Archive for February, 2010

Nigeria Visa Requirements for Tourists

Saturday, February 27th, 2010

The Nigerian tourism industry is still in its infancy.  Development and facilities are quite limited; however, if you don’t mind roughing it, the country is filled with interesting things to see and do.

Nigeria’s most popular tourist destinations are natural parks, including Yankari National Park, Cross River and Old Oyo. These parks feature breathtaking scenery and an amazing variety of animal and plant life, including animals that most of us only encounter in zoos, like elephants and lions.

Tourists also visit Nigeria to see cultural attractions,  like the parades of the Durbar festivals and the shrines and temples of the Yoruba religion.

According to Wikipedia, in 2007 travel and tourism was expected to bring the equivalent of $10 billion into the Nigerian economy, making up about 6% of the GDP.

To visit Nigeria, American citizens must have a Nigerian visa. Here are the steps you will need to take to get one:

  • Complete a Nigerian visa application form online, and print the confirmation page that appears after the online form has been submitted.
  • Pay the $112 visa application fee online, and print the confirmation form for the payment.
  • Submit a copy of a recent bank statement. The statement should show that you have enough money to support yourself in Nigeria.
  • Submit a copy of your round-trip plane tickets along with a hotel confirmation or letter of invitation.
  • If you are staying with a private citizen instead of at a hotel, you’ll also need to submit a copy of your host’s Nigerian passport.

You must apply for your  Nigerian visa before you leave the US- you can’t get one at the airport.  RushMyTravelVisa can help make the application process for your visa easier and quicker.

We’ll help you research your itinerary to ensure you get all the documents needed for each stage of your trip, including any necessary transit visas. Then, we’ll assist you with the paperwork to make sure everything is in order before we forward your applications to the appropriate embassies or consulates to ensure speedy processing.

Apply for your Nigerian visa today!

Kenyan Visa Requirements for Tourists

Saturday, February 27th, 2010

Tourism is one of Kenya’s most important industries, second only to agriculture.  According to Wikipedia, in the year 2000,  1,036,628 tourists visited Kenya. Tourism receipts for that year were approximately $257 million.

Tourism in Kenya is mainly conservation-oriented, with the major draws being wildlife parks, beaches, the Great Rift Valley and coffee plantations.  Kenya has 19 national parks, housing animals like rhinoceros, lions, baboons, flamingos, cheetahs and more.

Although tourism revenues declined significantly in 2008 due to the crisis that occurred after the 2007 presidential election,   in April 2008 Kenya was still named Best Leisure Destination award at the World Travel Fair in Shanghai, China.

The US Department of State currently has a travel warning issued for Kenya due to high rates of crime in some areas, possible terrorist attack s and  tensions along the Somali and Ethiopian borders.  That’s not to say that you shouldn’t go, but do read the travel warning so you have a better idea of the steps you should take to keep yourself safe.

To visit Kenya, American citizens need both passports and Kenyan visas.

Here are the required documents for a Kenyan tourist visa:

  • 1 Kenyan visa application form
  • 1 passport photo
  • A copy of your travel itinerary

Kenyan visa application forms are required to be typed. Even if you aced penmanship in elementary school, you still need to go the Kenyan Embassy’s website, fill out the form online and print it.

RushMyTravelVisa can help you apply for a Kenyan tourist visa, as well as any other visas you might need for your trip. We provide help with the application and will forward your paperwork to the appropriate embassy or consulate for the fastest possible service.

Apply for your visa with us today!

Syrian Visa Requirements for Tourists

Friday, February 26th, 2010

The US Department of State recently lifted its travel advisory to Syria, leading Jaunted. com to ask if the Middle Eastern country might become the next travel hotspot.

Although security concerns and chilly US/Syria relations have kept the country off the radar of most US tourists, Syria actually has a lot to offer. In addition to the ancient city of Damascus, the city of Aleppo offers an intriguing mix of food, culture and shopping.

According to the New York Times, tourist visits to Aleppo are on the rise.  The article quotes Joshua Landis of  Syria Comment who says that “The whole infrastructure of tourism is improving dramatically. The spate of new boutique hotels and restaurants has shown the moneymaking potential of Aleppo’s Old City. But the pitch is to go now, before the masses arrive.”

