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Online visa system to be available soon

By Gvantsa Gabekhadze
Wednesday, January 7
An electronic form for obtaining a Georgian visa will presumably be presented on February 1, 2015, explains Giorgi Chogovadze of the Georgian Tourism Association on January 6.

Chogovadze informed that over 5 million tourists visited Georgia in 2014, more than 1.9% more compared to 2013. However, he admitted that the government had expected bigger number of tourists’ inflow.

“There were several factors that influenced the situation, and Russian-Ukrainian developments were among them. Restricted visa regulations might also have affected the figures,” he said.

The new law on "Legal Status of Foreigners and Stateless Persons" came into effect on September 1, 2014. Visa-free travel to Georgia was revoked for 24 countries.

Under the old rules, citizens from 118 countries were able to enter Georgia without a visa and stay for a maximum of 360 days. But from September, citizens from 94 countries were allowed to enter Georgia without a visa for a maximum of 90 days in a 180 day period.

Foreign nationals are also able to present documents for obtaining a residence permit in Georgia through the web-page or 24 hours a day from December 29.

A foreigner requesting a residence permit must be at least 18 years-old.

Only those foreign citizens who live in Georgia can apply for the residence permit. Those who want to obtain extensions for their visas can enjoy the service from abroad as well.

Applicants can fill-out their forms in three different languages: Georgian, English and Russian.

An interested individual should upload all the necessary documents on the web-pages and the contact a distance service officer. Foreigners will just need a web-camera, microphone and earphones to contact the distance service officer to benefit from the new regulations.

Only the following residence permits are issued in Georgia: Working, studying, family re-unification, former Georgian citizens, stateless persons, a permanent residence permit and investment residence permits.

For additional information, telephone: +995 32 240 10 10