Kazakh MFA launches app to assist citizens travelling abroad

ASTANA – The Kazakh Ministry of Foreign Affairs launched Dec. 14 a new mobile app that will help Kazakh citizens find resources, understand local cultures and travel more safely abroad. The application, SmartTravelKZ, contains information about countries, regional peculiarities, standards of behaviour in different countries, recommendations on actions in hazardous situations, warnings about emergencies and other necessary information for Kazakh citizens abroad. The application also offers information about sanitary-epidemiological and criminal conditions in various countries.

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“Information on the visa regime and the order of stay in a foreign country, as well as general information on visa-free countries for Kazakh citizens can be of particular interest. Also, the mobile application can provide data on items prohibited for import and export, rules of duty-free import and export and veterinary and phytosanitary control in certain countries,” said the Director of the Department of Consular Service of the Foreign Ministry Ardak Madiyev during the app’s presentation.

He also noted that SmartTravelKZ users will not only be able to receive up-to-date information about the situation in a foreign country, but can also directly contact a Kazakh consul for advice.

“For the users’ convenience, the mobile application contains advice on insurances, medical services, emergency actions, useful phone numbers, contact details of Kazakh transport offices, as well as advisory information about medical institutions and lawyers. Application users will be able to contact the consul of Kazakhstan in a particular country and receive consular assistance on emergency issues online,” said Madiyev.

He added that in the face of increasing threats to global security, natural disasters and the growing number of trips of Kazakh citizens abroad, the issue of modernising measures of consular support is becoming especially important.

“We have studied the positive experience of developed countries, and generally, it was the foreign minister’s idea. We started working on the project since February this year,” Madiyev explained.

He also stated that Kazakhstan currently has 90 consular offices in 67 countries. All of them have been notified about the launch of the SmartTravelKZ mobile application and are ready to continue providing support for Kazakh citizens. In the countries where there are no consular offices, according to Madiyev, there are 103 honorary consuls who have also been alerted to the launch of the application.

The application is available for Android users and will be available in the near future for iOS. SmartTravelKZ can be downloaded from the official Kazakh MFA website as well. The app is also able to work in offline mode.

The app was developed as part of the Digital Kazakhstan state programme.