Last updated: 19 Sep 2021

Belgium

About

Belgium is a country whose specialities include ubiquitous beers, delicate chocolates, moules frites and Belgian waffles.

Enjoy the many Brussels museums such as the Museum of Ancient Art, the Museum of Modern Art, the Comic Strip Museum and the Museum of the City of Brussels - Maison du Roi. Pay homage to chocolate, which is one of Belgium's best known products, with a visit to the Museum of Chocolate and Cocoa off Brussels' Grand Place, or Choco-Story in Bruges.

Don't miss the highlight of Brussels - the spectacular Gothic Grand Place. Pose for a photograph in front of the famous Manneken Pis nearby, and his less heralded sister the Janneken Pis; both statues hint at the exuberance and irreverence of the ‘Bruxellois'.

Explore Brussels further, with St Michael and St Gudule's Cathedral and the Mont des Arts park, which links the upper and lower parts of the city. And don't forget the elegant Place Royale.
Capital:  Brussels (BRU)
Currency:  Euro (EUR)
Language:  Dutch, French and German. English may be spoken. 
Dialling code from SA:  + 32
Time Zones: UTC / GMT +1 (1 hour behind South Africa)
Daylight Savings Time: From last Sunday in March to last Sunday in October: UTC / GMT +2 (same time as South Africa)
Public Holidays 2021: 

Jan 1; Apr 4, 5; May 1, 13, 24, 25; Jul 21; Aug 15; Nov 1, 11; Dec 25

Side of the Road: Right. For non-EU nationals an international driving licence is recommended.
Best Time to Go: March – May and September - October
Best for: Castles, The Original Spa, War Sites
Plugs: 220 volts AC, 50Hz. Plugs are of the round two-pin type
Drinking Water: Mains water in hotels and towns is safe to drink, but bottled water is very popular with the locals. 
Health: There are adequate and well-equipped medical facilities, however they are expensive and visitors are required to pay for these services. Comprehensive health insurance is recommended.
Customs: Speaking the “wrong” language can cause offence – make sure that you know which language should be spoken. If in doubt, English should be spoken. 
Local Offences / Laws: All individuals are required by law to carry identification at all times. Smoking is prohibited in certain public areas. 
Travel Tips / Warnings: Although credit cards are widely accepted, if visiting a smaller village, be sure to carry cash. 
Duty Free: Belgium is within the European Union. If you are travelling from the UK, you are entitled to buy fragrance, skincare, cosmetics, Champagne, wine, selected spirits, fashion accessories, gifts and souvenirs - all at tax-free equivalent prices.

If you are travelling from within the EU, there is no limit on the amount or value of goods you may import, providing your goods are for personal consumption. Goods imported for commercial purposes are subject to duty and the following guideline amounts are in place to determine whether this is the case:
• 800 cigarettes or 400 cigarillos or 200 cigars or 1kg of tobacco.
• 10L of spirits over 22%, 20L of alcoholic beverages less than 22%, 90L of wine (no more than 60L of sparkling wine) and 110L of beer.

If you are arriving from a non-EU country, the following goods may be imported into Belgium by travellers over 17 years of age without incurring customs duty:
• 200 cigarettes or 100 cigarillos or 50 cigars or 250g of tobacco.
• 4L of wine and 16L of beer and 1L of spirits over 22% or 2L of alcoholic beverages less than 22%.
• Other goods up to the value of €430 for air and sea travellers and €300 for other travellers (reduced to €175 for children under 15).
Prohibited Imports: Restricted imports include firearms, narcotics, plants, animals and their products. Endangered species must be accompanied by a CITES permit.

Travel Alerts

Last updated: 14/09/2021

Belgium has banned all non-essential travel to and from the country. Testing and quarantine may be required according to country of origin.

Green Countries/Regions

  • All European Union and Schengen Area countries and regions not listed as Amber or Red, and Australia, Hong Kong, Korea (South), Macau, New Zealand, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, Taiwan, Ukraine.

