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India restores tourist visas 2 years after suspension due to Covid-19

The valid e-tourist visas issued for five years stand restored to nationals of 156 countries with immediate effect. the regular paper tourist visa, which has a validity of five years and is issued to nationals of all the countries, has also been restored..

NEW DELHI: Almost two years after international travel was suspended due to the Covid-19 pandemic, the Centre has decided to restore all categories of tourist visas for foreign nationals.

The Centre has decided to restore all categories of tourist visas for foreign nationals keeping in view the improvement in Covid-19 situation in the country. (File/PTI)

An order issued by the ministry of home affairs (MHA) on Tuesday said it has considered the need for further relaxation of visa and travel restrictions keeping in view the improvement in Covid-19 situation in India.

The ministry said that the valid e-tourist visas issued for five years shall stand restored to nationals of 156 countries with immediate effect. Fresh five-year e-tourist visas to the citizens of these 156 countries will also be issued.

The regular paper tourist visa, which has a validity of five years and is issued to nationals of all the countries, has also been restored. Similarly, long duration 10 year regular tourist visa to the citizens of the United States and Japan has also been restored and new ones will be issued with immediate effect, the ministry said.

All these visas were suspended in March 2020, when regular international flights were stopped.

Earlier in October 2020, a graded relaxation in visa and travel restrictions was done for foreign and Indian nationals, who wanted to come to India for business, conferences, employment, studies and research purposes except the tourist visas.

The tourist visas were opened for the first time in 18 months from November 15 last year but that too only for travel in chartered flights.

Several states, including Goa as well as stakeholders in the tourism sector had written to MHA seeking to allow tourists to enter India once again through regular international flights as the tourism sector was getting affected.

The decision to allow all tourists has been taken after discussion with the ministries of civil aviation, tourism, health, external affairs and the state governments as the number of Covid-19 cases in the country is below 3,000 cases per day.

Tuesday’s order, which has been shared with the Indian embassies, said the foreign nationals on tourist/e-tourist visas may enter India only through designated sea immigration check posts (ICPs) or airports by flights, including those under Vande Bharat mission or ‘air bubble’ or by any other flights.

The government has already decided to allow regular international flight operations from March 27. Scheduled international flight services have remained suspended in India since March 23 , 2020 due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

The order said in no case, the foreign nationals will be allowed to enter the country through land border or riverine routes on tourist visas. A separate order will be issued for the opening of land borders soon.

The latest order will also not apply to Afghan nationals, who, the ministry said, will continue to be governed separately through e-Emergency X-Misc visa. This new category of visa for Afghan citizens was introduced in August last year as thousands of Afghans were looking to flee the country and seek refuge in other countries including India following Taliban’s takeover of the country on August 15.

Broadly, there are about 21 categories of visas given by India with various sub-categories including tourist visa, medical visa, business visa, conference visa, student and research visa, missionary visa, film visa, journalist visa, sports visa, intern visa etc.

“All categories of visas are now allowed to travel to India,” said a MHA official, requesting anonymity.

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India Restores All Tourist Visas, Paper and Electronic, with Immediate Effect after 2 Years of Suspension

In March 2020, India – the second most populous country in the world – took several measures to combat the pandemic,  like cancellation of scheduled/regular international flights, suspension of tourist visas, and nationwide lockdown. With foreign countries having vaccinated their populace and the COVID graph being flattened in India, the government has relaxed the pandemic-induced restrictions for international arrivals since February 14, 2022. All the previously issued tourist visas to India, in both paper and electronic formats, have been restored for eligible foreign citizens starting today, March 16.    

India tourist visa resumption, India tourist visa news, India e-visa news

The tourist visa and regular  international flights to India had been suspended for the past 24 months. When the second wave started receding, India resumed issuing e-visa in certain categories, except tourism. India’s e-tourist visa or electronic travel authorization (ETA) resumed to be issued to foreign nationals, including those of Indian origin, in November 2021. But the 5-year and 10-year long tourist visas issued before October 6, 2021 continued to remain suspended until this day. Since November 15, thousands of fresh tourist visas have been issued for only 30 days of stay in India on a single entry.

With immediate effect, the government of India has reinstated valid 5-year e-tourist visas for the nationals of 156 countries and valid 5-year regular tourist visas (paper) for all countries, given the resumption of scheduled international flights to India from March 27, 2022. This generous move is aimed at scaling up the number of foreign tourist arrivals so as to support the tourism economy of the country.

Starting March 16, 2022, the citizens of the eligible countries can also apply for fresh regular (paper) tourist visas to India with 5-year validity. The issuance of fresh visas is subject to certain restrictions that the government may impose from time to time.

There is good news also for those who hold a valid 10-year-long regular tourist visa to India, which had been suspended since the onset of the pandemic in March 2020 . But the long duration regular tourist visas have been restored only for the citizens and nationals of two countries, the United States and Japan, as of now. Currently, the issuance of fresh tourist visas with 10-year validity is subject to country-specific restrictions. Only the US and Japan nationals are eligible for the fresh issuance of long duration tourist visas for the time being.

Not all foreign nationals/citizens of Indian origin are OCI or PIO card holders. The continued suspension of the previously issued valid tourist visas not only agitated them, but also led to the cancellation of their travel to India. Some of them had to obtain a regular X entry visa at an additional cost.

The tourist visa to India is granted to foreigners for four reasons: recreational and sightseeing, visiting family or friends, short business trip, and medical treatment for a short duration . Applications for India’s e-tourist visa must be submitted neither later than 4 days nor earlier than 34 days before the date of planned arrival. India’s tourist visa fee for foreigners varies from country to country. India’s e-tourist visa can be availed by citizens of as many as 169 countries. A tourist visa to India comes with validity up to 10 years. The electronic travel authorization allows a double-entry to India for 60 days, whereas a regular (paper) tourist visa to India allows more than 60 days of stay at a time.

cheap flights to India, air bubble flights to India from USA,

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293 thoughts on “ india restores all tourist visas, paper and electronic, with immediate effect after 2 years of suspension ”.

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Do you know the target date when this is going to resume? Also, what happens to the already existing Tourist VISA, already stamped in the passport and a valid one? Any ideas?

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Hi Rajesh! The existing tourist visas to India are invalid. The government of India has not given any tentative date of resuming tourist visas.

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Hi Indiaeagle, I have a Business visa from India, it expires in 2023. It is an actual page in my passport, it is not an electronic Visa.- Is it okay to travel on the same visa to India Now.

Hi Charles! India has reinstated all visas, paper and electronic.

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It is my understanding that the UK is excluded from the list? Took my breathe away when i realised we had been dropped off the list with no explanation! Any idea what that is all about?

It would seem not all countries, The UK has been singled out for some reason. And i cannot get an answer as to why from anyone?

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please let me know when u have an asnwer to this question… [email protected]

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Last night it was on the news that the existing valid 10-yrs visas unexpired are null and void for travel to India. New visa has to be requested to travel to India. It’s a shame that people paid for 10-yr visa, which is still valid for some more years, have to pay again to get a fresh one. It reflects a begger’s attitude on the part of India. The unexpired-visa should be honored till it is expired, which will reduce the mad-rush to get a fresh visa (to India) and will reduce animosity towards the administration.

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I totally agree with you Ajit, it means money down the drain for visa holders, also shorter stays for us Indophiles who have friends and family there and want to do workshops, health spas, etc. This really sucks and yes, it is as bad as when Modi canceled the Rs. 500 notes, of which I heard nothing even as I worked in the South Asia Center of an Ivy League University with top Indian economists from India! but got to India with Rs. 10,000 from previous stay, so I wouldn’t be burdened with currency exchange, and I lost that large amount, kind of sucks. I wish the Indian tourism was a little kinder to us who have supported the Indian economy over the years with our travel and study spending.

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I think there is no fees to apply for new e visa. I applied for my daughter and no fees was to be paid. But it’s only valid for 30days.

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Unfortunately UK people cannot get e-visa (although many other nations can) and I am one of the unfortunates who paid for a five year visa, used it once the first year it was issued, and now they have invalidated it. I have spent a fortune in India over the last 20 years and it does leave a very sour taste in the mouth. I am still waiting for flights to open before I will shell out another shed load of cash, I was due to go in 4 weeks’ time.

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Ajit Singh: You are right on brother. The whole world changes rapidly but India and it’s politicians and official are still maintaining “Begger’s Attitude”. When they buy things they want cheap and when they sell things it more than American sell their things in America. They are not only beggers but also very corrupt. It is in their DNA. Avoid going to India. Be a Pakistsani or a Bangladeshi. They are much much better than those corrupt Indians. Amen.

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Very well said, Ajit. It is a beggar’s attitude. Indian government should either refund the money or honor the remainder of time left on already valid Visas. Without a mad rush, obtaining an Indian Visa is treacherous.

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I have a previously issued 10 year visa. Will it be good?

Hi Mary! All the tourist visas issued before October 6, 2021 are currently invalid. You need to apply for a fresh tourist visa.

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All the countries (US,UK,AUS…) should cancel / invalidate Indian citizens visas and make them reapply for new visas also.

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Why is it invalid? Could anyone give a clear answer? It was suspended or whatever due to covid19, not it’s over, so it should be back to where it is until the expiry of its validity. I have still 7 years left on my 10 year visa (me, my wife and my daughter). Paid a substantial amount in visa fees and the trouble that we had to go through, financially and physically, in order to obtain it. Now 2 years after the so called suspension, its all down the drain! Just curious, how do these people justify this wonderful action? Shame on you whoever is responsible for this nonsense.

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so From what i understand from this is that everyone has to apply for new visas to india but what if i would like to stay for 5 months? I am a us citizen and would like to visit family friends there

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Will existing tourist visas remain valid once new tourist visas are resuming ?

CHO! There is still no clarity on this.

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Can we go to India for longer than 30days an can we get a year tourist visa yet.Dee

Hi Denise! Currently, a tourist visa is being issued only for 30-day stay in India. If you are looking to stay more than 30 days in India, you can apply for a regular entry X visa.

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I have a multiple entry tourist visa issued in 2016, valid for ten years until 2026 and you say this visa will not be valid for entry into India now. This is very upsetting. So I have to apply for a new tourist visa?

Hi Coralie! Currently, new tourist visas are not being issued. The existing tourist visas are suspended. However, the government of India is planning to end the suspension of the tourist visa.

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Any definitive date yet?

Hi PVP! Not yet. As soon as the date is announced, we will update the information here.

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How about eTourist visa for minors below 5 years, both parents are fully vaccinated but the child is not?

Hi KP! Are you traveling from the US to India anytime soon?

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I heard that by the end of the month of September 2019 they are planning to reconsider the suspension on the tourist visa

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Can US citizen holding indian type “T” tourist visa apply for OCI card ?

Hi Prabh! The tourist visa has nothing to do with the OCI card.

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Any word yet on the visas and when can go to India from USA.. I have a Visa that was issued in 2017 and it’s good for 10 years – till 2027… Will I be able to use this one ???? Or am I going to be forced to get a new visa (which seems unfair)…. Also would like to know the date that they are going to start allowing me to enter India with my visa… I am vaccinated… My friends there are continually asking me when I am coming…

Hi Bkaur! We are keeping a watch on the upcoming updates regarding the date of resuming the tourist visa. The tourist visa will be resumed anytime in this month.

