I’ll be honest with you. It is not so easy to find information about traveling to Libya, especially for a British citizen. If you do a quick search on the internet, most of you will find our websites with very little to no information on how to obtain a visa for this country.
However, reading online forums and comment sections, you will find countless visitors who show interest in visiting Libya and ex-pats (and former visitors) who express nothing but gratitude to the Libyan people and say that they have not felt at all uncomfortable being in Libya.
Looking at photos and articles written further about Libya, one cannot but be amazed at its beauty, especially by the archaeological sites waiting to be discovered by the world around it. And of course, because travelers are usually curious minds who want to discover the not-known, it may have made you want to visit Libya more. If you are a British citizen wondering if it is possible to visit Libya with your British passport, read on.
Requirements for having a Libya tourist visa
- Libya Visa Application Form
- Current passport, valid for 6 months after your departure date
- Passport size photo
- Employment letter or a cover letter stating your occupation (a requirement for some tour operators)
- Proof of approval/visa reference number of a tour operator in Libya
Step-by-step Procedure when applying for a Libya tourist visa
Important: since there is a lack of information on how to apply for a Libyan visa in London, it is advisable to seek help from a Libyan tour operator when applying for a visa.
1. Take a tour operator in Libya and make use of their Libyan Visa Service.
2. Submit all requirements issued by the tour operator so that they can process your visa for you.
3. When everything is ready, go to Libya.
Frequently Asked Questions About Libya
1. How long does it take to process my Libya tourist visa?
According to tour operators, it will take at least 10 working days from the day they receive your application form and your other documents to process the application.
2. How much does it cost to apply for a tourist visa to Libya?
Since there is very little information on official websites and we are currently looking to apply for a visa through a tour operator, the cost varies depending on how much they charge.
3. How long is my tourist visa valid for?
Tourist visas are valid from 45 days on issue and will give you a 30-day stay in Libya.
4. Do I need to get a vaccine before traveling to Libya?
According to Travel Health Pro UK, your routine vaccinations (MMP or measures-mumps-rubella and Diptheria-tetanus-polio vaccine) must be up to date before visiting Libya.
5. What should I do upon arrival in Libya?
You must register your stay in Libya with the local police within a week of arrival. Tour operators usually deal with this on behalf of the traveler.
6. Is it safe to travel to Libya?
If you listen to the news and travel advice then no, it is not safe and you would not even step into Libya because these websites say you should not plan a trip to the country at all costs.
However, if you dig deeper into online travel forums, you’ll find tons of ex-pats living in Tripoli, as well as visitors from all over the world, saying they still don’t feel threatened by anything the media says is happening across the country.
However, take this advice with a grain of salt, because you will still be the one to decide on your terms whether to travel to Libya or not.
If, in any matter, you still continue to travel, do not forget to travel after at night, especially if you are alone.
Also, constantly monitor local security situations when you are already in Libya to be aware of the situation in the country.
7. Do I need to get insurance when I travel to Libya?
Absolutely! You should get comprehensive travel and medical insurance plan before you leave for Libya.
8. What are some facts about Libyan culture that I should remember?
Before taking photos or talking to military personnel/facilities, make sure you have permission to do so.
One interesting thing I’ve read about Libya is that they find it insulting when someone shows them the soles of the shoes or feet. This is a part of Arab culture in general and is also widely known within Libya. The feet, as a whole, are considered unclean in their culture.
When eating a traditional Libyan meal by hand, always use the right instead of the left. The left side of the body is considered unclean in Islamic culture.
The way Libyans establish trust is through eye-to-eye conversations. This means that if you are negotiating with someone or have a deal with them, you must have a body meeting with them.
Seniority plays a big role in their culture. It is the most important or the oldest who often arrives at a meeting last, sometimes even after.
9. Do they speak English in Libya?
Yes! English is becoming a popular foreign language among the younger Libyan generation. This also comes with the rise of ex-pats living in the country.
If you plan to visit, you will definitely find people in the city who can easily communicate with you.
10. How to get around Libya?
The usual modes of transport in Libya have shared taxis, buses and coaches. In the past, tourists using these modes of transport have been unheard of. But now that the restrictions have been lifted, you can also see visitors riding these vehicles.
11. Can I use my credit card in Libya? Can I exchange my money?
Libya is a cash society so you need to bring your local currency and have it exchanged at the bank. There is also a black market where you can get more bang for your buck, but it is advisable not to risk your safety by going this route.