Amber Countries/Regions

  • Andorra, Austria (Lower Austria, Carinthia, Styria, Tyrol, Burgenland), Bonaire, Croatia (Primorsko-goranska zupanija, Licko-senjska zupanija, Zadarska zupanija, Sibensko-kninska zupanija, Splitsko-dalmatinska zupanija, Istarska zupanija, Dubrovacko-neretvanska zupanija, Grad Zagreb, Medimurska zupanija, Varazdinska zupanija, Koprivnicko-krizevacka zupanija, Krapinsko-zagorska zupanija, Zagrebacka zupanija), Denmark (Zealand, Southern Denmark, Central Jutland, North Jutland), Finland (South Finland, West Finland, North and East Finland), France (Centre - Val de Loire, Basse-Normandie, Haute-Normandie, Pays de la Loire), Germany (Brandenburg, Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, Dresden, Chemnitz, Leipzig, Sachsen-Anhalt, Thüringen), Greenland, Hungary (Budapest), Italy (Piemonte, Liguria, Lombardy, Abruzzo, Puglia, Autonomous Province of Bolzano, Autonomous Province of Trento, Veneto, Friuli-Venezia Giulia, Emilia-Romagna, Umbria, Molise, Campania, Lazio), Luxembourg, Malta, Norway (Innlandet, Northern Norway, Agder and South Eastern Norway), Portugal (Autonomous Region of Madeira), Romania (North East, South East, South Muntenia, South-West Oltenia, Bucuresti – Ilfov, North West, West), Saba, San Marino, Slovakia (Bratislava Region, Eastern Slovakia), Spain (Asturias, Canary Islands), Sweden (Stockholm, East Middle Sweden, Småland and the islands , South Sweden, West Sweden, North Middle Sweden, Upper Norrland), Switzerland (Ticino), the Vatican, and Bosnia and Herzegovina, Canada, Jordan, Moldova, Qatar.

