Egypt has expanded the list of nationalities who can obtain a visa online. This is part of a push to revitalize the tourism industry in the country by making it easier for more people to get authorization to visit.
Egypt’s electronic visa (e-Visa) was previously available to citizens of 46 different countries around the world.
Now, travelers with passports issued by 28 more countries can use the digital system to apply. This brings the total number of eligible nationalities to 74.
According to Ghada Shalaby, the Deputy Minister of Tourism and Antiquities, this move will help to encourage many tourists of different nationalities to visit Egypt.
The country launched its e-Visa platform at the end of 2017. Since then, it has provided a convenient way for foreign nationals to apply for an Egyptian travel permit.
Applications can be made in various different languages, with support available for inquiries.
Travel to Egypt Made Easier for More People With the e-Visa
The big advantage of being able to obtain a visa for Egypt online is that it is much quicker and easier than the alternative.
Visitors with eligible passports can apply from the comfort of their own homes, offices, or any other location with an internet connection.
Travelers simply enter their details into an online form. It takes mere minutes to complete and submit the necessary information. Then, the application is processed and the approved visa is received within a week.
Until recently, passport holders from 46 countries were able to use the online system to get their Egypt visas. Now, that figure stands at 74. The new 28 nationalities are:
- Hong Kong
- San Marino
- Saudi Arabia
- United Arab Emirates
Travelers of other nationalities were required to apply for their visas at an Egyptian embassy or consulate instead. As well as potentially having to travel a distance just to apply, the process of obtaining a visa from a diplomatic mission is generally longer than the online platform.
Citizens of the 28 newly-added countries can now enjoy the benefits of the e-Visa system, with applications being faster and more convenient than ever before.
A Boost for Egypt’s Tourism Industry?
Deputy Minister of Tourism and Antiquities Ghada Shalaby announced that the latest countries added to the e-Visa list are expected to have a positive impact on tourism figures in Egypt.
Like many places in the world, travel to Egypt has been severely impacted by the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. The country’s tourism industry has taken a hit and now the government is taking measures to boost the number of visitors from summer 2021.
The news that passports issued by 28 more countries are now eligible for the e-Visa comes around the anniversary of Egypt reopening airports on 1 July 2020. Borders had been closed from March of that year, but by July, the government was attempting to bring tourists back.
However, tourism has still not recovered over the past 12 months. It is hoped that expanding the online visa to these 28 nations will help the situation.
Tour groups are currently allowed to visit 3 Egyptian governorates that have not been affected too badly by COVID-19:
- The Red Sea
- Marsa Matrouh
- South Sinai
Travelers arriving in Egypt are still subject to some coronavirus restrictions. For example, they will need one of the following as proof that they are safe to travel:
- Negative PCR test
- Vaccination certificate (showing that they have been fully vaccinated against COVID)
Despite these rules, the official line is that Egypt is open to visitors. With more travelers now able to get their tourist visa online, summer 2021 may prove to provide a much-needed boost to the country’s tourism sector.