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Great news! I am very much upset with the Govt of India for suspending the valid tourist visa which I obtained in 2019 which is good until 2028. I had to go through hoops to get this. Taking time off, going to the local consulate, filling up forms, paying fees, showing proof of everything they asked for. I missed to see my uncle who was in death bed at that time. Because of the delay, I missed his funeral as well. Please dont tell me I could have obtained an emergency visa!!!!!! I already applied for a tourist visa, and it was the second time I had to apply. Anyway, I got my 10 year tourist visa, went in April of 2019, and the second time Jan of 2020. Came back to USA and now, I want to go to India for 12 days to visit my family. My initial assumption was that since I had a valid 10 year visa, all I have to do is fully vaccinated, show the PCR testing which is 48 hr before travel and follow mask rules and that is all. Now, what I heard is I have to re-apply for the Indian visa again? By paying another $300+ dollars??????? C’mon!! Dont you think this is a bribery at the govt level???????? There is no logic behind this other than govt of India taking advantage of COVID-19 and fully engaged in making money!! What else is there???? I am the same person fully vaccinated, and will be tested for PCR before travel, with a valid 10 yr multiple entry visa on hand…..why do I have to re-apply for another visa?

I applied for the new e-visa and didn’t have to pay for it… I had to type my current visa that they suspended, into the application.. I had gotten my 10-year visa in 2017… They were very quick coming back with my approved e-visa and it states on the visa I can only stay 30 days from the date of arrival.

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means i have valid 10 years visa issued before October 2021 and i am applying for E Visa i do not have to pay the fees for E visa corrct?

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Hello, I have tourist visa taken 2019 valid till 2029, but I didn’t pay attention last year that the visa has been suspended but I bought ticket went to board the flight, then they said this visa is no good, so couldn’t go, the ticket was wasted, didn’t get refunded as it was purchased the 3rd party website. Am I able to visit now in 2022(October or November)?with the same visa from USA to India

Hi Gautam! Yes, you can use your valid visa to travel to and from India.

Hi James, I am exactly in the same situation, got in 2019, went once coming back in 2020 after 2 weeks. It is kind of stealing money without delivering the services or goods. Isn’t it? And we can not complain to anyone. It is beyond frustrating.

bkaur, my situation is the same. It is frustrating that we do not get reimbursed for services (Visas) canceled by the Indian Government due to no fault of ours.

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Hi, I am Indian citizen residing in US, my 4 year old american citizen son is having Indian visa of type X-Misc with multiple entry. Can he travel with me in November?

Regards, Utpal

Hi Gokul! Your son’s visa does not have a ‘T’ (tourist) mark, he can travel to India.

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I read that India will be issuing free tourist visas for the first (forget the number) of people when tourist visas resume. Is it for e-visa or 10 yr visa? Thanks

Hi Kay! It is e-tourist visa, most probably.

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Hi, we are planning to travel in Dec. Both parents have OCI, plus vaccinated. How ever 3 kids, all under 5. 2 have tourist visa, one need to apply for evisa or tourist visa. None of the kids are vaccinated. Can you advise?

Hi Jacob! All of you, including the kids will have to take an RT-PCR test prior to boarding the flight to India. Kids don’t have to be vaccinated for travel to India. Hope India will lift the tourist visa ban this month or November.

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I’m a 21 yr. old male with both PFIZER vaccine shots and my 3rd booster. I plan to travel to India in early Jan for tourism. Do you think I will able to go/should go ahead and book a flight now or hold off?

Also, what is the status of state to state quarantines?

Hi Gabo! India is going to welcome foreign tourists soon. We hope you will be able to visit India in January 2022. Currently, no institutional quarantine in India.

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When India opens for charter flights, is it possible to fly in via commercial to a neighboring country and gain access via tourist visa this way? It’s been some time since we have been able to see family and it looks that a phased opening will place commercial near the end.

Hi Cody! From November 15, you will be granted a tourist visa to travel to India on non-chartered passenger flights.

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Hello! Most welcome news about Tourist visas because I have a flight to Chennai from NYC on November 16! I have a 10 year tourist visa that I have used 3 times. Will I be able to travel on that?

Hi Richard! There is still no clarity on whether the existing tourist visas will be honored by the government of India. Please be advised to check with the Indian embassy or consulate in your jurisdiction.

I called the Indian Embassy in D.C. and they don’t know either. They said to call back on October 15th. If something changes between now and then will you please post the info?

Hi Richard! Most probably, you need to apply for a fresh tourist visa.

Well, you were right, it is official, a fresh visa is needed. The next snag is they will only be good for thirty days. I am considering trying for an e-business visa. I am a tour guide and I have been working with an Indian company to promote tourism from the US. I’m not familiar with this type of visa. I’m wondering if they are only for major corporations or inclusive of my type of business as well. Do you have an opinion about this?

Why Richard needs to apply for fresh visa? He already paid and applied for it? What is changed? Is this a money making scheme for the government of India that drives this policy? Sounds very stupid! It is obvious that bribe is practiced and encouraged at the government level! Once a visa is issued that visa should be good for the time period. Why suddenly change the rules before the time period expires? You are going to say, “it is the rule from the government”. Well, that rule, whoever come up with it need resign and the government needs to honor those visas that were issued which is valid through its expiration date! That is what is democracy! Right now, the government is practicing autocracy!! I thought Indian government is for the people, of the people and by the people! Swindling money by putting excuses on COVID-19 pandemic is stupid and idiotic!

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I emailed them 2 times with the same question and both times received a one word response, Yes! But that is the embassy in Washington not the civil servant at the airport immigration counter if you know what I mean.

Setu Puthran Fri, Oct 8, 7:06 AM (3 days ago) to me

I must ask the same question again regarding my existing 10 year Tourist visa issued in 2016 and valid until 2026. Will I be able to enter India with this visa when regularly scheduled flights resume? Yes

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How soon American Citizens can travel to India with tourist visa?

Hi Kishan! From November 15. American citizens can travel to India on a tourist visa.

Problem is, we are not allowed to use the visas we have that are 10-year visas.. I don’t understand why they will not let us use the visas we already paid for… if they want us to only be there for 30 days.. put that restriction on the visas we already have.. but to force us to buy new visas seems quite unfair… when our visas are already paid for…

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Hi Indian Eagle – my family members (US citizen) have multiple entry tourist visas (type T) that are valid till 2024. Will those visas be reinstated or will they have to get fresh new tourist visas to travel after Nov 15th? If they have to get new fresh tourist visas – can they apply for it online or will they have to send all the documentation to the nearest embassy/consulate or will there be provision for issuing the visas on arrival at the airport (as they used to back in pre-covid times)?

Hi Amrinder! We are still waiting for further details from GOI, such as whether the existing tourist visas will be reinstated or not. Unfortunately, there is yet no clarity.

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All the press release indicate that – existing unexpired travel visas (both regular or e) are invalid and thus re-apply starting Oct/Nov 15. Seems like yet another scheme to profit off the pandemic ??

“2. The Government of India has restored all existing visas, which had been suspended earlier, including electronic visa except e-Tourist Visa, Tourist Visa and Medical Visa. All those who hold such valid visas (other than e-Tourist Visa, Tourist visa and Medical visa) need not apply to the Consulate for revalidation of their existing visa. In other words, only those who hold e-Tourist visa/Tourist visa (regular) and Medical visa need to apply for a fresh visa.” https://www.cgisf.gov.in/page/entry-visa-services/

“Fresh tourist visas are necessary for travel, even if you already hold valid tourist visas issued earlier. For now, tourist visas are only valid for travel by air or sea route,” it added.

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Hello, I have a booked flight on Nov 14th, reaching India Nov 16th. When and where can I apply for fresh tourist visa? How long does this process take?

Hi Sreena! Please be advised to visit https://indianvisaonline.gov.in/evisa/tvoa.html for the application procedure.

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Per release, The Indian Bureau of Immigration/Indian Missions/Posts abroad may grant fresh single entry e-Tourist/Tourist visa for 30 days. Existing e-Tourist Visa/ Tourist Visa shall remain suspended.

Hi Sanjay! Thank you very much for throwing light on this.

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Hi can I travel with my minor son (5 year old) to India on a regular tourist visa. Do I still need to get either OCI or entry visa? Has the ban been removed?

Hi Reetika! From November 15, foreign citizens, including those of Indian origin, can travel to India on a tourist visa. Indian government will start issuing fresh tourist visas from November 15.

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It’s not fair to make us get new Visa’s. Many people have 5-10 year Visa’s. Reinstate them ! Why are we even having hassles to travel. Can’t the scheming ever stop? Or India will keep doing this unfair ness.

@Panshi, Like I said, the system needs to profit off the pandemic somehow.. it didnt make any sense why existing student visas, business visas are reinstated valid, but not tourist e/visas..

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Hi Indian Eagle. Namaste

I have an existing US, 10 year visa to India.

Will India *refresh* this VIsa, already in our passports , 10 year Visas that we already have? for Tourist?

15 Nov onwards, In November, if we come in on a now, new visa? Will it be a fast e-Visa on Entry ?

And, wait for the refresh of existing Tourist Visas?

Tourists can relax and support India states in : services, by taxi, food , herbal treatments, and accom and transportation, tours’ with the longer stay Visa.

India is such a beautiful country and 30 days, for many who have the 10 year, seems is cutting off the opportunity to see all that India has to offer, and India is so large and amazing.

Thank you, CC

Hi CC! Reportedly, the existing tourist visas will not be restored for travel to India. You will have to apply for a fresh tourist visa.

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Does not make any sense. What is fresh visa? I have 10 years tourist visa for India stamped in U.S passport in 2018, hopefully be valid until 2018 without any hassle. Hope the confusion be clarified by an appropriate authority. Thanks

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My family members have existing tourist visa for India valid till 2027 (paper visa issued on passport). Will those be valid for travel to India after Nov 15?

Hi Amar! As per the report, the existing tourist visas will not be revalidated for entry to India.

So, we have to reapply for new visas and are just out the money for the rest of the years our visas are for… My visa is good til 2027 also… I am wanting to go to India around Dec 5 time frame.. Are we not going to be allowed in till January 2022… When will we be able to apply for new visas if they aren’t going to allow what we have to be used?

Hi Bkaur! As of now, you will need to apply for a fresh visa that will be valid for only 30 days. The window for the visa application will open on November 15.

also be advised that the departing airline will just enter your apparently valid existing visa into the records, but the immigration in India will deny entry on the invalid visa and will deport you back

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Do you have any idea when they might allow other durations of the tourist/e-tourist visa to India? Usually I travel to India for 90 days because my partner lives there. I was hoping for the same duration now after 2 years apart.. I have asked the embassy but no one gives me any clear answers!

Thanks in advance

Hi Melissa! Whenever there will be further updates, we will share through our article.

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How do you know “existing tourist visas will not be revalidated for enty into India”?? Are you sure of that? I know right now all they are offering is 30 day short stay visas which do not interest long term travelers like myself. So far all the articles I’ve read say existing tourist visas remain “Suspended ” I have not seen that those visas issued before the pandemic are voided entirely.. it’s it not possible that India will come to its senses and reinstate preexisting tourist visas for those people who wish to spend their money there for longer than 30 days?

