Sri Lanka Tourist Visa Rules and Extension

In October 2023, Sri Lanka announced a new visa policy in order to increase tourism and encourage foreign investment in the country.

Sri Lanka Tourist Visa Rules and Extension

In this article, we will discuss new tourist visa regulations and the extension of tourist visas in Sri Lanka and provide a comprehensive guide to Sri Lanka visa photos.

Table of contents

Sri Lanka Tourist Visa Policy in 2024

Every traveler planning a visit to Sri Lanka is obliged to secure a visa, either upon arrival or through prior arrangements. For those embarking on a journey for tourism, the mandatory requirement is an Electronic Travel Authorization (ETA). This authorization grants a complimentary 30-day visa period and the flexibility of double entry, commencing from the initial arrival date in Sri Lanka and valid for 30 days.

In October 2023, Sri Lanka updated its tourist visa policy 2024 to offer free visas to nationals of seven countries: China, India, Russia, Japan, Thailand, Indonesia, and Malaysia. This visa waiver is for a maximum stay of 30 days and can be obtained upon arrival or through an online application. The free visa waiver initiative continues until March 31, 2024, and allows for double entry from the date of first arrival in Sri Lanka after October 24, 2023.

Once in Sri Lanka, tourist can extend their stay without leaving the country. Extensions are usually provided in three-month blocks, with a maximum total extension of up to 270 days from the entry.

How to Apply for Sri Lanka ETA Online?

Any traveler planning a short visit to Sri Lanka must obtain an ETA (Electronic Travel Authorization) in advance. Upon arrival, the applicant may be granted a 30-day ETA, with double entries permitted from the first entry date.

To apply for a Sri Lanka ETA online, follow these steps

  1. Go to the “Apply” option on the official website of Sri Lanka's Department of Immigration & Emigration.
  2. Fill out the form with the required details, such as personal information, passport details, and travel plans.
  3. Pay the processing fee with a valid credit or debit card.
  4. Submit the form and await a confirmation email, which usually arrives within a few hours.
  5. Print the received ETA approval notice to present to the immigration officer upon arrival in Sri Lanka.

As a reminder, residents of China, India, Russia, Japan, Thailand, Indonesia, and Malaysia are exempt from the ETA until March 31, 2024, and will receive a free visa on arrival or through an online application.

The ETA is initially valid for 30 days from the date of arrival but can be extended up to six months. To do this, you will need to apply for an ETA visa extension Sri Lanka.

Can you Apply for Sri Lanka Visa on arrival?

It is possible to apply for a visa upon arrival in Sri Lanka. However, most tourists are advised to obtain an ETA before departure for a smoother process. This way, you will avoid a separate visa payment queue on arrival and can go straight through immigration control.

How to Extend Sri Lanka Visa Online?

How to Extend Sri Lanka Visa Online?

To apply for your visa extension from Sri Lanka online, follow these steps:

  1. Go to the Visa Extension Portal on the official website of the Department of Immigration & Emigration of Sri Lanka.
  2. Fill in all the required details on the visa extension application form for Sri Lanka. This includes personal details, passport details, and itinerary.
  3. Upload the scan of your passport’ bio page and a digital photo. File sizes must be 100 kb as a maximum.
  4. After completing the information, apply for an online visa extension in Sri Lanka and await a confirmation email, which usually arrives within a few days.
  5. Once your visa extension is confirmed, you will receive an approval letter with a payment link. Pay the visa fee online using an accepted credit or debit card.
  6. Print the ETA approval notice and have it ready to present to the immigration officer when you arrive in Sri Lanka.

Remember that the duration of a short-stay visa can be extended up to a total of 270 days from the date of arrival, with the first extension being for 60 days and the next two extensions for 90 days each.

After 180 days, no electronic visa extensions are available; you must personally visit the Immigration Office in Colombo.

How to Extend a Sri Lanka Visa at the Immigration Office?

Tourist visa extension in Sri Lanka can also be applied for at the Immigration Services Center in Colombo's central business district. Here are the steps:

  1. Visit the Immigration Services Center with your application and fees. They will give you an approximate time to pick up your passport.
  2. The center will forward your application to the Department of Immigration for processing and later collect the processed passports.
  3. You can either pick up your passport in person at the Service Center or have it delivered for a small additional fee.

Sri Lanka Visa Photo Requirements

The Sri Lanka visa photo specifications are as mentioned below:

These rules apply to both visa and passport photographs for Sri Lanka. The photograph must accompany all fully completed residence visa applications.

Get a Digital Sri Lanka Visa Photo Online

The service is convenient for getting your Sri Lanka visa photo from home. Simply take a photo with a digital camera or smartphone against a white or off-white background and upload it to the website. You will get a professional-looking passport photo instantly.

The Visafoto tool enhances your photo in moments by:

Take an image with a smartphone or camera against any background, upload it here and instantly get a professional photo for your visa, passport or ID.
Additional options
Upload photo & Continue


Source photo example that you need to take in order to make a passport or visa photo at


Result example: a correct visa or passport photo that you will receive

First, take a photo of yours under daylight like this one:

Оriginal photo

You will have two types of photos: a digital one for electronic applications and another one suitable for printing.

Here they are:

Example of Sri Lanka visa photo
Photos for Sri Lanka visa for printing

Take a Sri Lanka Visa Photo with a Phone

7ID App: 35x45 Photo App
7ID App: 35x45 Passport Photo Size
7ID App: 35x45 Photo White Background

Take a Sri Lanka visa photo with your smartphone using the 7ID App, supported by Visafoto.

Available for iPhone and Android, the 7ID visa photo app provides an easy platform for capturing and editing passport photos. The app is suitable for both online and physical submissions, making the photo editing process seamless.

Simply upload your image, select the appropriate country and document type, and take advantage of 7ID's fine-tuned features:

Sri Lanka Tourist Visa Fees

The cost of a tourist visa for Sri Lanka depends on both the nationality of the applicant and the location from which they are applying. Below are the details:

Sri Lanka tourist visa extension fees in 2024 are as follows:

Prices may vary depending on your nationality.

Note that these prices may vary from time to time, and it's recommended to check the current fees on the official ETA website.

With convenient tools like Visafoto and the 7ID app, you can take perfect and compliant visa, passport, and ID photos anytime, anywhere.

Install Visafoto (7ID app) on your phone!

Passport photos, visa photos and ID photos. QR code storage, PIN code storage, signature file maker.

Download 7ID App for iOS   Download 7ID App for Android

7ID Website with more information >

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