The South African Revenue Service (Sars) says personal effects do not have to be declared to custom officials when leaving or entering the country.
If you have your laptop or cellphones with you, you're not required to declare that when you leave the country.— Beyers Theron, Executive at Customs & Excise Centre of Excellence at Sars
This comes after widely shared letter written by a disgruntled South African traveler published on the Business Day.
"I returned from Vietnam on Saturday and was made to pay R1 500 to bring my own laptop back into the country, although I have owned it for many years", the letter reads.
Travelers are not required to declare their electronic devices, Sars exec Beyers Theron explains.
He adds that it is important to have proof that the items are not new or were not purchased in foreign country.
You are not obliged to declare those, unless you have followed the process of the TC01 which is an escape route to make sure there are no hassles from customs.— Beyers Theron, Executive at Customs & Excise Centre of Excellence at Sars
However, they are required to declare any goods that could be liable for payment of duties on a travel concession card (TC01).
Theron says submitting traveler card helps travelers avoid penalties or having their goods detain by custom officials.
Actually, the DA65 form has been decommissioned. It exists only within the cargo space.— Beyers Theron, Executive at Customs & Excise Centre of Excellence at Sars
The legislation basically says that all those goods that belong to you are regarded as personal effects.— Beyers Theron, Executive at Customs & Excise Centre of Excellence at Sars
Visit the Sars website to learn more.
Take a listen to the explanation from Sars: