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Advice on visa options





I am after advice. If there is a qualified visa specialist who can perhaps answer it would be even better. 


I’m an Aus Citizen (Born in SA). I lived in Brisbane for 8 years. In mid 2021 I decided to move back to SA to take care of my mother. She had a few bad years health-wise and personally. So we settled in a small town close to Hermanus where I bought and operated a small coffee shop. 


I also met someone in Cape Town on my last visit in 2019 and we stayed in tough via video calls all through lockdown etc. 


When I returned in 2021 we decided to take our relationship further and have been together since. 


Long story short, a month or two ago after a tough few months with loadshedding etc I decided to let go of the shop and return home (to aus). I sold at a loss. 


I want to take my partner with me to Australia obviously. I know about the partner visas. I would prefer to apply onshore as were without income atm. Thinking was to get back asap, get a job and start saving as the application fee for the partner visa is a lot and we do not have it. 


He is a qualified hairdresser which is on the skills list atm so should get work easily. 


But because of the above we thought of getting him a tourist visa (yes where he cant work) but at least we can be together. I can earn enough to look after both of us for the time being. 


So I (stupidly probably) thought that I would be open and honest about our intention as explained above and included a letter with his application explaining it (with my citizen cert and qualifications etc). The reason was I read on the website that they sometimes (on a case-by-case basis) will consider lifting some restrictions on visas. The hope was that they might consider at least allowing a longer stay, so that he won’t have to leave every 3 months or best case scenario lift the “no work” restriction on the visa as that would help us get back on our feet sooner. I did make it clear that if not either we would be okay if he cant work and that I will look after us until we can apply for the partner visa. 


Turns out I should have lied. Haha. They did send him for medicals and biometrics (which made me hopeful) but then rejected his tourist visa. Reasoning wasn’t clear but it seems that because he is self employed that he does not have a reason to come back to SA and because we have limited funds at the moment, he will “look for work” there to fund his stay? 


So now we are stuck on what to do. How can we get him in asap. I realise that it might mean that I go ahead without him at first but that would be terrible. Firstly because it will take time to save for the partner visa, and even if we had the money now, processing can take anywhere between 6 - 30 months. 


So I need advice on what the best course of action would be. I have a few things in mind but unsure. And would hate to lose more money on failed attempts. They are:


Try to re-apply for a tourist visa. Obviously because of the first failure we would need to address the problems. We need to show them a “reason for him to come back”. But not sure what. Do we buy a return ticket for him first? Would that be enough? Do we try to get him a temp job here first and include a letter from the employer? 

Should we try to see if we can find a way to apply for the offshore partner visa now? And if so, would he be able to travel with me while we wait for the decision? I guess probably not on the submitted partner visa but would they approve a tourist visa for him then? 

Worst case then being he stays and I go ahead until we can apply for the partner visa. 


Anyone has any other ideas or advice or options? Would highly appreciate any help



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