Extension of Stay

An extension of one’s stay in Jamaica may be granted to visitors to allow them to extend their time on the island beyond the time initially given by an immigration officer at the port of entry.

It is the responsibility of a foreign national to ensure that they visit the Extension of Stay (EOS) offices at PICA prior to the expiration of the time granted to them on the island and make out an application. Failure to do so will result in the individual being in breach of the island’s immigration requirements, which incurs penalties. Each EOS application is assessed on an individual basis except for cases involving applicants who are minors/dependents.

Passports in which the extension will be stamped must be valid for no less than six months.

Categories under which an extension of stay is granted include – VISITOR, STUDENT PERMIT, EMPLOYMENT, MARRIAGE, DEPENDENCY

VISITOR: Visitors from non-Commonwealth countries are typically granted a period of no more than six months stay on the island while Commonwealth citizens are allowed a maximum of 12 months. To apply for an extension of stay beyond the time granted, applicants must submit:

  • Valid Passport
  • Return Ticket
  • Letter stating reason extension is being sought
  • Entry visa (if applicant hails from a country where a visa is required prior to arrival. See list under Requirements for Travel to Jamaica)
  • Evidence of one’s ability to financially support their stay for the duration of time requested

STUDENT: Student refers to a foreign national who is enrolled in an institution of learning that is registered by the Ministry of Education. The student is required to visit PICA’s offices within two weeks of their arrival on the island to have the extension placed in their passport. Applicants must submit:

  • Valid passport
  • Letter of Registration from an Educational Institution ( accredited by the Ministry of Education) addressed to the Chief Executive Officer
  • Return ticket valid for one (1) year
  • Entry visa (if applicant hails from a country where a visa is required prior to arrival. See list under Requirements for Travel to Jamaica)
Extension of Stay will only be granted to foreign nationals who are enrolled in a Ministry of Education recognized institution.

EMPLOYMENT: Foreign nationals engaged in gainful employment may have their stay extended to facilitate their period of work. To extend one’s stay, applicant must submit:

  • Valid passport
  • Work permit/exemption/receipt/letter from the Ministry of Labour and Social Security
  • Entry visa (if applicant hails from a country where a visa is required prior to arrival. See list under Requirements for Travel to Jamaica)
An applicant will be granted temporary resident status if they submit the work permit receipt only and their time allotted will be no more than 3 months. Work permit holders submit their application for a renewal of work permit to the Ministry of Labour three (3) months prior to expiry date.

MARRIAGE EXEMPTION: A foreign national who is married to a Jamaican can extend their stay on the island on the basis of their marriage. The applicant is required to attend our offices, along with their spouse for an interview. Applicants for extension of stay on the basis of marriage must submit:

  • Valid passport
  • Marriage exemption certificate from the Ministry of Labour and Social Security
  • Birth/Naturalization Certificate or Machine readable Jamaican passport of Jamaican Spouse
  • Entry Visa (if applicant hails from a country where a visa is required prior to arrival. See list under Requirements for Travel to Jamaica)
  • Marriage Certificate

DEPENDENCY: This category applies to foreign nationals who do not work but are dependent on a spouse or parent who works on the Island. The applicant is required to submit:

  • Valid passport
  • Principal applicants passport, work permit/exemption letter from Ministry of Labour or Citizenship Certificate
  • Documents establishing relationship eg. Marriage Certificate, Birth Certificate/Adoption Certificate
  • Entry Visa (if applicant hails from a country where a visa is required prior to arrival. See list under Requirements for Travel to Jamaica)
Extensions of stay are processed within three (3) working days for all the categories.
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