Life & StyleTravel

Up to 21% of world population does not need a visa: UN

The latest report issued by UN Tourism on issuing travel visas around the world revealed shifts in international travel regulations, especially after the end of the COVID-19 pandemic.

As a result of these shifts, new types of visas have emerged, such as “nomad visas.”

The report also revealed that the rate of people in the world who do not need a visa has risen to new record levels at 21 percent.

Traditional visa requirements have decreased and fewer people around the world now need a traditional visa to travel, and decreased from 77 percent in 2008 to 59 percent in 2018, then to 47 percent in 2023.


Residents do not require a visa

According to the report, 21 percent of the world’s population now do not require any form of visa, an increase from 17 percent in 2008 and 20 percent in 2018.

These people can travel without a visa to anywhere in the world, while 14 percent of the world’s population can apply for a visa upon arrival at airports and ports, compared to six percent in 2008 and 15 percent in 2018.

The UN Tourism report said that 18 percent of the world’s population can apply for electronic visas, compared to three percent in 2013 and seven percent in 2018.


Tourist visa regulations

The report approaches tourist visa regulations by region, highlighting the following:

The Asia-Pacific region had the highest degree of openness of all the world’s regions, with the most open sub-regions being Southeast Asia, East Africa, and the Caribbean.

The largest increases in openness since the last report in 2018 were observed in South Asia and West Africa.

“Central and North Africa, North America, and Northern and Western Europe remain the most restrictive and most complex in granting a visa, while visa exemptions are particularly common in the Caribbean and Central America,” the report reads.

“Visa-on-arrival policies are common in East Africa, South Asia, Southeast Asia, and West Africa. Traditional visa applications in the Middle East decreased from 71 percent of the world’s population in 2015 to 57 percent in 2023. Electronic visas are spreading in West and East Africa and South Asia,” it added.


Recommendations for simplified travel

“The report emphasizes the pivotal role of improving visa policy in promoting tourism growth,” it said.

“Key recommendations include greater integration of tourism perspectives into visa strategies, targeted visa waiver programs for low-risk traveler markets and expansion of visa-on-arrival facilities. In addition, clear communication about visa policies is vital, along with a streamlined visa application process, fast processing times and improved entry procedures for an enhanced visitor experience.”

Related Articles

Back to top button