Indians can now apply for Rwanda visa on arrival .  Starting from 1st Jan 2018, nationals of all countries are eligible to receive a visa on arrival at Rwanda, entering through the Kigali International Airport or at all land borders. Indian citizens can obtain their Visas to Rwanda in two ways- they are issued on arrival or from Rwandan Embassies in India itself. Optionally you can apply online at the official website of the DGIE which is www.migration.gov.rw or the Government portal www.irembo.gov.rw only.

In a landmark judgement, Rwandan government has passed this motion. Yves Butera, spokesperson of the Directorate-General of Immigration and Emigration has stated, “Citizens of all countries will get a visa upon arrival without prior application, starting January 1, 2018.” Prior to this judgement, only nationals of African countries and few other countries were getting a visa upon arrival in Rwanda.

This new visa policy was discussed during a cabinet meeting chaired by President Paul Kagame, and was approved on November 8th, 2017. It has been in effect since 1st January, 2018. This new judgement will increase the number of Indian foreign investors coming to Rwanda and foster free movement of Indian nationals, improving trade and tourism inside Africa.

There is also a visa waiver for holders of diplomatic and service passports from India, Israel, Guinea, Morocco, Ethiopia, Gabon, Turkey, and Djibouti, which is applicable from immediate effect on 1st January, 2018.

What does this judgement mean for Indians

This judgement means that Indian travellers holding a valid Indian passport are eligible to enter Rwanda by air, sea or road and get their visas stamped on arrival at the Kigali International Airport. For further improving trade relations, RwandAir, the official Airline of Rwanda, has launched direct flights from Mumbai to Kigali from September 2017.

Travel visas are granted to people who wish to enter Rwanda for tourism, travel and leisure purposes only. Visitors are allowed to stay for a predetermined amount of time, that is, 30 days in Rwanda. Indian citizens holding these visas are not permitted to work or engage in any business activities in the host country of Rwanda.

A business visa allows the bearer to enter a foreign country and engage in business activities without joining that country’s labour force, temporarily or permanently. Typically, the visitors must show that they are not receiving any income from the country. A business visa is granted to those visitors who are planning to visit Rwanda for taking part in temporary work or business activities. You can visit Rwanda on a Business Visitor Visa for a maximum period of 3 months.

Please note that the Government of Rwanda has not authorized any single affiliated Agent to apply for a visa on your behalf. If you choose to use these agents, be cautious as they may mislead you and charge you more than the visa fees.

Rwanda Visa requirements

Following are the Rwanda visa requirements for Indian :

Travel Document: An applicant shall be holder of a valid passport or another acceptable travel document. The document (such as passport) must be valid for a minimum of 6 months after the applicant wishes to enter the country of Rwanda.

Covering letter- The applicant must submit a covering letter to the centre, with details such as the applicant introducing himself/herself, explaining the purpose of visit, duration & schedule of the visit in brief.

Proof of Means of Transport – Applicants need their flight reservation of return or round ticket. Applicants must note that the tickets do not have to be paid for; only the booking receipt needs to be submitted.

Proof of Lodging – The applicant’s hotel reservations, receipt of renting a holiday home or campus residence reservation are required as proof. Proof of sponsorship and private accommodation from the host is required, in the event that the applicant intends to stay with a family member or a friend in Rwanda.

Health Requirements: Indian nationals may be required to show a vaccination certificate at the border post. Specific requirements could be set by the Government of Rwanda, and put to the knowledge of the applicants in the event of a major disease outbreak in the country.

 

The following guidelines have been specified by the Government of Rwanda for Yellow Fever Vaccinations before entering Rwanda.

  • For travellers (Residents/ Non-Residents) coming from Yellow Fever non-endemic countries and without an active transmission outbreak of Yellow Fever are not required to show a Yellow fever vaccination certificate to enter into Rwanda.
  • For travellers (Residents/ Non-Residents) coming from Yellow Fever endemic countries and countries with active Yellow Fever transmission outbreaks are compulsorily required to show proof of a Yellow Fever vaccination certificate to enter the country of Rwanda.
  • Applicants please note that it is mandatory for all residents travelling from Yellow Fever endemic countries to be vaccinated at least 10 days before travelling to Rwanda.
  • Since India is a Yellow Fever non-endemic country, this vaccination is not required. However, if Indian citizens residing in the following countries- Argentina, Angola, Benin, Bolivia, Brazil, Burundi, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Chad, Central African Republic, Congo, Côte d’Ivoire, Colombia, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Equatorial Guinea, Ecuador, Ethiopia, French Guiana, Gambia, Gabon, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Kenya, Liberia, Mali, Mauritania, Niger, Nigeria, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Senegal, Sierra Leone, South Sudan, Sudan, Suriname, Togo, Trinidad and Tobago, Uganda, Venezuela- will need to get the vaccination.

Financial Requirements: An applicant must have sufficient funds to cover the costs of their stay in Rwanda. The visa or Immigration authorities may demand to see evidence for such funds online, at the Rwandan foreign mission or at the entry point in Rwanda.

Personal Invitation. If the applicant is visiting friends or family in Rwanda, they must provide a letter of invitation from the host. This must contain the contact information of the host and visitor, purpose and duration of the visit, confirmation of accommodation including the address, signature and date. Additionally, you will need to provide proof of the host’s citizenship status in Rwanda by providing a copy of their Rwanda passport’s information page. In the vent that they are not a citizen of Rwanda, copies of their Rwanda residence permit and their national passport’s information pages must be provided.