Hi Joshua! As of now, fresh tourist visas will be issued with 30-day validity. We are not saying that the existing visas will remain suspended. For the time being, the existing visas won’t be revalidated for entry into India. Maybe, the existing visas will be restored for travel to India in the future.

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I was reading all the above Q&A about multiple tourist visa . I am carrying the Ten years on my passport will expire in 2027 from Canada. If they are not planning to reinstate ,they should reimburse or issue visa with no charge. Otherwise people wasted the hard earned money in the drain.

I have the same problem.. I have a 10 year visa I paid for and it don’t expire until 2027 and I think it is unfair to invalidate them and make you pay for another one to only be valid for 30 days.. I have 6 more years left on it… I’ll bet a lot of people are probably carrying a 10 year visa who aren’t going to be happy with this …

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Ditto! I have 6 years left on my 10-year multiple entry visa and feel cheated. What could possibly be the rationale to force these visa holders to apply for a fresh visa? Is it to restrict the length of stay in India and the number of entries?

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I received my 10 year on feb 27th 2020. I never have been to india. This is such a scam

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Hi Indian Eagle

I am planning to travel to India with my family (US citizen) on Nov 20th. We have existing tourist visas for India. However per the comments above, it seems that those visas will not be valid and we would need fresh visas. Should we be applying for emergency entry visa or should we be applying for tourist visa? The embassy website doesn’t allow for applying for tourist/e-tourist visa right now. So, it unclear what process we should follow. Can you please guide us what we should do?

Thanks, Vipan

Hi Vipan! You will be able to apply for e-tourist visa on November 15 and after.

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The fresh tourist visas are issued for 30 days free of charge.

Can I, a US citizen apply for an India evisa from Sri Lanka with a US Passport?

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Good luck to the tourists who were dreaming about making a journey to India from november 15th. First step : apply for a Tourist visa. Now the Indian gov allows only one month visa. Of course valid from the date of issuing and not from the day of arrival. That means maybe 3 weeks left in India. Second step : enter in the jungle of « fresh » (!) and less « fresh » « health guidelines » to fly to India. Incredible : no vaccination accepted, all tourists must have a PCR test, they seem to trust a PCR test (valid 3 days) more than a vaccine. Third step : fill up the « health » form of the Delhi airport with a lot of more or less mysterious details and numbers. Fourth step : on arrival, the unfortunate tourist must undergo a second test at his own expenses !! Fifth step : enter in the even more bushy jungle of « health guidelines » for the Indian states you wish to visit. Unbelievable : every state has its own guidelines ! If you travel to Kerala for instance, you shall have to undergo a 10 days quarantine. That means maybe 11 days left in India. To enter some other states, you shall have to download the « Aarogyasetu » app, which is impossible without an Indian telephone number. If you survived the path of the obstacle, you will be allowed to meet a population encouraged to become suspicious of venomous foreigners. The time has not yet come for the Indian tourism industry to recover from the terrible wounds inflicted by the government. If they want to attract tourists, it would be advisable to issue more bearable « fresh » guidelines since november 15th.

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Whoever comes up with these rules must have an IQ of room temperature. Why suspend the existing tourist visa and reissue new. We have tourist visas expiring in 2029. Why go through the hell of a process again and pay the fee.

Hi Ashok! Maybe, the existing tourist visas will be revalidated later.

Ashok, you got the point – “.. pay the fee”. thats the magic mantra. tourist visa or e-visa is biggest percent of visas issued and a major source of tourism revenue

Ashok, a very good question! Why go through the hell of a process again and pay the fee???? Ah! That is the key word… “FEE”. Which means, income for the government of India! Bunch of stupid people gathered around a an office which is paid by the tax payers and created a scheme to swindle money in the name of pandemic! They knew verywell that there is a huge demand for people wanting to be with their loved ones and separated for many months! These goons taking advantage of such demand!! They are simply thugs and need to be in jail!!

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My friend and I are US citizens and want to go to a friend’s wedding in India. We need tourist visas and saw the news that they open Nov 15. We were planning to fly out on Nov 15 evening from New York. My questions are:

1. are we able to get the visa earlier on our passports but use it after Nov 15 or do we need to apply on nov 15?

2. does india do visa on arrival?

if you can provide any guidance, that would be greatly appreciated

Hi Solanki! India will start issuing both paper tourist visa and e-tourist visa on November 15. You can apply for e-tourist visa or visa on arrival.

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Hi….am I right in reading that the e tourist visa reissues will start from 15 Nov ? I am a Canadian and do not see it available yet. I need to plan my sons wedding in India in December hopefully…..any updates when the e tourist visa to Canadians will be available?

Hi Shridhar! India has already started issuing fresh tourist visas (both paper and electronic) for travel on or after November 15, 2021.

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From Nov 15th, can tourist fly into India on any flight or are there restrictions on which bubble flight who can take? Me and my husband will be traveling with OCI where we can fly only on certain airlines but our adult US citizen kids on e~tourist visa. Can we all fly together on any airlines? Are Vande Mataram bubbles have to be followed from Nov 15th? Any clarity? Thanks so much!

Hi Rani! Both OCI cardholders and US citizens can fly together on Air India, United Airlines, Delta Airlines, Emirates, Qatar Airways, British Airways, Turkish Airlines from USA to India. Please be advised to call our travel advisors at 01-800-615-3969 for the best itineraries for your hassle-free travel on air bubble flights.

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It seems that only 30-day tourist e-visas are being offered at the moment. Does anyone know when the 60-day visas will be reinstated?

Is it possible to leave India for a week to somewhere like Dubai or Nepal and then come back with a fresh 30-day tourist visa so I can extend my stay? I typically stay for 2-3 months, and I thought I’d be able to do the same this time after waiting so long. My flight is leaving November 19th. Any advice would be appreciated. Thanks!

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I need to know the same thing if I can use the 30 day visa then leave to a nearby country reapply for another 30 days and return to india

I read this on the Consulate General of India in Houston, Texas.. Does this mean that ones of us who have tourist Visas that don’t expire til 2027 or 2029 )or other dates) can use the visas we have? their site also doesn’t mention 30-day visas … we need more information

i. Government of India has restored most of the visas, which had been suspended earlier.

ii. Below is the list of some of the categories where in case the applicant has a valid regular paper visa (and not an electronic visa), there is no need for a fresh visa:

a) Entry (X) Visa b) Business (B) Visa c) Employment (E) Visa d) Student (S) Visa

People reading this forum & comments – be aware that Indian govt doesnt care at this point to reinstate the previously issued tourist visas.. since Oct 15 new T e/visas are being issued already. very clever on their part to invalidate only tourist visa/e-visa… aam aadmi visa.. if either K/B/E/S were invalidated imagine the uproar from the companies and universities.. best bet was to punish the common man who will fret, complain and eventually pay the money to seek new visa

no logic or reasoning. it cannot be to limit entries or visits or stay. if so, why is that not applicable to other classes. how about OCIs? why not put an entry stamp saying stay limited for 30days using existing VISA rather than new visa.. either way you may eligible for visa-on-arrival.. so whats the logic?

I wish they would put out what people are going to required to do in order to fly into India for a visit. There is a family there who is waiting for my visit and keep asking me when I am coming.. I have NO idea what I am required to do… I have a visa that don’t expire til 2027… This is what India needs to address with information on their embassy sites… I can’t afford to buy an expensive ticket and than find out my visa is no good… How sad that india wants to do this to people who want to come for a visit…

just apply for OCI. that’s what i did. That way you don’t have to worry about visas.my tourist visa wont expire until 2029. its Indian government, they wont make anything easy. they just want money.

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Some good news. My husband who has a 10 year visa just applied for an e-tourist visa. He did not have to pay for it. He emailed them with a screenshot asking why it said it has already paid for and they confirmed he did not have to pay and it was already paid for. GOI did not say why. I assume that it’s because having a 10 year visa it should be free?

Hello! That’s good, indeed. We request you to share the email confirmation from the GOI with us at [email protected] .

It is not free because of holding 10 year visas. Government of India plans to issue 500000 evisas free of charge (per Finance Minister).

That’s hardly news. Indian Government announced months ago the first 500 thousand visas would be free of charge. Exciting news would be that India has decided to lift the suspension on our existing tourist visas and let those of us waiting to return long term finally come back..

Hey guys, there is no such thing as “FREE” for GOI. Their intention is to make people so confuzed and in the process make as much money as possible!!

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For fresh tourist visa can we still get multiple 10 years visa or currently they are giving just for 30 days.

Hi BK! The fresh tourist visas issued by the GOI currently are valid for 120 days from the date of issuance and it entitles you to a 30-day stay in India.

Hi BK! The government of India is currently issuing only a single-entry tourist visa for 30-day stay in India.

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Hi there. Is this still the case (e-visa only), or has issuance of multi-entry visas resumed?

Hi Katie! Currently, the government of India is issuing single-entry tourist visas for stay up to 30 days in India.

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My elderly parents would like to go back to India. But mom has valid tourist visa and not well going back and forth to emergency , with many health complications, but cannot go back to India. Its a sad and tough situation.. Not sure what to do.. Our Indian government should have exceptional option for elderly.

Sorry, I don’t understand why India is currently issuing 120 day tourist visa but you can only stay 30 days? What sense does that make? Why the 30 day limit? I have friends there and want to do tours and 30 days isn’t enough. Thanks

the visa is only valid for a single use of 30 days and must be used within a time window of 120 days from date of issue. And agreed. 30 days is pointless for most of us and hopefully they reinstate preexisting and normal visas soon..

Hi Indianeagle, Thank you for your service. Just a clarification to my previous question…. 1. Can US citizen with tourist visa starting Nov 15th travel to India by AIRINDIA? 2. Can US citizen with OCI also travel by AIRINDiA? Just want confirmation, thank you so much!

YES and YES. Frankly, your questions are stupid.

Hi Rani! A US citizen with OCI and a fresh tourist visa can travel by Air India on or after NOV 15.

Is the paper visa is also for 30 days? can we get multiple paper tourist visa? When we can apply for Paper tourist visa.

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I am canadian citizen and want to travel in Dec, however, the e-visas for canadians are still not open yet. On Nov 15th, will they open the e-visas for CANADIANS as well,?? And if so, is it only going to be issued for 30 days?

Please let me know ASAP, very stressed out.

Hi Gurpreet! Don’t worry! The e-tourist visa application window may open for Canadians in the fist week of November.

So will it be only for 30 days though? I need it aleast for 6 months. I have already booked my flight from Dec to Feb… Please reply!

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Please let me know ASAP.

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Hello, I have gotten an e-visa starting November 15th. I’m starting my flight from USA on November 14th and landing in India on November 15th. Is this okay to do even though I am starting my travel from USA a day early?

Hi Kuma! All new tourist visas are valid for travel starting on November 15. In our knowledge, it applies to travel right from the country of departure. Please be advised to check with the airline whether they will onboard you on NOV 14.

I have an e-visa granted to visit India beginning Nov. 15th. My flight is scheduled to leave on Nov. 13th, but I land in India on the 15th. Is this allowed?

