VISA to Rwanda
VISA to Rwanda is a legal travel document that will grant you entry into the Republic of Rwanda. The country which is also referred to as the “land of a thousand hills” is located in the central part of Africa, neighbouring Uganda to the North, Tanzania to the East, Burundi in the South and the Democratic Republic of Congo to the West.
The Directorate General of Migration and Immigration in Rwanda is the government organization responsible for issuing Visas to Rwanda. Visitors can always get a VISA upon your arrival at Kigali international airport or any land border.
The government of Rwanda has eased the visa acquisition process by introducing the E-Visa system where travellers apply for a Rwandan visa online. A single entry VISA can be processed in three working days and the visa is valid for 30 days.
Requirements for acquiring a VISA
In order for one to acquire a VISA, you must have the following;
- A valid passport or other important travel documents from your country of origin, passport should be valid for at least six months from the date of arrival.
- Two recent passport size photographs, these are put on your visa card after processing it
- Yellow fever vaccination certification, this is very necessary in case you are coming from a country that is endemic to yellow fever or when there is an active outbreak of yellow fever.
- A blank page on your passport, this will be used for stamps at the entry point at Kigali international airport.
How to get a VISA
Visitors planning to travel to Rwanda can apply for a visa online. Simply checkout the Rwanda VISA application website on www.migration.gov.rw and fill out the application form. You can then submit your visa application form together with the necessary documents. Alternatively, you can visit the Government portal www.irembo.gov.rw and fill out the application form online.
Lastly, you can also get purchase your VISA directly from the nearest embassy to Rwanda or High Commission in your country.
Visa Types and Fees in Rwanda
Visa fees in Rwanda are different depending on the type of the VISA you want to purchase and the purpose of your visit to Rwanda. Visa types and fees in Rwanda include;
Single Entry Tourist Visa, this is a visa that grants you entry into Rwanda once for various reasons and is valid for 30days and costs $30.
Single Transit Visa, this type of visa simply grants you safe passage through Rwanda but not stay there. A single transit costs $30 and is valid for 72 hours.
Single Entry Conference Visa, this is a visa that allows you to visit and stay in the country for conferences, symposium and others events. The single entry conference VISA costs $30 and is valid for 30 days in the country.
East African VISA, this is a visa that allows you to visit any of the East African countries like Uganda, Kenya and Burundi. For the East African visa, visitors have to pay $100 and it is valid for 90 days from the date of arrival.
Multiple Entry Business Visa, this is a visa that grants you entry into Rwanda multiple times in a given time frame for business reasons. This visa costs $50 and is valid for 90 days from the date it’s issued.
Payment of VISA
Once the application procedure is done you are requested to pay for the visa. All payments for a VISA are made using the bank account details of Rwanda High Commission.
In case you have applied for a VISA online; you can pay for the visa by credit/debit card or PayPal account. However the Rwanda High Commission doesn’t accept payment by cash, postal orders or cheques.
Extension of Your VISA while in Rwanda
In case you wish to spend more time in Rwanda, you can then apply for an extension of your Rwandan Visa by applying to the Directorate General of Immigration and Emigration office. Before your current visa expires and you will be given a grace period in that you will be allowed to stay in the country for five days after your visa has expired. However if your visa expires before you apply for a visa extension, you will be subjected to a penalty and the visa extension will be denied.
Visa Exemption countries in Rwanda
There are some countries that are visa free in that their citizens can enter Rwanda without a Visa card but rather with a passport and they include;
Countries that belong to the East African Community include; Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania and Burundi. The citizens of these East African countries are allowed to visit Rwanda for a period of 30 days.
Others countries that do not require a visa to enter Rwanda include; Samoa, Dominica, Grenada, Philippines, Haiti, Hong Kong, Angola, Mauritius, Ghana, Singapore, Palestine, Indonesia among others, they are given passports and the visit in Rwanda can be valid for 90 days and sometimes six months.
However, travellers from countries such as; Australia, Germany, Sweden, UK and USA are required to purchase a VISA upon your arrival at Kigali International Airport.
Conclusion: Getting a VISA will grant you access to explore beautiful sceneries like savannah wildlife in Akagera national park and the beautiful landscapes in the countryside. During your visit to the ‘Land of a thousand hills,’ do not miss an opportunity to have a face to face encounter with the rare mountain gorillas in Volcanoes national park and habituated chimpanzees in Nyungwe national park.