How to Get a Visa in Kuwait

There are several ways to obtain a visa in Kuwait. Visas, as you would expect, have more specific purposes, other than just getting into a country of your choice.

If you’re a national from a country that is part of the Gulf Cooperartion Council (GCC), then entering Kuwait without a visa won’t be a problem. Otherwise, all foreign citizens can obtain a visa upon arrival in Kuwait.

A Guide on How to Obtain a Visa in Kuwait

There are several visas which non-GCC citizens can apply for to enter Kuwait. Depending on how long you intend to stay in the country and your purpose of entry, you should apply for a suitable type of visa for your stay here in Kuwait.

To begin with, any foreign national with a passport can apply for a visit visa upon arrival in Kuwait. However, this type of visa is only valid for three months. Should you wish to stay longer or to work in Kuwait, applying for a visa prior your trip would be necessary.

Types of Visas:

Visitor Visa

This type of visa is valid only for three up to six months and can be obtained at the Kuwait embassy of consular office in an applicant’s host country or upon arrival in Kuwait. This can be obtained from a sponsor such as an employer or from the hotel in which you will be staying at for the duration of your visit. Visitors can also apply for multiple entry visas at Kuwaiti embassies and consular offices for reasons such as repeat business trips.

Residence Visa

This type of visa is more suitable for people who wish to work in Kuwait. To apply for a residence visa, you need to get a No Objection Certificate (NOC) from the Ministry of Social Affairs and Labour, and then followed by the visa application from your sponsor. If you would like to apply for this type of visa prior leaving the country, your sponsor should first obtain an NOC on your behalf, and then apply for visa at the Ministry of Interior. Once the visa has been approved, the entitled holder must immediately fly to Kuwait and return home with the NOC on hand. At this point, the visa will be issued shortly. The visa holder needs to undergo medical examination which includes an HIV/AIDS screening. Once you have obtained your visa, you will also be given a Civil ID card, which you need to bring with you at all times.

The requirements to apply for a visa include a sponsor, which can either be your work employer or the hotel where you will be staying at for your visit. To use the service of the latter, you need to submit a copy of your passport and your travel itinerary a few weeks ahead of your stay. Make sure to get a confirmation that your visa will be available at your point of entry before you set out abroad. Expect an additional fee to your hotel bill when availing this service. Moreover, your hotel can give you a short stay extension, granted that they can be assured of your trip itinerary. Remember that in this scenario, the hotel will be held responsible as your sponsor during your stay in Kuwait. Alternatively, work sponsorships are quite straightforward. Employers typically arrange all the permits and visas that you’ll need for work.

Typically, visas and permits will have passport stamps on them to make it easier for immigration officers to check if you have authorization to enter or exit the country. Certain fees apply to acquiring a visa or permit. However, with foreign employees, these fees are typically covered by the employer. To know more about permit and visa fees, it’s best to check with the Kuwaiti embassy in your country beforehand.

When flying to Kuwait for employment, as with most members of the GCC, the sponsor usually takes care of the administrative requirements, and simply gives out instructions for the person being sponsored to follow. But be that as it may, it still helps for one to understand the visa application process so as not to be left in the dark regarding an important matter such as this.

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