Hi Kuma! May we know when the e-tourist visa was granted? In our knowledge, the tourist visas granted before OCT 6, 2021 are currently not valid.

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Hello, do you know if evisas will be reinstated for British passport holders? I have my wedding in February in Goa, I do not know if I can continue with it as most of my guests are from the UK and would not be able to get visas.

Please advise me kindly. Thank you.

Hi Mahua! As of now, there is no such update whether the previously issued e-tourist visas will be reinstated later. They can apply for a fresh e-tourist visa.

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I would like to know this too as we also have a holiday booked for February and currently struggling to obtain a visa.

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Hi Indianeagle team, Thanks for the service , I have T -1 visa issues in 2019 valid for 10 years, can I travel Dec 1st week to India? Thanks Priya

Hi Priya! Currently, all tourist visas issued before OCT 6, 2021 are invalid for travel to India. Maybe the previously issued tourist visas will be revalidated later.

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If I apply the e-visa on indianvisaonline after 15 November, lets say on 16th of November, will there be an option to get the e-visa for more than 30 days. I (India) need to make my baby travel for more than 30 days, hence was looking for an option. Not sure if I apply for an entry visa, how long exactly its going to take.

Hi Manish! If you want your baby to stay more than 30 days in India, you had better apply for a regular entry visa.

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I planning to visit Chennai leaving on 12/31/2021. I have a OCI card issued with old passport and haven’t updated the new passport details. The consulate site says that you can use the OCI card with old passport till 12/31/2021. Since it is touch and go to be safe I want to apply for e-tourist visa as well. The website for applying for visa keeps saying unavailable. Any idea when the site will be open to apply for visa. Thanks

Hi Peter! You can apply for an e-tourist visa here https://indianvisaonline.gov.in/evisa/tvoa.html . Please note a fresh tourist visa is valid only a single entry to India and 30-day stay in India.

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Hi – I am a US Citizen and I applied for a Tourist eVisa on 05 Nov 2021, to visit my father who is very sick

– My flight for SFO-DEL is booked for 15 Nov’21

– It has been 6 days since my eVisa application was accepted and I still do not have a eVisa.

Does someone know why?

Are there steps that you can recommend which will allow me to get a Visa (ASAP) and be able to fly out on 15 Nov?

Many Thanks!! Sonny

Hi Sonny! In our knowledge, you will get a visa on arrival if your application for e-visa has been accepted.

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My husband and I are Indian passport holders and our son(2.5 year old) is an American passport holder. We entered India from the USA in June 2019 by applying for X-1 visa(valid till 2024) for my son.

Currently all 3 of us are permanent residents of Australia. I’m planning to travel with my son to India from Australia in January 2022 with his valid X-1 visa. I wanted to know if the X-1 visa is still valid under current covid guidelines. Much appreciated.

Hi Sarah! The X-1 visa is still valid.

Hi indianeagle,

Any updates on the tprurist visafor canadians?? I heard they are still excluding Canada for indian tourist visa? Please let meknow ASAP. Plzzz

Hi Gurpreet! You got the correct information. Canadian citizens are barred from applying for a tourist visa to India.

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I am applying for a paper tourist visa to India. I do not qualify for an e-visa as even though I was born in United States and also am a U.S. citizen, my grandmother was born In Pakistan.

After I filled out the whole application online it said to make an appointment at the VFS in NYC. On the VFS website it says they are not processing visa applications at this time.

Has anyone else filled out the application for a paper tourist visa? what is the procedure

Hi Jaden! In our knowledge, the government of India is currently issuing only e-tourist visa.

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It is now November 15th. When can I apply for a 5-year tourist e-visa?

Hi Cathy! Currently, the government of India is issuing e-tourist visas with 120-day validity period, during which you can stay only 30 days on a single entry to India.

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Are us citizens living in the us barred from applying for Tourist E Visa online?

Hi Vijay! US citizens are not barred from applying for an e-tourist visa to India.

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Hi l have 10 year visa can we go to india

Hi Vishal! If your tourist visa was issued before October 6, 2021, it is currently invalid.

Hi, There are confusing ionformation I hear. I got my 10 yr multiple entry visa in 2019. Are they going to honor this visa for me to travel to India. I am a U.S. Citizen. Can somebody clearly let me know? It is November 16, 2021. What is the correct information? Please!!

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There are many people in your situation. I got my visitor visa in 2019 which is valid for 10 years. Currently India govt. is not honoring that visa. There is no rhyme or reason why they are doing it. You have to apply for a new e-visa where you can only stay for 30 days. I hope they will restore our 10 year multiple entry visitor visas soon.

Ashok, good information you have. However, I tried to apply for e-visa yesterday, the response came and said my application is not approved as I may be eligible for a new visa! WTF!! this is what I am saying…some goons in the government holding us all hostage..because, they need money and in the process scew us all at the same time!!

Hi James! If you have a multiple-entry visa without the ‘T’ (tourism) mark on it, it may be honored for your entry to India. Please be advised to check the Indian Embassy as well.

Mr. Indianeagle, then why issue me a “T” tourism visa in the first place? They collected money and my time !! Scew the Indian Embassy..bunch of morons run that place!!

Wait what….? “James! If you have a multiple-entry visa without the ‘T’ (tourism) mark on it, it may be honored for your entry to India. Please be advised to check the Indian Embassy as well” We’ve all been WAITING for India too reinstate our long term multiple entry tourist visas. It appears your saying here that India may honor them…. that’s like opposite of what you’ve been telling us. And contrary to everything the Indian Government has thus far said on the subject. Please clarify what you mean?

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Hi Any idea when the evisas will be re-instated for UK citizens just had to cancel my flight because of this. It’s getting beyond a joke all this political wrangling.

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If I want to stay in India longer than 30 days on a tourist visa, can I apply for more than one single-entry tourist visa? So can I enter with one 30-day visa, leave for 1-2 days and then re-enter with the 2nd 30-day visa?

Hi Melissa! In our knowledge, you cannot apply for more than one tourist visa to India together.

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Hi Indianeagle,

We are travelling to india with new born 2 month old baby (US citizen) and both parents are indian citizens on Nov 23rd and baby got e tourist for 30 days, we are planning to stay about 80 days in india for multiple reasons. So applied for paper tourist visa for 6 months but still we got 30 days only. So what are the options here to stay 80 days because i already purchased roundtrip tickets from Nov 23rd to Feb 13th. I cannot return in 30 days for sure

Thanks, Rakhi

Hi Rakhi! You can apply for a regular entry X visa for your baby’s stay in India for more than 30 days. Please note your onward flight is just 5 days away.

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Me and my wife are Indian citizens and our daughter is a US citizen having multi entry ‘X1’ visa issued in 2018 and valid till 2023. Is she allowed to travel with us with the existing visa under current guidelines.

Hi Yusuf! The multi-entry X1 visa is valid for travel to India.

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We are planning to visit India from Dec 11-Jan 2 (22 days) and have our tickets booked. We have applied for OCI in mid-October but am unsure if we will receive them in time for our journey. I am planning to apply for e-tourist visa which I understand is for a single-entry 30-day stay to be used within a period of 120 days from the date of issue.

I am wondering if we should go ahead and apply for the visa right away or wait until early December.

Couple of questions for those of you who applied for the recent e-tourist visa: 1. Does it clearly state on your Electronic Travel Authorization (ETA) that your arrival in India should be between DATE 1 and DATE 2, where the two dates are 120 days apart? 2. Also, is DATE 1 the date when the visa is issued? I presume the date of issuance is typically about 72 hours after you submit the application.

Hi Siva! You can wait for the first few days of December before applying for an e-tourist visa.

Thank you Indianeagle for your quick response.

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I’m an Indian citizen and a green card holder. My husband is US citizen. We got legally married but our traditional ceremony is still due and got postponed due to pandemic. We are traveling to India in January for 4 months for this ceremony and to spend time with family.

Since my husband’s 10 year visa is not valid anymore and he is not yet eligible for OCI, the only option I found is Entry X visa. We fall under Texas consulate but I couldn’t find any guidance on where or how to apply for this visa after a lot of research.

First of all, am I applying for the right category of visa for my husband and how long does this application process take? Also could you help point me at some resources on how I can apply this with Consulate of India in Houston?

Thank you so much for answering all the questions here. I highly appreciate this!

Hi Sravani! Being legally married to an Indian national, your husband is eligible for an entry X visa to India. If your husband’s existing visa is a tourist visa (paper or electronic), it is currently not valid. If he does already have an entry X visa (paper, not electronic), he can use it to travel to India. Please visit this link https://cgihouston.gov.in/pages/MTk4 .

What is an X Visa?

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What Is An X Visa?

X Visa, also known as Entry Visa, is a form of visa provided for foreigners visiting India. According to the Government of India, an X Visa can be granted to the following people:

Spouse/children of a foreigner of Indian origin. A person of Indian origin, who wishes to visit India for holidays and other purposes. Dependents of foreigners who come to India on visas like business, student, research or employment etc.

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hello, we are going india for two and half months. but i heard , they are only offering 30 days. we are going in my brother marriage and my dad passed away.we have to do our paper work . please advise us. we are going in January to until mid of march .

Hi Gagan! If you are talking about a tourist visa to India, a tourist visa currently entitles you to 30-day stay in India on a single entry. You can apply for an entry X visa.

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Hello Indianeagle,

My family and I are US citizens with 10 year tourist visas. I understand these visas are currently suspended. I have heard that if we apply for a new 30 day tourist evisa it will cancel our 10 year tourist visa. Do you know if this is correct or will our previous visas be honored once suspension is lifted? Thank you!

Hi Sean! We’re sorry. We have little knowledge of what you wrote about.

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Hi My wife and my child are planning to go to India End of January. My wife and I are Indian Citizens, my daughter is born in USA. She has a US passport. We are planning to stay there for 80 days; I believe the best visa for this is the Entry X Visa. I do not see the 1 or 5 year Tourist visa option on the consulate website, only 30 days is available. What is the cost for the ENTRY X visa? It is very hard to find the information on the Consulate website. I am applying at the New York Indian Consulate.

Hi Dheepak! A one-year multiple entry visa to India for US citizens costs $162.90, including service fee, reference fee, consular fee and ICWF fee. A 6-month multiple entry visa to India for US citizens costs $125.90. Please note the fees may have increased due to the impact of the pandemic.

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So, international travel back to normal on 15 December, but no restoration of the 10-year tourist visa. What is your sense? Will the Indian government eventually reinstate those ‘currently invalid’ visas? Or will they be permanently cancelled? And when? I know you don’t know, but I’m wondering what your prediction is. Thanks. Michael

Hi Michael! Unfortunately, the resumption of normal international travel to and from India is postponed until a further notice.

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I am US Citizen with a multiple entry X-1 visa issued in 2018. This visa is valid until August 2023. Per Indian Embassy in US ( https://www.indianembassyusa.gov.in/extra?id=79 ) “Government of India has restored most of the visas, which had been suspended earlier, except Tourist Visas (e-Tourist and regular Tourist Visa) issued before 6 October 2021 and e-Visas of all other types issued before 30 March, 2021. The details of currently permitted categories are available at PERMITTED CATEGORIES FOR TRAVEL TO INDIA.”

