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New GCC Entry Permit Allows Tourists to Visit 6 Countries with 1 Visa

New GCC Entry Permit Allows Tourists to Visit 6 Countries with 1 Visa blog S & S Lawyers that is the leading law firm in sharjah, UAE consisting of experienced lawyers and advocates in Sharjah that provides high quality legal services to groups and individuals to help them with legal matters, including arbitration, civil, criminal law and crimes, real estate, personal status, and as well free legal consultation.

Called “GCC Unified Visa”, a new system is being introduced to travelers that allows them to visit six Gulf countries and stay for over 30 days, this game-changing rollout aims to boost ‘bleisure’ (business-leisure) travel from India to the UAE and wider region.

If you have heard of the Schengen visa, you will quickly understand the concept of this new visa system except it has a smaller coverage unlike the Schengen visa which allows a tourist to visit 27 countries in the Schengen Area. The GCC Unified Visa is expected to contribute to the growth of the tourism sector of the six gulf countries and increase the number of hotel guests, ultimately establishing the region as a leading destination for regional and international tourists.

The new visa system has been in the works since October of last year as the GCC states aim to foster the economic growth in the region by streamlining tourist travel, highlighting its potential, and to showcase the region’s diverse tourist destinations.

According to Philip Barnes, the chief executive officer of Rotana “We are in the fortunate position that we can cater to diverse travel needs with a variety of accommodation options, from serviced apartments to five-star hotels, capitalizing on these market trends,” he also added that as the region seek to grow its tourism offer with enhanced investments, strategies, visa procedures, and more, there is a growing trend among travelers to visit multiple countries per trip.

One of the many factors why this multiple entry visa was proposed is the rising trajectory in long-stay bookings from both business and leisure travelers. Barnes added that they saw an exceptional 28 percent increase in long-term stays in Q1 2024 as compared to Q1 2023 across its regional properties in Dubai, Riyadh, Al Khobar and Doha which are the cities known as essential business hubs in their respective regions, home to significant business projects and developments, attracting many business travelers who are either planning to relocate to the GCC permanently or visiting for an extended period.

Authorities from the UAE estimated that the unified GCC tourist visa could lead to a record number of visitors, with projects indicating a total of 128.7 million visitors by 2030, which is a massive surge in tourism and is expected to have a significant impact on the regional economy, creating new opportunities for cultural exchange and business, while elevating the GCC’s status as a premier travel destination.

Oman’s Minister of Heritage and Tourism, Salem bin Mohammed Al Mahrooq, confirmed that feedback on the unified visa plan was sought in December 2023.

There is no doubt that the Unified GCC Tourist Visa is one of the groundbreaking projects the Leaders of the Council have approved recently, it is also stated that this project represents a great achievement, which is to be added to the council’s many great achievements, additional to the UAE’s exceeding expectation in 2023.

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