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Sri Lanka ETA visa question

Sri Lanka ETA visa question

Old Mar 2, 20, 6:40 am
  #1  
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Sri Lanka ETA visa question

I am traveling to Sri Lanka this coming weekend. I applied for an ETA visa a few weeks ago via the official government online form. US passport holder. I was still required the pay the fee when I applied even though it's supposed to be free for US citizens at the moment. I never received any sort of response (which makes me wonder if I had entered my email incorrectly). I was finally able to check the status of my application this morning after getting error messages when trying to access the status check page over the weekend. I see my status is "approved". Should I also receive any sort of ETA approval document that I need to take with me? Or is it just electronically tied to my passport? I printed out the page that shows I have been approved, but never received any other notice.
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Old Mar 2, 20, 10:33 am
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They normally send an email but it should not be a problem as there is a visa counter at the airport before the immigration counters. If approved they should be able to verify it.
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Old Mar 2, 20, 2:48 pm
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If you use the official Sri Lankan ETA portal (www.eta.gov.lk) and your travel dates are within the temporary ETA free exemption period, which ends on the 30th of April 2020, you should not be charged a fee. I am a US citizen and just tried it myself, and it shows the visa fee as 0.0 USD.



There are other Sri Lankan VISA service web pages, which unfortunately all look official. These web pages might still be charging the fees. I have not tried them.

I travel to Sri Lanka at least two times a year and always use www.eta.gov.lk, which sends an email acknowledging your ETA application and another email when the ETA is approved. However, I never print this email out and carry it with me. If you have used the correct passport number, the Sri Lankan immigration computer system gets updated with your approval and the immigration officer should see this when he or she scans your passport at the CMB airport. You said you checked your ETA approval status online. You can print this webpage and take it with you, if it make you feel more comfortable.
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Old Mar 4, 20, 11:32 am
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I did use the actual official site. Maybe there was some sort of glitch. I was able to finally check the status and it is "approved". According the embassy I am good to go. And the person I interacted with there seemed to be unaware that the fee was supposed to be waived trhough April.
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Old Mar 4, 20, 11:42 am
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I also have been "approved" but didn't receive any notice for it. I sent an email asking if there is one, but also no response.

Let me know how it goes for you
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Old Mar 5, 20, 12:17 am
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As mentioned by sooge_sj, there are a number of sites that offer the visa. They look pretty similar to the official site & often can be mis-leading. You could join the line at the regular immigration counter and like others have posted here, once they swipe your passport on the machine, it should show the details of your ETA. In case it's not reflecting for some reason, you can always head to the Visa on Arrival counter and get a visa in a few minutes.

You should be ok either way
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Old Mar 9, 20, 8:27 am
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Originally Posted by chinoz View Post
I also have been "approved" but didn't receive any notice for it. I sent an email asking if there is one, but also no response.

Let me know how it goes for you
entered last night with no issues. For some reason the stamp they put in my passport says first visit even though it's my second. I guess that's probably because the other visit was on my previous passport.
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Old Mar 9, 20, 10:26 am
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Thanks so much for the update. Will proceed without the official letter.

hope you have a great trip
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Old Mar 9, 20, 8:52 pm
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There is a Health form to fill up now on arrival into CMB. They collect this from you, before you join the immigration lines. Depending on the time of day of one's arrival, it can get a little chaotic if there are multiple arrivals.
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Old Mar 9, 20, 10:57 pm
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The ETA allows for dual entry under the 30 day permit. Activation of the ETA will always indicate first visit, even if you have been there a dozen times before.

Happy wandering
Fred

PS - Use the government website.
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Old Mar 10, 20, 8:26 am
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that makes sense, thanks.

PS - I did use the government website
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Old Mar 14, 20, 7:08 am
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Did they let you in without a fuss?
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Old Mar 19, 20, 8:13 pm
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they did when I arrived on March 9. But things have changed significantly since then. The country closed to all arrivals as of 12:01AM March 19. Departures are allowed to continue but my guess is that airlines will stop flying within a few days.

And anyway the whole country basically shut down. All of the national parks closed on Sunday for a couple of weeks. Schools are closed. Large public gatherings canceled like everywhere else. Curfew was put into effect yesterday afternoon for some localities including Negombo. I left a few days earlier than planned since there was really no point in staying there and wanted to get home while I still could
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Old Mar 24, 20, 4:53 am
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Originally Posted by glennaa11 View Post
they did when I arrived on March 9. But things have changed significantly since then. The country closed to all arrivals as of 12:01AM March 19. Departures are allowed to continue but my guess is that airlines will stop flying within a few days.

And anyway the whole country basically shut down. All of the national parks closed on Sunday for a couple of weeks. Schools are closed. Large public gatherings canceled like everywhere else. Curfew was put into effect yesterday afternoon for some localities including Negombo. I left a few days earlier than planned since there was really no point in staying there and wanted to get home while I still could
Been here at our winter home since October and except for some curfew and shutdowns we are quite content staying here and riding out the storm instead of going back to the States anytime soon. When I seen they have extended the IRS Tax date to 15th of July, Istarted doing a happy dance as that is our main reason for returning home to doom and gloom ohio before 15th of April. Yes of coarse if your joe tourist and plan on doing the tourist deal here now, might not be a smart move.. We are hunkered down in our condo on the indian ocean sipping tequila and drinking Lion lager.. We promote way to much doom and gloom and not enough 1/2 full mentality...Love this place no matter what the situation is..
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