Red Countries/Regions

  • Aruba, Austria (Vienna, Upper Austria, Salzburg, Vorarlberg), Bulgaria, Croatia (Adriatic Croatia, Pannonian Croatia, Bjelovarsko-bilogorska zupanija,Viroviticko-podravska zupanija, Pozesko-slavonska zupanija, Brodsko-posavska zupanija, Osjecko-baranjska zupanija, Vukovarsko-srijemska zupanija, Karlovacka zupanija, Sisacko-moslavacka zupanija, North Croatia, City of Zagreb), Curaçao, Cyprus, Denmark (Capital Region of Denmark), Estonia, Finland (Helsinki-Uusimaa), France (Île de France, Paris, Seine-et-Marne, Yvelines, Essonne, Hauts-de-Seine, Seine-Saint-Denis, Val-de-Marne, Val-d’Oise, Cher, Eure-et-Loir, Indre, Indre-et-Loire, Loir-et-Cher, Loiret, Bourgogne - Franche-Comté, Bourgogne, Côte-d’Or, Nièvre, Saône-et-Loire, Yonne, Franche-Comté, Doubs, Jura, Haute-Saône, Territoire de Belfort, Normandie, Calvados, Manche, Orne, Eure, Seine-Maritime, Hauts-de-France, Nord-Pas de Calais, Nord, Pas-de-Calais, Picardie, Aisne, Oise, Somme, Grand Est, Alsace, Bas-Rhin, Haut-Rhin, Champagne-Ardenne, Ardennes, Aube, Marne, Haute-Marne, Lorraine, Meurthe-et-Moselle, Meuse, Moselle, Vosges, Loire-Atlantique, Maine-et-Loire, Mayenne, Sarthe, Vendée, Bretagne, Côtes-d’Armor, Finistère, Ille-et-Vilaine, Morbihan, Nouvelle-Aquitaine, Aquitaine, Dordogne, Gironde, Landes, Lot-et-Garonne, Pyrénées-Atlantiques, Limousin, Corrèze, Creuse, Haute-Vienne, Poitou-Charentes, Charente, Charente-Maritime, Deux-Sèvres, Vienne, Occitanie, Languedoc-Roussillon, Aude, Gard, Hérault, Lozère, Pyrénées-Orientales, Midi-Pyrénées, Ariège, Aveyron, Haute-Garonne, Gers, Lot, Hautes-Pyrénées, Tarn, Tarn-et-Garonne, Auvergne - Rhône-Alpes, Auvergne, Allier, Cantal, Haute-Loire, Puy-de-Dôme, Rhône-Alpes, Ain, Ardèche, Drôme, Isère, Loire, Rhône, Savoie, Haute-Savoie, Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur, Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur, Alpes-de-Haute-Provence, Hautes-Alpes, Alpes-Maritimes, Bouches-du-Rhône, Var, Vaucluse, Corse, Corse-du-Sud, Haute-Corse), French Guiana, French Polynesia, Germany (Berlin, Hamburg, Düsseldorf, Köln, Münster, Detmold, Arnsberg, Saarland, Schleswig-Holstein, Stuttgart, Karlsruhe, Freiburg, Tübingen, Oberbayern, Niederbayern, Oberpfalz, Oberfranken, Mittelfranken, Unterfranken, Schwaben, Bremen, Darmstadt, Gießen, Kassel, Koblenz, Trier, Rheinhessen-Pfalz, Braunschweig, Hanover, Lüneburg, Weser-Ems), Greece (Attica, North Aegean, South Aegean, Crete, Eastern Macedonia, Thrace, Central Macedonia, Western Macedonia, Epirus, Thessaly, Ionian Islands, Western Greece, Central Greece, Peloponnese), Guadeloupe, Iceland, Ireland (Northern and Western, Southern, Eastern and Midland), Italy (Basilicata, Calabria, Sicily, Sardinia, Toscana, Marche), Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Martinique, Monaco, Netherlands (Flevoland, North Holland, South Holland, Groningen, Friesland, Drenthe, Overijssel, Gelderland, Utrecht, Zeeland, North Brabant, Limburg,), Norway (Trøndelag, Oslo and Viken, Western Norway), Portugal (North, Alto Minho, Cávado, Ave, Área Metropolitana do Porto, Alto Tâmega, Tâmega e Sousa, Douro, Terras de Trás-os-Montes, Algarve, Algarve, Center (PT), Oeste, Região de Aveiro, Região de Coimbra, Região de Leiria, Viseu Dão Lafões, Beira Baixa, Médio Tejo, Beiras e Serra da Estrela, Lisbon Metropolitan Area, Lisbon Metropolitan Area, Alentejo, Alentejo Litoral, Baixo Alentejo, Lezíria do Tejo, Alto Alentejo, Alentejo Central), Réunion, Saint Barthélemy, Saint Martin, Sint Maarten, Slovenia (Eastern Slovenia, Western Slovenia), Spain (Galicia, A Coruña, Lugo, Ourense, Pontevedra, Cantabria, Basque Country, Álava, Gipuzkoa, Biscay, Navarre, La Rioja, Aragon, Huesca, Teruel, Zaragoza, Comunidad de Madrid, Castilla y León, Ávila, Burgos, León, Palencia, Salamanca, Segovia, Soria, Valladolid, Zamora, Castilla-La Mancha, Albacete, Ciudad Real, Cuenca, Guadalajara, Toledo, Extremadura, Badajoz, Cáceres, Catalonia, Barcelona, Girona, Lleida, Tarragona, Valencian Community, Alicante, Castellón, Valencia, Baleares, Ibiza and Formentera, Mallorca, Menorca, Andalusia, Almería, Cádiz, Córdoba, Granada, Huelva, Jaén, Málaga, Sevilla, Murcia, Ceuta, Melilla, El Hierro, Fuerteventura, Gran Canaria, La Gomera, La Palma, Lanzarote, Tenerife), Switzerland (Lake Genova Region, Vaud, Valais, Genève, Espace Mittelland, Bern, Freiburg, Solothurn, Neuchâtel, Jura, Northwestern Switzerland, Basel-Stadt, Basel-Landschaft, Aargau, Zürich, Zürich, Eastern Switzerland, Glarus, Schaffhausen, Appenzell Ausserrhoden, Appenzell Innerrhoden, St. Gallen, Graubünden, Thurgau, Central Switzerland, Luzern, Uri, Schwyz, Obwalden, Nidwalden, Zug), and Albania, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Brunei Darussalam, China, Japan, Serbia, and all other countries outside of the European Union and Schengen Area that are not listed as Green or Amber.

