POSTED: April 26th 2013
Istanbul launches new online e-VISA system for travelers simplifying entry
LAURA WALDEN / Sports Features Communications
(SFC) Turkey has announced the launch of a new e-VISA that would greatly simplify access to the country for travelers and should Istanbul get the nod for the 2020 summer Games it would already be in place to facilitate border control and immigrations.
Facilitating access to one of the most traveled countries makes good sense for the travel market as well and will eliminate the lining up for a traditional “stamp-type” visa.
Citizens of up to 94 countries will be able to utilize the system and Istanbul 2020 has also guaranteed a visa waiver for all accredited people attending the Olympic Games, including one month prior and one month after the events.
A press conference was held in Ankara and Ahmet Davutoğlu, Turkish Foreign Minister, noted, "This is a revolutionary practice and there is no other country implementing this system at the scale we are implementing it."
Turkey’s Interior Minister, Muammer Güler, the Finance Minister, Mehmet Şimşek, and officials from the Prime Ministry, the Development Ministry and the Police Department were also present at the press conference.
As well the Foreign Ministry inked an agreement with the national Turkish Airlines at the launch.
Ali Kiremitçioğlu, CEO of Istanbul 2020, added, “This is an important step in Turkey’s commitment to providing the best possible visitor experience for the ever-increasing number of tourists that visit our country. Istanbul 2020 will be characterised by a simple and enjoyable end-to-end experience for every guest.
“That starts with user-friendly entry procedures that minimise bureaucracy for the preparation and celebration of the Games, with no compromise on security. The entire Olympic family can be guaranteed the warmest of welcomes with Turkey’s famous culture of hospitality and compassion.”
The procedure for the new system is expected to be working within 3 to 4 months and that 7.5 million visas will be issued every year through this plan. It will initially be available to visitors traveling on Turkish Airlines through their agreement.
Istanbul is running against Madrid and Tokyo to host the summer Games of 2020 and the IOC will make their final decision on September 7th in Buenos Aires, Argentina.
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Laura Walden ()
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