Per above note, I assume I can travel on my valid X-1 visa issued in 2018.

Hi Mahesh! If you hold the entry X-1 visa in paper, it is valid for your travel to India.

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Hi, I noticed this question was asked by others but not answered, so perhaps you do not know. Years ago my 30 day e-visa was expiring, so I flew to Nepal, applied for and received a new 30 day e-visa and returned to India. I wonder if this would be possible now. Thank you.

Hi Steve! We are trying our level best to respond to queries as many as possible. If you are referring to an e-tourist visa, all tourist visas issued before October 6, 2021 are currently invalid for travel to India.

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I applied for a 12 month tourist visa and got a 30 day single entry tourist visa. I am going for 60 days to India. can I apply for a Entry X visa when they have issued the 30 day tourist visa?

Hi Ajith! You can apply for an entry X visa.

Thanks for the quick response. Do you know the Visa and the ICWF fees. Is the entry visa issued for 6 months or a year? Thaks agin

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Hello, my daughter applied for an evisa and she got it approved, but it’s validity is only for a 30-day stay. She need to stay in India for 35 days; she has travel planned leaving US on 01 Jan 2022 and returning from India on 06 Feb 2022. Can she get her evisa extended in India? Or, is there any other visa she can apply for now that will enable her stay in India for 35 days?

Hi Raghunathan! Currently, e-tourist visas are not extendable. In order to say for more than 30 days in India, she can apply for a regular entry X visa.

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Hello, my son has a US passport and lives in Australia. India has established an air bubble with Australia. My son has an e-tourist visa issued on 13-Nov-2021. He is booked on Sydney to Delhi direct flight arriving in Delhi on 22-Dec. He will stay in India for 28 days. Can you let me know if he will be allowed entry in to India on his e-tourist visa? Indian government’s civil aviation website which describes air bubble countries mentions this regarding who can enter India from Australia: “All foreign nationals holding a valid Indian visa as per extant guidelines”. I wasn’t sure if the e-tourist visa issued on 13-Nov-2021 qualifies for an entry in India. Thanks.

Hi PK! Tourist visas issued after October 6, 2021 are valid for travel to India and 30-day stay in India. Hence, no worries.

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I would love to visit India again. I have endless plans queued up, like mountain biking from Manali to Leh and riding the “Chaiyya Chaiyya” train from Coimbatore to Ooty.

I will gladly return to India when my 10 year multiple entry tourist visa is reinstated. I will not apply for a new Indian visa during the validity period of my existing visa. I will travel to other destinations while this situation is in flux.

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Likewise, “suspending” (but really cancelling) a 10-year visa I was never able to use is frankly absurd.

Hopefully the pandemic winds down for good and normal travel becomes possible again. Perhaps at that time Indian immigration will come to their senses and allow perfectly valid long-term visas to be used again.

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I was wanting to visit India in Feb./Mar. 2022, but my 10-year visa was suspended. The Gov’t. Of India took fees for my visa which has over 5 years of validity left. If the Indian government is going to suspend something I paid for they should prorate the balance of validity and refund my money. What they are doing is completely inhospitable and unethical. It creates a poor image for the tourism industry in India which prior to now was stellar.

I’ll spend my money in countries more hospitable until the Gov’t. Of India gets its act together.

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I just got back from India in Nov but emergency came in and I have to go back and my Visa is till Feb 28th 2022. I am Actually coming back by 24th of Feb but I am worried if something happen, flights get canceled then my Visa will be canceled. Should I get E VISA? be on safe side. Advise please.

Hi Moninder! May we know what visa you currently have?

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Hi I have green card and my 3 year old is us citizen so how can he stay in India more than 30 days right now?

Hi Lajju! He needs a regular X entry visa to stay in India more than 30 days on a single entry/visit.

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Hi – i have multiple entry tourist visas (type T) that are valid till 2024. Will those visas be reinstated ? I need to travel to see family in early March, 2022.

Can somebody explain me why they suspend multiple entry visa? When they are allowing tourist visa for 30 days stay, what is the purpose of doing this other than earning money. I don’t think they’re doing this because of the safety issue.

This is totally unfair and unethical.

Hi Ann! Any tourist visa (with T mark) issued before October 6, 2021, are invalid for travel to India. If you have a single/multiple-entry regular X visa, you can use it.

Thanks for reply.

My visa is on one page of my passport and it shows Visa Type: Tourist No. of Entry : Multiple

Each stay not to exceed 180 days .

I am not sure it is T or X visa, how I can find out this ? Also do I need to apply for e-visa for my March trip?

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Any word on when long-term tourist visas will be available? The Indian govt sites haven’t been updated since last year. I need to go to India but 30 days is too short.

Do you know if entry visas are available for people other than Indian-origin travelers?

Hi Arpi! There is yet no update on when long-term tourist visas will be made available.

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hi, I applied for a 30 day tourist visa and there was no payment option but they recieved the application and said expect a response within 72 hours.

is the tourist visa free?

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Hello, i am a US citizen and currently have X-1 visa which expires next year. Can i travel to India or do i need to apply for visa again? thanks Rajni

Hi Rajni! You can travel to India using the X-1 visa.

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When are you going to open Indian Embassy for apply for Tourist visa I’m very Desperate to go india please let me know

Hi Jay! You can apply online for a tourist visa to India.

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I bought a 5 year tourist e-visa in 2020. I traveled that year with my wife who is from India. We are in USA. Is my visa valid or do I need to reapply for a new one as I will be visiting the end of April? I know the visa had been suspended but thought they now were only issuing 30 day visa.

Hi James! With immediate effect from today, India restored all long-duration valid tourist visas for the nationals and citizens of the United States.

Wooooo Hoooooo!!! 😎✈

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I have a 10-year-old visa (expiring in 2 years), and I am a U.S citizen. Does that mean that my Indian Visa is valid and I no longer need to get an e-visa to travel to India?

Hi Yogita! Yes, being a US citizen, your 10-year-old tourist visa (regular/paper) stands reinstated with immediate effect.

Thank you. Can you tell me around what day and time (IST) did they reinstated the long-term visas?

Hi Yogita! Indian government restored valid 10-year paper tourist visas and valid 5-year tourist visas, both paper and electronic, for US citizens with immediate effect from March 16.

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CAN SOMEONE HELP – TOURIST VISA? I have a T-1 visa – Tourist Visa for individual tourists, 10years, valid till 2028. This Tourist visa was suspended since 2 years. As I have to travel to India in last week of March, I applied for the ENTRY Visa which is valid for 1 year on March 11, 2022. My application for Entry Visa reached India Consulate March 16, 2022. And the news today is that India restored the 10 year Tourist visa. Now what is the consulate going to do, let me keep my 10 year Tourist visa or going to give me 1 year Entry visa. No way to retrieve application for Entry visa. The 1 year Entry Visa makes no sense now and it will be disappointing if they cancel my 10 year Tourist visa.

Hi Eva! Even if you are issued an entry visa, it should not affect your existing tourist visa.

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I am in the similar boat as you. My Entry Visa application reached VFS on the March 14th. Two days later India restores the existing visas. I already have the 10 years tourist visa valid till 2027. I went to the VFS website and contacted them through the email and told them the situation. They emailed me back saying they’ll dispatch my application back to me and I’ll receive a refund within 10-15 business days. Let’s see what happens. I haven’t beed issued the Entry Visa since I withdrew my application early in the process, but even if they would have issued it, my existing tourist visa wouldn’t have been affected.

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We have 5 year e-visas from UK have they been restored also?

Hi David! In our knowledge and as per the latest reports, the 5-year e-tourist visas are restored for 156 countries including the UK.

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Hi I have a 10 year paper tourist visa issued in 2017 valid till 2027,is it reinstated for citizens of Canada? is it valid to travel? Thank you.

Hi! As of now, the 10-year paper/regular tourist visa is restored only for the US and Japan citizens.

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HI, I am a US citizen, I have a 10 year regular tourist visa issued in 2019. Is it restored and valid or do I have to apply for a fresh visa? Thank you.

Hi Cynthia! Long duration 10-year tourist visa (paper/regular) have been restored for US citizens. Hence, you don’t need a fresh visa.

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My mum has a 5 year paper visa for her UK passport which was valid until September 2022. It was obviously cancelled during Covid but I’d like to know if it’s now valid again.

Hi James! Recently, all 5-year tourist visas, paper and electronic, have been reinstated for travel to India until their actual expiry date.

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i have a 10 year visa issued in 2016 and i am from Canada. So we have to apply for visa again; will they refund us for the 10 year visa? They should not be charging us again for the same thing.

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I have 10 year visa to India but my passport has expired so I got new passport, do I need to get the visa transferred to new passport or just take old passport with new one to India.

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I have same issue as Bal Singh, have one yr of visa left of my 10 yr visa in expired passport, have just renewed my us passport. I tired to apply online for 10 yrs paper visa but after filling out 3 pages it said “ invalid Request” . So question is can I still go to India with both my passports since I still have one year valid visa in my expired passport?

Hi Solanki! Your visa (though on the old passport) is valid until it expires. Hence, you can with both old and new passports.

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My Daughter is in India on E visa with 30day validity. She also have T visa which has validity for another 8 years. She went to india prior to March 16th. Would her stay in india be okay now since old visa has been reinstated.

Hi Rinku! In our knowledge, she won’t be charged with overstay as her long-duration tourist visa has bee reinstated.

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I am little confused by misleading info on Indian visa restoration. It says all ten year visa are now restoring. But also says tourist visas issued before Oct 6 2021 are not. What it means. What visas are still suspended. Pls advise

Hi Suresh! The tourist visas issued before October 6, 2021 were suspended until March 15, 2022. Those tourist visas have been reinstated with effect from March 16.

Thanks very much.

You’re welcome! FYI, we at IndianEagle.com, a leading and trusted travel-booking partner, are offering cost-to-cost airfare deals for US-India flights.

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Thank You this helps. I have a Tourist Visa for my son which was issued on sep 2014 and is valid till Aug 2024, we are planning a visit to India next month, so we should be good then correct?

Hi Altafur! The tourist visa is valid for your son’s travel to and from India.

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i have two months left on my multiple entry tourist visa issued in July 2012,can i still go to India for two months and also can i extend my tourist visa in India if i want as my mother is not well, please reply

Hi Sonia! You can travel to India and can request the extension of your regular/paper tourist visa through an online application on India’s e-FRRO portal.

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Hi I was issued a10 year paper tourist visa issued in 2017 valid till 2027,is it reinstated for citizens of Canada? is it valid to travel? Thank you.

Hi Bini! Most probably, the 10-year tourist visa has not been reinstated for the citizens of Canada.

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HI I have 10 years visa valid until 2028 as US Citizen. My understanding this is reinstated for US and Japan only. Please confirm if i can travel to india on that visa, and i do not need e-visa. thanks

Hi Raj! Being a US citizen with a 10-year tourist visa to India, you can travel to India without needing an e-visa.

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Hi, my son has 5 years multiple entry visa which is issued in July 2019, is it valid to travel India?

Hi Shaveta! All 5-year tourist visas, regular and electronic, have been reinstated for travel to and from India.

