This process of applying for a visa is known to be a troublesome one, requiring all sorts of verification and details, and to make it worse, oftentimes different countries will have wholly dissimilar processes, requiring the traveller to produce different documents and perhaps even make trips down to embassies themselves.
Founders of Evisa Asia, Lee Earn Pin (left) and Chiam Wei Kiat (right)
Now, with Evisa Asia, travellers now have a one-stop online platform to apply for different countries’ visas. Founded in 2006 by two Malaysians, Lee Earn Pin and Chiam Wei Kiat, Evisa Asia started out as an electronic visa system for the government of Cambodia, which then expanded in 2010 to cover the visa applications for other Asian countries such as Thailand and Laos.
According to Lee, Evisa Asia was designed with a goal towards user convenience, incorporating features such as the ability to file group applications and take passport photos using webcams. “We have spent almost a year trying to streamline the visa application process of all countries in Asia,” he said, “Visa regulations are so different in this part of the world. The rules change very often. It is a challenge to turn everything into one form, yet to be so simple and easy to use.”
Evisa Asia’s design decisions have produced tangible results in the form of an increase in their user base, which according to Lee grew by over 50 per cent for the first three months since expansion in 2010. This has led Evisa Asia to sustainability over the past three years, letting them concentrate on their core business of providing convenient visa applications.
That said, the vast majority of startups seek growth and business expansion, and Evisa Asia is no exception. Lee shares that they are currently looking for Series A investment of over US$3 million. The funding will be used to create new partnerships to further ease the process of getting ready for an overseas trip.
Evisa Asia has plans to launch a new affiliate programme, where it hopes to work with airlines and travel agents to make the visa application process an integral part of the travel package. Also, it is looking to expand to the Asia Minor and the Middle East regions, bringing easy visa applications to more countries around the globe.