UK's upgraded e-visa waiver by month-end

A fee of £15 will be collected online for each EVW2 application from today

The UAE Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation has received a note from the British Embassy about launching the UK's upgraded electronic visa waiver scheme, EVW2, by the end of May 2016, to make travel to the UK even easier for Emirati passport holders.

Assistant Undersecretary for Consular Affairs at the ministry, Ahmed Elham Al Dhaheri, said the note explains the procedures involved in the upgraded scheme in which applicants should upload a copy of the page showing personal details on their passports to enable the staff to ensure accuracy of the data typed in the application. In case the data does not exactly match, the applicant will be notified to make the necessary changes.

Starting at 13:30 hours local time, Monday, May 23, a fee of £15 will be collected online for each EVW2 application to cover the cost of improvements to the new system, he noted.

He said the note has retained the minimum period of 48 hours during which an application must be completed before departure to the UK.

This document can be used only once for a visit of up to six months to the UK for tourism, business or training purposes.

EVW2 forms can be filled online at www.visa4uk.fco.gov.uk.

EVW2 is an upgrade of EVW1 which was launched in early 2014 to make travel to the UK easier for Emiratis.

Al Dhahrei noted that the UK embassy and consulate in the UAE introduced a fast visa service whereby a separate form should be filled in online after the application is completed. A fee of $1,140 will be levied for this speeded up service.

Applications can be made between Sunday-Thursday, from 8 to 10 am at www.vfsglobal.co.uk

On the same day, applicants will be handed their visas or a note of rejection after 4 pm.

If an application is completed after 10 pm, it will be processed after 4 pm the next day.

Emiratis who plan to travel for other purposes to the UK, or are frequent flyers, are advised to apply for a multi-entry visa or for visas that are valid for up to 10 years as follows:

Short visit, up to six months, single entry or multi-entry, for $132

Long visit, valid for two years -$502.

Long visit, valid for 10 years -$1143.

Al Dhaheri noted that the new visa system will reduce the number of cases in which applicants are refused entry to the UK for minor mistakes in personal details or data of their itineraries.

This, he said, shows the UK's interest in facilitating Emiratis' travel to its territory based on the excellent bilateral relations between the two countries in all spheres.

He also stressed that the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation continues to make efforts to provide nationals with excellent services overseas, in particular to facilitate visas or visa waivers to travel to other countries.

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