Rwanda Visa Online – Everything You Need to Know

In this comprehensive guide, you’ll find everything you need to know about obtaining a Rwanda Tourist Visa, including requirements, application process, and fees. It also includes information about Rwanda’s tourism, culture and frequently asked questions.

About Rwanda

Rwanda has a rich history, diverse culture, and impressive progress in recent years. It is known as the “land of a thousand hills” due to its beautiful, rolling terrain. The capital city is Kigali, the country’s largest city. Rwanda has approximately 12 million people and is home to three major ethnic groups: the Hutu, Tutsi, and Twa.

It also has a rich and diverse culture, with traditional dance and music playing an important role in everyday life. The country is also known for its vibrant textiles and crafts. The official languages are Kinyarwanda, French, and English.

Rwanda Tourism

Rwanda has several national parks, including Volcanoes National Park, known for its mountain gorilla population. The country also has a rich cultural heritage, with sites like the King’s Palace Museum and the National Museum of Rwanda. Additionally, Rwanda has a growing ecotourism industry, with hiking, birdwatching, and other outdoor activities opportunities.

Here are some of Rwanda’s top tourist attractions (Places to visit and things to do).

#1 Gorilla Trekking

Tourists popularly engage in gorilla trekking while visiting Rwanda, as the country is renowned for its mountain gorillas. The guide-led visits allow visitors to access several gorilla families residing in the Volcanoes National Park.

#2 Nyungwe Forest National Park

This park is home to over 1,000 different plant species, 13 species of primates, and various bird species. Visitors can go on guided hikes, chimpanzee tracking, or canopy walks.

#3 Akagera National Park

This park is home to a variety of wildlife, including elephants, lions, and hippos. Visitors can go on guided game drives or even overnight camping trips.

#4 Kigali Genocide Memorial

This museum is a tribute to the victims of the 1994 genocide and offers a powerful reminder of the country’s tragic past. It includes exhibits, memorials, and a peaceful garden.

#5 Lake Kivu

This beautiful lake offers opportunities for swimming, boating, and kayaking and scenic views of the surrounding hills.

#6 Cultural Experiences

Rwanda has a rich cultural heritage, and visitors can learn about traditional dances, music, and crafts by visiting local villages and cultural centres. It offers a unique and rewarding travel experience for those seeking adventure, nature, and culture.

The Ultimate Guide to Obtaining a Rwanda Visa

Rwanda Visa Requirements and Guidelines

As of January 1st, 2018, nationals of all countries can receive a visa upon arrival at Kigali International Airport and all land borders in Rwanda. However, citizens of countries that are members of the African Union, Commonwealth, and La Francophonie can receive a visa upon arrival and are waived visa fees for a visit of up to 30 days.

Types of Visas

There are several types of visas available for visitors to Rwanda:

Entry Visa: This visa is extendable for visitors staying for less than three months.

Transit Visa: This type of visa is for visitors transiting through Rwanda to another destination.

East Africa Tourist Visa: This visa allows visitors to travel simultaneously to Rwanda, Kenya, and Uganda for tourism purposes.

Visa Exemptions

Citizens of East African Community Member States can receive a pass/entry visa free of charge upon arrival to stay for a period of six months. Additionally, citizens of certain countries are granted a 90-day valid visa free of charge upon arrival. These countries include the following.

  1. Angola
  2. Benin
  3. Central African Republic
  4. Chad
  5. Cote d’Ivoire
  6. Democratic Republic of Congo
  7. The Federation of Saint Christopher and Nevis
  8. Ghana
  9. Guinea
  10. Indonesia
  11. Haiti
  12. Mauritius
  13. Philippines
  14. Senegal
  15. Seychelles
  16. Sierra Leone
  17. Sao Tome and Principe
  18. Singapore
  19. State of Qatar

Rwanda Visa Online Application

Visitors who are not visa-exempt can apply online or at the Rwanda Diplomatic Missions of their country of residence before departure. Those who apply online have the option to pay online or upon arrival.

Visa Extension

Visitors can apply for an extension while their initial visa remains valid.

East Africa Tourist Visa

Visitors who wish to visit Rwanda, Kenya, and Uganda simultaneously for tourism may apply for the East Africa Tourist Visa (EATV) online, upon arrival, or from Rwanda Diplomatic missions abroad. If acquiring the EATV visa before travel, the first entry point must be the country where the visa was applied. The EATV visa costs US$100, is valid for 90 days, and is multiple entries (if staying within the three countries).