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i have Tvisa issue 2018 valid upto 2028 can i travel with that visa now or get new

Hi Akunjappy! Having a valid tourist visa, you can travel to India without needing a new one.

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My son has 10 year Visa and Canadian citizen. Is his visa is still valid? Can he travel to India?

Hi Chetna! Currently, the 10-year tourist visas to India stand restored only for the nationals of USA and Japan.

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Hi Indian Eagle, can you give a link for the embassy website in USA that states same? Have a 10 year visa from 2017 from USA, thanks!

Hi Eileen! 10-year-long visas to India have been reinstated for US citizens.

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I have a T – 1 Multiple visa which expires in 2027. Do I need a new visa to travel in October 2022.

Hi Jeanne! If you are a US national, your 10-year-long tourist visa is valid for travel to India.

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Dear Indianeagle, Would you have any information regarding when UK nationals will again be eligible to use the e-Visa process? I have read it may be soon, September or October, in time for the peak travel season.

Hi Sandy! Both you and we are on the same page regarding this. As of now, we don’t know anything beyond this.

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Hi Basudha! 10-year tourist visas to India have been restored for US citizens.

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I was issued an e-visa in 2019. This was a 5 year visa. We are traveling to indian on Nov 17, 2022. Am I ok to travel with this visa that expires in 2024?

Hi Ravi! Yes, you can travel with this visa.

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Hello, I am a US Citizen and have 10 year multiple entry visa (stamped in my passport) issued in 2014 valid till 2024. Can I use that to travel or do I need to apply for e-visa ?

Hi Girish! You can travel with your 10-year multiple entry visa.

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Hello, I am a US citizen with a 5 year X-1 (entry) paper visa, that was issued on August 08, 2018 and expires on August 07, 2023. Given that it’s a 5 year visa, is it no longer valid, and do I have to apply for a new Indian visa?

Many thanks!

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Hello, I am a British citizen with a five e-visa, was a granted in 2020 and valid for 2025, and would like to travel in first week in FEB 2023, do I need to apply for new visa or can I use same existing Valid e-visa. Many thanks, please reply.

Hi Suresh! As per the latest update, India will soon resume the e-visa facility for British citizens. There is no mention of whether British citizens can use their existing 5-year e-visa to travel to India. Kindly contact the Indian Embassy or Consulate.

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Hello, I am a British citizen with a 5year e-visa, was a granted in dec 2019 and valid unti dec 2024, and would like to travel to India in Feb 2023, do I need to apply for new visa or can I use same existing Valid e-visa. Many thanks, please reply.

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AS OF NOW IT LOOKS LIKE EVISAS FOR UK HAVE BEEN REINSTATED.

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Hi, my US born daughter has a 10 year M entry regular passport stamped tourist visa but her passport is expired so we have her new passport and old passport (with visa sticker). Will she allowed to visit India with this situation? Also she has an OCI Card issued in 2017 however not renewed due to a new guideline of not requiring renewing OCI until 20 years. Can she use that OCI card to entry into India? Please reply, many thanks.

Hi Ketan! The OCI card for those below 20 years need not be reissued until they are 21. But a scanned copy of the new passport and her latest photograph must be uploaded on the OCI portal online. FYI, she can travel with her new passport and the old passport with the 10-year tourist visa stamped on it.

Thank you for your answer and it helps! I have already finished uploading new passport and her latest photograph on the OCI portal online and going to have along with me the successful acknowledgment print. Let me know if still I am missing anything.

Hello, I have US citizen minor kid and she got a INDIA entry visa M entries with 5 years of validity. Is it good for India travel for duration of less than 6 months?

Hi Ketan! In our knowledge, your kid can travel to India using the 5-year entry visa. However, be advised to contact the Indian Embassy/Consulate and confirm the same.

I already contacted them but have not received any response. I have received her ENTRY VISA in NOV, 2022 and all of the existing visa and new visa process has went back to normal processing. Please let me know if you have any official records showing that NEW and existing India visa would be good for travel.

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Hi, I’m a Canadian with a 10 year paper visa from 2016. Since Dec 7th it seems the UK and other commonwealth countries have been reinstated but I can get a clear answer on this and no embassy will speak over the phone and BLS is abysmal. Is this valid for travel?

Hi Tess! The government of India has restored e-visa facility for Canadians. All 10-year tourist visas issued to Canadians before March 2020 have not been reinstated yet.

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Hi, I have a visa that was issued April 4 2017 The expiration date on that visa is April 19 2027 . I am going to india In February will this visa be accepted?

Hi Salsabin! We are not able to address your query without knowing what visa type you do have. Kindly specify what type of a visa to India you have.

' src=

Hello, I am a U.S citizen and my partner is Japanese. We each have Indian tourist evisas issued before the pandemic valid until 2025. Can we enter India now on these visas? And how many days can we stay per entry? Also, we entered India on business visas during 2022 and stayed for 6 months. Does that invalidate our previously issued long term tourist visas? Thank you.

Hi Sadhu! Your use of a business visa does not invalidate your long-term tourist visa which is valid until 2025. You can use the tourist e-visa to travel to/from India.

' src=

My daughter has a 10 year tourist visa stamped in her Canadian passport in 2016. Is it still valid? Thanks

Hi Joshi! In our knowledge, 10-year tourist visas to India have not been restored for Canadian passport holders. Hence, they need to apply for a fresh e-visa or paper visa for travel to India. However, it is recommended that you do also check with the Indian Embassy or Consulate in Canada.

' src=

My daughter has a 10 year indian tourist visa stamped in her American passport in 2016. Is it still valid? Please reply as soon as possible We need to travel India asap.

Hi Lakshmi! 10-year Indian tourist visas are valid for US citizens. She can travel.

' src=

Hi, I have American passport and got my 10 years VISA on 24/10/2016, Can I use it.? I am planning to visit India at the End of this Year.

Hi Mahendra! You can use the visa as all 10-year tourist visas to India have been restored.

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Hi, I am a Canadian Citizen, and hold a valid 5years eVisa starting Jan , 2020 until Jan 2025. Last year it was invalid, but i hear that it is instated again. Can you please guide if it is true and i can travel with my eVisa which was bought in yr 2020 ?

Hi Murli! India restored the e-visa facility for Canadian passport holders, not the e-visas issued to Canadian citizens before March 2020. If your e-visa was issued before March 2020, it is invalid.

' src=

Hi I have 10 yr visa obtained in 2018. Valid till 2028. Has it been restored to visit India or I have to apply new? I am Canadian Citizen.

Hi Gurmel! All 10-year tourist visas to India have not been restored yet for Canadian citizens.

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  • India restores valid e-visa of tourists from 156 countries after 2-year suspension due to Covid pandemic

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  • Updated On Mar 17, 2022 at 11:46 AM IST

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  • Published On Mar 17, 2022 at 11:46 AM IST

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India restores 5-year e-tourist visas suspended in 2020

The move, announced as the pandemic situation is improving in the country, aims to boost tourism and the economy. ten-year tourist visas have also been allowed..

indian tourist visa suspension

With the pandemic ebbing away, the Centre on Tuesday restored the five-year e-tourist visas for people from 156 countries. The move is aimed at boosting tourism, which has suffered the most during the pandemic.

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indian tourist visa suspension

Sources said that not only would foreigners be allowed to apply for fresh e-tourist visas but existing five-year visas will also be honoured now. Five-year visas allow foreigners multiple entries to India over the period. With tourist visas, foreigners can stay in India for up to 180 days in a year provided one stay is not longer than 90 days.

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The government suspended all visas in March 2020 in the middle of a raging pandemic. With the situation improving, the government has relaxed visa rules step by step over the past two years. In October 2021, the Centre began issuing visas to all foreigners, including tourists, arriving on chartered flights. This was further relaxed to cover regular flights by November 2021.

“The decision has been taken keeping in view the improvement in the Covid-19 situation in the country. It was thought there was a need for a further relaxation of visa and travel restrictions. This will be another step in further opening up the economy and boosting tourism, which has suffered the worst during the pandemic,” a government official said.

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Sources said apart from this, the five-year regular (paper) tourist visas issued to foreigners have also been restored. They too were suspended in March 2020. “Fresh regular tourist visas of five years’ validity have also been allowed subject to the restrictions imposed from time to time,” the official said.

The government has also restored valid long-duration (10 years) regular tourist visas, which had remained suspended since March 2020, for US and Japan nationals. Fresh long-duration (10 year) tourist visas have also been allowed.

According to government sources, foreign nationals on tourist or e-tourist visas may enter India only through designated sea immigration check posts (ICPs) or airport ICPs, including those under the Vande Bharat mission, the air bubble scheme or by any flights as allowed by the Directorate of General of Civil Aviation or the Ministry of Civil Aviation.

No foreigner, sources said, will be allowed to enter the country through land borders or riverine routes on tourist or e-tourist visas. Sources said that an order for opening ICPs for land and riverine routes would be communicated separately.

These instructions will not be applicable to Afghan nationals, who will continue to be governed by the separate instructions issued by the Ministry of Home Affairs on the grant of e-Emergency X-Misc Visas.

In October 2020, the government effected the first major relaxation in Covid-related visa restrictions by allowing entry of all foreigners except tourists.

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Authorized Portal for Visa Application to India Indianvisaonline.gov.in

All foreign nationals entering India are required to possess a valid international travel document in the form of a national passport with a valid visa from an Indian Mission/Post or eVisa (Limited Categories) from Bureau of Immigration, Ministry of Home Affairs.

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Visa on Arrival for the nationals of Japan, South Korea and UAE (only for such UAE nationals who had earlier obtained e-Visa or regular/paper visa for India) Available at selected Airports

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Advisory: Government of India has not authorized any agent or intermediary to charge any fee for facilitation of emergency / express Visa/eVisa. For travel to India a regular/eVisa along with passport is mandatory. Only categories exempted under bilateral arrangments may not need a visa. For persons of Indian origin (all categories), OCI card is mandatory.

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e-Visa - Only Ordinary Passport holders may apply for eVisa application online. Select Visa Service as G20 eConference Visa and purpose as "To Attend G20 Conference/Meeting" .

Regular Visa - Diplomatic/Official/Ordinary Passport holders may fill online application and submit at concerned Indian Embassy/Mission in their country. Select Visa Service as Conference Visa and purpose as "To Attend G20 Conference/Meeting" .

India stops new visas for Canadians, asks Ottawa to downsize missions as spat worsens

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Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi (R) extends his hand for a handshake with his Canadian counterpart Justin Trudeau during a photo opportunity ahead of their meeting at Hyderabad House in New Delhi

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Krishn reports on politics and strategic affairs from the Indian subcontinent. He has previously worked at the Organized Crime and Corruption Reporting Project, an international investigative consortium; The Indian Express; and The Caravan magazine, writing about defence, politics, law, conglomerates, media, elections and investigative projects. A graduate of Columbia University's journalism school, Krishn has won multiple awards for his work.

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India has suspended visa service for Canadians. Here are your top questions answered

India's ministry of external affairs says it will review the situation on a regular basis'.

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India's visa processing centre in Canada suspended services Thursday as a rift widened between the countries after Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said India may have been involved in the killing of a pro-Khalistan activist and president of Guru Nanak Sikh Gurdwara in British Columbia, Hardeep Singh Nijjar. 

