Brazil received 616 visa applications from Americans in the first week after the electronic process was initiated to simplify issuance in the US. Of these, 327 had already been issued by Thursday (Feb. 1).
The simplification of the visa (e-Visa) issuance process for applicants interested in visiting Brazil started on November 21 in Australia. In January, the measure was brought into effect in Japan (11/01), Canada (18/01) and the US (25/01).
Altogether, 5,254 visiting visas have been requested online since November 21 in the four countries. According to the Brazilian Foreign Ministry, the system was widely accepted in Australia, the country chosen to start implementing the change.
Online applications in Australia represent the majority of requests in the country. They add up to 3,990—3,752 granted, and 139 still ongoing.
In Canada, applications amounted to 458, with 308 visas issued, and 144 under consideration. In Japan, in turn, consulate services received 289 applications, 262 of which had already been granted.
The consulates in the four countries account for 63.74% of the tourist visa applications and 58.15% of business visas, according to official figures.
The Tourism Ministry reports that 570 thousand US tourists travel to Brazil each year, bringing some $710.5 million into the economy.
The electronic visa makes it easier for tourists from these countries to have the document issued. The whole process—including application, review, and issuance—takes from one to three days.
American citizens living far from a consulate, for instance, can file their application online. Their documents must be scanned and sent to VFS Global, the company charged with pre-analysing the documentation before forwarding it to the Brazilian authorities.
According to Paulo Roberto Soares Pacheco, director at the Immigration and Legal Affairs Department of the Foreign Ministry, the e-Visa was the creative solution for making things easier for tourists without foregoing the requirement of a visa from countries demanding it from Brazil.
Pacheco notes that the change is also an efficient effort to prevent fraud. “The future of visas is electronic, as it ensures safety, especially against fraud,” he argued.
The visiting visa is valid for two years or for as long as the passport has not expired. Visas with longer expiry dates must be obtained at a Brazilian consulate. Also, the traditional method for issuing a visa was not abolished in the four countries.
To learn more about the e-Visa, please visit VFS Global at www.vfsglobal.com/brazil-evisa.
Translated by Fabrício Ferreira