Can anyone kindly give me advice concerning getting Jordanian/Syrian/Turkish visas upon arrival. I have been given conflicting responses, and would like some opinions from those who have traveled to these countries. I am a Canadian citizen planning to start and end in Egypt, hopefully get into Gaza, back to Egypt, Leave from Nuweiba, then off to Jordan, Syria and Turkey. (go back the same route minus Gaza and fly from Cairo to London..God Willing). So..I make some calls...and here's my dilemma I call the visa HQ in Ottawa and I am told I need to pay around 451 dollars for multiple entry visas for Egypt, Jordan, Syria. I am told (by the Jordanian embassy) I can get a Jordanian visa from Cairo before going to Jordan or at point of entry, but the Syrian embassy in Canada was insisting on getting a Syrian visa before leaving Canada. If I leave Canada with only an Egyptian visa what are the chances of getting visas upon arrival in Jordan, Syria, and Turkey. Also hoping that I get into Gaza at the Rafah border, does having a Gaza stamp alter my chances on moving on to the other countries? (I chose this route to avoid Israel..although I would love to check out Israel..I fear having Gaza stamped on my passport is gonna give me issues...that and I figure having an Israeli stamp is gonna give me issue around the M.E and other Islamic countries). I am a newbie at traveling to the M.E and would appreciate any further info. Thanks.
I am a Canadian citizen planning to start and end in Egypt, hopefully get into Gaza, back to Egypt, Leave from Nuweiba, then off to Jordan, Syria and Turkey. (go back the same route minus Gaza and fly from Cairo to London..God Willing)
I fail to see the reason why you want to go this way.
If I was you I would fly into Turkey and then make my way south to Egypt. You'll save a ton of time, hassle and money this way, plus going this route you can safely check out Israel to your hearts content.
I also am afraid that unless you got a very good reason to go to Gaza you better give up on it. AFAIK the border between Gaza and Egypt has been closed for a very long time ( look up ""gaza tunnels" on the internet) and the area is generally considered not safe.
When you go Turkey-Syria-Jordan-Israel-Egypt you can get visa for Israel, Jordan and Turkey on arrival at the border.
For Egypt you can normally also get visa on arrival, but since you will be coming overland from Israel or Jordan and travelling through the Sinai you need to pick up a visa in advance. You can do this either by applying at the Egyptian embassy in Canada or by going to the consulate in Aqaba or Eilat or the embassy in Amman. I would pick up the visa at the consulate in Aqaba or Eilat. I haven't done this myself, but from what I know it is a fairly simple and fast process that takes a day at the max. So you can combine getting the visa to Egypt with a day at the beach in Eilat or Aqaba, which is not so bad.
Syria is a bit more of a problem. The rule is that must apply in advance at the Syrian embassy in Canada. But - almost everybody nowadays gets the visa at the border with Turkey. There is a loophole in the laws that allow the Syrian border officials to issue you a visa if you turn up at their posts without one - all they have to do is fax your details for approval to Damascus. According to the grapewine this is a fairly simple process for Canadians - come early in the morning, wait a few hours and then hopefully get your Syrian visa. The fees at the border are significantly lower, around 10-40 USD depending on nationality.
I hope this info was helpful so far. I am sure you have more questions, so feel free to ask.
t_maia...Thanks for info...its much appreciated
I should have mentioned the whole point of my trip...I am going with a human rights delegation to Gaza. My plans to stop by the other countries recently came up for the sake of leisure....So that is why my route is the way it is. I have also already booked my flight which is pretty much from Toronto-> London->Egypt. Ur right about the entrance difficulties into Gaza...the group I am going with has been a number of times recently...so I am hoping it works out again. (so scratch Israel)
So with this particular route..is it safe for me to get only a Syrian Visa before leaving, since it seems to be the most difficult and get the Egyptian/Jordanian/Turkish upon arrival? Also since my return flight is scheduled to leave Cairo which route do you recommend (after I stop @ Jordan/Syria/Turkey)?
Hope I haven't confused you.
If you are determined to go to Syria you should go to Syria before you go to Gaza.
I don't know exactly what stance the Syrians have on people who only enter Gaza and not Israel proper, but my guess is they take a dim view of it too.
According to the Egyptian-Israeli peace treaty the Gaza strip is official Israeli territory, so I think you will be stamped into Israel when you enter the Gaza strip.
To clear the situation up you should do 2 things:
1) Contact the human rights delegation you are going with about their experiences. Where will you enter the Gaza strip, will you get a stamp in your passport from Israeli authorities, could you travel around Israel on your own after the visit to Gaza, etc. Explain your travel plans to them, they should know all about the visa situation.
2) Contact the Syrian embassy in Ottawa, explain your travel plans and wait for what they say. Better yet, have a friend do it for you using his name - this way they cannot connect your inquiry with your name on a visa application later.
Until you can confirm that your visit to Gaza won't be a problem for the Syrians I am afraid that you travels in the area will be limited to Israel, Jordan, Egypt and Turkey.
So for the time being better plan your travels so that they exclude Syria and Lebanon.
I have also already booked my flight which is pretty much from Toronto-> London->Egypt. .... Also since my return flight is scheduled to leave Cairo
In this light I would advice you to plan a trip that goes around Egypt, Jordan and Israel. Fly in and out of Cairo and do a circle of the area.
Or do you have the time to go to Turkey and Syria first before you need to be in Gaza? In this case cancel your flight to Cairo and change it to Istanbul. You'd then need to catch a flight from Cairo to Istanbul for around 200 USD at the end of your trip but this would work out to be the cheapest if you are coming from Toronto.