So what does that mean for Canadians planning trips to India? Here's what we know so far:

Who does this affect? 

Canadian citizens who do not have a visa for India or were in the process of applying for one. 

What type of Indian visa can I apply for?

India's Ministry of External Affairs confirmed the decision to stop all categories of visas, including e-visas, for Canadian Citizens. If you're a Canadian national wondering whether you can apply for an Indian visa from a third country, like the U.S., you will be subjected to the same suspension of services.  

I've already got a plane ticket and I'm heading to the airport. Will my trip be affected?

If you have a valid visa or an Indian passport, you can travel. There is no travel restriction. The announcement is about suspension of visa services in Canada, which means Canadian nationals can't apply for visas or get them processed until the Government of India resumes visa services. 

NOTE: A visa does not guarantee you admission to a country. It permits one to present themselves at a port of entry to seek admission. 

Should I be worried for my Canadian family member in India right now? Can they return to Canada? 

If a Canadian national in India needs an extension of visa, they won't be able to receive one. But if they have a visa, they are allowed to stay in India or travel back and forth.

indian tourist visa suspension

India suspends visa services in Canada

Is traveling to india right now a safety risk for me.

Canada has regional travel advisories for Indian states of Jammu and Kashmir, Punjab, Gujrat, and Rajasthan.

India has a travel advisory for Indian nationals and international students in Canada. 

I'm planning to go back in November or December for a wedding. What does this mean for that trip?

A lot of people travel to India during those months, be it for holidays or for weddings. If you have a visa or an Indian passport you can travel.

The Ministry of External Affairs in India says it will "review the situation on a regular basis." You can find updates on India's visa processing platform, BLS International. CBC is also closely monitoring the situation. You can find updates on our website or CBC News app. 

Does this mean people in India won't be able to book trips to Canada?

Indian nationals with a valid visa to Canada are still allowed to travel to Canada. Canada is making staffing changes to its high commission and consulate in India, citing online threats to diplomats. It is too early to say what the situation will look like in the coming months, weeks or even days. 

Will this affect Indians applying for Canadian visas? What about incoming international students? 

So far, Canada has not suspended its visa services in India. 

The Indian government says it's asked for "parity" in staffing, pointing out that Canada has more diplomatic presence in India than India does in Canada. India has requested Canada's presence be reduced. 

The High Commission of Canada has said it is temporarily adjusting its staff presence at its commission and consulate locations in India, due to "some diplomats having received threats on various social media platforms."

In the coming days and weeks, this could mean delays in visa processing, or suspension of visa services. 

Can people who already possess visas still enter the country? 

Those in Canada who possess valid visas to India, or those who have overseas citizenship of India are free to travel to India. 

indian tourist visa suspension

The personal impact of India's suspension of visa processing

I am an indian citizen. can i travel to india .

Yes. If you are an Indian national (passport holder), you don't require any visa to enter India. 

What if I applied for a visa before this announcement? 

Your visa application will not be processed until further notice from the Indian government. 

Do Canadians need a transit visa? 

If you don't need to leave the airport, you do not need a transit visa in India. However, if your trip requires a stay in India, you require a transit visa. Canadian nationals are unable to obtain a transit visa until the suspension of visa services is lifted. 

How long will this last? 

That's the million-dollar question. This is an evolving situation. The Indian government has said they are reviewing the situation on a regular basis. 

What if I have tickets booked and don't have a visa? 

In a statement to CBC News, Air Canada said, "We continue to operate our normal service to India of 19 flights a week. For customers who may be affected by new visa requirements we have put in place a flexible rebooking policy so they can change their flights with no change fee if they need more time to prepare."

  • India suspends visa services in Canada as diplomatic fight grows

We have a cruise booked for December and have applied for, but not received, our travel visa for India. Will we have to remain on board when we are in port or can we even board the ship if we don't get our visa?

No. Regardless of how you enter any country, by air, land, or water, you require a visa unless you're exempt from visa requirements for that country. In this case, you need a one year tourist visa. At the moment you won't be able to get one due to the visa suspension. 

I understand your trip is in December, I hope things change before that. 

But if I were you, I would have a backup plan. If the suspension isn't lifted, can you rebook, can you get a refund? Can you ask the cruise for a different destination?

India's online visa website  has more information on cruise visas.

I have a valid multiple-entry Indian visa. I went to India in February and need to go again in November. My visa expires on Dec. 20, 2023. Can I still use the visa to go to India in November if I return by Dec. 20th?

Yes. According to the Consulate General of India's website, you can travel with a passport on which visa is applied, it must have at least two blank pages and must have a validity of more than 190 days.  Passengers holding valid visas may be denied entry into India if the validity of their passports is less than 180 days at the time of entry into India.

You have to just make sure you leave before your visa expires, in your case it seems like it is valid till Dec 20th. 

Did the Indian government state when or if they are going to refund e-visa applications that are currently in processing?

Application fees for an Indian visa are non-refundable if you get rejected, or if service is denied. 

I am an Indian student in the process of applying for a Canadian visa for my winter 2024 intake at a Canadian university, should I be concerned about India asking Canada to remove diplomats?

 If Canada removes 41 out of its 62 diplomats in India by Oct. 10, it will affect their functioning and services in India. That could mean delays or suspension of visa services for Indian people applying for a Canadian visa.

I have a student visa and my tickets are booked. Can I still enter? 

Yes, there are no travel restrictions if you have a valid student, work, or tourist visa. Please check the travel advisories before you travel. 

Have more questions about India's visa service suspension? Write to us at:  [email protected]  

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

indian tourist visa suspension

Reporter | Editor

Saloni Bhugra joined CBC News as a Donaldson Scholar in May 2022. She has since worked with News Network, World Report, World This Hour, and CBC Calgary. Bhugra established a permanent CBC bureau in Lethbridge until she returned to Toronto and started working with Metro Morning. Bhugra is now CBC's Brampton bureau reporter. Contact her by email at [email protected].

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  • Trudeau accuses India's government of involvement in killing of Canadian Sikh leader

indian tourist visa suspension

India has suspended all visa applications for Canadians. Here’s what that means for travel

indian tourist visa suspension

An Indian paramilitary soldier stands guard next to a police barricade outside the Canadian High Commission in New Delhi, India on Sept. 19, 2023. India has temporarily suspended all visa services for Canadians. Altaf Qadri/The Associated Press

UPDATE : On Nov. 22, India resumed issuing e-visas for Canadian tourists and business travellers after annoucing it would do so on Oct. 25 .

India is temporarily suspending all visa services for Canadians in the wake of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s bombshell allegation that New Delhi was involved in the killing of a Sikh leader in British Columbia.

Indian External Affairs Ministry spokesperson Arindam Bagchi confirmed there is temporary suspension of all visa services for Canadians, including e-visas and visas issued in third countries.

BLS, the agency that processes visa requests for India, including for entry, tourist, student and employment purposes, posted on its website: “Due to operational reasons, with effect from 21 September 2023, Indian visa services have been suspended till further notice.”

The move has sparked confusion as to what the suspension will mean for Canadians planning to travel to India.

Here’s what we know so far.

What types of visas are affected by the suspension?

All types of visas are affected, including for work, business and tourism. Applications through the online e-visa program are also suspended. According to Mr. Bagchi, any application that would have to go through the high commission of India in Ottawa or another Indian consulate are included in the pause.

Can I still travel to India if I already have a visa, or have a valid Overseas Citizen of India (OCI) card?

Those who already have an OCI card, a Person of Indian Origin (PIO) card, or a valid Indian visa of any kind can still travel to India, because only new visa applications are affected by the suspension. There are no flight or travel restrictions at this time for a person who holds valid travel documents.

“The issue is not about travel to India. Those who have valid visas, those who have other kinds of documents like OCIs are free to travel to India. But the issue is of incitement of violence and the creation of an environment that disrupts the functioning of our high commission and consulates,” Mr. Bagchi said in a news conference.

I’m a permanent resident in Canada. Can I still visit India?

There are currently no changes to permanent residency policies for Indian citizens living in Canada, and permanent residents can still travel to India and back. That means all Indian passport holders can travel without issues or restrictions. On Sept. 20, the Indian government requested all Indian citizens living or studying in Canada register with the high commission or an Indian consulate to “better connect … in the event of any emergency or untoward incident.”

I have recently acquired Canadian citizenship. Does the suspension impact new OCI applications or passport surrender services?

Kubeir Kamal, an immigration consultant, says that new OCI applications are expected to be affected by the suspension. BLS International has not been able to confirm if they will continue accepting new OCI applications at this time.

According to the Indian Citizenship Act, 1955, India does not allow dual citizenship with another foreign country. A person is expected to surrender their Indian passport before they can apply for OCI or PIO card. Mr. Kamal says that Indian passport surrender services are expected to operate in normal fashion.

Will in-process visa applications also be affected?

Yes, in-process visa applications will also be delayed seeing that all visa operations have been suspended until further notice.

I have booked a trip to India in early 2024. Is it likely that Indian visas will be issued again before then? Should I cancel now?

According to Mr. Kamal, it’s too early to tell if a traveller with a flight booked to India in the early months of 2024 should cancel their trip. “There is no way to speculate when the situation will deescalate and visa services will return to normal,” he said. Instead, he recommends following the official Twitter account of the High Commission of India in Ottawa for updates on the visa services.

Are there any travel advisories in place for Canadians who plan to travel to India?

Global Affairs Canada is urging travellers to “exercise a high degree of caution” when visiting India. Canada updated its travel advisory on Sept. 24 to include safety and security warnings about protests in the region. It advises travellers to avoid non-essential travel in parts of Northeastern India such as Assam and Manipur, and to avoid all travel to Jammu and Kashmir due to the threat of terrorism, militancy, civil unrest and kidnapping.

How are Canada’s consulates in India affected?

Canada’s embassy in New Delhi remains open , as do Canadian consulates across India, said Global Affairs spokesman Jean-Pierre Godbout in a statement. However, the Canadian government is reducing staff levels at its diplomatic missions in India, citing fear for the safety of its employees. This reduction in staff will likely mean disruptions for members of Canada’s Indian diaspora who maintain business or administrative ties with the country, explains Mississauga, Ont., paralegal Bobby Sidhu. “It’s definitely going to affect the lives of many, many Indian-Canadian citizens,” Mr. Sidhu said.

With reports from Steven Chase, Robert Fife, Abigale Subdhan and the Associated Press

Have a question about Indian visas? E-mail us at [email protected] and we’ll try to get it answered for you.

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indian tourist visa suspension

How does India's visa office suspension affect Canadian travellers?

The suspension of Indian visa services for Canadians this week has prompted uncertainty among many who had hoped to travel to India in the near future.

The news came Thursday as India's visa processing centre in Canada halted services for Canadian citizens, with India saying it anticipates Ottawa will reduce its diplomatic presence in the country. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau told Parliament earlier in the week there were “credible allegations” of Indian involvement in the June killing of Sikh independence activist Hardeep Singh Nijjar.

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"Due to operational reasons, with effect from 21 Sept. Indian visa services have been suspended [until] further notice," stated the BLS Indian Visa Application Center in Canada on its website.

