Morocco will launch a new online visa system on July 10th, 2022 as a way to make travel simpler for visiting tourists.
The Morocco e-Visa, or electronic visa, will become available to nationals of around 50 different countries. The platform will allow tourists with passports issued by these nations to get their visa for Morocco online, without the need to apply in-person at a Moroccan diplomatic mission.
Electronic visa systems are a growing trend worldwide. Morocco is the latest country to launch an eVisa, joining nations like Australia, South Korea, and Turkey, among many others.
The North African state hopes that by making it possible to submit visa applications online, more tourists will be encouraged to visit the country. Like many places, Morocco’s tourist industry has suffered during the COVID-19 pandemic. The government hopes to give it a much-needed boost.
Minister of Tourism Fatim-Zahra Ammor backed the scheme, pointing out that the accessibility of visas is an important factor for tourists choosing a holiday destination.
“Through electronic visas, Morocco becomes more competitive in the international arena”, he said.
The principle of the eVisa is that it is quicker, easier, and more convenient to get, being obtained online instead of in person.
It is expected that processing times will also be much quicker than traditional visas. The Moroccan Ministry of Foreign Affairs has stated that applicants will receive their eVisas in 24-72 hours after submitting the online form.
Morocco’s e-Visa will allow visitors to stay for up to 30 days. There will be 3 different categories of visa for different travellers, depending on their nationality and country of residence.
Advantages of electronic visas: why Morocco has launched its e-Visa program
The digitalisation of visas brings a number of benefits to both the destination countries and the visitors.
E-visas are seen as a way to improve border security, creating a means to collect traveller data, which can be screened against security databases. This helps border authorities to identify individuals who pose a risk and block them from entering the country before they even arrive.
The electronic systems make this process much faster and more efficient than traditional visa applications done in-person with paper forms. This saves time and man-power for immigration authorities, while also saving time and effort for travellers.
Tourists can take full advantage of the fact that they can get their visa without having to leave the comfort of their own home. In fact, it is possible to fill out an online application from anywhere if you have an internet connection on your phone or device.
The easy access, rapid processing, and simplicity of e-Visa systems are all reasons why most travellers prefer them to traditional visas.
In the case of Morocco, it is hoped that these advantages will encourage visitors to travel to its shores in 2022 and give a much-needed boost to the tourism industry.
Morocco’s plan to boost tourism
Tourism is one of the most important sectors in Morocco’s economy. The impact of the past few years of pandemic restrictions has been severe.
Tourist arrivals in 2021 were 71% lower than in the pre-COVID-19 period, despite the country’s many attractions and availability of amazing Moroccan tours with local operators.
The e-Visa is one measure that Morocco is taking in 2022 to try and bring more visitors and boost the tourist industry.
According to Minister of Tourism Fatim-Zahra Ammor: “We have been waiting for a long time for this catalyst which will give us access to more tourist emitting markets.”
Morocco lifted its travel ban in February and has continued to ease travel restrictions as the year has progressed.
It has now removed the requirement for inbound passengers to have taken a PCR test and is allowing both vaccinated and unvaccinated tourists to enter the country.
In May 2022, Morocco initiated Operation Marhaba to facilitate the return of the Moroccan diaspora for the summer holidays.
The country has also worked to increase the number of air links and diversified its tourism offer.
Agadir currently ranks as the cheapest destination for all-inclusive holidays, with Marrkech also making the top 10.
Together with the eVisa scheme, it is hoped that these measures will attract more visitors this summer and boost the tourism sector.