To visit Syria, you need both a passport and a Syrian tourist visa.  You must apply for your Syrian visa before you leave the US, and you will need the following documents:

  • A valid US passport
  • 2 completed Syrian visa application forms
  • 2 recent passport photos
  • A  copy of your airline tickets and your itinerary

You should also be aware that Syria will not admit foreign visitors who have traveled to Israel in the past.  If your passport has an Israeli visa stamp or an Israeli entry/exit stamp you will be denied entry. The US Department of State also notes that “the absence of entry stamps from a country adjacent to Israel, which the traveler has just visited, will cause Syrian immigration officials to refuse admittance.”

RushMyTravelVisa can review your itinerary and look up the requirements for all the countries that you plan to visit on your trip. Then, we can help you apply for the necessary visas, assisting you in filling out the application forms and forwarding your documents to the appropriate embassy or consulate for the fastest possible service.

Apply for your Syrian visa today!

Get a Belarus Visa To Get Lost in the Woods of Belovezhskaya Pushcha

Thursday, February 25th, 2010

This week’s UNESCO  World Heritage Site of the Week is the Belovezhskaya Pushcha in Belarus.  This ancient forest is one of the largest, most pristine forests in Europe, consisting of 1,771 square kilometers in Belarus and Poland, where it is called the Białowieża Forest.

The forest is home to an amazing variety of creatures, including the wisent, or European bison.  The story of the recovery of the wisent is almost miraculous-the animal actually went extinct in the wild in 1927, when the last one was shot by poachers. However, a small herd was reintroduced in the 1950′s, and today there are around 300 in the park.

The park is also home to some magnificent oak trees, some over 500 years old.  The forest was made a UNESCO World Heritage site in 1979.

To visit the Belovezhskaya Pushcha, you need a Belarus tourist visa. You should apply well in advance, as visas are not available on arrival.  Here are the documents you will need to apply:

  • 1 Belarus visa application form
  • 1 passport-sized photo of yourself
  • If you are  going on a tour, you need a letter from the tour company confirming your reservation with them and your  itinerary.
  • If you are traveling by yourself, you need a hotel reservation from an authorized Belarussian travel agency. The agency will give you an  authorization number to write on your Belarus visa application form.
  • If you are a former Soviet/Belarussian, you will also need to prove how you lost your Soviet/Belarussian citizenship. Generally, you can use the documents you used to get your US citizenship.
  • Your US passport

Also, bear in mind that you may need transit visas for countries that you travel through on the way to Belarus.  RushMyTravelVisa can review your itinerary and make sure you get all of the documents you need for your journey. We can also help cut through the confusion of the visa application process, providing you with clear instructions to make sure you get the fastest service available.

Apply for your visa today!

Peru Visa Requirements For Business Travelers

Sunday, February 21st, 2010

American citizens don’t need a visa to travel to Peru as tourists, but if you are traveling there on behalf of your employer it’s a different matter.  Americans doing business in Peru need to have a Peru business visa, which is good for 90 days. You should apply before you leave the US, and you will need the following documents:

  • 2 Peru visa application forms. Each application needs  needs an original signature (not a photocopied signature) and a thumbprint.
  • 2 passport-sized photos
  • A business letter from the company that’s sending you. The letter should describe the nature of your business and the purpose of your trip, and should also contain assurances that your employer will support you financially while you are in the country and provide you with transportation home.

Make to sure to talk to your doctor before you leave-if you will be in Lima, you should be fine without medication for malaria, but in some other parts of the country it is recommended. Also, a yellow fever vaccine is not required for you to enter Peru, but it may be required if you travel from Peru to another country in South America.

RushMyTravelVisa can help you get the documents you need to travel.  We can assist you by researching your itinerary to ensure that you have all of visas you need and that nothing is overlooked. Then, we can help you with the paperwork for the required travel visas, providing easy-to-follow step-by-step instructions. Then, we forward your completed application to the appropriate embassy or consulate for the fastest possible processing.

Let us help you apply for your Peru business visa today!

Laos Visa Requirements For Tourists

Sunday, February 21st, 2010

Laos is a small, landlocked Asian country, surrounded by China, Burma, Vietnam, Cambodia and Thailand.  Although Laos is still not on the itinerary of most Americans, tourism is the country’s fastest-growing industry. According to Wikipedia, in 1990  4,400 tourists visited Laos. In 2005, that number had risen to 1.1 million.  Tourism provides Laos with much-needed cash, and is expected to bring in $250–300 million by 2020.

