Visa & Passports
When you’re planing your Sri Lanka holiday, it’s worth bearing in mind that you’ll need to apply for a visa online beforehand through the ETA (Electronic Travel Authorisation) website. This can be done up to 90 days prior to your departure, will cost you around $30 for an individual online application and will be valid for 30 days. You should receive a response to your application within a couple of days and if you plan to stay longer than 30 days in Sri Lanka, your visa can be extended at the Department of Immigration in Sri Lanka. Remember to ensure that your UK passport is valid for 6 months after the date you plan to arrive.
The Sri Lankan Rupee comes in denominations up to 5000, so its worth carrying change for those smaller purchases. You can exchange money in almost every hotel, however we suggest exchanging your money in an authorised bank to avoid higher rates. In larger towns, you’ll find reliable banks such as Commercial Bank, Sampath Bank and Seylan Bank. You’ll need a card with a Visa, Maestro or Cirrus logo and you can often pay by Visa or Mastercard in hotels, large shops and restaurants. GBP and USD traveller cheques can also be exchanged.
Tips & Haggling
We recommend using your discretion when tipping for services in hotels, restaurants and your guides or drivers. It is normal in Sri Lanka to tip and doing so usually serves to make up an employee’s salary.