Eritrea visa types
Eritrea situated on the west coast of the Red Sea is an eastern African country with a small population and area. Its capital is Asmara, and the country shares borders with Sudan, Ethiopia, and Djibouti. It is a country that not so many people have heard of. However, I believe it is an underrated travel destination, and people should seriously consider travelling to this beautiful country. It is a multi-ethnical country comprised of ethnic groups like Tigrinya, Tigre, Saho, etc. Therefore too many languages are spoken by local people. This multicultural diversity created a unique environment where you can enjoy mixtures of foods, differences, etc.
Travelling criteria feels like stepping back in time as almost anything old has a usage here. If we look at the near history of the country, we will see that it was an Italian colony. Even though they are repelled from the country in 1941, their influence stays strong. In the streets, you will see many old Italian cars. Furthermore, many cafes serves Italian food, which for many people are best Italian food outside Italy. The capital city Asmara is called New Rome. Most of the landmarks and architectural structures were constructed in the way their Italian counterparts were built. If you know Italian, you will find it easier to communicate as some elderlies can speak Italian. For history buffs, the city of Massawa is a must-visit place. Here stands ruins of historic structures dating back to ancient Egypt, Ottomans, etc. This city was also one of the places where prominent battles in the Eritrean War of Independence occurred.
Apart from being rich in history, Eritrea is also blessed by the beauty of its nature. The Dahlak Marine national park should be noted, especially in this regard. In this immense natural park, more than 300 species of fish are preserved. This park is also an excellent place for scuba diving.
One who desires to visit the country should first ask, do I need a visa for Eritrea?. How to know? You can find an answer to this question after checking the Eritrea visa policy.
Eritrea Visa Policy
According to the visa policy of Eritrea, there are two types of countries regarding their visa status. They are Eritrea visa free countries and visa-required countries. You might ask, which are Eritrea visa free countries? Actually, the list is quite short. Only the nationals of Uganda can enjoy visa-free entrance. The Visa policy of Eritrea defines visas as a tourist, business, family/friend visit, study, employment, official, and transit visas. Details of Eritrea visa application, can vary depending on the visa type. As you can see from the names, they are granted for specific reasons. One of the things that can be confusing, would-be business and employment visas. The main difference between these two is that the business visa does not allow you to take employment in Eritrea. It only enables you to engage in business activities, while an employment visa is a way to work in Eritrea.
Another thing to note about these visa types will be transit visas and their validity. With transit visas, you can only transit through the country within 72 hours. Visas to Eritrea can be extended or renewed. However, you will need strong reasons as extensions are done rarely. The procedure will be carried out at the immigration services in Eritrea.
Eritrea Visa Requirements
Requirements can be various, based on visa types. However, the major part of it applies to almost all visa types. You might ask, what are Eritrea visa requirements? You will find them on the list below:
• Eritrea visa application form duly completed by the applicant.You should present your photo that is in passport format (3.5x4.5 colored) and taken recently. The photo should capture your whole face. The Head in the photo should take up 70-80 percent of the photo. The applicant’s eye line should meet the camera straight. You should not wear anything that matches the colour of the background.
• You should present your passport which should remain valid for 6 months after you leave Eritrea, alongside a copy of your passport’s main page. Your passport should possess two blank pages.
• You should present a copy of your national ID card.
• You should prove that you have sufficient funds to cover your expenses during your travel.
• Hotel room bookings, along with a reference from one of Travel agents or Eritrea citizens.
These are what do you need to apply for a visa to Eritrea. However, these are not all. Depending on the visa type, there will be additional requirements. You might wonder, what are they? Let’s have a look at specific requirements for visas. Starting with a business visa, you will need an invitation letter provided by an organization or company in Eritrea. In this letter, your purpose of visit should be shown. For tourist and family/friend visit visas, you should present a travel itinerary that should indicate the date of entering Eritrea. If you want to apply for a study visa, you should present your invitation letter written by the educational institution where you got admitted. This invitation letter should also give information on the purpose and duration of stay. In the case of an employment visa, an employment letter provided by the employing company, the organization is needed. If it is a transit visa you want to apply for, then you will need a verified flight ticket indicating the next destination. What about visa fees? Are they the same for each of them? The answer is no, you will need to pay different amounts of visa fees for each. For a tourist, family visit, study visa, you will be asked to pay for the fee amount somewhere between 35-60 USD. For transit visas, it can be down to 30 USD.
Regarding business visas, prices range depending on the validity and entry types of the visa. For a business visa with a validity of three months, you will be asked to pay a fee of around 90-115 USD. For 6 months validity, the price can be as high as 200 USD. For a year-long business visa, it is somewhere between 285-300 USD.
How to Get Eritrea visa?
Getting a visa to Eritrea is not an easy task. The state is considered to be amongst the most difficult countries to get a visa. However, you can get your visa if you have bold travel reasons and know how to get Eritrea visa. You have two options at your disposal. They are visas via foreign representatives of Eritrea and Eritrea visa on arrival. Unfortunately, there is no service like Eritrea visa online, where you can complete visa procedures online. You might ask what do you need to apply for a visa to Eritrea? Well concerning requirements, they are almost identical. What distinguishes them is the application method. Furthermore, you will complete these applications at different timelines. Let’s have a close look at these methods. We will first start with visas via embassies, consulates, or visa application centres of Eritrea.
You can get any of the visas that we mentioned before through application to an embassy in Eritrea. It starts with locating the foreign representative of the country. Following this, you make an appointment with the embassy so that you can present your Eritrea visa application. Once you present the required documents and pay the fees, you will wait for a bit to get your application processed. How long does it take? It is not that precise as it varies from country to country. However, it generally takes around 10 and 28 days. If your application is successful, you will earn your visa.
How about Eritrea visa on arrival? The procedure of applying for a visa on arrival follows this guideline. A person first identifies whether he is entitled to apply for a visa on arrival or not. Only the nationals of Ethiopia and Sudan can apply for a visa on arrival. They bring their documents to the Asmara airport in Eritrea or an international entry point to Eritrea. There they also fill out Eritrea visa application form, and then their application gets processed. Bear in mind, and you should be ready for any circumstance and be well prepared by bringing all possibly required documents. Otherwise, you might not be able to enter the country. You can inquiry about documents, fees for visas at the embassy of Eritrea.
To sum up, Eritrea can be a new exciting travel experience. It is one of the unique countries in Africa. It is so different from other African countries, mostly due to Italian influence still evident in the country.
Tamerlan Mehdiyev is a science geek. He is doing a master's in Earth sciences and now planning to research climate change. He loves nature and fond of observing the beauties of the Earth. He believes traveling can help him to grow wise and find inner peace. His life goal is to see different places, cultures, people as many as possible.