Ireland is planning to increase the number of tourists it receives by introducing a common visa between Ireland and Britain for non-EU visitors, this summer.
Details of the new program are yet to be finalized by the Irish and British Governments. The proposed scheme will have a common travel area between Britain and Ireland for people from non-EU. It is expected to start from this summer, and will allow tourists to travel freely between Britain and Ireland using single visa, and it will also permit business visitors and tourists from outside the European Union.
It is being said that this new program will be better than the existing visa waiver scheme, that permits travelers from from 16 non-EUcountries to visit Ireland on Britain’s visas. The existing program will expire in October, 2016. On the other hand, the new common visa it is envisaged, will be permanent and it will replace the current program. The exisiting visa waiver program is restricted only to 16 countries, but the proposed program will allow business visitors and tourists from any non-EU country.
For instance, under the existing program Brazilians are not allowed to travel to Ireland on Britain’s visa, but this will be made possible once this program is rolled out.
Indian and Chinese tourists will be the first and most likely beneficiaries to travel under the new program. Though the number of visitors travelling from China and India is minute, the market is on the rise. Also, Chinese tourists are likely to spend more time than the others. India is a good market, as it has a huge population with a growing middle-class, said the chief executive of Tourism Ireland.