Electronic Visas (eVisas) have become one of the most common visa channels with more and more countries making use of it. Today, 44 countries around the world offer eVisas or some form of electronic visa solution for travellers. The service allows the secure management of the visa application process to take place entirely in an online environment, increasing time and cost efficiencies for the end customer and the concerned government as a convenient solution for pre-travel authorisation.
In this article, Jiten Vyas, the COO at VFS Global Regional Group, discusses how smart, quicker and hassle-free solutions in this space are making eVisas a preferred choice for global travellers.
As overseas travellers continue to grow by leaps and bounds each year, in the present digital era, technology plays a major role in determining the way travel is planned and decisions are made. We are now able to make travel decisions faster, whether related to transport or living arrangement or guided tours, with the help of tools and apps available at our fingertips.
Breakthroughs in technology coupled with improved internet connectivity and speed are allowing ‘armchair booking’ of visas, flight, hotels at the click of a button. Airports are upgrading their technological solutions to ensure biometric check-ins of travellers in the near future. Even in the case of visa services, eVisa services allow customers to submit their visa applications using just a mobile phone as it does not require a visit in person to the Application Centre as part of the submission process.
As improving technology continues to facilitate other newer applications in the travel and tourism industry, the potential benefits for global travellers are extensive, i.e. he or she will find a range of customized services tailored to specific requirements, irrespective of country of origin or destination, all available in a smoother and more enjoyable experience.
Some of the reasons why eVisa services are being preferred by modern-day travellers while deciding on their travel destinations are:
- Apply on the go with the globally accessible and user-friendly websites
- Simplified payment options- mostly online in nature
- Quicker turnaround time of decision making and
- No more paper form filling or carrying copies of documents to be submitted on arrival
- Time and efforts saved from not having to visit the Consulate or Embassy in person for a visa
- Track application status online
- Reduced waiting time at airports for select categories.
The eVisa is emerging as a convenient and revolutionary service in the travel domain as it now offers customers the unmatched convenience of applying for their visa from the location of their choice by leveraging on the highly secure and smart solution developed by VFS Global.
With an intuitive online application form filling support that leverage artificial intelligence and quality checks to ensure all details submitted and documents uploaded are as per the requirement of the mission, eVisa solutions makes it simpler and convenient for governments to make the decision on the visa application in a secured (GDPR compliant format) to deliver an end to end seamless service.
More and more governments are looking into a solution that transforms the traditional offline visa application process into a digital visa model. While one part of the application process can be fully digitised, the biometric enrolment will still happen at a nearby visa application centre. This is primarily because physical enrolment of biometrics continues to be an important aspect of border control norms today.
Yet, the interest in eVisas will not wane for travellers but on the contrary continue to steadily rise globally considering its ease in application, especially for those who seek shorter duration stays or trips, which is very significant. Especially when there is a growing interest amongst governments across the world who aim to liberalise their visa regimes to make their respective countries both tourist-friendly and business-friendly destinations in this digital day and age.
About VFS Global: VFS Global is the world’s largest outsourcing and technology services specialist for governments and diplomatic missions worldwide. VFS Global has Swiss parentage and is a portfolio company of EQT, a leading global private equity firm headquartered in Stockholm, Sweden. With 3425 Application Centres, operations in 150 countries across five continents and over 219 million applications processed as on 31 December 2019, VFS Global is the trusted partner of 64 client governments.