I had heard that there is a way to get a Free Jordan Visa. It ain’t easy, but you can get it. Or at least it’s a discount if you can’t get through the hoops. Typically when you arrive in Jordan (some nationalities must apply before their trip) you can buy a Jordan visa on arrival. 20 Jordanian Dinars (JD) or about $28 USD. However, there is a way to get a FREE visa for Jordan.
Aqaba, the port city in the south of Jordan, right on the Red Sea and bordering with Eilat in Israel, is an economic free zone. This means you can do a bit of duty-free shopping here, for one thing. The Jordanians are looking to promote travel to Aqaba and there is a huge development project in the works there – they’re even moving the port down the coast toward Saudi Arabia to make room for a marina.
In hopes of getting the ball rolling with tourists, the Aqaba Special Economic Zone Authority (ASEZA) allows travelers coming to Aqaba to do so with a free visa.
You can obtain it at the border if you are entering Aqaba directly from Eilat, Israel. (You can also avoid the entry stamp if you want to keep your Israel visit invisible for future visits to certain Arab countries.)
The free Jordan visa requires you to complete a simple form upon arrival. Once inside Jordan it is assumed you are going to Aqaba, so this is not designed for you to just go tour the rest of Jordan (though that is still also possible). After entry you have 48 hours to get this visa validated at the ASEZA office near the outskirts of Aqaba. This is easy if you are working with a tour agency as they will do it for you. If you are independent, it will require a taxi ride. If you do NOT do this, you will pay for the visa when you leave Jordan. However, the fee will only be 10 JD unlike the usual entry visa of 20 JD in Amman. (And truth be told, the immigration agent in Amman didn’t charge me anything at all!)
Not Entering Via Aqaba?
No worries. You can request this free visa in Amman when you arrive if you are heading to Aqaba in 48 hours.
Read my article about crossing the Israeli-Jordanian border by land.
Aqaba makes a good home base for Wadi Rum and Petra, plus it is a very good scuba diving destination. Read more…