Brazil has launched an electronic visa program for American and Canadian passport holders that will be implemented in 2018, offering a dramatically less expensive and more efficient way of obtaining a travel visa to the country.
In an announcement last week, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Brazil launched the "Electronic Visitor Visa Program - E-VISA” for citizens of Australia, Canada, the U.S. and Japan. The Brazilian e-visa will be available starting Jan. 25, 2018, for U.S. citizens; and Jan. 18 for Canadians.
The cost is U.S. $40 (non-refundable), a quarter of the fee charged for U.S. passport holders applying for the traditional visa through a consulate. It will be valid for up to two years, but for only a maximum of 90 days per year.
Travelers needing a visa before and after the implementation of the new e-visa program can still apply for a traditional visa through the Brazilian consular network.
Travelers will need to present a printed or digital image of the Brazilian e-visa to their airline in order to board a flight to Brazil. The Ministry said that the Brazilian Federal Police “is fully integrated to the e-visa system,” and that there is a chance in the future that e-visa holders will be able to utilize the e-Gates at Brazilian airports, currently only available to Brazilian citizens.
Brazil’s e-gates use facial recognition technology to automate the immigrations process, as an alternative to undergoing a manual passport check with a Brazilian Federal agent.
Foreign applicants can apply for the e-visa and obtain it online, via the website www.vfsglobal.com/brazil-evisa or through apps for mobile phones or tablets.
By applying online, travelers do not have to visit a Brazilian consulate. When a visa is approved, the consulate will email the visa typically within five business days.
The Brazilian e-visa will not be stamped on a passport, while the Consular Visa is.