Visa

The objective of Sri Lankan Visa is to facilitate the legal entry of non Sri Lankans and to regulate the period of their stay and the conditions governing their stay.

Competent Authority for issuing Sri Lankan visas is the Department of Immigration and Emigration. On behalf of the Department of Immigration and Emigration, the Deputy High Commission of Sri Lanka in Chennai (and other Sri Lanka Diplomatic Missions) has been authorized to issue visas.

VISA FOR SHORT-TERM VISITS
A visitor should obtain an Electronic Travel Authorization / short term visa to visit Sri Lanka for a short term for tourism, business or transit purposes.

Short Term Visa
A Visit Visa is an entry permit signifying the consent of the Sri Lankan Government for the admission of a foreign national to the country. The Visa contains details of the period of time and the condition/s of the stay.

Following sub-categories come under visit visas:

Tourist visit Visa
A Tourist Visa is issued to bona-fide tourists who wish to visit Sri Lanka for tourism purposes.

Business visit Visa
A Business Purpose Visa is issued to foreign nationals who visit Sri Lanka for business purposes for short period of time. This visa may be issued for single, double or multiple journeys.

Transit visa
Transiting through Sri Lanka

Electronic Travel Authorization (ETA)

Electronic Travel Authorization (ETA) is an online system which provides official authorization for short visits (up to 30 days), and is issued electronically. Those who wish to undertake short-term visits must obtain an ETA prior to their arrival in Sri Lanka.

ETA has to be applied via official ETA website http://www.eta.gov.lk

When applying ETA by third parties, payments are to be made through the arrangement made in the website www.eta.gov.lk and an acknowledgement of ETA application should be obtained. Any payments made to other websites or agencies are not valid to process a valid ETA. Therefore, always ensure that the payments made by accessing Sri Lanka ETA website and avoid making repayment at the port of entry to Sri Lanka.

All applicants except children below 12 years of age and transit passengers, who enter Sri Lanka up to 48 hours, have to pay an ETA Processing Fee online.

The ETA facility has been extended to all nationalities except those of Republic of Maldives, the Republic of Singapore and the Republic of Seychelles, who on the basis of reciprocity, are exempt from the requirement of obtaining ETA to visit Sri Lanka.

There is no requirement to endorse the ETA on the passport.

The applicants themselves or a third party on their behalf can apply for ETA by submitting an ETA application online via the ETA website.

It is advisable to keep a copy of the ETA approval notice with the traveler to be produced at the port of entry in Sri Lanka.

For last minute travelers who need to visit Sri Lanka without prior ETA approval, a limited facility to obtain ETA at Bandaranaike International Airport in Colombo is available. An additional fee of US$ 5 will apply.

ETA for Tourist Purposes:

The following categories available for applying tourist ETA:

Sightseeing, holidaying, excursions & relaxation
visiting friends and relatives
medical treatment including Ayurvedic and yoga
Participate in sporting events, competitions and activities relating to cultural performance

Documents required to process Tourist ETA in SLDHC Chennai

ETA application form (download application here)
Two recent passport size photographs
Air tickets (onward and return)
Hotel accommodation/invitation from Sri Lanka
For 90 days stay, consent from applicant explaining the reason for 90 days stay
Original & photocopy of the passport front and last pages (if applicant is a foreigner data page and valid Indian visa page)

Please note that the validity of the passport must be six months beyond the stay period in Sri Lanka

ETA for Business purposes

The following categories available for applying Business ETA (With effect from 07th December 2015)

Participation in Business Meetings and Negotiations
Conferences, Workshops and Seminars
Short Term Training Programmes
Participation in Art, Music and Dance events
Participation in symposiums
Participation in religious events

Documents required to process Business ETA in SLDHC Chennai

ETA application form (download application here)
Two recent passport size photographs
Invitation from Sri Lanka company should be attached with the visa application and a copy of the same to be sent directly by the Sri Lankan company to SLDHC Fax No. 0091 44 28241894
Covering letter from Indian organization
Air tickets (onward/return)
Original & photocopy of the passport front and last pages (if applicant is a foreigner data page and valid Indian visa page)
If applicant is business firm or investor in Sri Lanka
- License copy of company or BOI certificate,
- A Request letter denoting the purpose of visit to Sri Lanka in the company letter head.

