As an eco-traveller, l am all about minimising my environmental impact.
But as a traveller, l am all about minimising time-wasting too.
(Duh, Pyotr, who isn’t? Its not my goal to live in airports…)
But you might think, how might one travel efficiently and travel eco-friendly?
What’s the connection?
Well, l am glad you asked!
On the surface, it might seem unrealistic, even stupid, to think you can be green and still travel quickly.
Because travelling quickly doesn’t really involve eco-friendly methods.
For instance, you’d pick private cars over public transport. Or you’d pick to fly as much as possible, ideally privately again, to save time, both in flying time and at border customs.
Equally, eco-friendly travels won’t likely often involve the most efficient, effortless travel.
Perhaps, as an eco-traveller, you are visiting usual destinations. Countries that lack advanced technology or modern infrastructure. And this might include travel documentation.
What do l mean?
While countries like Egypt, Colombia or India will provide unique, unparalleled experiences, the entry or application process can be challenging.
And that’s where iVisa comes in!
Who is iVisa?
Indeed, you read that right.
iVisa is about simplifying and handling the most often frustrating, (more infuriating) aspect of travelling to some countries.
Indeed, they handle everything online.
As iVisa state themselves:
- No more ‘complex bureaucratic websites,
- No lengthy government forms,
- And no expensive, wasted journeys or cross-country trips to embassies.
You simply, enter your destination and home countries and away you go!
See what l did there?
‘Away you go’ can refer to both getting your visa and actually going on that trip? (Hey, l thought it was a good play on words.)
Moreover, iVisa’s information updates in real-time.
So, if conditions change, this is accurately reflected.
How does iVisa work?
The process varies per country, since each country’s visa requirements vary.
But with iVisa, they’re all equally easy!
- First, you start by entering the countries you are coming from and going to respectively.
- iVisa then indicates whether you need a visa and if so, you complete their online applications, where they advise on stuff like photos too.
(This reduces paper usage, as you don’t have to print out any forms or spend travelling around to fill them out!)
- iVisa then takes care of the bureaucratic, diplomatic, melodramatic (at least how l get dealing with this bs, and other forms of ‘atics’ so you don’t have to.
- You then receive your visa fully prepared and recognisable via email, which you then present at border customs on arrival.
Its legit as simple as that.
Again, every country experience or processing-time will vary.
But the point is that, you avoid having to deal with the unpleasant, unnecessary application process, while also reducing your usage of resources and products.
Thats just a win-win.
So, why am l endorsing iVisa especially?
Well, its because l and other people l recommend them to, have personally used them.
October 2019 saw me take a trip to Marsa Alam, a town of the east coast of the Red Sea in Egypt.
I am an avid diver as seen here, and the Red SEA is THE home for large aquatic life…
I am talking Whale Sharks people!
Thing is, l wanted to travel to Egypt for longer than the 2 weeks that doesnt require a visa…because whale sharks.
And so, off l went to find and obtain a visa.
This led me to iVisa, and as you can probably tell, my experience was sublime.
Aside from the process outlined above, what l really like is the amount of detail available on country pages.
So on the page for Egypt, and every country they list, the page provides:
Here iVisa go into detail on the country’s visa specifications:
- lengthy of validity
- the total time you can stay continuously in the country
- any other attachments – eg Declaration Forms
They also outline which countries can enter the country on that visa.
Or details such if its longer than a certain then its required – as in Egypts case.
Finally, they also outline how to display or use the visa/document.
This might seem silly right?
But actually no.
Of the 80 or so countries l have visited, some countries can be SO fussy about how or where the visa is.
So iVisa explaining is a nice touch.
Required documents to apply
How many times have you gone to apply for something – be it a visa or even a job…
…Then you realise you forget an all important component.
Yea, l cant stand that.
So this selection on iVisa as it clearly sets out what you need before you get started.
Really saves you a tonne of time.
This is great feature, which might seem gimmicky but really is not.
The calculator does just that.
By providing where you’re from, the number of travellers, and reason for travel, it gives an estimate of both processing time and cost.
In your local/home currency l might add.
Its just a great tool to ease the planning process.
Lastly, why iVisa is because of the bespoke FAQs they have prepared for every country they serve/list.
Yes, a personalised FAQ specific to that country.
Its bloody beautiful.
Seriously, when l came across this extensive list of responses to common, yet crucial travel questions l was sold.
For me, it really showed the efforts iVisa were going to simplify the process.
And make our travel lives that much easier.
As of writing, they have over 25,000 reviews rating them ‘excellent‘ via Trustpilot – the widely respected and renowned customer review website.
So you KNOW they are the real deal.
Now, as with everything, its always important to mention any potential limitations.
The fact that the whole process is online can make it tricky to get in touch with a real person.
Especially, in processes like these, it can be reassuring or satisfying to have human contact to check there aren’t any issues.
But iVisa have thought of that!
They provide a live-chat box which enables you to make queries or ask questions.
And they even respond in the specific language you use!
Now any of the other reservations l have seen are unfairly given and don’t actually relate to iVisa:
- Visa didn’t arrive in time for travel.
Complaints like this are daft.
Its not the fault of iVisa if you leave it so late to get your visa before travelling that you then miss your trip!
Thats poor and ineffective planning.
You have to remember that using iVisa is to make your life easier they cannot account for the government processing and have no control over it.
So, it is you as the traveller to incorporate that when applying for your visa.
- iVisa fees are high.
This is factually just inaccurate.
Most fees on iVisa are around $25 which is very reasonable.
You have to remember that travelling and living in places like the EU or North America are a luxury – where the freedom of movement is simplified.
This drastically changes when travelling to less economically developed or remote countries.
Regardless, this isnt the fault of iVisa.
If anything, they are great at outlining all these additional costs in the FAQs l mentioned earlier.
Then use epic live-chat box and they will get back to you with an answer!
See, all bases covered.
And with that, comes the end of my iVisa post.
I do genuinely recommend them for:
- their ease of use,
- and that you’re more eco-friendly by reducing the number of materials you use.
And l wouldn’t ever endorse something unless l used it myself or have those who will vouch for it.
Its as useful be you a tourist or an expat.
So, if you’re planning a future trip post-covid, what’re you waiting for?
Have you ever used iVisa? Did l miss anything out?
Then leave me a comment!