What is a visa?

A visa is a document or a stamp in the passport of a person who wishes to travel to a specific country and stay for a certain length of time. The visa form can be a rubber stamp or a form which is glued into the traveller’s passport or a separate document. The visa is important for entry into many countries but not all. Some countries have treaties of reciprocity that allows citizens of each other’s countries to enter without the need for a visa. Before travelling it is important that research the requirements of the country you are planning to visit, you may have to apply for visa online before leave.

The word “visa” originates with the Latin for “this document has been seen.” There are a number of different types of visa, simple visas such as tourist as well as visas for those who are taking residence in a new country. A person who wishes to enter a country for business would apply for a business visa, conversely a person who is entering the country for a set time frame to pursue citizenship will have been granted an immigration visa.

Most visas that are issued are time sensitive, they are giving the traveller the opportunity of staying in the country for so many days or months and then they expire. Upon expiration, the traveller has to leave the country or, in some cases, apply for a visa extension. There are visas that allow for a single entry to the country and then they lose their validity, there are also multiple entry visas that allow a person to come and go several times over a longer period of time before they expire. Once a visa has expired the individual can apply for visa online for a replacement.

In some cases, a visa can be issued upon arrival in the foreign country, in other cases the visa application must be completed before entry is granted. If an application has to be made first, the applicant may have to prove that he has enough money to survive during the stay or they may inquire about the applicant’s health, the reason for the visit and the general character of the applicant. Some visa applications require that the applicant be photographed and fingerprinted.

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