Visa-free travel to Indians: Iran follows Kenya, Thailand, Vietnam to ease rules. 4 things you need to know

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Iran on Tuesday announced visa-free travel for Indians and citizens of several other nations for a maximum stay of 15 days. Iran’s decision follows a similar visa waiver implemented by Kenya, Malaysia, Sri Lanka, Thailand and Vietnam.

Announcing the latest development, Iranian embassy said, “The visa-free entry has been rolled out for Indian citizens from February 4 subject to four conditions”

Here’s all you need to know about the new rules: 

Individuals holding ordinary passports will be allowed to enter the country without a visa once every six months, with a maximum stay of 15 days, the statement from the ministry said. 

“It is important to note that the 15 days cannot be extended.”

“The visa abolition only applies to individuals entering the Islamic Republic of Iran territory for tourism purposes,” it said.

Hence, Indians wanting to stay longer, make multiple entries within six months, or require other types of visas must obtain necessary visas from Iranian missions in India.

“The visa abolition outlined in this approval specifically applies to Indian nationals who enter the country just through the air border,” it said.

In December, Iran approved a new visa-free programme for India and 32 other countries, including the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Indonesia, Japan, Singapore and Malaysia.

Here’s all you need about visa-free travel in these countries:

Kenya

From January 1, Kenya will remove visa requirements for international visitors. The move is likely to boost the country’s crucial tourism sector, offering visitors hassle-free travel to experience wildlife safaris and beach holidays.

President William Ruto said, “It is no longer necessary for anyone from any corner of the globe to bear the burden of applying for a visa to come to Kenya.”

Malaysia

Tourists from India and China can now enter Malaysia without a visa and stay there is up to 30 days. The new rule has been levied from December 1, 2023.

While announcing the development, Prime Minister Anwar Ibrahim said the exemption was subject to top security screening

“Initial screenings will be conducted for all tourists and visitors to Malaysia. Security is a different matter. If there are criminal records or the risk of terrorism, they will not be allowed to enter,” the prime minister said.

Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka has introduced a visa-free entry initiative for visitors from India and six other countries, including China, Russia, Malaysia, Japan, Indonesia, and Thailand. This initiative will remain effective until March 31, 2024

Thailand

Thailand has also started granting 30-day visa-free entry for visitors from India and Taiwan from November 1. The initiative will remain applicable till May 10, 2024.

Vietnam

Earlier this year, Vietnam also announced that it is contemplating visa-free entry for Indians and Chinese to enhance tourism. Presently, citizens of certain European countries enjoy visa-free access, while others can obtain e-visas with a 90-day validity and multiple entry options.

 

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Published: 07 Feb 2024, 10:27 AM IST

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