Personal Letter. The applicant must submit a personal letter addressed to the Embassy of Rwanda. This letter must explain the purpose of the trip, dates of travel, cities to be visited, and place of accommodation in Rwanda.

Verification of documents:

Applicants must note that their marriage certificate, birth certificate, death certificate and adoption certificate must be certified by the issuing authority, and original copies must be kept as proof.

The Police clearance from the issuing authority must be original.

Rwanda  visa fees

Following are the Rwanda visa fees

Visa Fees: The following are the fees for processing of applications. Please note that in the event that applications are refused, or withdrawn by the applicant, refunds of fees will not be made by the visa authorities.

The fee for a Tourist Visa to Rwanda is RWF 25,000 (equivalent to USD 42).

The fee for a Business Visa to Rwanda is RWF 50,000 (equivalent to USD 83).

 

Validity and extension period of visas to Rwanda

 

Validity of Visas: The maximum and minimum period of validity of visas is set out in the Information for Applicants for each visa class.

Tourist Visas are valid for 30 days. They are renewable once with proper justification, and documentation.

Business visas are valid for 30 days.  They are renewable more than once with proper justification, and documentation.

Single or Multiple Entries: Whether a visa will usually be issued for single or multiple entries is set out in the Information for Applicants for each visa class, on the online visa portal of the Government and Immigration authorities of Rwanda.

Extensions of visa: This extension of visas should be applied for whilst initial visas remain valid. The government of Rwanda provides a period of grace to travellers, without penalty, allowing a visa holder up to 5 days after their visa expires to depart from the country. In the event that you depart from Rwanda more than 5 days after the expiry of your visa, you may be subject to a fine and may be refused a further visa extension.

To avoid penalties, the applicant should apply for a new visa or renew their current visa in time before expiration of current visa. For a delay of 6 to 15 days the penalty fee is RWF 20,000. The penalties from 16 days to 9 months and above are outlined by Article 34 of the Ministerial Order of Rwanda establishing procedures and regulations.

Change of Status for Some Classes: An applicant may apply to the Director General for another class of visa whilst they are in Rwanda and whilst their current visa remains valid.

If a person is a holder of an entry visa and wants to change his purpose of visit or visa type, he or she is permitted to do so at any office of the Directorate General of Immigration and Emigration in Rwanda. However, they may not do so at land borders and airports, and only after satisfying the necessary conditions. Change of status is not permitted for the Group tourist visa. For more information regarding the particular visa classes (if change of status is allowed or not), the applicants may use the online visa portal.

How to apply for a Rwandan Visa

You can apply for a Rwanda visa online using the E-Visa service too.

Step 1: Visit the URL https://irembo.gov.rw/rolportal/en/web/dgie/newhome . Select the type of Visa you want to apply for such as Conference Visa, Entry Visa, Transit Visa, or E-payment of Visa.

Step 2: On the website for the specific visa type, you will find the option “Apply Now and Pay on Arrival” or “Apply now and Pay Online”.  You can select whichever is more convenient for your needs. After clicking on the URL, you will be redirected to the online application on another page.

Step 3:  Fill in the online application by entering the following details:

  • Passport Number
  • First Name
  • Middle Name
  • Surname
  • Profession
  • Current Occupation
  • Gender (male, female or other)
  • Nationality: at birth
  • Nationality: at present
  • Date of birth
  • Place of birth
  • Country Of Birth
  • Choose your preferred language of communication from the drop down list
  • Father’s Name
  • Mother’s Name
  • Marital Status
  • Current Address
  • Permanent Address
  • City or Town
  • Country
  • Email
  • Phone Number
  • Proposed address in Rwanda (Address of your hotel in which you are staying or the address of the host must be entered)
  • Contact person in Rwanda
  • Hotel in Rwanda
  • Institution which is hosting the applicant
  • Company name where the applicant is employed, in India
  • Phone number of the company
  • State your Proposed date of arrival
  • State your Proposed date of departure
  • State your Proposed entry point
  • State your purpose of visit
  • State more details about your visit that have not been entered elsewhere on the application
  • State whether you have ever been to Rwanda before

Attach supporting documents such as:

  • Photo copy of Passport / Travel Document (Maximum number of file allowed: 1 /Allowed file type is PDF/ Total file size: 500 KB)
  • Recent passport size photo with white background (Maximum number of files allowed is 1. The only allowed Type is JPG. The total file size cannot exceed 40 KB)
  • Invitation Letter (Maximum number of files allowed is 1. The only allowed Type is PDF. The total file size cannot exceed 500 KB)
  • Supporting Documents (Maximum number of files allowed is 1. The only allowed Type is PDF. The total file size cannot exceed 500 KB)

Step 4: After entering the above details, and attaching the required files, you can preview your entire E-Visa application. After reviewing, you can proceed to pay if you have chosen the ‘Pay Online’ Option. There you will be redirected to a secure portal where you can make payments using your credit or debit card.

Rwanda visa status

After submitting your visa application for an E-visa to Rwanda, your confirmation will be sent directly to your registered Email address.