home Affairs! I will probably not be able to earn an income for the months of April and May or maybe even June, I have no idea as I cannot get any answers. And on top of that, I see many many people in the FB groups that have struggled so much with passport renewal issues! THIS NEEDS TO CHANGE! 

In the year 2018 this is where we find ourselves - our embassy still takes ONLY cash and cannot offer change + ONLY does manual fingerprints, where all branches in SA have digital processes - why are we left hanging in the dark ages in The Netherlands?? I am shocked over and over as to how us SA expats get little to no support on all of the above if any at all. PLEASE CHANGE OUR TURN AROUND TIME FOR ISSUING OF PASSPORTS for SA Expats, and I speak on behalf of the Netherlands expats specifically!!!



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