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First year digital nomad visa fee fixed at $ 500

  • Immigration and Emigration Dept. yet to decide on visa criteria, fee for extended stay

By Charumini de Silva

The Immigration and Emigration Department has finalised the digital nomad visa at $ 500 for the first year, but it is yet to decide on criteria for the long-term visa and a fee for the extended stay. Following Sri Lanka being ranked second-best for digital nomads in 2021 by the influential French travel and tourism operator Club Med, the Government last month decided to attract the fast-growing segment of travellers with long-term one-year visas. The regulations to accommodate long-term visa with proper criteria and a fee for the extended stay is still under observation, the Daily FT learns. Sources said the digital nomad visa fee for the second year will be $ 600, but no official confirmed the information. Previously, it was proposed to have the digital nomad visa fee at $ 500 for the first year with the fee of $ 50 for each month extended, following a study conducted. First year... The Government believes the move would help position Sri Lanka as a favourable destination for digital nomads. In describing Sri Lanka, which ranks second, Club Med said: “The colourful country of Sri Lanka is a paradise for nomads. “Sri Lanka came high up on our list as the second-best country for digital nomads to visit. With low living costs and a beautiful working backdrop of lush green mountains, coral reefs and powdery sand, it’s clear to see why Sri Lanka offers such a great remote working experience,” it said. Tourist arrivals in the first seven months reached 19,337, a welcome development since the reopening of the borders on 21 January, but down by 96% from the corresponding period a year earlier. In July, tourist arrivals increased by 50% to 2,429 from June, despite the travel restrictions in place because of the ongoing third wave of the COVID-19 pandemic. Europe was the largest source region with 13,212 travellers of the total traffic received in the first seven months, whilst Asia and Pacific and the Americas accounted for 3,904 and 1,756 tourists respectively. Despite the minor improvements observed with the reopening of countries, the recovery remains to be fragile and uncertain due to rising concerns over Delta and other variants that are gradually developing, especially in Asia and Pacific region.

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