Visa 101: What Are The Different Types Of Visas

Modern technology has changed the world we live in into a global village. People visit other countries more often and on a much larger scale than in the past. Enter the travel visa. Unless the passport you carry allows you to travel to your destination visa-free, it’s important that you carry the required documents that will allow you entry. The last thing you want is to have your holiday all booked only to realise when you get to the airport that you require a visa. Here are the most important and common types of travel visas used for various travel purposes:

Tourist Visa

This is the most common type of travel visa and is usually available for tourists for short stays, varying anywhere between two weeks to six months. For some countries, tourism’s an important source of income, and so governments are ready to make acquiring a tourist visa as easy as possible. As mentioned, depending on the passport you carry, you’re allowed to travel visa-free for short stays in certain countries, while other will issue tourist visas easily upon application. Do note that you’re not allowed to work in the country you’re visiting with this type of visa.

Medical Visa

Sometimes, patients are required to travel abroad due to absence of specific medical treatment or expensive treatment in their own country. In this case, they have the option to visit other countries that either provide advance or affordable treatment. Known as medical tourism, some countries such as the United Kingdom, United Arab Emirates, and United States of America, will require you to obtain a medical visa.

Business Visa

A business founded by a foreigner is economically beneficial for any country. Therefore, many countries provide benefits and special privileges to foreign entrepreneurs and investors looking to pump money into their local economy. For such persons, a business visa is required. This visa allows foreign investors to engage in various commercial activities like attending business conferences, setting up a business, long-term stay, and so on.

Employment/Work Visa

It’s not uncommon for people to search for greener pastures in a different country. Large numbers of workers migrate from their native countries (with smaller or unattractive job opportunities) to these countries mainly to earn better salaries. All countries provide employment or work visas for such persons.  

This visa can only be obtained after successfully securing a job in a public or private company located in a foreign country. They’re also normally issued for longer periods of time or according to the terms of service mentioned in an applicant’s contract. Usually, the hiring company provides all types of legal documents and other necessary services to its foreign employees.

Student Visa

Parents always want the best for their children. In many cases, parents opt to send their children abroad to study at world-renowned institutes. Sometimes, governments sponsor local students to receive education abroad, or perhaps your employer is willing to send you to a higher learning institute overseas so you come back a better-skilled worker. Whatever the case may be, countries provide student visas for such candidates.

The duration of these visas is normally according to the duration of the course that a student is going to undertake. In some countries, students are also allowed to work part-time while they study, with certain conditions and limitations mentioned in the visa.

Pilgrimage Visa

This type of visa is for religious purposes. A country with a holy site of religious significance issue pilgrimage visas to visitors of a particular faith from different parts of the world. The most famous country for this type of documents is Saudi Arabia. It issues a Pilgrimage Visa to Muslims from all over the world during Hajj season and on other important occasions. The duration of such passes is usually limited according to the duration of a religious activity. Few other countries also issue such visas including Italy, Iran, India, and so on.

Transit Visa

This type of travel visa is available for short spans of time, and usually issued to those with a long layover, when an airline requires you stay in one or more countries before reaching your final destination. This usually only allows the holders of transit visa to remain inside airports. On rare occasions, the duration of a transit visa can also be extended for up to a few days.

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Brenda is a part of the business consultant team Riz & Mona in Dubai. Her work is to assist the formation of companies and visa service in Dubai. Other services she takes a part in are visa processing, trade license, trade mark, bank account opening, product registration and local sponsors. Along with this, she vigilantly manages to pursue her writing career. For the past five years, she has been writing on different niches. The top ones are visa, law and finance.