See the Belgium Federal Public Service Covid-19 for further details.

Entry restrictions

  • Passengers are not permitted to enter Belgium.
  • This does not apply to: 
    • Passengers holding proof they have been fully vaccinated with a vaccine approved by the European Medicines Agency at least 2 weeks prior to arrival;
    • Passengers holding an NHS full vaccination certificate from the United Kingdom, confirming they have been fully vaccinated against Covid-19. Passengers holding a certificate issued by Scotland must ensure it is the recent type with a QR code;
    • Nationals and residents of the European Union or Schengen Area member states, including family members;
    • Passengers holding a residence card (or D-visa) issued by a Schengen Area member state;
    • Diplomats and staff of international organisations or passengers invited by international organisations, provided their physical presence is required;
    • Healthcare professionals, transport personnel, frontier workers and seasonal workers in agriculture and horticulture;
    • Passengers travelling for humanitarian reasons;
    • Passengers visiting a partner in Belgium, provided holding evidence of a stable and long-term relationship;
    • Passengers transiting outside the Schengen Area and the EU;
    • Passengers travelling for co-parenting reasons;
    • Passengers travelling for funerals, marriages or civil partnerships of first and second degree family;
    • Seafarers travelling on duty;
    • Passengers travelling for study reasons, including students, interns and teachers; or
    • Professionals travelling for economic reasons, including professional athletes and journalists;
    • Passengers holding authorisation to enter or work issued by the Belgium authorities.
  • Passengers travelling to Belgium for business purposes must have completed the online Business Travel Abroad Form (BTA) prior to departure here. The generated certificate number must be entered in the Passenger Location Form (PLF) to activate the professional travel section. The BTA must be completed by the Belgian employer or client of the passenger.

Form requirements

  • Passengers will be denied boarding if they do not hold a QR code generated as proof of completion of a Public Health Passenger Locator Form, available here, within 48 hours before arriving in Belgium.
    • The requirement to complete a Public Health Passenger Locator Form does not apply to passengers who will stay in Belgium for less than 48 hours, or passengers returning to Belgium after staying abroad for less than 48 hours.
  • Passengers over the age of 11 whose main residence is not Belgium must also hold a negative Covid-19 test obtained within 48 hours of arrival, or a Covid-19 certificate confirming that the passenger is fully vaccinated or recovered.

Quarantine and test on arrival requirements

  • Residents of Belgium travelling from Red countries must quarantine for 10 days on arrival.
  • This does not apply to:
    • Passengers holding a European digital Covid-19 certificate confirming that the passenger is fully vaccinated and that at least 2 weeks have elapsed since the last dose, or a negative PCR test result issued within 72 hours prior to arrival, or that the passenger has recovered from Covid-19;
    • Passengers who undergo testing on day 1 or 2 after arrival.
  • Passengers travelling from Red countries must quarantine for 10 days on arrival. Passengers will be subject to testing on arrival.
    • This does not apply to passengers holding a European digital Covid-19 certificate confirming that the passenger is fully vaccinated and that at least 2 weeks have elapsed since the last dose, or a negative PCR test result issued within 72 hours prior to arrival, or that the passenger has recovered from Covid-19.
    • The quarantine requirement does not apply to passengers arriving from outside the European Union who hold proof that they are fully vaccinated with an EMA approved vaccine and that at least 2 weeks have elapsed since the last dose, however these passengers must undergo testing on arrival.

This Information is intended as a Guideline.

