Sri Lanka, a tropical island in the Indian Ocean, is a popular destination with visitors from around the world. It is now possible for citizens from a long list of countries to obtain an Electronic Travel Authorization, or ETA, for Sri Lanka before they travel. Chinese passport holders can use the Sri Lanka ETA for Chinese citizens to travel to Sri Lanka temporarily for business, tourism or transit.
Do Chinese Passport Holders Need a Visa to Go to Sri Lanka?
Chinese nationals entering Sri Lanka for any purpose must obtain the appropriate visa to do so. Any Chinese passport holder who intends to live or work in Sri Lanka on a long-term or permanent basis will need to apply for a traditional visa at a Sri Lankan embassy or consulate. For travelers making short trips to Sri Lanka, however, three categories of Sri Lankan ETA for Chinese passport holders are available:
- Sri Lanka ETA for tourism
- Sri Lanka ETA for business
- Sri Lanka ETA for transit
The Sri Lankan ETA available for tourism purposes allows travelers to visit Sri Lanka for vacation, to visit relatives, to receive medical treatment, or to participate in cultural, religious, or sporting events. It permits entry for up to 30 days and can be extended from within Sri Lanka for up to 6 months, as long as the initial ETA does not expire.
The Sri Lankan ETA for business lets travelers enter Sri Lanka to attend business-related meetings, conferences, negotiations, training, etc. Like the tourist ETA, it permits entry for a maximum of 30 days and is extendable for up to 6 months.
Finally, the Sri Lanka ETA for transit allows travelers who are passing through Sri Lanka on their way to a different destination country to stay in Sri Lanka for a maximum of 2 days. However, transit passengers are not required to obtain this visa if:
- They are in Sri Lanka for less than 8 hours while in transit
- They have proof of their onward journey to another country
- They do not leave the airport transit zone during their stay in Sri Lanka
Any Chinese national who holds dual Chinese/Sri Lankan citizenship, or who is the child of Sri Lankan parents, have been born abroad and registered in Sri Lanka, and is under 21 does not need to apply for a Sri Lanka visa for Chinese citizens.
What Documents are Required for Chinese Citizens for the Sri Lanka ETA?
According to the Sri Lanka visa requirements for Chinese citizens, the primary document required to obtain a Sri Lankan ETA for Chinese passport holders is a valid Chinese passport. This passport must remain valid for 6 months or more following the holder’s intended date of entry into Sri Lanka. In addition to this eTA requirements, individuals applying online for a Sri Lanka visa for Chinese citizens must also possess the following:
- A valid email address (the ETA will be delivered electronically to this address)
- An active debit/credit card (for payment of the ETA application fee)
How Can Chinese Citizens Apply for a Sri Lanka Visa?
The process of applying for a Sri Lankan ETA for Chinese passport holders is quick, simple, and can be completed online. To do so, travelers simply need to fill out an online application form, providing the following information:
- Applicant’s personal details (name, address, place of birth, date of birth, etc.)
- Details of passport used for application (number, date of issue, expiry date, etc.)
- Applicant’s travel plans (travel dates, itinerary, etc.)
Applicants will also need to choose which category of Sri Lanka ETA for Chinese citizens best suits their needs – tourist, business, or transit.
Chinese nationals applying for a Sri Lanka visa from China online are advised to double-check that all the information entered on their form is accurate, as mistakes may cause the application processing to be delayed, and the application may even be rejected entirely.
Once applicants receive their approved Sri Lanka ETA for Chinese citizens in electronic format, they should print it and show it to immigration officers upon entering Sri Lanka. Travelers from China may also be asked to present the following documents at their Sri Lankan port of entry:
- Proof that they can fund their stay independently
- Proof that they will return to China or travel onward to a third country once their Sri Lankan ETA for Chinese passport holders has expired
- Proof of appropriate travel authorization for their onward journey, if necessary
A great advantage of the Sri Lanka ETA for Chinese citizens is that because the application process can be completed online, it is much quicker than applying in-person for a traditional visa. It is also quicker than applying for a visa on arrival at a Sri Lankan port of entry, which can sometimes entail long queues.
Anyone thinking of applying for a Sri Lanka visa for Chinese citizens is advised to remain up to date with the latest visa regulations and travel advisories for Sri Lanka, as these are subject to change.