Online travel authorisation for Seychellois passport holders free of charge as of April 1
The change applies to all applications by Seychellois passport holders for both the standard and expedited application fees. (Ministry of Transport)
(Seychelles News Agency) - Online travel authorisation for Seychellois passport holders for entry to their homeland will be free of charge as of Friday, April 1, the Ministry of Transport announced on Thursday.
The change applies to all applications by Seychellois passport holders for both the standard application fee of €5.40 and expedited application of €25.40. These same fees will remain for residence permit holders and foreign passport holders .
On the travel authorisation portal, Seychellois will have to upload a copy of their passport, a selfie, proof of up-to-date vaccination or negative COVID-19 test, enter contact and trip information, and answer questions on to Customs, immigration and biosecurity, free of charge.
The ministry said that "all Seychellois are encouraged to apply with their Seychelles passport to benefit, as any Seychellois citizen travelling on a foreign passport will be subject to the processing fees until further upgrades are done to the system in order to recognise other forms of identification", including the NIN- the national identification number.
Local authorities have reviewed the Travizory travel authorisation system following numerous complaints from Seychellois living in other countries and those living locally who undertake overseas travel, who saw it as unfair that they must pay a fee to enter Seychelles. This was seen by many as an infringement of their constitutional rights.
Transport minister Antony Derjacques said that the system will continue to evolve to further facilitate the travel experience for Seychellois citizens, including those travelling on foreign passports as they do not hold a Seychelles one.
For Seychellois using foreign passports, Derjacques said that "they will soon simply be able to upload another form of ID to the online platform. This complements the government's announcement last week that the Ministry of Foreign Affairs will open a new office to address issues and concerns from the diaspora."
Further streamlining of the application process for citizens is expected in the coming and will include auto approvals of fully vaccinated or COVID-19 PCR-test negative citizens, who can provide verifiable digital health certificates issued locally or internationally.
The fees collected from foreign visitors and residence permit holders will be used to support further upgrades to the arrival and departure process, to guarantee a simple and seamless travel experience for all passengers into and out of Seychelles, says the Ministry of Transport.