Visa in Passport on a Map of Asia

Sri Lanka – Visa Requirements & How-To Apply Online

This post was last updated on February 26th, 2020 at 07:47 am

What do you need for your vacation or trip to Sri Lanka? You have arranged your vaccinations, the tickets have been booked and your bag has almost been packed. Then it’s time to arrange your visa for Sri Lanka. Fortunately, a visa for Sri Lanka is easy to arrange.


Apply for ETA

You can request an ETA online at the Electronic Travel Authorization System of Sri Lanka. Applying for an Electronic Travel Authorization (ETA) is the easiest way to arrange a visa for Sri Lanka.


PLEASE NOTE – An ETA is not a visa, it is a travel authorization.


Applications are often approved within a few hours. To prevent stress, we recommend that you request ETA a few days in advance. You pay US$35 for an ETA. You pay it with your credit card and then receive a visa that is valid for 30 days. It goes like this;


  • Go to the website and follow all steps;
  • Pay the US$35;
  • Wait for the email containing your ETA approval;
  • Take the printed ETA approval notice with you to Sri Lanka. This is recommended but is not strictly necessary.


TIP – Your Sri Lanka visa starts the moment you enter the country (on arrival).


Apply for a Sri Lanka Visa Online

If you want more specific information about applying for your visa for Sri Lanka, have a look at websites in your local country. In most cases you can easily order your visa online and your visa will be delivered to you very quickly.


Sri Lanka Visa on Arrival

Anyone who opts for the above method opts for a 30-day visa. You can also arrange a 30-day visa in Sri Lanka itself (quite easily even). You can get a Visa on Arrival at Colombo Airport. Note that this costs you US$5 extra and there is often a long queue.


Often after a long journey you don’t feel like waiting even more. Our advice is to arrange your Sri Lanka visa in advance.


Extending Your Visa

You can extend your visa. In total you can extend the visa twice. Your first extension will be 90 days (3 months) and the second extension is also for 90 days (3 months). That should be enough to be able to travel in Sri Lanka for 6 months.


Keep in mind that the second time they will ask you more about why you are extending your visa. So you will have to have a good reason. What a good reason is… they, unfortunately, don’t disclose.


How to Extend Your Visa

If you want to extend your visa, you must go to the Department of Immigration and Emigration in Colombo. Here you can have your visa extended twice. You will have to go to Colombo for that because it is only possible in this city.


TIP – The Department of Immigration and Emigration is open Monday to Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. They do have a break between 12:00 p.m. and 1:00 p.m.


Make sure you arrange or have the following with you;


  • Your passport;
  • Completed Extension Form (click here to download);
  • Cash or credit card. You have to pay US$49;
  • A (recent) passport photo;
  • Return or transit ticket (although this is rarely requested).


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