YANGON, 6 January 2015: Myanmar’s Ministry of Immigration and Population officially included another 32 nationalities that are now eligible for an eVisa, effective 2 January, 2015.
They join a list of 68 countries that were eligible for eVisas when the scheme rolled out 1 September 2014.
The eVisa costs USD50 paid for by Visa or American Express, but applicants should be aware there are other web services that compete for attention; one paying Google to have a top ranking (Myanmar-visa.org).
They have similar internet addresses that could give applicants the impression they are contacting the official website for eVisas. Fees charged by the sites are much higher possibly exceeding USD100.
The official site is evisa.moip.gov.mm, while information on restricted no-go areas can be found at mip.gov.mm.
Also, effective 2 January, the eVisa is now available for travellers entering the country at Yangon, Mandalay and Nay Pyi Daw airports (first point of entry).
This is particularly useful for travellers flying to Mandalay and Nay Pyi Daw directly from Bangkok and Singapore.
Despite assurances by the Myanmar government last year, not all ASEAN citizens are eligible for visa-free entry for up to 14 days.
That privilege is available to citizens of Laos, Vietnam, Philippines, Brunei, Indonesia and Cambodia.
Surprisingly, the big three investment countries for Myanmar (Thailand, Singapore and Malaysia) are not on the visa-free list.
According to the ASEAN charter all member countries are expected to offer visa-free travel to citizens of the 10 member bloc. Myanmar is the last country to comply with that requirement and it was thought it would introduce visa-free travel across ASEAN before it relinquishes the ASEAN chair at the end of January. That is now unlikely.
Travellers applying for an eVisa, must complete the online form, provide a 4.8 cm x 3.8 cm colour photo that can be attached to the online file and have a valid passport of more than six months.
They have to identify they are staying in a registered hotel, or guesthouse, to meet visa conditions and the visa is limited to tourism purposes excluding business, event or seminar related trips. This is again counter productive for a country that is keen to attract quality visitors. Business tourism is a top earner with much higher daily spend than registered by leisure travellers.
Once the online process is approved the applicant receives an approval letter that is valid for just 90 days and must be presented to immigration officials at the first point of entry.
An eVisa is valid for a stay of just 28 days and cannot be extended.
An application is confirmed within one hour of filing online and it usually takes three days for the ministry to email the confirmation or rejection. Fees are non-refundable, whatever the outcome.
The following 32 countries were added to Myanmar’s eVisa facility list 2 January 2015:
|8.Costa Rica||24. Mauritius|
|9.Côte d’Ivoire||25. Monaco|
|12.Fiji||28. South Africa|
Original list of 68 countries and Taiwan that eligible to apply eVisa:
|1. Argentina||35. Latvia|
|2. Australia||36. Lithuania|
|3. Austria||37. Luxembourg|
|4. Bangladesh||38. Malaysia|
|5. Belgium||39. Malta|
|6. Brazil||40. Mexico|
|7. Brunei||41. Mongolia|
|8. Bulgaria||42. Nepal|
|9. Cambodia||43. Netherlands|
|10. Canada||44. New Zeland|
|11. Chile||5. Norway|
|12. China||46. Pakistan|
|13. Colombia||47. Panama|
|14. Croatia||48. Peru|
|15. Cyprus||49. Philippines|
|16. CZECH||50. Poland|
|17. Denmark||51. Portugal|
|18. Egypt||52. Romania|
|19. Estonia||53. Russia|
|20. Finland||54. Saudi Arabia|
|21. France||55. Serbia|
|22. Germany||56. Singapore|
|23. Greece||57. Slovakia|
|24. Hungary||58. Slovenia|
|25. India||59. Spain|
|26. Indonesia||60. Sri lanka|
|27. Ireland||61. Sweden|
|28. Israel||62. Switzerland|
|29. Italy||63. Thailand|
|30. Japan||64. Turkey|
|31. Korea, DPR||65. United Kingdom|
|32. Korea, Republic||66. United States of America|
|33. Kuwait||67. Venezuela|
|34. Laos||68. Vietnam|
To learn more about how to apply for a 70 day Myanmar business visa go to http://consult-myanmar.com/myanmar-business-visa/
Source: MYANMAR TIMES