However, before you go adventuring in Laos, there are a few things you need to be aware of:

Stay on the beaten path

Unfortunately, there is still a good deal of unexploded ordinance (UXO) left over from the Indochina War, as well as buried land mines.  The US Department of State notes that unexploded ordinance kills more than 300 people in Laos each year. Stick to well-worn, frequently used paths and roads. Now is not the time to be a trailblazer!

Also, Laos’ government is very authoritarian in nature. So, some places, particularly remote rural areas that aren’t close to a big tourist destination, may be off limits to foreigners. Make sure to get your itinerary cleared by local authorities if you plan to travel through rural areas, especially if you are traveling without a guide.

Just Say No to Love

The government of Laos is also very strict about relationships between foreigners and Lao citizens. Basically, unless you have officially married a Lao citizen and your marriage is on file with the Lao government, there is to be no hanky-panky.  Laotian police can and will search your hotel room, and you may be interrogated, detained, arrested or fined up to $5,000 if you are caught in flagrante delicto. Actually, they don’t even have to catch you in the act-all they have to do is hear about it.

In fact, the government sometimes fines foreigners after formal engagement ceremonies on the assumption that the happy couple just couldn’t wait for the wedding. So, don’t get caught with your pants down!

Get a Lao Visa

Americans traveling to Laos need a Lao visa to enter the country.  If you are staying less than 30 days, you can obtain a visa on arrival at certain airports and land crossings. If you’re flying, check with your airline to see if you can get a visa on arrival. Or,  you can apply for one before you leave the US.

Here’s what you need to get a Lao tourist visa:

  • 2 application forms for a Laos tourist visa
  • 3 passport-sized photos
  • A copy of your itinerary

RushMyTravelVisa can help you apply for a Laos visa and for visas to surrounding countries if required.  We can research your itinerary, then help you with the necessary paperwork and deliver your documents directly to the appropriate embassy or consulate for the fastest possible service.

Apply for your Laos visa today!

UNESCO World Heritage Site of the Week: Get a Chinese Visa to See Giant Pandas

Wednesday, February 17th, 2010

Who doesn’t love pandas? With their big, over-sized heads and gentle faces, they look like they are just waiting to be picked up and hugged (although they will bite if provoked- see this amusing story about a Chinese student who broke into a panda cage and tried to hug one, only to discover he’d bitten off more than he could chew.)

There are some pandas in zoos in America, but for the full panda experience, you really have to go to the Sichuan Giant Panda Sanctuaries.The panda sanctuaries protect the largest stretch of habitat remaining for the giant panda, and contain the largest panda captive breeding program.  The area is home to 30% of the world’s giant pandas and has been a UNESCO World Heritage site since 2006.

In addition to housing giant pandas, the sanctuaries also protect other endangered and elusive creatures, including the red panda, the snow leopard and the clouded leopard. While the Woolong Nature Reserve used to be the top choice for viewing pandas because of the gorgeous views and natural scenery, it was heavily damaged in the China Earthquake, and is currently closed.

Until Woolong opens back up, the best place to see pandas is the Chengdu Panda Base, which has a healthy population of captive breeding pandas.

To visit China, you will need a Chinese tourist visa, also called an L visa. You need to apply before you leave, and you will need to submit the following documents:

  • An application for a Chinese tourist visa.
  • Your passport, which must be valid for at least 6 months and have at least one blank page.
  • You’ll also need a copy of the information page from your passport.
  • One passport.

If you plan to leave within the next 7 days, you should also submit a copy of your travel itinerary to get expedited service.

RushMyTravelVisa can help you speed through the China application process, providing friendly advice, personal attention, easy-to-follow instructions, and the fastest possible service.

Apply for your Chinese visa with us today!

Venezuelan Tourist Visa Requirements

Tuesday, February 16th, 2010

According to the US Department of State, approximately 12,000 US tourists visit Venezuela each year. Although relations between the two countries are somewhat tense, Americans are still drawn to Venezuela’s beaches, rainforests and cities.

To travel to Venezuela, American citizens need a US passport that has at least 6 months left before it expires, and a Venezuelan visa or tourist card.  Tourists traveling to Venezuela by air and staying less than 90 days can obtain a tourist card upon arrival .

However, if you are traveling to Venezuela by private transportation or entering the country via a land border crossing, you need to get a Venezuelan visa ahead of time. Here are the requirements for Venezuelan tourist visa:

  • 1 Venezuelan visa application form
  • 2  passport-sized photos
  • A  copy of your plane tickets or an itinerary showing when and where you plan to enter and exit the country.
  • A letter from your employer. The letter must state how long you have been employed with the company, your position and your salary.
  • If you are unemployed, you can  submit a bank  statement instead.
  • A reference letter from your bank-ask for a visa letter and they should be  able to prepare something suitable.