Issuing Authorities

a) Belgian Embassy
625 Leyds St, Muckleneuk 0002
Tel: 012 4403201 Fax: 012 4403216
The visa section at the Embassy in Pretoria has been closed.

b) Belgian Consulate of Johannesburg
3rd Floor, 158 Jan Smuts Bld, 9 Walters Ave, West Core, Rosebank, JNB 2196
PO Box 3431 Parklands 2121
Tel: (011) 912-9611 
Mon-Fri: 08.00 - 13.00 and 13.30 - 16.00
Telephone Enquiries: 08.30-12.30 and 13.30-15.30
Visa Applications: Monday till Friday 08.30 - 12.30 (by appointment)
Telephonic enquiries for visa: Monday till Friday 14.00-15.00
E-mail enquiries: Johannesburg@diplobel.fed.be
Web: www.southafrica.diplomatie.belgium.be

c) Belgian Consulate of Cape Town 
1 Thibault Square, 19th floor, Corner Long Street & Hans Strijdom Avenue, Long Street, Cape Town
Tel: (021) 419-4690
Telephone enquiries: 13h00 - 15h00
O/hours: Mon-Fri: 09:00-13:00
E-mail: Capetown@diplobel.fed.be
Web: www.southafrica.diplomatie.belgium.be

ALL VISA APPLICATIONS TO BE APPLIED FOR THROUGH TLSCONTACT IN CAPE TOWN OR JNB:

Cape Town TLScontact Visa Application Centre
Media Quarter, Upper Ground Floor, 2 De Smit Street, De Waterkant
Tel: 012 472 3801
Application hours: Mon-Fri 08:30-13:30 (by appointment)
Collections: Mon-Fri 08:30-16:00
E-mail: contact.cpt2be@tlscontact.com
Web: https://be.tlscontact.com/za/splash.php

JNB TLScontact  Visa Application Centre  JHB: 
2nd - 3rd Floor, 24 Central Building, Gwen Lane and Fredman Drive, Sandton
Tel: 012 472 3801
E-mail: contact.jnb2be@tlscontact.com
Web: https://be.tlscontact.com/za/splash.php
Application hours: Mon-Fri 09:00-15:30 (by appointment)
Passport retrieval hours: Mon-Fri 08:30-16:00

Visa Requirements

Visas are required by SA passport holders, but not British P/port holders.

Visas are required by other passport holders. Passengers in transit from Belgium to another country that requires a visa, MUST obtain that visa in advance.

REQUIREMENTS: See General Schengen Requirements and the TLS website.

ALL VISA APPLICATIONS TO BE APPLIED FOR THROUGH TLSCONTACT IN CAPE TOWN OR JNB:

  • Please note that the Visa On Web should be completed and printed prior to booking an appointment. As soon as your form is validated your VOW application form will be sent to your email address. The form should be completed in capital letters using black ink and must be signed by the applicant in person.
  • PLEASE NOTE All visa applicants will have to apply in person when lodging their application, in order to provide their fingerprints. Children under the age of 12 years old are exempted of fingerprints. However, an appointment still needs to be made to allow for intake time.
  • All travel insurance submitted is to consist of one page and will explicity mention  its compliance with Schengen regulations. All major insurance companies have been contacted and have drafted a one page  Schengen travel Insurance. In the event that your insurance company is not aware of this regulation, please advise them to contact the Consulate/Embassy direct.

NOTES:
• Letter from company in SA & Belgium (stating all costs and medical insurance will be paid for) COMPULSORY.
• NB Please specify if visa is for one or multiple entries. Specify reason & proof for multiple entry.
• Only D visa applicants apply at the Consulate, not at TLS

 

Visa Processing Time

5-10 working days.

  • Please ensure that visa applications reach the issuing authorities at least 15 days before departure date.
  • Incomplete applications will only be processed after all outstanding documents are received. No on-the-spot Schengen visa will be issued.

Visa Validity

A Schengen visa allows a maximum stay of 90 days within a period of 180 days in the Schengen countries. Belgium must be your main travel destination.

Visa Cost


VISA FEES:
See https://be.tlscontact.com/za/JNB/page.php?pid=application_fees

Tourist visa: EUR80 / EUR40 children 6-12
TLS Service fee: EUR27

* The visa fee, only collectable in ZAR, may change as a result of currency fluctuation.

SA Representative

South African Embassy

Montoyerstraat 17-19
1000 BRUSSEL

MINISTER RAAD Manelisi Paulos GENGE
+32 2 285 44 00
+32 2 514 78 03

Travel Health

Compulsory:  None
Recommended Travel Vaccines:  Hepatitis B, Tetanus, Polio