Visa Categories

Entry visa - Residence visa

Resident visa permit for non-Sri Lankans to obtain residence facilities for special purposes. There are sub-categories which come under residence visas:

Employment category, Investor category, religious category, Student category, Registered Indians covered by the 1954 Indo- Lanka agreement, Ex Sri Lankans and their dependants, Family members of a Sri Lankan, Diplomatic and official visa, My dream home visa programme, Residence guest visa program.

  • In this case the visa process should originated from Sri Lanka and by the individual/institution who/which sponsor/facilitate the applicant the concerned individual/institution in Sri Lanka should submit the application for residence visa in behalf of the applicant directly to the controller general, Immigration and emigration (CG/I-E) of Sri Lanka.


  • If the controller general immigration and emigration approve the completed application form, they will then authorise the Embassy of Sri Lanka Paris, France offices to issue entry visa (valid for 30-day) to the applicant. An entry visa allows entry into the country and is valid for 30-days only. The applicant should then contact the embassy to obtain the entry visa.


Required Documents

  • Entry visa form
  • Entry visa approval from the Department of Immigration and Emigration Sri Lanka
  • Original Passport and a copy
  • Government fee: Adult - €53 / Children below 12 years - €00


  • Upon arrival in Sri Lanka the applicant must visit/ contact the Department of Immigration and Emigration of Sri Lanka to obtain his/her residence visa.



Diplomatic and official passport holders if travelling for the purposes listed below are also expected to apply online for ETA. However, if they are travelling on official government business other than the purpose indicated below, they need to apply through The Embassy. If they are travelling for private purpose, issuance of ETA on gratis basis will be considered on the basis of reciprocity.

    • Visiting friends and relatives
    • Tourism sightseeing holiday
    • Medical treatment
    • Participation in sports cultural performances
    • Business meeting
    • Confidence workshops and seminars
    • Short training
    • Participation in art music and dance performance workshops


Required Documents

  • Duly filled application for official diplomatic purpose.
  • Valid passport with the photocopy (6 months validity is required from the date of arrival)
  • Third party note (TPN) from the respective government stating the purpose of visit.


  • Transit visa.


A transit visa is an entry permit granted to a foreign national for admission into Sri Lanka for a brief period which is incidental and during his journey to another destination.


  • Journalist visa


Required documents.

  • Business/journalist visa application
  • Invitation letter from the company in Sri Lanka
  • A letter from the applicant’s company in France
  • Original Passport and a copy of the Passport
  • List of Equipments (Carnet)
  • NFC approval or any other approvals from relevant departments if necessary
  • Copy of Flight Ticket
  • Government fee: One month €53/= & 03 months Double entries €158/= & Multiple entries €210/=

Payment method: If the applicant physically visits the Embassy, he/she can pay by cash. Note: Crédit/Debit cards and personal or company cheques will not be accepted.             

Postage: within France 10 Euro.  Outside France 15 Euro. If required courier services should be arranged by the applicant.


  • Guidelines for media personnel and filming crew visiting Sri Lanka and checklist.


All journalists/ media personal travelling to Sri Lanka need to obtain visa from the relevant Sri Lankan mission prior to their travel to Colombo.

You are requested to apply for visa at 14 days prior to expected date of travel.

Media accreditation issued by the department of information in Colombo which allows foreign media to operate in Sri Lanka will not be issued under any circumstances for media personal who enter the country on a tourist visa.

The department of customs strictly enforce regulations pertaining to the clearance of media equipment. Therefore, visiting journalists should obtain a temporary import document known as “international carnet” for their professional cameras and media equipment for customs clearance. in the absence of a “carnet “a bank guarantee should be submitted to the value of the imported items if the visit is sponsored by any state institution, a guaranteed letter from the institution to ensure the equipment will be re-exported is required.

A list of equipment carried by audio/visual media should be sent to the public communication division of the ministry of foreign relations through the relevant Embassy in advance to facilitate custom clearance at airport. The list should be accompanied by a letter of undertaking from the relevant media organisation stating that all equipment will be taken out of the country at departure.

All foreign media working in Sri Lanka are required to obtain media accreditation from the department of government information issued upon the recommendation of the ministry of foreign relations media accreditation requests submitted to embassy will be forwarded to the department of government information through the ministry of foreign relations in Colombo. Journalists who wish to obtain media accreditation advised to visit department of government information centre in Colombo.

Journalists contact the public communication division of the ministry of foreign relations if they wish to contact the for courtesy meetings or requesting interest with VVIPs and for any other assistance.

Filming documentaries feature films.

filming of documentaries and feature films are their tourism promotional films and wildlife related documentaries require prior approval from the national film corporation (NFC) please visit ( “foreign shootings” for more information.

Tourism promotional documentaries

Media teams are required to complete the NFC agreement and submit it along with the synopsis of the documentary itinerary of the media team while in Sri Lanka as well as locations of filming 24 working days are required to process this document prior to issuance of visa.

media teams travelling to Sri Lanka to film tourism promotional documentaries or taking part in Sri Lanka tourist board (SLTB) family life station to us are required to fill the SLTB selection criteria for journalist TV crews for FAM tours form.

The SLT PB requires at least 30 working days for processing the relevant documents prior to the scheduled commencement of the project. Set media teams should also identify a local ground handling team who will be coordinating the project in Sri Lanka.


Filming in wildlife protected areas.

Filming in wildlife protected areas requires prior approval from the department of wildlife conservation (DWC) (please see below for details) must be completed and handed over to the relevant mission. The department of wildlife conservation requires at least 14 working days for processing the documents.



  • Guidelines for issuance of visas and work permits for expatriates working and seeking to work in a voluntary capacity in social service organizations or NGO's.


Following are some of the key requirements laid down in the guidelines:

  • All the voluntary social service organisations or NGO’S registered under the voluntary social service organizations act number 31 of 1980 who wish to obtain visas should submit their NGO or INGO registration certificate and MOU signed with the government of Sri Lanka to the department of immigration and emigration. Visa will only be processed for the organisations that fulfil the above requirement.
  • All foreign nationals who intend to work in NGO/INGO sector in Sri Lanka should apply for entry visa prior to travel.
  • Residence visas are issued by the controller general of immigration and emigration for foreign nationals holding entry visas on the recommendation of the director of national secretariat for non-governmental organisations subject to a minimum period for a one-year. extension of resident visa will not exceed 3 years.
  • Foreign nationals travelling on tourist visa will not be able to obtain resident visa.
  • Visa fee applies.
  • comprehensive details on the new procedures can be obtained from the respective authorities in Sri Lanka (government information centre
  • granting or termination of visas is at the sole discretion of the Controller General, immigration and immigration section 14 of the immigrants and emigrants act number 20 of 1948 and Immigrants and Emigrants regulations.



Form [s] required


Employment/Assignment at Diplomatic Mission