Sri Lanka is such a beautiful and underrated country full of nice people, breathtaking scenery, and delicious food. Applying for a Sri Lanka online visa or eVisa is very easy and quick. I got it the online Sri Lanka visa as a US citizen, but the process is same for everyone.
I could’ve gotten a Sri Lanka visa on arrival (it would’ve cost $5 extra) but it is way better to apply online beforehand, especially if you don’t want to be in a queue for an hour. They also refer to this as Sri Lanka ETA or Electronic Travel Authorization.
Do not let the April 2019 terrorist attacks scare you from visiting this enchanting (and cheap) country. I was there when it happened and I loved how quick the government went into enhancing the safety of the locals and tourists.
Before this attack, the country had 10 years of peace along with growing tourism. So I highly suggest booking your next trip here.
Things to Do in Sri Lanka
There are so many things to do and see in Sri Lanka, starting from beautiful beaches to Hindu and buddhist temples. A lot of people only plan for Colombo which is the capital and has sights such as Gangaramaya temple, Seema Malakaya, independence square etc.
But if you only want to hit the beaches, some of the best beaches in Sri Lanka are Wijaya beach, Mirissa beach and Hiriketiya beach. Unawatuna and Weligama are definitely worth visiting.
You can also plan for a 10 day Sri Lanka itinerary.
Who can Get Sri Lanka Online Visa?
Citizens of any country but the ones listed below, can get an ETA. Citizens of the following countries must get a visa prior to their arrival to Sri Lanka in a consulate.
|Afghanistan||Cameroon||Republic of the Congo|
|Cote d’Ivoire||Kenya||North Korea|
|Democratic republic of Congo||Guinea-Bissau||Nigeria|
Apply on Sri Lanka Visa Official Website
There is only one website where you can apply for the Sri Lanka Online Visa: http://www.eta.gov.lk/slvisa/.
Make sure you are not misguided to apply through some other bogus website.
The website is very simple and user friendly. Once you click on apply, you need to choose the Apply for an Individual under Tourist ETA. You would need to fill in some personal information such as your address, passport details etc.
Tips for Sri Lanka eVisa Application:-
- Intended Arrival Date : Don’t fret over this but keep it close to the date you are actually planning to travel. The ETA is activated from the day you enter Sri Lanka.
- Children : If you have children (below 16) traveling with you, you can add their details in your application. Children under 12 can enter free from any nationality but their details must be entered.
- Information about Departure : You can leave out the Port of departure, Airline and flight number while filling out the form. However, make sure you have a return ticket within 30 days when you arrive.
- Declaration: If you already are in Sri Lanka with an ETA or any other visa, you can’t get an ETA until that expires.
- Address in Sri Lanka : This can be the address of a hostel or hotel where you are going to stay.
How Much Does Sri Lanka Online Visa cost?
The Sri Lanka eVisa costs 35$ for everyone.
After filling out the form, you can pay for it using a credit or debit card. Please note that only Visa, Master card, and American Express are accepted. Depending on your credit card, you will need to pay a processing fee of 1$ approximately. If you are from any of the 28 countries under EU or one of the 20 countries below, your ETA is free. ( This is subject to change.)
Once you make the payment, you will see an acknowledgement on the screen along with a reference number. Make a note of that number. You can use it later to check the status of your application.
**Children under 12 enter free from any nationality (still must apply for a visa).
Sri Lanka ETA Approval Email after Payment
After your payment goes through, if everything is fine, you will receive the ETA approval email. Print it out and carry it with you before you arrive in Sri Lanka.
If you don’t get the ETA approval email, you can reach out to Sri Lankan Immigration.
Contact Details for Sri Lanka eVisa Helpline
Hotline : 0094 71 9967888
Telephone : 0094 70 1777555 , 0094 11 5329422
E-Mail : email@example.com
Visa duration : 30 days
Visa validity : 6 months
Visa fees : 35$ (+ 1$ processing fee)
No. of Entries : This is a double entry visa (up to 2 entries). You get 30 days per entry.
Immigration/ Port of Entry in Sri Lanka
When arriving in Sri Lanka, you must have the following documents.
Sri Lanka Online Visa Requirements at Port of Entry:
- A passport valid for not less than 6 months from the date of arrival, the same passport that you used when applying for Sri Lanka Evisa.
- A confirmed return ticket within 30 days from the date of arrival.
- Sufficient funds to meet the expenses during the stay.
- Yellow fever vaccination if you are from a Yellow fever affected country. Example- Ecuador, Bolivia
- Completed Disembarkation card : The immigration official keeps this. You don’t need to present it when leaving Sri Lanka. A separate Disembarkation card must be completed for each accompanying child traveling with the same passport.
At the immigration, hand over the documents and they will stamp your passport with a sticker like this.
Extension of Sri Lanka Online Visa
The ETA can be extended up to 6 months in 3-month blocks. You can do the extension at the Immigration Services Centre located in the central business district in Colombo. Make sure to do it before your ETA expires.
Things to Note
- The Sri Lanka ETA is valid for six months and a fresh ETA cannot be obtained using the same passport until that ETA expires. If you lose the passport which contains the valid ETA you may apply for a fresh ETA.
- If after receiving an ETA approval, you find out that you have made a mistake, then you will have to submit a fresh application and pay for it again.
I was in Sri Lanka for approximately 25 days and saw 90% of the country. I never thought that Sri Lanka would be one of my top 3 favorite countries. If you get a chance, do visit it.
Have you tried obtaining a Sri Lanka Online Visa?
If you have tried obtaining a Sri Lanka Evisa, let us know in the comments. The visa process is constantly changing and it will help me updating the article if there is any change. Please feel free to ask any questions you might have.