Renewing your driver’s licence in South Africa can be a strenuous and time-consuming process. Sometimes there is a seemingly unending queue; a machine is not working properly, you have to see a local councillor, or some other issue pops up during the process. The coronavirus pandemic made the process more stressful because offices had to shut down during the lockdown, and drivers got worried. However, the government extended the date of renewing a driver’s licence to 31st August 2021 for people whose driver’s licence expired between 26th March to 31st December. A driver’s licence is valid for five years after the date of renewal.
Do well renew your driver’s licence before the expiry date. Waiting till it expires can get you into trouble with the law as you may have to wait an entire month (4 weeks) from the day you applied to receive your licence card. Additionally, applying late will cost you additional fees because you will need to apply for a temporary driving licence. You will receive the temporary licence immediately after you apply for it. This is not the same for people whose driver’s licence is to be renewed this year.
The renewal process takes between 4 weeks to 6 weeks, after which your license will be available. You can get notified through SMS when your driver’s licence is ready for collection. However, you ought to have indicated that this is what you want during the application process. On the day you go to collect your licence, take your ID card and the original receipt of payment of the licence fee. It will serve as proof of payment, and the ID will show proof you are the owner of the renewed driver’s licence. Carefully check the information on the licence to ensure there are no errors. If you do not receive your licence in at most 8 weeks, contact the DLTC.
Sometimes people say they are busy or find some other reason why they have not renewed their driver’s licence even after the expiration date, but they are driving on public roads. The problem is that driving without a driver’s licence in South Africa will get you into serious trouble with the law and you can end up spending time in jail.
How to renew a drivers licence
- Contact the Driving Licence Testing Centre (DLTC) to find out their specific requirements and submit them at the office.
- If you live in Gauteng, you can apply online to renew your driver’s licence at https://online.natis.gov.za/#/
- Fill the application for renewal of the driving licence card, which is known as the DL1. This form is available at the Driving Licence Testing Centre (DLTC).
- Submit your optometrist report alongside the licence renewal application if you decided to do the eye test at the optometrist closest to you.
- Complete the document to show notification of change of particulars or address of an organisation (NCP) or a person.
You can ask someone else to collect your licence document if you are unable to do so yourself. The person needs to go with a certified copy of your ID, their ID and a certified copy of the person’s ID, and an affidavit from the police to show that you have permitted that individual to collect your driver’s licence. The affidavit should state why you cannot collect the card in person. Afterwhich the driving testing centre will be issued to your representative.
Drivers licence renewal requirements
- An original ID and a copy of your identity document (ID) or your old driving licence card. You can present a valid South African passport in the absence of any of the other two documents.
- Four black and white ID photographs but do well to consult with the centre to know the exact number of photos they require. It is possible to take photos at the DLTC to save yourself the stress.
- Proof of residence address like a utility bill in your name. If the bill is not in your name, then the person in whose name the bill is in must make an affidavit to show that you live at that address. Attach the utility bill to the affidavit when going. Bring a letter from your local ward councillor to confirm your residential address if you live in an informal settlement.
- The licence renewal fee costs approximately R250. However, different municipalities have different fees, so it is good to contact the licencing office you want to work with. Most centres require that you bring the money in cash.
- You can do an eye test at the optometrist centre closest to you. The optometrist will charge an amount that is specific to them. Then submit the report alongside your licence renewal application. However, you can do the eye test at the Drivers Licence Testing Center of your choice. The of the eye test will be included in your licence fee.
- Your fingerprints will be taken at the centre, and the cost of this is included in your licence fee.
- You have to take along extra money if your driver’s licence has expired. It will serve as the temporary licence fee. A temporary licence is a legal document that permits you to drive in South Africa while waiting for the original licence. It lasts 6 months and will keep you out of legal trouble.
If your driver’s licence is missing or was stolen, you need an affidavit from the police that states that it was stolen or you lost it.
Drivers licence renewal cost
The cost of renewing a driver’s licence in South Africa is relative, depending on where you live. You don’t have to pay an extra fee or penalty for the late renewal of your driver’s licence. Here are the towns, the cost of renewing a driver’s licence, and the cost of getting a temporary driver’s licence. Some places require that you pay a different sum to renew the driver’s licence and another amount for the temporary driver’s licence. Other areas combine the costs into one fee.
- Cape Town
You have to pay R185 to renew your driver’s licence in Cape Town, and this amount includes the cost of getting a temporary driver’s licence. You can only pay in cash. This is a fair amount in comparison to other areas.
It costs R228 to renew a driver’s licence in Johannesburg, and you can pay using a credit card or cash. This does not include the cost of a temporary driver’s licence, which costs an extra R72, and you have to pay it in cash. The Johannesburg centre requires you to pre-book at https://online.natis.gov.za, and the website will give you access to a list of the testing centres in Gauteng RTI.
- KwaZulu-Natal (KZN)
The cost of renewing your driver’s licence in KZN is R250, while that of a temporary driver’s licence is R92. You have to pay in cash.
Renewing your driver’s licence costs R185 in Mpumalanga.
Gauteng has a new system to book driver’s licence renewal online. Visit the natis portal at https://online.natis.gov.za to see the entire list of all the DLTC offices in Gauteng.
Where to renew driver’s licence
You can only renew your driver’s licence physically because you have to take an eye test and you have to give your fingerprints. The renewal process is done at Driving Licence Testing Centres. Gauteng residents can renew their driver’s licence at the post office that is closest to them in Gauteng.
Your driver’s licence card will be destroyed if you do not collect it within 90 days.
International applicants have to be in the country to renew their licence because of the new fingerprint and eye test policy. However, they can assign someone else to collect it if they leave the country before it is released.
Do well to contact the SA service at 131084 if you need any information on the renewing process.