At RushMyTravelVisa.com, we can help you apply for the visas you need for your next trip out of the country. We can review your itinerary and research the requirements for each country you plan to visit, ensuring that you have the documents you need before you leave the US.

Then, we help you through the application process,  cutting through the red tape to provide you with easy-to-understand instructions and a helpful checklist.  Finally, we forward your visa application to the appropriate embassy or consulate to ensure that you get the fastest possible processing.

Need a Venezuelan visa? Apply with us today!

North Korea Visa Update: North Korea To Allow US Tourists Year-Round

Saturday, February 13th, 2010

The relationship between North Korea and the US may not be particularly cordial, but the cash-strapped country is thirsty for American tourist dollars, especially since South Korea’s Hyundai group stopped running cross-border tours in 2008.

According to Reuters, to encourage US tourists to come visit North Korea, North Korean leader Kim Jong-il has agreed to let Americans in year-round. Previously, tourists from the US were only allowed in from August to October for the Arirang Mass Games.

However, just because American citizens are being allowed to cross the border, that doesn’t mean that you’ll be able to move around freely. Americans are restricted to staying in hotels reserved for foreigners , and cannot stay more than 4 nights. Expect to spend your trip being escorted around by official “guides,” and don’t expect any conversations that you have while you are there to be private. Big Brother is watching…you will be spied upon!

US tourists are allowed in North Korea only as part of organized tour groups. Koryo Tours, located in China,  is one of the main companies that arranges such tours.

To travel to to North Korea, US citizens must have valid passports and a North Korean visa.

Here’s what you will need to get a North Korean visa:

  • 1 passport photo with a white background
  • A  copy of the 1st page of your passport
  • 1 North Korean visa  application  form. On the form,  make sure to give  “tourism” as your reason for traveling.

Us citizens may apply for North Korean visas at the North Korean Embassy in Beijing, China.  It usually only takes a day to get your visa issued, but you should probably contact the Permanent Representative of the Democratic
People’s Republic of Korea to the United Nations first to see if your visa application is likely to be accepted. Here is his contact information:

The Permanent Representative of the Democratic
People’s Republic of Korea to the United Nations
820 Second Avenue
New York, NY 10017
Tel: (212) 972-3105
Fax: (212) 972-3154

The company that you arrange your tour with may also be able to help you with your visa, and may request that you forward your details several weeks in advance of your trip.

If you are entering North Korea via China, you also need a multiple-entry Chinese tourist visa. See Chinese Tourist Visa Requirements for details.

Due to the fact that the US has no North Korean Embassy, we can’t expedite a North Korean visa application for you. However, we can help expedite your visa to China, as well as helping you apply for other visas you may need for your trip.

Contact us about your travel visa needs today!

Cambodian Visa Requirements for Tourists

Friday, February 12th, 2010

According to Wikipedia, tourism is one of Cambodia’s fastest-growing industries. In 1997, only 210,000 tourists visited Cambodia, but by 2004, that number had grown to 1,055,000.  In 2007, 2.0 million people visited the country.

Tourism is Cambodia’s second-largest industry, only ranking below textiles in importance.  Tourists come to Cambodia to experience the country’s unique culture and to see ancient monuments like the temples of Angkor Wat.

US citizens visiting Cambodia must have a passport and a Cambodian visa. Cambodian tourist visas are available on arrival in the Phnom Penh and Siem Reap airports, but if you apply ahead of time, you’ll be able to get out of the airport much more quickly-definitely a relief after a long journey!

To apply for a Cambodian visa, you will need the following documents:

  • A Cambodian visa application.
  • 2 passport-sized photos.
  • Your US passport. Your passport must have room in the back for the visa and be valid for at least 6 months after you enter Cambodia.
  • A copy of your travel itinerary.

RushMyTravelVisa can help you get the travel documents you need for your trip. We’ll review your itinerary to make sure you have all of the visas you need, including any necessary transit visas.

Then, we’ll help you through the application process, providing you with a helpful checklist and application instructions that are easy to understand and follow. We do our best to help you avoid common mistakes that can cause your visa to be delayed, and we forward your visa application to the appropriate embassy or consulate for the fastest processing times available.

Apply for your Cambodian visa today!