Gulf introduces single visa sailing cards for GCC members
The plan for a single visa system for the GCC countries for cruise passengers, awaits to be offered as early as September, according to a senior Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing official.
It would be a single visa for all the GCC countries. "It will happen for sure before the next season. So it should be done by September this year," Hamad Mohammad Bin Mejren, DTCM's Executive Director for Business Tourism, said to news daily. Asked if it would be a single visa for all the GCC countries, he said: "That is what we hope for. That's what we have conveyed to the authorities, we want and that's what we hope will happen."
He added that the visa process will be eased for cruise passengers and the region's travel and tourism industry is pushing the federal authorities to introduce it as quickly as possible. A single visa can speed things up in the cruise business as ships use Dubai as the hub to sail to other countries in the region such as Oman, Qatar, Bahrain and Kuwait. At present, a lot of foreign travellers must secure several UAE entry visas.
Cruise journey costs travellers approximately $150 or Dh550 per person to just come in and out of the country, the cruise companies would get a "great uptake" in cruise guests if a single visa were adopted.