The Immigration Director-General recently hosted a Stakeholder’s Consultative meeting to discuss the E-Visa. A key output of the meeting was the need to phase out the manual visa issuance on arrival and move entirely to the E-Visa only system by 1st January 2021.
To support this move a revamped E-Visa platform has been put in place which addresses some of the previous concerns. Key amongst the changes made are: –
1. The Kenya Missions abroad: can now approve the visas from wherever they are as opposed to applications being sent to Nairobi.
2. Delayed visa issuance: the problem of e-visas applied for but “stuck” in the system will be addressed by a dedicated team to handle this issue.
3. Improved Customer Experience: a dedicated e-mail for E-visa concerns (email@example.com) will be instituted as well as a dedicated Customer-Care line at the Call Centre for real-time responses.
4. Turn-around time: this was confirmed to be a maximum of 48 hours and in many cases the E-Visas come through much sooner.
5. East Africa Single Tourist Visa: this would also be availed for applications online but manual stickers would still be issued on arrival for the time being.
A concern was raised that the E-visa system sometimes “hangs” midstream forcing applicants to start all over again and it was agreed that the system needs to be configured in a way that can allow applicants to continue from the last step.
In line with the above, it is important for members to start encouraging ALL intending visitors to move to E-Visa application well ahead of the January implementation date. This will allow for important feedback on any areas that may still pose a challenge to users. We further urge members to report any challenges that may arise with the E-visa applications.