Online tourist visa processing will now take 2-3 days
Posted on August 23, 2015
Online visas will now be available within 48 to 72 hours, not 7 days, the Immigrations department has said.
Director general Gordon Kihalangwa said applications, via evisa.go.ke, will be sustained and arising issues addressed.
The aim is to end cash handling by Immigration officers, Kihalangwa said, adding that 16,261 visas have been processed so far.
Travel agents will be able to apply for their clients but those found making money out of the process will be blacklisted, he further said.
Kihalangwa spoke during a meeting of the Kenya Tourism Board, Kenya Airways and tourism industry players at Nyayo House on Wednesday.
The e-applications will quicken the collection of data on tourists, who will only be turned away on security concerns.
He said those visiting countries outside the EAC will apply for double visa entry to enable re-entry.
Heritage Hotels CEO Mohammed Hersi welcomed the move saying last minute charter business will carry on smoothly.
For 60 days from September 1, both e-visa and visa on arrival will still be valid, he said, adding that e-visa booths will be available at the Jomo Kenyatta and Moi International airports.
The Immigrations department has already started online visa processing at www.ecitizen.go.ke; a multilingual site will soon be rolled out.
The tourism industry had warned about the continued use of manual and online visas saying Kenya could lose Sh30 billion annually.
A meeting between industry representatives and Interior PS Monicah Juma agreed that problems have to be addressed before manual applications are phased out.
In July, the Interior ministry set a deadline of September 1, to completely phase out manual visa applications at airports upon entry.
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