Ethiopia Launches Online Visa Application and Issuance as Air Arabia Spreads Wings to Somaliland
By Abdi Ali
Published July 3, 2017
In a move aimed at making travel to Ethiopia easier, the country’s national airline and immigration department have introduced an E-Visa service.
Ethiopian Airlines, whose motto is The New Spirit of Africa, launched the online visa application and issuance service on June 12, 2017, creating a single-stop shop for its customers by linking its website with the E-visa service of the Ethiopian Immigration Services.
Travellers to the country that hosts the headquarters of the African Union can “apply for their e-visa online, book a travel online, check-in online, follow flight status online, change booking online, upgrade online, pre-order duty free online and plan a Holiday online,” Ethiopian says in a message to members of Sheba Miles programme for its frequent fliers. What is more, the service comes on ethiopianairlines.com complete with “various payment options made online.”
Meanwhile, Ethiopian has with effect from July 1, 2017 re-introduced a no- show fee of US$50 on all fares to all markets as Air Arabia commences two weekly flights connecting Sharjah and Hargeisa starting from July 4, 2017.
Air Arabia, touted as being the Middle East’s first and largest low-cost carrier that entered the African market in 2004 and currently flies to Egypt, Sudan and Kenya from Sharjah, its United Arab Emirates hub, into Somaliland’s Hargeisa on Tuesdays and Fridays.
“Hargeisa offers travellers a unique blend of contemporary and modern experiences from one street to the next and the city has all the amenities a traveller could wish for: from culture to commercial and more,” says Adel Al Ali, Group Chief Executive Officer of Air Arabia. “We are glad to announce this new route and are confident that this will establish Hargeisa as a destination of choice and appeal to the growing tourism and trade sectors.”
Air Arabia whose Chief Executive Officer is Adel Abdullah Ali has its head office in Sharjah Freight Centre, Sharjah International Airport. The airline that commenced operations on October 28, 2003 currently flies to 115 destinations.