Solo Traveler Tips 10 Ways to Avoid Visa Delays

Solo Traveler Tips 10 Ways to Avoid Visa Delays


Solo Traveler Tips 10 Ways to Avoid Visa Delays. This has become more complicated with security concerns. As a result, what is a top update? Be sure to read your visa while still at home.  Some spots have new rules. Even a tourist may need to sign in at a government office in-country or have some new rule to meet.

rsz_smartecarte (1)

I have visited 68+ countries. However, after many times of applying directly for visas, I find that it is still easy to fall into some common mistakes more than once. Having just picked up my Cambodian visa today, I fell into #8 below (the issue of single versus dual entry requirements.) Although I forgot to check this out before applying, I was lucky to discover that my itinerary and visa matched perfectly by coincidence not by following the visa instructions all the way through!

After that misstep, I came up with these 10 single traveler tips to avoid common visa mistakes. I look forward to comments by fellow solo travelers on how they avoid visa pitfalls.

Solo Traveler Tips 10 Ways to Avoid Visa Delays:

1.  Apply for visas as soon as possible after booking your flight(s).Don’t wait too late. In the high season if you need more than one visa, its is easy to run out of time. Be sure that your visa covers not just your date of arrival but your departure as well since some visas are for a flat period of time not coordinated with your travel schedule. Typically,  you must submit your passport and after a period of time, it is returned to you with the visa stamped in the existing pages. Living in Washington, I always hand-carry mine to the embassy and retrieve it. Commercial services can provide this service for a fee.

Solo Traveler Tips 10 Ways to Avoid Visa Delays:

2.  Never assume that you can fly through a country and change planes without a visa for the interim stop(s). China currently allows up to 72 hours for transfers without a visa. When a blizzard threatened to block my prior flight via New York to South Africa, I tried to change my flight to go via a southern route through Brazil to Cape Town.  I was told by the airline that I must have a Brazilian visa to take that flight so it didn’t work.

Solo Traveler Tips 10 Ways to Avoid Visa Delays:

3.  Before relying on Internet sources that claim to provide visas, check the countries’ website. Some have warnings about the authenticity of visas obtained from certain third party providers,

Solo Traveler Tips 10 Ways to Avoid Visa Delays:

4.  Read the directions carefully for acceptable photos and download or print them. A number of countries require photos to be standardized with only white backgrounds, hair behind the ears for women and certain styles of collars. In some cases. 2 photos rather than 1 are needed.

Solo Traveler Tips 10 Ways to Avoid Visa Delays:

5.  Take a copy of your travel documents, especially plane schedule/tickets, to apply for the visa. In the last year, I have been asked for specific proof of when I was leaving or entering the country and with a tour, a copy of the itinerary with my name designating that it was the trip I would be taking.

Solo Traveler Tips 10 Ways to Avoid Visa Delays:

6.  Credit cards are not generally accepted for visas so, if required, get a cashier’s check or other accepted form of payment to accompany your application.

Solo Traveler Tips 10 Ways to Avoid Visa Delays:

7.  When you go to apply, have the name of  your point of entry and departure  in each country. If you are on a river cruise or other small ship, it may be a very unfamiliar location so “know before you go”.

Solo Traveler Tips 10 Ways to Avoid Visa Delays:

8.   Look carefully at your trip  plans to see if you need a single or dual/multiple entry visa. Even if your stay is brief, this is an easy mistake to fall into. When I previously obtained a visa in the Amman, Jordan airport, I did not think to ask if it was single entry or merely valid for a set period of time. I made an intermediate trip to Dubai and discovered on return to Amman I needed to start over with a new visa. The cost was not very great. However, if you are in a hurry and don’t want to wait in line again, it may be best to start out with a visa allowing more than a single entry.  In addition, where purchase of visas is allowed at an airport, it is easy to solve an error of this kind but be aware that many countries require visas be obtained prior to arrival.

Solo Traveler Tips 10 Ways to Avoid Visa Delays:

9.   Always save old passports since some visa applications require a list of countries you have visited in the recent past. On a prior trip to Russia, , I had to list every country I had visited over the last 10 years or so. Since not all of them required a visa or stamped my passport, it meant rummaging around through multiple collections of travel photos. Keep a list if you can’t easily remember them all!

Solo Traveler Tips 10 Ways to Avoid Visa Delays:

10.  Visas may also be coupled with an entry form that is required upon departure. To avoid delays, on my midnight arrival in the Amazon, I was traveling with a small fold-up stapler to attach the entry documents to my passport so I could quickly find them again.

Last but not least, guard your passport and visas by carrying them in a money belt or keeping them in a hotel/boat safe. In this day and age of cyber crime and identity theft, such lost documents could  result in much more trouble than merely interrupting your trip.

 

The post Solo Traveler Tips 10 Ways to Avoid Visa Delays appeared first on Solo Trekker.



Source link