Sri Lanka Visa Guide



Sri Lanka is located south - east from the southern tip of India, the place where Arabian Sea, Bay of Bengal and Indian Ocean converge. It was earlier known as Ceylon and the present name of Sri Lanka was adopted in the year 1972. Sri Lanka has a rich cultural heritage and history that is believed to be as old as the epic Ramayana. Today, Sri Lanka is really progressive, vibrant and a country teeming with opportunities.


But what the rest of the world doesn’t know about is, Sri Lanka’s amazing geography. It is an island nation so you can obviously find so many beaches here, in all directions. Maybe there are a few hundred beaches scattered around or maybe there is just one beach which encircles the entire country, it is upto the tourists to decide. The south - central part of Sri Lanka is mountainous region from where numerous rivers flow in all directions. The highest point in Sri Lanka is Pidurutalagala which is 8,261 Ft. high.


The capital of Sri Lanka is Colombo. It is situated on the western coast of the country. The area between India and Sri Lanka is called the Gulf of Mannar. Also, in the North - West, Sri Lanka is connected to India through ‘Adam’s Bridge’ or ‘Ram Setu’ as it is known in India. This Limestone bridge is 3 to 30 Ft. deep and researchers believe that it was destroyed by a cyclone in the 15th century. So, if you want to explore what is hidden in the heart of this curious island nation, here is the complete travel and visa guide for Sri Lanka.


Application Process


All the tourists as well as business travellers must obtain Electronic Travel Authorization (ETA) for entering Sri Lanka. The ETA is valid for 30 days from the date of entry in Sri Lanka and it can be extended for up to 6 months. The application can be done online as well as at Sri Lanka Overseas Missions and the Head Office of the Department of Immigration & Emigration, Colombo. Business ETA for single/ double/ multiple entry can be obtained by applying online. And the applicants can not engage in any kind of trade, business or employment activities while they are in Sri Lanka, regardless of paid or unpaid, which are not mentioned in the valid ETA.


-          You can apply for an ETA yourself or can get your application submitted through third party service providers such as travel agents and airlines.

-          Step 1 - Submit Application

Fill in all the details required in the online Application form, as they are mentioned in the passport.

Add basic information of the applicant(s) such as name, DOB, nationality, and passport details. The details of children can be attached along with their parents’ application. Also, furnish the details of your travel plan, contact details and formal declaration required in the application form.

The applicant needs to furnish the address in Sri Lanka

If applying for business Visa, the applicant needs to add contact details of the applicant’s company and contact details of the Sri Lankan company concerned, is required to be submitted.

-          Step 2 - Review Information:

Always check and recheck the application to make sure that there are no typo-errors and wrong information is not furnished.

You can change the information if needed, and confirm if all information is correct.

-          Step 3 - Payment Options:

The payment of fees is not needed for Indian citizens going for tourism purposes.

The applicants can deposit the payment for Visa application fees using electronic payment cards, on the official website of ETA - Government of Sri Lanka and get formal acknowledgment of their ETA application.

The department has NO REFUND policy so, make sure you pay the right amount on the right portal with the right information.

-          Step 4 - ETA Confirmation:

The status of Visa application and authenticity of the Visa application can be checked online using the link:

Based on the information furnished and documents attached, the Visa authority may approve your Visa application or they may serve a referral notice to you for making amendments/ alterations in the application. The applicant may contact the Sri Lanka Overseas Mission, for further actions as per the referral notice. You can see some examples of acknowledgement/ referral notices/ approval letter on this link:

The applicants need to visit the Sri Lanka Overseas Mission personally for collecting the Visa, if their Visa application is approved.

The ETA holder should enter Sri Lanka within 3 months of the date of issuing ETA. The applicant should keep a copy of ETA approval ready while entering in Sri Lanka, at the port of entry.


