The information on this page covers the rules currently in place regarding the Ethiopia visa for UK citizens. All information provided below is for travelers using a British passport.
Currently, the British passport is positioned as one of the most powerful travel documents in the world, allowing visa-free access and visa on arrival to 185 out of a total of 195 countries recognized in the world, including Ethiopia.
All visitors traveling to Ethiopia are required to obtain a visa in order to enter Ethiopia, except for citizens of Kenya and Djibouti, who have visa-exemption arrangements with Ethiopia, meaning that citizens from both countries are able to travel to Ethiopia without a visa for a period of up to 1 year (Kenyans) and up to 3 months (Djiboutians).
*Note: An Ethiopia eVisa is an electronic travel authorization which allows travelers to enter a specific country for a certain time period. Applying for a visa online eliminates the need to physically go to an embassy or consulate. It is a convenient way of arranging your travel visa prior to traveling. What is more convenient is the fact that you can apply for and obtain an Ethiopia tourist visa for UK citizens while still in your home country.
Do UK Citizens Need a Visa for Ethiopia?
Yes, UK citizens must have a valid visa in order to enter Ethiopia. Except for citizens of Kenya and Djibouti, all other international visitors must first obtain a visa in order to enter Ethiopia, including UK citizens.
Ethiopia and the UK maintain strong and rich diplomatic relations. Hence, an estimate of around 20,000 British citizens visit Ethiopia per year.
Applying for an Ethiopian visa as a UK citizen is simple. However, prior to your visa application, it is vital that applicants check that they are able to comply with Ethiopia visa requirements. Applicants must first hold a valid passport of at least 6 months, counting from the day of planned arrival in Ethiopia.
Please note that single-entry visas will expire once you leave Ethiopia. This is applied to all visas, regardless of the number of days used out of the 30 or 90 days granted. In order to reenter Ethiopia, UK citizens will need to apply for a visa again.
Visa holders are able to extend their visa while still in Ethiopia by physically going to the Main Immigration and Nationality Affairs Office in Addis Ababa. In order to extend the visa successfully, the extension application should be made at least a week prior to the current visa expiry date. Alternatively, applicants can apply online for a new eVisa while still in Ethiopia. In the case of overstaying, travelers will be expected to pay a fine in full before leaving Ethiopia or could also risk imprisonment.
Multiple-entry visas must be arranged via your nearest Ethiopian embassy or consulate.
For UK citizens transiting through Ethiopia, no transit visa is required, providing that travelers do not leave the airport between flights.
Holders of service or diplomatic passports of any country, except for Somalia and Pakistan, can enter Ethiopia visa-free for a period of up to 3 months.
Ethiopia visa requirements for British citizens are listed below.
Documents Required to Obtain the Ethiopian Visa for UK Citizens
Applying for an Ethiopian eVisa is simple, but it is imperative that applicants meet all visa requirements. The complete list of documents for an Ethiopian tourist visa for UK citizens includes:
- Valid passport with at least 6 months of validity from the date you intend to enter the country
- A recent passport size digital photo in color. (Dimensions: 51mm x 51mm (front view with clear, full face from the top of the hairline to chin, eyes open))
- A scanned copy of passport biographical page
- Correct details should be given in the online application form
- Credit card or debit card for visa fee payment
*Note: Residents of UK will be expected to provide a valid residence permit in the UK.
Additional documents that may be required:
- Yellow Fever Vaccination Certificate
- Travel insurance
- Recent bank statement of sufficient funds
*Note: UK Emergency Travel Documents (ETDs) are also accepted for entry, airside transit and exit from Ethiopia.
For Ethiopian specific information on vaccine recommendations, outbreaks or health risks, consult with your country’s latest health advice at least 8 weeks prior to your intended trip.
Important things to keep in mind
- Carrying over 1000 Ethiopian birr is illegal (both, when entering and/or leaving Ethiopia)
- You must declare any cash in excess of $3,000 or the equivalent in local currency to customs officials.
When visiting Ethiopia on a tourist visa:
- It is against the terms of the tourist visa to work or take up any kind of employment, voluntary employment included
- Immigration statuses cannot be changed
*Note: For emergency help from the UK Government when abroad, please contact the nearest British embassy or consulate.
Information regarding minors
In the case that minors possess their own passport, a separate application may have to be completed. However, minors aged 14 or under, are allowed to be included on the parent’s eVisa application.
Visa applicants over the age of 18 should possess the appropriate documents in order to be able to travel abroad on their own.
This following is a list of additional documents that may be required:
- A consent letter confirming the permission for the child to travel alone or accompanied by one parent
- Citizenship identification or birth certificate
- Other supporting legal documents: custody court orders, divorce papers, death certificate in the case of a deceased parent
How Long Does It Take to Get a Visa for Ethiopia from the UK?
Once applicants have submitted all the required documents and information, the Ethiopian Authorities will screen the application, documents, and fee payment. Normally, visa applications are approved within 1-3 business days (24-72 hours). It is easy to keep track of your visa processing procedure online.
On rare occasions, the process may take longer. This could be due to application errors or inaccuracies. Hereby, it is advisable to apply at least 7 days prior to your trip in order to allow plenty of time for processing and/or required improvements.
Another thing to consider is making sure you check out official holidays in Ethiopia before applying!
When applying for an Ethiopian visa from the UK, all communication and notifications for your eVisa application will be sent via email. Once the Ethiopia eVisa confirmation has come through, applicants will also get a description of conditions that apply to the eVisa. A printed copy of your approved visa should be presented at the airport in order to gain entry.
*Note: e-Visa application fees are non-refundable in case of rejection or unused!
Ethiopian Visa Application for UK Citizens
The Ethiopian visa application for British citizens only takes a few minutes thanks to the speedy online application form. Questions asked in the Ethiopia online visa application form include personal information, passport information, travel plans, vaccination and health history, as well as security information eliminating the possibility of public risks to Ethiopia.
Al information provided on your application form must be double-checked, as any inaccuracies or errors can result in delay or rejection of your electronic tourist visa to Ethiopia.
Upon approval, remember to print the Ethiopian e-visa sent to your email address in order to present it at the port of entry. The only point of entry for eVisas, for the time being, is Addis Ababa Bole International Airport. It would be a good idea to keep a copy of your Ethiopian eVisa with you at all times during your stay.
Applicants with dual citizenship must use the same passport to enter Ethiopia as the one used to complete the visa application form.
*Note: The validity of the eVisa validity from the day the visa holder enters Ethiopia, not the date of issue.