At the Dubai International Airport.


Schengen-style visa for UAE, GCC in future?

Countries in the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) are considering a “Schengen-style” visa system to boost tourism, Bahrain’s Minister of Tourism said at the Arabian Travel Market (ATM) in Dubai.

Fatima Al Sairafi said that under the visa system, GCC countries will have one entry visa procedure for tourists. The GCC is composed of the UAE, Bahrain, Kuwait, Qatar, Oman and Saudi Arabia.

During a panel discussion on The Future of Travel for GCC, Al Saraifi said the Schengen-style visa system will certainly boost tourism in the region.

“We have a huge opportunity, the effort is in how to unify all the countries in the GCC,” Al Saraifi said. The UAE is already implementing visa-free entry for GCC nationals.

The Bahraini tourism minister said that a single entry visa would allow tourists to visit multiple countries in the GCC, benefitting the region.

“If all the GCC countries unified their efforts in promotion, the opportunities would be incredible,” the minister said.

The Schengen visa allows a person to travel to 27 European countries under the Schengen area for up to 90 days for tourism or business. ICA/Expat Media

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