Documents Required

-          A passport valid for a minimum of 6 months from the date of entry in Sri Lanka

-          A round trip ticket booking for your tentative visit in Sri Lanka

-          Hotel/ Accommodation booking details including telephone number and address

-          Passport size photographs of the applicant

-          Documents explaining the applicant’s financial stability and ability to meet the expenses in the visit to Sri Lanka

-          The same documents that are furnished for obtaining the Visa, should be used by the applicant while entering Sri Lanka. If there is any mismatch in documents or information provided by the applicants, they might have to pay the visa fees again.


Important Update for Indian citizens

Under the ETA Fee Waiver Program, Indian citizens travelling to Sri Lanka for tourism purposes from 01 August 2019 to 31 January 2020, are exempted from paying ETA fee. However, travelers need to obtain the ETA compulsorily.


Types of Sri Lanka Visa

There are three main types of categories for which the eligible applicants can apply for…

Tourist ETA

Applicable for tourism, holidaying, Ayurvedic - Yoga and other medical treatments, participation in cultural or sporting competitions, and personal visit to family and friends

Transit ETA

Applicable only for transiting through Sri Lanka

Business ETA

Participation in meetings, conferences, workshops, seminars, symposiums, short-term training-programs, art events, religious events, and other business negotiations. Applicants should note that Online ETA is not available for media and journalism related activities such as…

Participation in media/ journalism related conferences, workshops, and seminars

Attending meetings/ conferences/ seminars with political parties and groups

Engaging in activities carried out by NGOs and INGOs

The applicants must obtain prior approval from appropriate authorities of the Government of Sri Lanka, if they wish to engage in the above mentioned activities.



Where do I apply for a Sri Lankan visa?

The government of Sri Lanka considers a visa as Electronic Travel Authorization or ETA. You can file your ETA application on


How much would I be charged for a Sri Lankan visa?

As of now, the government of Sri Lanka has mandated that Indian citizens do not need to pay any fees until January 2020.


Do I need to get travel insurance while traveling to Sri Lanka?

The need for travel insurance is not mandatory, even though the importance of travel insurance for any vacation should not be ignored. If you find yourself without your baggage or in the midst of an accident, travel insurance from providers like Bharti AXA could go a long way.


What is the best time to visit Sri Lanka?

Different parts of the country are best visited in different times during the year. For instance, the western and southern coasts of Lanka are best visited during October-March. The best time to visit the central hills is March, while the perfect weather for the eastern and northern areas is between April and September. The time to avoid while visiting this region is the inter-monsoonal period, which is October-November.

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What kinds of medical coverage’s are provided??

The following medical expenses are covered: 

  • Travel insurance includes medical expenses, repatriation, and emergency medical evacuation. Even dental care expenses such as acute anesthetic treatment of teeth are covered.

What is a deductible?

“Deductible”means a cost-sharing requirement under this policy, that provides that the insurer will not be liable for a specified rupee amount or percentage of claim amount or number of days or number of hours, as specified in the policy schedule and which will apply before any benefits are payable by the insurer. A deductible does not reduce the sum insured and is applicable per event, upto the specified limits mentioned.

What Is Not Covered Under the Travel Insurance Plan?