Please note that the validity of the passport must be six months beyond the stay period in Sri Lanka

Diplomatic and Official Visas

Diplomatic or Official Passport holders intending to visit Sri Lanka for official purposes should forward their ETA applications to the Department of Immigration & Emigration through the relevant Sri Lanka Diplomatic Mission. They are advised to complete the relevant application (download application here) and submit it to the Deputy High Commission of Sri Lanka in Chennai, India with a Note Verbal from the relevant Mission/International Organization/Ministry of External Affairs of India and the invitation from the relevant Organization in Sri Lanka confirming that the visit is official.

While Gratis ETA and visa endorsement will be issued by the High Commission for Diplomatic and Official passport holders to travel to Sri Lanka for Official purposes, Diplomatic and Official Passport holders also should follow the normal ETA application procedure applicable for tourists for their personal visits i.e. should apply for ETA online by paying the relevant ETA processing fee.

Visa for Journalists

All media personnel intending to visit Sri Lanka should obtain a visa from the relevant Sri Lanka Embassy/High Commission/Consulate prior to their arrival in Colombo.

Media personnel should not apply for or enter Sri Lanka with, tourist or business visas.

Visa for journalists who wish to travel to Sri Lanka from Southern India is processed only through the Deputy High Commission in Chennai.

Documents Requirement for Journalist Visa

Duly filled ETA Business Application Form (download application here)
Journalist attestation form - (download application here)
Passport copy (for Indian nationals front and last pages, for other journalists (nationalities other than Indian) - data page and Indian visa page)
Two recent passport-size colour photographs
Letter of Commission: a detailed commissioning letter from respective media organization which includes the tentative programme with dates, places and if it contains interviews the persons to be interviewed and questions etc. (For freelance journalists, a letter from the Editor of a reputed publication)
Equipment list for electronic media along with a carnet or bank guarantee for customs purpose Form
Letter undertaking that the equipment are re-exported at the end of the visit
Copy of return air ticket or flight itinerary

Please note that the validity of the passport must be six months beyond the stay period in Sri Lanka

More information on journalist visa: http://www.immigrationlanka.com

Residence Visa & Entry Visa

A Residence Visa is a permit for a non-Sri Lankan to obtain residence facilities for special purposes. It is issued to persons of non-Sri Lankan nationality to whom it has been decided to extend residence facilities for the purpose of investment or otherwise, in circumstances where the prescribed authority is satisfied that their stay in Sri Lanka and the pursuit of their vocations are not prejudicial to the best interests of the population.

To obtain a Residence Visa, it is necessary to arrive in Sri Lanka on an Entry Visa issued by a Sri Lankan Mission abroad with the concurrence of the Controller General of Immigration and Emigration. The fact that you wish to apply for Sri Lankan Residence Visa has to be mentioned when obtaining the entry visa and necessary supporting documents has to be submitted.

Visit Visas can't be considered for conversion into Residence Visa.

For more information on Residence Visa: http://www.immigration.gov.lk

Entry Requirement for all travelers to Sri Lanka:
A passport with at least 6 months validity
Valid Sri Lanka visa or ETA, if applicable (refer to the Visa Requirements page for more information)
Sufficient funds to last for the intended period of stay in Sri Lanka
Confirmed onward/return tickets, if applicable
Entry facilities to their onward destinations, if applicable e.g. visas.
Completed Disembarkation Card
Yellow Fever Vaccination Certificate, if applicable

For more information on Sri Lankan Visas visit following websites:
1. Immigration Services Centre: http://www.immigrationlanka.com
2. Department of Immigration & Emigration: http://www.immigration.gov.lk
3. Official ETA website: http://www.eta.gov.lk/slvisa/

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