Etihad Airways has launched an online visa-processing service that should make it easier for passport holders from India, South Africa and other countries to visit Abu Dhabi. The airline launched the service with the Indian-based TT Services, which has already been contracted as a visa outsourcing service provider in India, Sri Lanka, South Korea, Sweden, Russia and the UAE.
"The service allows citizens and residents of the country where it is available, travelling on Etihad Airways to the UAE, to apply for quick and easy visa processing," the airline said. The initiative is part of wider efforts by GCC states to boost the number of tourists arriving in the region. Under the service, transit passengers travelling on Etihad's global network through its Abu Dhabi centre will now find it easier to change travel plans and stay for a few days in the UAE.
The service was launched in South Africa last month and India this month, and will be rolled out to a large number of countries on Etihad's network, the airline said. Travellers from countries such as India who are travelling on Etihad to Abu Dhabi can apply by visiting the website of TT Services. It includes a dedicated website to provide information, submit applications and check status; offices to collect the applications and receive customer support; and a nationwide courier service to collect visa applications.
By the end of July, the online service will be available in almost 20 countries, as will a global website for people living outside their countries who require a UAE visa. firstname.lastname@example.org