  • Medical Expenses (inclusive of Repatriation and Emergency Medical Evacuation), Daily Allowance in case of hospitalization, Compassionate Visit benefits, the following will not be payable for Any pre-existing condition, Routine examinations, Expenses for rest or recuperation at spa/ health resort/ sanatorium, Pregnancy (including childbirth, miscarriage, abortion or related complications ) or treatment relating to the removal of physical flaws or anomalies (cosmetic treatment or plastic surgery).
  • Cosmetic surgery, unless such cosmetic surgery is rendered medically necessary as part of treatment for accidents and burns whilst being abroad.
  • Suicide, attempted or wilfully self inflicted injury or illness, mental disorder, anxiety, stress or depression, venereal disease, alcoholism, drunkenness or the abuse of drugs, or any loss arising, directly or indirectly, from any injury, illness, death, loss, expense, or other liability attributable to HIV and/or any HIV related illness including AIDS and/or any mutant derivative or variation thereof however caused.
  • Treatment which could be reasonably delayed until the Insured’s return to India, which will be decided jointly by the treating Physician and the Emergency Assistance Service Provider and shall be in accordance with accepted standards of medical care.
  • The Insured taking part in naval, military or air force operations; war and nuclear perils.
  • Insured engaging in air travel unless he or she flies as a Fare Paying passenger in an aircraft licensed to carry passengers.
  • Participation of the Insured in winter sports, mountaineering and such other professional sports or any other hazardous or potentially dangerous sport for which the Insured members are adequately trained, physically fit and using proper equipment. and that too only if specifically agreed and mentioned in the policy schedule.
  • Hazardous occupation, or if engaged in any criminal or illegal act.
  • Medical Expenses in respect of Experimental, investigational or unproven treatments or treatments which are not consistent with or incidental to the diagnosis and treatment of the positive existence or presence of any Illness for which confinement is required at a Hospital. Any Illness or treatment which is a result or a consequence of undergoing such experimental or unproven treatment.
  • Naturopathy treatment.
  • Non Allopathic treatment e.g. - Ayurvedic, Yogic, Homeopathic, Unani treatment(s).
  • Under no circumstances shall this insurance contract be deemed to provide cover and no liability be incurred to pay any claim or provide any benefit hereunder to the extent that the provision of such cover, payment of such claim or provision of such benefit would expose us to any sanction, prohibition, or restriction under United Nations resolutions or the trade or economic sanctions, laws or regulations of the European Union, United Kingdom, United States of America & India

You can avail the Travel Insurance online and enjoy the benefits offered by ICICI Lombard General Insurance (Bharti AXA General Insurance*)

What Is Covered Under Travel Insurance?

Loss of passport and documents:

Reimbursement of actual expenses incurred in connection with obtaining a duplicate or fresh passport or reasonable cost of replacing/obtaining the stolen documents/ tickets if the passport belonging to the Insured / Insured Person be lost

Home Fire Insurance Contents & Home Burglary Insurance (contents):

Cover against any loss or damage of the Contents at Home of the Insured in India caused by Fire and Allied perils or through burglary and/or housebreaking while the Insured is on a trip abroad.

Hijack Distress Allowance

Payment of distress allowance in case of hijack of a common carrier for more than certain number of hours whilst on the trip. You can easily avail the allowance by filing a claim online through Travel Insurance cover online process.

Medical Expensesinclusive of Repartration  and Emergency Medical Evacuation

If you are sick or injured during the journey, your medical expenses can prove to be costly. In such cases,  Travel Insurance cover greatly helps. The insurance company also offers a cashless settlement with the network hospitals or you can also opt for the reimbursement process within 30 days of hospitalization.

Legal Expenses

Payment of legal costs and expenses incurred by the Insured towards claims from third Parties for compensation in respect of death or disablement arising due to an injury whilst on a trip abroad.

Personal Accident

Payment of compensation if the Insured sustains accidental bodily injury during a trip resulting in death or Permanent Total Disablement or Permanent Partial Disablement within 12 months of occurrence of such injury.

Trip Cancellation/Or Interruption

Payment towards the non-refundable prepaid payments incurred on the trip being cancelled and additional cost of transportation in case of Interruption: due to medical problems, personal employment problems or natural disasters or other listed reason in policy wordings.

Trip Delay

 Reimbursement of additional expenses if trip is delayed beyond a period, due to airline problems, medical problems, personal employment problems or natural disasters.

 Daily Allowance in case of Hospitalisation

 Payment of daily allowance for the days the Insured is hospitalised beyond a specified number of days, as mentioned in the Policy Schedule, for which a valid claim is admissible under the Policy whilst on a trip abroad.Emergency Accommodation

 Payment of compensation for the additional cost of emergency accommodation if the Insured/ Insured Person could not stay in the accommodation originally booked due to ­fire& flood, earthquake, storm, hurricane, explosion, outbreak of major infectious diseases.

Why do I need Travel insurance?

During a trip there are chances of unfortunate events such as loss of checked in baggage, medical emergency, loss of passport that can spoil your international trip, be it business or leisure. Travel insurance can protect you from such events ensuring that you are left stuck in foreign land.