Russians top the Visas on Arrival charts in Goa

February 24, 2015
Russian travelers arrive in Goa in huge numbers after the VoA scheme began

Out of the 10,000 international visitors who benefitted from the newly begun VoA facility in Goa, almost half are Russians. The tourism department of Goa was of the view that on 22 February, 2015 an estimated 10,475 citizens from 26 abroad nations have made use of the Visa on Arrival scheme when they arrived in Goa. Leading these nations was Russia with 6,581 tourists, followed by 3,113 travelers from Ukraine.

The scheme involving VoA was started at over a dozen specified international airports which included Dabolim international airport. The launch was initiated in November, 2014 by the home ministry at the union level and aims at giving a fillip to tourism by easing the arrival process and by offering visas which are inexpensive.

According to Aravind K Nair who is the chief immigration officer at Dabolim airport, they had issued 5,000 VoAs in the middle of January, 2015. Within a month’s time, these estimated figures had crossed 10,000. A leading destination which has a number of beaches, Goa welcomes almost half a million international visitors on a yearly basis. The arrivals are mostly from Britain and Russia. Nevertheless, Britain has been excluded from the list of 26 nations which have been offered the VoA provision.

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