How do you get visas to all these different countries, do you do it online or go to an embassy in every nation?
Yeah, getting travel visas is sometimes a hassle, but it can be made easier by not worrying too much about it. Much of a traveler’s success rate at being granted tourist visas depends on their country of origin.
Published onMay 13, 2009byVBJFollow me on Twitter here.
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How do you get visas to all these different countries, do you do it online or go to an embassy in every nation? (seems like that would be the hassle that is the most worrisome)
Yeah, getting travel visas is sometimes a hassle, but it can be made easier by not worrying too much about it. Much of a traveler’s success rate at being granted tourist visas depends on their country of origin. I am from the USA and have a USA passport, so I usually do not have too difficult of a time getting visas, and for most countries I can get them on arrival. Regardless of politics, most countries want tourists from nations that they view as being wealthy, and the USA is at the top of this list. If I was from a country whose citizens have a reputation for overstaying visas in foreign countries, then I would probably have a much more difficult time.
How to get travel visas
On the strength of my nation of origin, I have little problems getting travel visas. I simply walk into consulates, give them my passport, some money, a photo, and then return in a few hours to pick up my visa.
I very rarely get visas in my home country, as is often suggested. It tends to be more expensive if I get visas at consulates in the USA than in other countries. So if I am planing on traveling to a region where I will need lots of visas, I pick a regional administrative hub city and go to the consulates there. For example: If I want to travel to West Africa I will stop first in Casablanca and get all of the visas I need; if I want to go to China, I will take a flight to Hong Kong; if I want to go to the Indian Subcontinent or Southeast Asia I will travel first to Bangkok to get the visas or, if I am in China already, Kunming.
World travel is an ongoing system of connecting transportation and administrative hubs. If you do this properly, you can continuously travel with little difficulties. Just pick a major city in a country that both does not requite you to have a visa to enter and is near the regions you want to travel to that requires visa and get all of the travel documents that you need there.
Just follow the paths of least resistance around the world, and getting visas is seldom a problem. But if you want to go straight from Guatemala to India- or some odd route like this – then getting visas become much more of a hassle.
I am the founder and editor of Vagabond Journey. I’ve been traveling the world since 1999, through 90 countries. I am the author of the book, Ghost Cities of China and have written for The Guardian, Forbes, Bloomberg, The Diplomat, the South China Morning Post, and other publications. VBJ has written 3657 posts on Vagabond Journey. Contact the author.
The airlines will try to extort us any way they can. This is one of their worst grifts.
Ghost Cities of China
Ghost Cities of China is a book which recounts the two and a half years I spent on the ground investigating China’s empty new cities. Pull back the dark veil on the New China and find out what the country is really all about.