In the past, tourists could apply for the so-called Oman visa on arrival at the airports of Muscat and Salalah. All tourist visa on arrival have been discontinued since the implementation of the new Oman e-visa. The visa now has to be applied for before departure, through the internet.
Oman visa on arrival discontinued in 2018
The immigration service of Oman is of the opinion that the visa on arrival is out of date. Firstly, the possibility to acquire the visa on arrival at the airports of Muscat and Salalah led to undesirably long queues. Furthermore, it was impossible to perform effective screenings of unwanted travellers at the airports.
No visa on arrival desk at new terminal Muscat
The number of tourists visiting Oman has been growing for years. Between 2010 and 2018, the number of passengers arriving at Muscat International Airport, the largest airport of Oman, tripled. To process this rising stream of visitors, a second terminal was opened in March 2018. This was the perfect moment to also introduce the Oman e-visa. This eliminated the need to equip the new terminal with visa desks. Travellers arriving at the old terminal after March 2018 could only get a visa on arrival for a few more months, but nowadays that possibility has also expired.
Improved screening possible due to cancelling Visa on Arrival
Visas basically have two reasons to exist. Firstly, they provide a financial contribution to the treasury and thus function as a tourist tax. Secondly, they offer the possibility to screen all incoming travellers and stop unwanted persons. In the case of the visa on arrival, this process had to be done in a few seconds or minutes, the traveller and desk clerk are waiting for it after all. By requiring that the visa is applied for before departure, screening can take several days without problems. This increases the chance that unwanted travellers are actually identified as such.
The new e-visa procedure of Oman
Oman has replaced the old visa on arrival with an electrical visa. The application can be submitted easily, in this order:
- The traveller fills in their contact, travel and passport information
- The traveller meets the costs of the Oman e-visa
- The traveller uploads a scan of their passport and passport photo
- The application is processed
- The visa can be downloaded as a PDF document
- The travellers prints it and takes it along on their trip
Children and minors also need an Oman e-visa. It is possible to fill in multiple people in a single online application form. This way, multiple visas can be easily applied for at once.
Apply for the e-visa right away
Going on a trip to Oman? Remember to submit your visa application online on time, preferably at least two weeks before departure. In urgent situations, an urgent application can also be submitted, but the government of Oman gives no guarantees regarding delivery times, even with urgent cases. Urgent applications are on average granted after 4 days.
Apply for the Oman e-visa