British tourists visiting popular Turkish holiday resorts from April 2014 will only be able to enter the country with a valid e-visa as the Turkish immigration authority switch away from paper.
From the 10th April 2014 ports of entry into Turkey including Antalya, Bodrum and Dalaman Airports will no longer issue the “sticker type visa” in return for a £10 note.
Instead visitors heading for Fethiye, Marmaris, Bodrum and other popular Turkish holiday resorts will need to purchase an electronic visa, known as e-visa, before their visit to Turkey. (Note visitors will be able to purchase a visa at special e-kiosks at Turkish ports of entry until 31 December 2014).
So as well as booking their holiday and adding Advance Passenger Information to their flight details holiday makers going to Turkey will also now need to make an application for a visa to the official site www.evisa.gov.tr
The new Turkish e-visa was introduced last year and has operated alongside the current sticker system.
The switch over on 31st December 2014 will no doubt save time and resources and improve controls for the Turkish immigration authorities.
Visitors should also find one less queue to tackle and a smoother passage from plane to holiday with only the immigration booth to visit.
They should also find the online approval process, helpful period of stay calculator and clear rules during the application process provides piece of mind.
However, the move to “self service” will not necessarily be easy or save time for everyone.
• Visitors will need to be able to use the internet visit and apply for the e-visa using the online system at www.evisa.gov.tr
• Each travelling person including infants and children will need to apply for an e-visa at least 24 hours prior to travel.
• Payment can only be made with a valid credit/debit card with “3D Secure System” that is open to international transactions to be able to make payment.
The above have encouraged a number of online ‘agencies’ that claim they will assist users in receiving Turkish e-Visas in return of a service charge.
The British Embassy issued a warning via their Facebook page for people who are contemplating using such agencies.
“There are numerous web sites which claim to assist users in receiving Turkish e-Visas in return of a service charge. We do not have any connection with them. Therefore, we cannot be held responsible for any misuse of information or failure of service on their side.
You should apply for your e-Visa at least 24 hours before your departure. However, you are advised to make an application at least one week before your departure.”
What If I Arrive in Turkey Without an E-Visa
The immigration authorities have just announced that they will have electronic kiosks located at all Turkish airport ready for the big switchover on April.
So make sure you do arrive without a visa you at least have a credit/debit card that can be used to pay in US Dollars with you to make the payment.
Look to the Future Its Only Just Begun
But these transition issues are likely to fade away as the way we used to buy a Turkish tourist visa fades in memory.