Category Archives: Visa

Sri Lanka introduces new online visa system with effect from 17 April, 2024

All arrangements have been made to commence the implementation of new visa methodology and new online methodology of the Department of Immigration and Emigration with effect from 17 April, 2024. Arrangements have been made together with GBS Technology Service & IVS Global Institute to implement the E-Visa system – the online methodology to be introduced in lieu of the ETA (Electronic Travel Authorization) methodology implemented at present at www.srilankaevisa.lk.

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Spain CG fields TAFI member queries, says it increased visa processing capacity by 30% in 2023

Addressing TAFI members in Mumbai, Fernando Heredia Noguer, Consul General of Spain in Mumbai, said, “We have increased our visa processing capacity by 30 per cent in 2023 compared to 2022 and increased 40 per cent compared to the average of the four years before the pandemic! In 2023, we managed to issue almost 52K visas versus 40,000 visa applications in 2022.”

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FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

1) What is VFS Global’s role in the visa process? VFS Global’s role in the visa application process is limited to front-end administrative tasks only, which include collecting visa application forms, required documentation as per the checklist, and enrol biometrics, if applicable. This allows diplomatic missions (embassies/consulates) to effectively manage their time and resources and focus on the critical task of assessing visa applications and decision making. VFS Global plays no role in the decision-making process of granting or refusing a visa. 2) What is VFS Global’s role in providing visa appointments and visa decisions? VFS Global’s role in the visa application process is limited to front-end administrative tasks only, which include collecting visa application forms, required documentation as per the checklist, and enrol biometrics, if applicable. Visa appointments are available online on first-come first-serve basis as per the directives of the client governments we serve. Decisions on visa applications, including the availability of appointment slots and the timelines to process them, are at the sole discretion of the respective client governments and may vary from one mission to another. 3) How early before my travel dates should I apply for my visa? When planning your travels, you always book flights and hotels in advance. Do the same for visas. Most countries accept visa applications up to 90 days (3 months) before your date of travel. According to the revised Schengen Visa Code, effective 02 February 2020, you can apply for a Schengen visa up to 6 months before your date of travel. VFS Global forwards applications to respective embassy/consulate as per the agreed service level agreements with them. 4) What is the typical turnaround timelines for visas? Each country …

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Learn about visitor visas for New Zealand by attending their upcoming webinar on April 4 at 10am

Tourism New Zealand will conduct an exclusive training sessions for the travel trade on visitor visas led by Immigration New Zealand live on Thursday, April 4 from 10am – 11am. Attendees can gain valuable insights and updates on visa procedures and regulations for the destination. For more information, write to jaspreet.kaur@ddppl.com or 9650196532 to register.

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Agents must guide their clients applying for visas, particularly during peak season: Harmandeep Singh

With the impending peak season, Harmandeep Singh Anand, MD, Jagsons Travels, says that to avoid last-minute rush for visas and prevent visa shopping, travel agents must guide their clients on when to apply for visas, depending on the country their wish to travel to. “Every year during peak season there is a lot of traffic for European destinations and Indian travellers tend to decide their holidays very last minute and expect their visas within a short span of time. However, visa as such has never been a problem if one applies in advance. Most of the embassies have increased their time when you can apply for a visa. For instance, you can apply for a Schengen visa as early as six months in advance! We see a lot of rush starting from March onwards. Next month will be super peak which leads to a lot of visa shopping. None of the European destinations had a challenge; they only had a restricted number of visa that would be issued. If you look at Italy, it has made it simpler in terms of repeat visitors to Schengen territory in the last eight years where they have opened up additional appointment slots. So agents must guide their clients in terms of applying for visas,” he shares.

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Traditional visa requirements impact nearly half of global population in 2023, restricting international mobility

According to UN Tourism’s Tourism Visa Openness report, traditional visa requirements continue to be the most prevalent form of entry regulation, with a considerable impact on international mobility. In 2023, these traditional visa policies affect almost half of the world’s population, 47% to be precise.

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This is India’s decade as global destination for investments and travel: VFS Global Founder

India has a vibrant economy, a large young population and a rich cultural heritage which make it attractive for investors and visitors, according to the CEO of the world’s largest visa outsourcing company. Zubin Karkaria, founder and CEO of VFS Global, said India is undergoing a rapid economic and social transformation. “This creates new opportunities for business, trade, tourism, and culture. I truly believe this is India’s decade,” he said. “In VFS global, we are very optimistic about the prospects of India as a global destination, as a source, both for inbound tourism and outbound travellers. India has a vibrant and diverse economy, a large young population, and a rich cultural heritage. These factors make India attractive, both for investors and visitors,” he told PTI in a recent interview. Known for creating a new industry of visa and passport outsourcing, VFS Global in just 22 years of its inception operates in 149 countries through 3,353 application centers. So far it has processed 278 million applications and 130 million biometrics enrolments. Today VFS Global is the trusted partner of 67 governments, including the Five Eyes Intelligence Alliance (the United States, the United Kingdom, Australia, Canada and New Zealand), and 24 of the 27 Schengen countries. “VFS Global is a truly Indian success story that has gone global. I mean truly global. I conceptualised and launched VFS Global in India, one of the first made-in-India unicorns to become a global leader in its field,” Karkaria said. “We remain committed to supporting India’s growth story by providing seamless and tech-driven visa services to events, to secure cross-border mobility for people and trade. This is to and from India, thereby contributing to India’s economic …

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Visa-free travel increases globally, surge in visa-on-arrival options: UN Tourism Report

As per the UN Tourism report, visa-free travel has seen an uptick globally with 21 per cent of people across the world not needing any form of visa, an increase from 17 per cent in 2008 and 20 per cent in 2018. Moreover, 14 per cent of the world population can apply for visa on arrival, an increase from 6 per cent in 2008 and 15 per cent in 2018.

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Hon. MP Dr. Nishikant Dubey launches all-women Travel & Hospitality certificate programme at VFS Global Academy in Jharkhand

To mark International Women’s Day, VFS Global Academy at Deoghar inaugurates its all-women batch for the Travel and Hospitality Certification Programme. This milestone event was launched by Dr. Nishikant Dubey, Honourable Member of Parliament from Godda, setting a new standard in empowering women through specialised education and career opportunities in the travel and hospitality sector. The opening batch was selected from among the students of the Rama Devi Bajla Mahila Mahavidyalaya in Deoghar. The three-month certificate programme comprises industry-aligned modules on basics of tourism, introduction to hospitality business, event management and communication skills. The initiative aims to increase employment opportunities for women in the travel and hospitality sector and encourage social inclusion. The programme will be offered at no cost to the students. “VFS Global has made a significant step in supporting women’s empowerment by starting an all-women batch. This move will surely motivate young women towards independence. Congratulations to VFS Global Academy for focusing on skilling the youth in Deoghar, especially for creating tailored programmes that empower young women”, said Dr Dubey “We are launching an all-women batch to encourage women to pursue careers in the hospitality industry, responding to their growing interest in this field. This initiative supports the Indian government’s ‘Beti Bachao, Beti Padhao’ campaign and aligns with the International Women’s Day 2024 theme of #InspireInclusion,” said Prabuddha Sen, Chief Operating Officer, South Asia, VFS Global. Opened in August 2023 on the Software Technology Park of India campus in Deoghar, VFS Global has become a beacon of hope and opportunity for the community. VFS Global Academy, a part of VFS Global, the world’s leading outsourcing and technology service specialist for governments and diplomatic missions, was established with …

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