Spend Less Time Queuing With APEC Business Travel Card
How APEC Business Travel Card Allows Less Time Queuing
The APEC Business Travel Card (ABTC) is a system that makes short-term business travel inside the APEC region easier by smoothening the entry process. This card allows holders to enter visa-free into any APEC economy and fast-tracks the immigration process.
There are currently nineteen fully participating members in the ABTC scheme and two transitional members. Its function as a multiple-journey visa is another benefit.
The designated APEC Business Travel Card lanes allow APEC members to get quick immigration clearance.
The Advantages Provided by the APEC Business Travel Card
An APEC Business Travel Card gives the following benefits:
- It streamlines the entry of frequently-traveling businesspersons into APEC economies.
Card-holders get visa-free entry to all fully-participating APEC member nations.
- The special APEC Business Travel Card lanes at major international airports. It helps speed up the immigration formalities and help businesspeople save their precious time.
- Frequent business travelers do not face red tape and receive a pre-cleared entry to any participating member economy.
- The card allows its holders to tap new business opportunities and invest in new sectors.
- It permits multiple short-term entries and allows the holder to stay 60 to 90 days per trip. There is no need for members to make a separate visa application.
APEC Business Travel Card – Perfect for Busy Business Owners
For frequent business travelers, an APEC Business Travel Card allows them seamless entries into any APEC economy related to their business. Similar to a credit card in size, the ABTC carries much of the holder’s personal information. The standard magnetic strip and scanning features make it easily readable and decrease the time spent by businesspersons to stand in line at airports. It reduces the formalities and speeds up the immigration process, allowing the holder to focus and spend time on other essential business tasks requiring his attention.
One-time Application for a 5-year Card
To get an APEC Business Travel Card, applicants need to make a single application to their home economy or the economy for which they have a passport. Successful applicants will get a card that will be valid for five years or as long as the validity of their passport (whichever is shorter). Most ABTC applications are processed in around three months. There may be delays due to the need for pre-clearance from every ABTC participating economy.
Eligibility Criteria for the APEC Business Travel Card
A person intending to apply for the ABTC must meet the following conditions:
- He or she must be a bonafide business person representing an economically active business enterprise who needs to travel frequently to APEC economies on short-term visits. The person must be engaged in goods trading, providing certain services, or conducting investment activities.
- The person should have a clean criminal record.
- Must have a membership to a professional body (like an accountant, lawyer, etc.)
- Can be a public officer representing a government department, ministry, or economic agency and traveling in an official capacity
Our Passports and Visas Needed for Entering APEC Economies?
Suppose the holder is traveling to an APEC economy, which is a fully participating member. In that case, there is no need for a separate application for a visa if pre-clearance to that economy has been granted. However, pre-clearance depends on the APEC economy, and it can determine whether to allow a person to enter an economy and stay there even after receiving an ABTC. The card is not a replacement document for the passport. Passports remain the primary identification documentation, and ABTC holders must present their passport upon arriving and departing from an APEC economy. You need a travel or identity document when traveling to an APEC economy that is a transitional member.
The APEC Business Travel Card benefits member economies. It works by removing the barriers faced while trading across borders, such as lengthy immigration clearing procedures. The card enables them to make multiple visits to the APEC economies to transact their business. A study conducted by the APEC Policy Support Unit showed that by reducing transaction costs and time spent on border immigration processes, the card helped ABTC holders save millions of dollars. It provides them with more time to concentrate on their business activities. It works by ensuring that there’s less time queuing during immigration clearance.
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