A Guide to Uganda’s Visa Process

July 9, 2024

by Sofeeyah Lloyd & Mark Karamira-Karegyesa

Uganda, the Pearl of Africa, offers a breathtaking backdrop for your next international conference, with a perfect blend of spectacular natural landscapes and rich cultural heritage.

But to facilitate a seamless experience for your international participants, it’s important to acquaint them with Uganda’s visa procedures. That’s where we come in! 

This quick guide to Uganda’s tourism visas will help you and your participants navigate the visa process for every nationality. You can relax knowing everyone is fully prepared with the correct paperwork and procedures. 

 

Still need help? Our expert team in Uganda is always ready to assist, get in touch. We handle everything from visa applications to venue arrangements, ensuring your event in Uganda goes smoothly, giving you peace of mind and a hassle-free experience.

 

Quick Tips For Uganda Visas

  1. Nationals from 32 countries can travel to Uganda visa-free for up to 90 days. 
  2. Everyone else must apply for their Uganda visa online before their arrival; there is no option for a visa on arrival.
  3. Once approved, the visa can be personalized by visiting an Embassy or upon arrival at a point of entry in Uganda.
  4. Visas typically take seven days for approval, but travelers are encouraged to submit e-visa applications 30 days before scheduled travel data to allow for delays or eventualities.
  5. Uganda is part of the East Africa Tourist Visa, allowing 90 days’ travel within Uganda, Rwanda, and Kenya. 
  6. Ugandan immigration imposes a fine of approximately $30 per day for visa overstays and may detain individuals who overstay their visas until the fine is paid. 
  7. There is no refund of fees made into the embassy bank account.

 

 

What Type of Visa Will Your Event Participants Need for Uganda?

Here’s a breakdown of the visa types required for international attendees to enter Uganda. 

Navigating the visa process can be complex, but don’t worry; we’re here to help. We have experience in facilitating visa procedures for foreign participants. If you need assistance, please don’t hesitate to contact us.

 
Visa Exemption

Holders of diplomatic or service passports issued to nationals of India, Italy, Namibia, and South Africa do not require a visa to enter Uganda and stay for three months. Still, they must complete the application process online via the Uganda e-immigration service portal.

 

Nationals of the following 32 countries also do not require a visa to enter Uganda for up to 3 months. 

Angola

Antigua and Barbuda

Bahamas

Barbados

Belize

Burundi

Comoros

Cyprus

Eritrea

Fiji

Gambia

Ghana

Grenada

Jamaica

Kenya

Lesotho

Madagascar

Malawi

Malta

Mauritius

Rwanda

Saint Vincent and the Grenadines

Seychelles

Sierra Leone

Singapore

Solomon Islands

Swaziland

Tanzania

Tonga 

Vanuatu

Zambia

Zimbabwe

 

 

Ordinary/Tourist Visa

The Uganda Tourist Visa is issued to foreigners visiting Uganda for tourism, medical treatment, or family visits. It is a single-entry visa valid for up to three months and can only be applied online via the Uganda e-Immigration Portal.

The visa costs $50 per visa, and approval authorization is valid for 90 days (three months) from the approval date. It is automatically canceled and invalidated if not used within this period, requiring a new application. To avoid this inconvenience, applicants are advised to travel within three months of receiving their visa approval.

 

Citizens of the following countries will require a visa to enter Uganda:

Afghanistan

Albania

Algeria

Andorra

Argentina

Armenia

Australia

Austria

Azerbaijan

Bahrain

Bangladesh

Belarus

Belgium

Benin Republic

Bhutan

Bolivia

Bosnia and Herzegovina

Botswana

Brazil

Brunei

Bulgaria

Burkina Faso

Cabo Verde

Cambodia 

Cameroon

Canada

Central African Republic

Chad

Chile

China

Colombia

Congo, Democratic Republic of the

Congo, Republic of the

Costa Rica

Côte d’Ivoire

Croatia

Cuba

Czech Republic

Denmark

Djibouti

Dominica

Dominican Republic

East Timor

Ecuador

Egypt

El Salvador

Equatorial Guinea

Estonia

Eswatini

Ethiopia

Finland

France

Gabon

Georgia

Germany

Greece

Guatemala

Guinea

Guinea-Bissau

Guyana

Haiti

Honduras

Hungary

Iceland

India

Indonesia

Iran 

Iraq

Ireland

Israel

Italy

Japan

Jordan

Kazakhstan

Kiribati

Korea, North

Korea, South

Kosovo

Kuwait

Kyrgyzstan

Laos

Latvia

Lebanon

Liberia

Libya

Liechtenstein

Lithuania

Luxembourg

Malaysia

Maldives

Mali

Marshall Islands

Mauritania

Mexico

Micronesia, Federated States of

Moldova

Monaco

Mongolia

Montenegro

Morocco

Mozambique

Myanmar (Burma)

