Sri Lanka jacks up tourist visa fees 50-pct, adds another charge to scrap existing ETA

Sri Lanka has hiked tourist visa fees by at least 50 percent to 75 dollars, shifting to a global processing company, which appears to be charging an additional 18.5 dollars, according to information on the new online portal.

Sri Lanka allowed double electronic travel authorization for tourists for 50 dollars with more than one entry allowing them to come to the island and also fly to neighboring destinations through a portal operated by the Department of Immigration.

The ETA has drawn plaudits from Trip Advisor and Lonely Planet as a ‘hassle free’ system.

According to information on the new website, SAARC country tourists will now be charged 35 dollars instead of 20 dollars for the standard visa.

A 30-day single entry visa will be available to India and a few countries without a fee.

According to the online notice, an 18.5 dollar additional fee will be charged from all visa categories.

The website says it is operated by companies called IVS-GBS and VFS Global.

If the 18.5 dollar charge goes to the companies, it adds up to 12.75 billion rupees in 2024 if the tourism target is met.

Sri Lanka is targeting 2.3 million tourists in 2024 not counting other visa categories.

The Immigration Department’s previous ETA system has drawn acclaim from tourists globally for its simplicity.

“Sri Lanka may be known as the teardrop isle (due to its distinctive shape), but the country’s refreshingly straightforward visa system shouldn’t be a source of much anguish for travelers,” according to a feature on visa requirements on