What is the change? Omani authorities have set up temporary visa-on-arrival counters at the new Muscat International Airport terminal but are moving quickly toward eliminating the visa-on-arrival program in favor of Oman’s e-visa program.

What does the change mean? All tourist and express visa applications should be submitted online through the e-visa portal prior to travel. Companies should register and activate a company account on the e-visa system. The temporary visas-on-arrival counters were set up for emergencies where eligible international travelers are not aware of the change. However, it is unclear how long the counters will be available.

  • Implementation time frame: Ongoing.
  • Visas/permits affected: Tourist, multiple-entry visas, and express visas; e-visas.
  • Who is affected: Individuals and companies that previously relied on visas on arrival.
  • Impact on processing times: Applicants should apply online ahead of travel and print out the e-visa.
  • Business impact: Companies should register an account and factor in additional time to apply and receive approval online.

Background: The e-visa program, which was introduced in 2017, requires users to fill out an online application, pay the government fee and upload supporting documents. In February, the Royal Oman Police announced that all tourist and express visa applications would need to be submitted online through the e-visa portal starting March 21. The temporary visa-on-arrival counters are intended as an emergency solution for international travelers who are not aware of the policy change.

BAL Analysis: Travelers who rely on tourist or express visas should apply for an e-visa before traveling.

This alert has been provided by the BAL Global Practice group and our network provider located in Oman. For additional information, please contact your BAL attorney.

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