Namibia

Nauru

Nepal

Netherlands

New Zealand

Nicaragua

Niger

Nigeria

North Macedonia

Norway

Oman

Pakistan

Palau

Panama

Papua New Guinea

Paraguay

Peru

Philippines

Poland

Portugal

Qatar

Romania

Russia

Saint Kitts and Nevis

Saint Lucia

Samoa

San Marino

Sao Tome and Principe

Saudi Arabia

Senegal

Serbia

Slovakia

Slovenia

Somalia

South Africa

Spain

Sri Lanka

Sudan

Sudan, South

Suriname

Sweden

Switzerland

Syria

Taiwan

Tajikistan

Thailand

Togo

Trinidad and Tobago

Tunisia

Turkey

Turkmenistan

Tuvalu

Ukraine

United Arab Emirates

United Kingdom

United States

Uruguay

Uzbekistan

Vatican City

Venezuela

Vietnam

Yemen

 

 

Individuals on a Uganda tourist visa must refrain from employment during their stay, or their visa will be revoked.

 

To complete the online visa application process, the following documents are required:

  • Passport copy (bio-data page) with at least six months validity
  • Tour Plan
  • Travel itinerary/booking
  • Return Ticket
  • Recent Passport-size Photograph
  • Vaccination Certificate (Yellow Fever)
  • Hotel booking or reservation (if any other accommodation, provide an address)

 

East African Tourist Visa

The Joint Tourist Visa only allows travel to Uganda, Kenya, and Rwanda. It is a multiple-entry visa designated exclusively for tourism purposes and prohibits any form of employment.

The visa remains valid for 90 days and is not renewable upon expiry or once you exit the block of Kenya, Uganda, and Rwanda.

Please note that the issuing country must be the first entry point and are available online through the Immigration portal.

The visa fee is USD 100, non-refundable, and subject to a bank charge.

 

The following documents are required for processing the EAC tourist visa:

  • A copy of the passport (Bio-data page) with at least six months of validity.
  • A recent passport-size photograph.
  • Yellow fever vaccination certificate.
  • Return ticket.
  • Travel itinerary.

 

All attached documents should be in English; additional documents may be requested during processing.

 

Business Visa

The business visa is designed for travelers on meetings and conference engagements in Uganda. It is a single-entry visa and can be granted for up to 3 months.

The visa costs USD 50. Intending travelers can apply online via the Uganda e-immigration system.

 

Applicants for the business visa must upload the following supporting documents to complete the application process:

  • Passport copy (bio-data page) with at least six months validity
  • Letter of invitation with precise address and clearly stating business in Uganda
  • Recent Passport-size Photograph taken in the last six months
  • Vaccination Certificate (Yellow Fever)
  • The immigration status of the host (if individual)

 

Multiple-Entry Visa

The multiple-entry visa is available for travelers who frequently visit Uganda and can be obtained for 6, 12, or 24 months. This visa allows the holder multiple entries within its validity but prohibits any form of employment.

The fees for the visa are USD 100 for durations between 6 to 12 months and USD 200 for 24 months. It is important to note that visa fees are non-refundable and include a bank charge.

 

Applications for this visa can be made online through the Immigration portal. Required attachments include:

  • Passport (Bio-data page) with at least 6 months validity.
  • Recent Passport size photograph.
  • Valid Police clearance from Interpol or home country.
  • Yellow Fever Vaccination Certificate.
  • Recommendation letter from two referees in Uganda.
  • Cover Letter stating reasons for requesting Multiple Entries.

 

All documents submitted must be in English. Applicants should be prepared to provide additional documents required during the processing phase.

 
Visa-on-Arrival

Uganda does not offer a visa-on-arrival service. 

