Types of Visa  - How they Work

   Rest your mouse in the image for a brief descriptor 

Image by Zachary Theodore

The Working Visa & Offshore

Very hard to define unless you know the visa business and the countries vary considerably.


The Question is what is deemed  as business or work -  

Nigeria has a working visa , A temporary working Visa , and an STR 

your work style and reasons of your stay will all be taken into account so we can advise which one  you should apply for - 


Saudi have strict clearance of all qualifications which must be verified and cleared through the FCO and their own Cultural Bureau before you can apply for a visa to work inside Saudi - they have specific  block visa provision for large employers of foreign talent.   


Working in Oil and Gas and offshore has its own specifics and we have a dedicated Oil and Gas team that can help. 


The Student  Visa -


Issued to students that have signed up to classes and courses offered by the hosting countries. 

Usually granted once proof is obtained of the course purchase and booked accommodation, proof of means ( funds)  is also commonly asked for,  as many student visas issued, have rules limiting the of  amount  casual work can be performed locally for income purposes. Visa is usually granted for the period of the course and no further. 


The Transit Visa -


This visa is required by certain countries to allow egress of passengers  NOT Entering the country when meeting a flight or  Transiting between aircraft.


the Majority of countries ask you remain " airside" and wait for the onward connection, but where the delay between the 2 flights in considerable  exit passes are sometimes issued for a hotel stay or brief exit from the airport.  

Some countries restrict the hours and also the SET Area you can move in. 

Long Hair

Tourist Visa -

For the one off visit or holiday 

Some countries have let 30 -90 visits be allowed for tourism and holidays without visa and some have opted for issue on arrival in country


Queues at passport control can be lengthy so it is advised to arrange your visa before travel.


59  countries are offering the new style E VISA  - we offer 59 here on this site.  Apply on line , you receive email clearance which allows boarding , and a visa is issued when you show your email clearance -


A visa will then be stamped into your passport on arrival. Old style paper visas are still available as an option.


Cuba offers an entry voucher  valid for your stay and surrendered on departure. 

Teaching English

The Teaching Visa- 


Education Visas for teaching abroad  require in depth attestation of all documents, and personal - Educational and  professional working history. 

to include medical records , tax references in all countries worked,


Attestation of Certificates and qualifications, and POLICE and criminal history checks, plus immunisation and full medical are par for the course -


these visas is not for the feint hearted !!! 


The Media Visa -

The hardest Visa to get -

The 1st question any embassy asking is what " Exactly " are you doing , where do you want to go, what are you planning to do when you get there , reasons for filming , content and style of the material.


There is a vast difference for an embassy issuing a visa, to shoot a holiday commercial to promote their country as opposed to a sensitive political documentary or  comment on famine, disaster or war reporting. 

Opinions may vary on the journalist concerned and previous articles written -  

Many film crew are recruited locally as they are employed and trusted locally to produce what is acceptable format to the country concerned

who are professional and politically cleared .

airport on phones



Business visas are designed for Issued to those carrying out company business only, within country.

Types can vary from 1 month to 5 years.

The Embassy decides what you get issued not necessarily what you apply for.

Business interpretation is often down to the country concerned and letter of invitation dictates the type of visa you need.

All embassies ask for 6 month validity on you passport when you leave their country and often issue in excess of 1 year


so be sure to check your passport expiry date before you apply.

Image by Chris Lawton

The Ships Crew / Flight Crew Visa -

Issued to seafarers and  air cabin crew for frequent and short access for country stop-overs and embarking and dis-embarking  ships on crew change over days.

Crew Passports are often Varied and from all over the world - Current access is often an issue as " Transit Visas " can expire when the passport is often ON BOARD with the passport holder so can not be presented to an embassy for renewal.


2nd passport management is advised as is  ( " Transit visa" status ) can effect dramatically the routing to the ship, and returning to the home country via a 3rd country and the associated costs within those transits.

 Flight Crew

The Diplomatic Visa-


Issued often by a friendly country to assist in trade negotiations or Export, or in assistance to diplomats in accessing the local representative High Commission in running supporting representative services within that country.


Visa fees are usually nominal and clearance is very quick within 2-3 days