Visas, Sri Lankan Rupees and Sim Cards


Previous page: The cost of a holiday to Sri Lanka


Visas for Sri Lanka

We applied and paid for our Sri Lankan visas online. They cost $90 USD each. They only took a few days to arrive. They really just look like an email. They are not something you attach to your passport. This is what the email visa says:

"ETA Number: 181215VI18701882


Passport Number: (blanked out purposely here by me)

Nationality: AUSTRALIA (AUS)

Date Of Birth (DD/MM/YYYY): 20/11/1951

Validity of ETA (DD/MM/YYYY): Valid 30 days ONLY. (Use before 13/06/2019)

Entry Type: Double (This is permitted within 30 days from your initial arrival)

Purpose of Travel: Tourist - Sightseeing, holidaying

(You are NOT permitted to use this ETA for any other purpose. Ex: Business or Trade, Studying, NGO activities, Journalism, Meeting with Political Parties etc...)

You must verify the above information to ascertain that they have been entered correctly. Further, in case of any inconstancy in the above particulars you are requested to pay again at the port of entry to obtain a fresh ETA.

In addition, you must ensure that the particulars of same travel document used for applying online visa is used for entering into Sri Lanka. In the event if you produce a travel document other than the one used for applying online visa, you are compelled to pay again at the port of entry to Sri Lanka to obtain a fresh ETA.

This ETA allows you to enter into Sri Lanka for the purpose mentioned above. Please produce your passport together with return air ticket and proof of sufficient funds to the Immigration officer at the port of entry to Sri Lanka. If you stay beyond 30 days, please report to the Visa Section of the Department of Immigration & Emigration, Colombo, Sri Lanka."


We have bought some Sri Lankan Rupees

We know we can use ATM's in Sri Lanka to withdraw cash but we wanted some before even leaving Australia. The guest houses we are going to don't actually take credit cards so it is important to have cash on us. We bought some Sri Lankan Rupees from an exchange shop attached to Flight Centre. They don't carry many SLR's so they had to be ordered in. We particularly asked for smaller denominations but it seems that was not possible. It all arrived as 5000 rupee notes. We were rather disappointed until the teller said that each one is only worth about $40 AUD so I guess that is not too bad. This is what 5000 SLR notes look like:

Sri Lankan moneySri Lankan money



Getting a Sri Lankan sim card

We want to buy a local sim card and discovered there are desks are the airport that can supply them. Sounds good but we arrive in the early hours of the morning so we may not feel like standing in a queue when we will be so very tired. We have since been told that the immigration people give you a free sim card at the airport when you arrive. Sounds marvellous.


Getting from the airport to Moss Colombo Hotel

We arrive well after midnight so we don't want to muck around trying to find a bus into the city at that time of night so we are intending to get a taxi. I've learned from Trip Advisor that there is a counter called "Airport Taxi" that we need to look for. It is the first place on the right that we will see when exiting customs. We pay for the taxi right there. We don't pay the driver. We are told the cost will be approximately 3000 SLR's. I think this will work out to be around $23 AUD so that is not too bad. We have to remember to tell the driver we want to travel via the expressway.


Next page: Not yet written. We leave Australia on 24th January so look out for more upon our return on 14th February. In the meantime please follow our Sri Lankan adventure on our Facebook page: Morrison's Adventure Before Dementia