Citizens of non-visa-exempt countries must secure the relevant visa before their travel to Uganda. Additionally, individuals holding diplomatic or service passports from India, Italy, Namibia, and South Africa must complete the visa application online before arriving in Uganda.

 

Avoiding Scam Visa Websites

Visa applications for Uganda must exclusively be submitted through the official Uganda E-Visa website. Applications in paper form are not accepted. Be cautious of other websites claiming to offer online visa services, as they may be fraudulent. 

The Ugandan Government will not compensate for any financial losses or additional expenses incurred due to the use of non-official websites.

Require assistance with visa applications for your conference? Our team is here to help. We have extensive experience handling Uganda visa procedures for events and are committed to ensuring a smooth process so all attendees can enter Uganda without complications.

 

How to Apply for a Visa to Uganda

The only valid means of application for a visa to Uganda is via the official e-immigration service portal.

 

Applying Online

To apply for a visa online for Uganda, applicants should follow these straightforward steps:

  • Log into the Immigration Portal and choose ‘Start a new application.’
  • Agree to the terms and conditions in the Disclaimer.
  • Select the appropriate visa or permit type, category, and sub-category.
  • Fill out the application form.
  • Upload the required documents. A six-digit application ID (e.g., 234790123) is generated for reference.
  • For applications requiring prepayment, proceed to make the payment.
  • If no top-up payment is needed, an approval letter will be sent via email upon approval.
  • For applications requiring a top-up payment, make the payment upon approval. An approval letter will be emailed post-payment.
  • Visit the immigration office or border for biometric capture, bringing all uploaded documents, payment receipts, the approval letter, and your passport.

 

Please note that the portal accepts only Mastercard and Visa credit cards authorized for international transactions. 

 

Requirements for entry into Uganda

In addition to obtaining a visa, additional entry requirements set by the Ugandan Government must be met to gain entry into Uganda.

 

Passport Validity

Travelers heading to Uganda must have passports valid for at least six months beyond their travel dates, and these passports must have at least one blank page available for an entry stamp.

 

Visa

Travelers from countries requiring a visa for Uganda must obtain one before their journey. The specific visa type depends on the purpose of their visit.

For citizens of countries subject to visa requirements, visa applications must be completed online exclusively through the official Uganda e-visa portal.

Nationals from countries exempted from Uganda’s visa policy are allowed to stay in Uganda for up to 30 days within 12 months, with the possibility of extending this period by another 60 days in two separate intervals. Visa extensions can be processed online or directly at the Ugandan Immigration Headquarters or Regional Immigration Offices.

 

Health

Proof of Yellow Fever vaccination is mandatory upon entry into Uganda.

For those traveling with prescription medication, confirming with the Ugandan Embassy that it is allowed in Uganda is important. Ensure all medications are carried in original packaging with a doctor’s prescription.

 

Common diseases in Uganda include:

  • Hepatitis B
  • Meningitis
  • Yellow Fever
  • Typhoid
  • Malaria
  • HIV
  • Polio
  • Tuberculosis (TB)
  • Marburg Hemorrhagic Fever
  • Pneumonic Plague
  • Schistosomiasis

 

As the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) advises, travelers must be fully up-to-date on all vaccinations.

The U.S. Department of State has not indicated any specific restrictions for entry into Uganda related to HIV/AIDS for visitors or foreign residents.

 

Invitation Letter

An invitation letter from the host or the event’s facilitator is necessary for specific visits to Uganda, such as business, studies, or family visits. This letter must include a precise address and explicitly state the nature of the business in Uganda. 

It should detail the purpose and dates of the visit, along with the relationship between the inviting entity and the visa applicant.

 

Return or Onward Ticket

At the port of entry into Uganda, travelers are frequently required to provide evidence of a return ticket or arrangements for an onward journey.

 

Accommodation

Business travelers heading to Uganda are not mandated to provide accommodation details. However, arranging a booking is advisable, especially for arrivals late at night or during peak travel seasons.

 

Need Help Applying for a Uganda Business Visa?

Our team of experts in Uganda is committed to ensuring your event planning is as smooth and enjoyable as possible.

 

We handle all the details, from venue selection and logistics to entertainment arrangements and visa application support. 


Contact us today to benefit from our local team’s expertise in Uganda. We will guide you through each stage for a seamless, worry-free event planning experience.

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