Thursday, September 18, 2008

New Tourist Visa Extension Law

Amal, a friend of mine who visited the Mogamma recently was given the following information. She hopes this information will help others who are in Egypt on short tourist visas.

Just a heads up to everyone who is staying here in Egypt long-term on a Tourist Visa or who knows anyone who is: I went to renew my tourist visa at Mogamma in Cairo today to be told that the law has now changed and the maximum extension permitted on a Tourist Visa now is only 3 months. After that time you either have to come back with an application for residency based on work, studying, marriage, or a child studying here. If you can't do that you will have to leave Egypt at the end of the 3 monthst!!

The option of keeping on coming back into the country with a new visa isn’t available, as it was when they saw that I already had an immigration file for previous visas that I was told I could only have the 3 months extension.

Looks like Egypt is finally catching up with the rest of the world in regard to tourist visas!

From the things they were saying to me it sounded as if they were trying to stop employers employing foreigners without a work visa, as they kept on telling me to get my company to get me a visa, even though I kept on telling them that I wasn't employed by a single company, but a freelance worker.


Darell said...

Good and nicely done - hope you can find a sponser for your visa. Your blog is important and I have linked my blog to your article an noticed LuLu did as well.

Darell said...

Apologize it was not Lulu who linked it was Living in Egypt - who writes a great blog.



Kim said...

Thanks Darrell. I have a visa valid for another couple of years because my husband has a work visa.

The person who gave this information is my friend Amal, I will pass on your wishes to her.

Andrew said...

Hi there,
I went to the Mogamma last week and they are still issuing 12 month tourist visas for foreigners, which can be renewed multiple times. I saw it happen in front of me.
It does depend on nationality - some countries like Korea, India, South Africa etc have different rules, but Australia, W. Europe, USA and UK have no issues.
Particular individuals may have problems but there isn't a blanket change to the system.

Kim said...

Thanks for the info Andrew.

I've been hearing a lot of contradictory versions of the visa renewal process recently.

Its good to hear from someone who had a good experience.

Amal said...

After much searching and asking, it seems that there has been a change in the way the visa laws are to be implemented, but it is not being applied universally.

It appears that tourist visas can be issued for up to 3 years, after which time they are issued at the ministry's discretion.

The recent change in the way the law is applied was highlighted in this article:
Egyptian Residency Visa Requirements

U.S. citizen working in Egypt are required to obtain a work permit through their employers and accordingly are authorized residency in the country. The Egyptian Immigration Authority has recently authorized the issuance of a temporarily tourist visa for only three months for working foreigners to finalize their residency status. All Foreigners applying for work, study or training permit, and staying longer than 30 days, require HIV/AIDS testing. Dependents, spouses and children aged 15 or older are subject to the same requirements. (See the top of page 6)

visasnap said...

When the country is coming to face its new age, changes in all its external affairs including of treatment of overseas travelers are acceptable. Travelers who are interested in seeing great pyramids can still enjoy as there will not be much change in terms of visitors and visa offers, after all a lot of Egyptian economy depends upon travel and tourism

VisaSnap said...

Despite all the oddities and issues in Egypt it is still a popular tourist destination for millions who wish to explore the land of Pharaohs. The recent popular revolution in the country for sure will bring peaceful administration and travel experience for travelers from outside the country. As tourism is a major contributor in the Egyptian economy the new government will definitely bring liberal visa policy to attract travelers.

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