General Information for Applicants Seeking a Rwanda Tourist Visa

1. Travel Document

An applicant should hold any genuine acceptable travel document valid for not less than six months.

2. Health Requirements

A vaccination certificate may be required at the border post. In the event of a major disease outbreak, specific requirements could be set and put to the knowledge of the public.

3. Rwanda Visa Fees

These are fees for processing applications. If applications are denied or withdrawn by the applicant, refunds of fees will not be made.

4. Validity of a Visa

The maximum and minimum visa validity period is set out in the Information for Applicants for each visa class.

6. Financial Requirements

An applicant must have sufficient funds to cover the costs of their stay in Rwanda. Evidence for such funds may be requested online, at the Rwandan foreign mission, or at the entry point.

7. Extension of a Visa for Some Classes

The Information for Applicants for each visa class outlines the possibility of extending some visa types. Applying for an extension while the initial visa remains valid is important. If a visa expires, a grace period of 5 days is allowed to depart or renew the visa without a penalty; otherwise, a penalty will be imposed, and the visa extension may be denied.

8. Change of Status for Some Classes

Visitors can apply to the Director General to change their visa status in Rwanda, provided their current visa is still valid. However, the group tourist visa is an exception to this rule, as status change is not allowed.

  • 💡 Useful Resource: For more information about the Visa, visit the Rwanda Directorate General of Immigration and Emigration website.

The Ultimate Guide to Obtaining a Rwanda Visa

Frequently Asked Questions About Rwanda Visa

Are you planning to visit Rwanda and have some questions in mind? Look no further as we have compiled a list of frequently asked questions about Rwanda that will help you prepare for your trip.

Who needs a visa to enter Rwanda as a tourist?

All visitors to Rwanda, except those from visa-exempt countries, need a visa to enter the country as a tourist.

How can I get a visa to visit Rwanda?

Visitors can obtain a visa upon arrival at Kigali International Airport or at any land border crossing in Rwanda. They can also apply online or at Rwanda diplomatic missions abroad.

What types of visas are available for tourists visiting Rwanda?

Tourists visiting Rwanda can obtain an Entry Visa, Transit Visa, or East Africa Tourist Visa.

What is an East Africa Tourist Visa?

The East Africa Tourist Visa (EATV) allows tourists to travel simultaneously to Rwanda, Kenya, and Uganda for tourism purposes.

How much does a tourist visa for Rwanda cost?

The cost of a tourist visa for Rwanda varies depending on the type of visa and the visitor’s country of origin. Visitors can check with their nearest Rwandan diplomatic mission for specific visa fees.

Can tourists extend their visas while in Rwanda?

Yes, visitors can apply for a visa extension at the Directorate General of Immigration and Emigration offices while their initial visa remains valid.

What are some of the natural wonders of Rwanda?

Rwanda’s beautiful landscapes include the Volcanoes National Park, Nyungwe Forest, and Lake Kivu.

What is the official language of Rwanda?

Kinyarwanda, English, and French are the official languages of Rwanda.

What is the population of Rwanda?

As of 2021, the estimated population of Rwanda is approximately 13 million people.

What is the climate like in Rwanda?

Rwanda has a tropical climate, with temperatures ranging from 20 to 30 degrees Celsius throughout the year. The country has two rainy seasons and two dry seasons.

What are some of the popular tourist destinations in Rwanda?

Some popular tourist destinations in Rwanda include the Volcanoes National Park, home to endangered mountain gorillas, and the Nyungwe Forest, known for its beautiful scenery and biodiversity.

Final Thoughts on Rwanda Visa

In conclusion, Rwanda offers a range of visa options, including exemptions, for tourists to enter the country. Visitors can apply for a visa online or at Rwandan Diplomatic Missions, ensuring they hold acceptable travel documents and have sufficient funds to cover their stay.

Rwanda is a picturesque country with diverse wildlife and landscapes, making it an ideal tourist destination. National parks such as Volcanoes, Akagera, and Nyungwe Forest offer unique experiences for tourists. With its well-designed visa requirements, Rwanda ensures visitors can make the most of their trip and create unforgettable memories.