Here's what the visa centre closure could mean for India's sizable diaspora community in Canada, which is now caught in the middle of rising diplomatic tensions between the two countries.

WHAT SERVICES DOES THE CENTRE OFFER?

With offices in Montreal, Ottawa, Toronto, Brampton, Ont., Winnipeg, Calgary, Edmonton, Vancouver and Surrey, B.C., BLS is the agency that processes visa requests for India, including for entry, tourist, student and employment visas. 

Its services are divided into three main categories: passports, temporary visas and Overseas Citizenship of India (OCI) cards. Those eligible for OCI cards are persons of Indian origin who formerly held an Indian passport, along with their children and spouses.

It's essentially a "lifetime visa for India," the office states online. Cardholders are "granted multiple entry, multi-purpose, lifelong visa for visiting" the country.

But it cautions that OCI status is "not to be misconstrued as 'dual citizenship,'" as India forbids its citizens from holding citizenship of a foreign country simultaneously.

Under normal circumstances, it usually takes about two to three months for the office to process OCI applications, while single entry visas would only take about a week to approve, said immigration consultant Pragati Sharma.

It is not clear how many Canadians hold OCI status, but Indian media reports suggest there were roughly six million cardholders worldwide as of 2020.

ARE CURRENT OCI OR VISA HOLDERS AFFECTED BY THE OFFICE'S CLOSURE?

The suspension won't affect Canadian citizens who already hold OCI cards, or those whose single entry visas have already been processed, said Sharma, who operates Westlink Immigration in Winnipeg.

However, any Canadian who planned on travelling to India but had not yet been granted an OCI or visa is out of luck for now, she said. That includes those who already applied but had not yet seen their submission processed.

"There are lots of calls I was getting this week because of the situation. People are worried how this is going to impact their applications, those who have already submitted those applications," Sharma said.

"There is a rift between two countries and obviously they have taken some steps, so this is definitely going to impact Canadians."

HOW IMPACTFUL COULD THIS BE?

With Canada home to around 1.4 million residents of Indian descent, according to the 2021 census, travel between the countries is common.

In 2021, 80,000 Canadian tourists visited India, making them the fourth-largest group, according to India's Bureau of Immigration. Meanwhile, Canada remains an attractive destination for Indians, especially students. In 2022, nearly 300,000 Indians were pursuing higher education in Canada.

"This, of course, is going to affect those who are travelling in the next few months," Vinay Kanetkar, director of the University of Guelph's Canada India Research Centre for Learning and Engagement, said in an email.

The restrictions come at a time when many Indian expats often make the trip back home. Sharma noted that there are a series of Indian festivals which begin in October, including Diwali the following month.

"People tend to go back during these festival seasons and they like to visit their family. That would be a big issue," she said.

"They have to cancel those plans. Obviously, there will be uncertainty during this period."

Almost one in five recent Canadian immigrants were born in India, making it the leading country of birth for recent immigration to Canada, Statistics Canada said last year.

WHAT ABOUT THOSE TRAVELLING FROM INDIA TO CANADA?

Thus far, it appears India's suspension of services will have no effect on those seeking to travel to Canada, according to Sharma. That is despite India having urged caution for its citizens planning to visit Canada, citing security risks.

"I got so many calls this week, those people who have submitted an application for a study permit, work permit, like all those things, how this is going to impact them," she said.

"There is nothing as such I'm aware of, to be very frank."

— With files from The Associated Press

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Sept. 22, 2023.

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How does India's visa office suspension affect Canadian travellers?

TORONTO - The suspension of India n visa services for Canadians this week has prompted uncertainty among many who had hoped to travel to India in the near future.

The news came Thursday as India 's visa processing centre in Canada halted services for Canadian citizens, with India saying it anticipates Ottawa will reduce its diplomatic presence in the country. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau told Parliament earlier in the week there were “credible allegations” of India n involvement in the June killing of Sikh independence activist Hardeep Singh Nijjar.

“Due to operational reasons, with effect from 21 Sept. India n visa services have been suspended 1/8 until 3/8 further notice,” stated the BLS India n Visa Application Center in Canada on its website.

Here's what the visa centre closure could mean for India 's sizable diaspora community in Canada, which is now caught in the middle of rising diplomatic tensions between the two countries.

What services does the centre offer?

With offices in Montreal, Ottawa, Toronto, Brampton, Ont., Winnipeg, Calgary, Edmonton, Vancouver and Surrey, B.C., BLS is the agency that processes visa requests for India , including for entry, tourist, student and employment visas.

Its services are divided into three main categories: passports, temporary visas and Overseas Citizenship of India (OCI) cards. Those eligible for OCI cards are persons of India n origin who formerly held an India n passport, along with their children and spouses.

It's essentially a “lifetime visa for India ,” the office states online. Cardholders are “granted multiple entry, multi-purpose, lifelong visa for visiting” the country.

But it cautions that OCI status is “not to be misconstrued as 'dual citizenship,”' as India forbids its citizens from holding citizenship of a foreign country simultaneously.

Under normal circumstances, it usually takes about two to three months for the office to process OCI applications, while single entry visas would only take about a week to approve, said immigration consultant Pragati Sharma.

It is not clear how many Canadians hold OCI status, but India n media reports suggest there were roughly six million cardholders worldwide as of 2020.

Are current OCI or visa holders affected by the office's closure?

The suspension won't affect Canadian citizens who already hold OCI cards, or those whose single entry visas have already been processed, said Sharma, who operates Westlink Immigration in Winnipeg.

However, any Canadian who planned on travelling to India but had not yet been granted an OCI or visa is out of luck for now, she said. That includes those who already applied but had not yet seen their submission processed.

“There are lots of calls I was getting this week because of the situation. People are worried how this is going to impact their applications, those who have already submitted those applications,” Sharma said.

“There is a rift between two countries and obviously they have taken some steps, so this is definitely going to impact Canadians.”

How impactful could this be?

With Canada home to around 1.4 million residents of India n descent, according to the 2021 census, travel between the countries is common.

In 2021, 80,000 Canadian tourists visited India , making them the fourth-largest group, according to India 's Bureau of Immigration. Meanwhile, Canada remains an attractive destination for India ns, especially students. In 2022, nearly 300,000 India ns were pursuing higher education in Canada.

“This, of course, is going to affect those who are travelling in the next few months,” Vinay Kanetkar, director of the University of Guelph's Canada India Research Centre for Learning and Engagement, said in an email.

The restrictions come at a time when many India n expats often make the trip back home. Sharma noted that there are a series of India n festivals which begin in October, including Diwali the following month.

“People tend to go back during these festival seasons and they like to visit their family. That would be a big issue,” she said.

“They have to cancel those plans. Obviously, there will be uncertainty during this period.”

Almost one in five recent Canadian immigrants were born in India , making it the leading country of birth for recent immigration to Canada, Statistics Canada said last year.

What about those travelling from India to Canada?

Thus far, it appears India 's suspension of services will have no effect on those seeking to travel to Canada, according to Sharma. That is despite India having urged caution for its citizens planning to visit Canada, citing security risks.

“I got so many calls this week, those people who have submitted an application for a study permit, work permit, like all those things, how this is going to impact them,” she said.

“There is nothing as such I'm aware of, to be very frank.”

- With files from The Associated Press

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Sept. 22, 2023.

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Restoration of valid Tourist Visa

Consulate General of India

PRESS RELEASE

RESTORATION OF VALID TOURIST VISA

            The Government of India has further relaxed visa and travel restrictions to India keeping in view the improvement in the COVID situation in India-

-           All Regular (Paper) valid Tourist visa issued before March 2020, except 10 years Tourist Visa, shall stand restored with immediate effect. Canadian nationals will be eligible for fresh Regular Tourist Visa, except 10 years duration Tourist Visa.

-           Electronic Travel Authorization or e-Visa, issued to Canadian nationals before March 2020 will continue to remain under suspension.  Canadian nationals are not eligible for issuance of fresh e-Visa.

  • Foreign nationals on Tourist Visa would be permitted to enter India only through designated Sea Immigration Check Posts (ICPs) or Airport ICPs by flights including those under the Vande Bharat Mission or ‘air bubble’ scheme or by any flights as allowed by DGCA or Ministry of Civil Aviation. In no case will foreign nationals be allowed to enter through Land border or riverine routes on Tourist Visa.
  • Visa application can be filled online and duly filled forms are to be submitted along with required documents and fee to the nearest BLS center in this Consulate's Consular jurisdiction. All visa related information can be accessed at the BLS website: https://www.blsindia-canada.com
  • Entry Visas for persons of Indian origin remain available but due to added documentation and scrutiny/verification requirements, processing time for such visas will be more than 45 days. Regular tourist visas will be processed in 30 days.

March 16, 2022

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India suspends visa services for Canadians in further decline in relations

Announcement of ‘security threats’ follows Justin Trudeau’s claims India was involved in Sikh activist’s killing

Relations between India and Canada have further deteriorated after Delhi announced it was suspending visa services for Canadians due to “security threats” faced by its embassy and consulates in Canada.

BLS International, which runs the Indian visa offices in Canada, put a notice on its website stating that all visa services for Canadians were suspended until further notice, citing “operational reasons”.

Arindam Bagchi, a spokesperson for India’s foreign ministry, confirmed the suspension at a media briefing, mentioning “the incitement to violence, the inaction by the Canadian authorities and the creation of an environment that disrupts the functioning of our high commission and consulates” as the reason.

India has long levelled allegations that Canada was providing safe haven for what it says are “terrorists” from the Khalistan movement, a Sikh independence group banned in India. Canada has the largest population of Sikhs outside their home state of Punjab.

“You are aware of the security threats being faced by our consulates in Canada,” said Bagchi. “This has disrupted their normal functioning. Accordingly our high commission and consulate are temporarily unable to process visa applications. We will be reviewing the situation on a regular basis.”

It was the latest retaliatory move by India’s foreign ministry in response to the Canadian prime minister Justin Trudeau’s allegation this week that there was “credible evidence” Delhi had been involved in the murder of the Sikh activist Hardeep Singh Nijjar in British Columbia in June.

India rejected the allegations as “absurd” and in the aftermath the two countries engaged in a tit-for-tat expulsion of top diplomats .

Bagchi on Thursday spoke damningly of Canada as a place where “elements linked to organised crime, linked to terrorists, secessionists or extremists who are operating freely, they are being politically condoned, they seem to have a free run”.

Rebuffing questions on whether Delhi’s reputation had been marred by the accusations of its role in the assassination of Nijjar, Bagchi said: “If there is any country that needs to look at this, it is Canada and its growing reputation as a safe haven for terrorists.”

Bagchi said the Canadian authorities had not yet shared specific information or evidence around the murder of Nijjar. “We have conveyed this to the Canadian side and made it clear we are willing to look at any specific information that is provided to us,” he said.

Speaking to reporters at the United Nations in New York on Thursday, Trudeau said he was not seeking to escalate the row between the two countries and called on India to cooperate with Canadian authorities to “uncover the truth” behind the killing.

“We are not looking to provoke or cause problems, but we are unequivocal about the rule of law and unequivocal about protecting Canadians and standing up for our values,” he said. “That is why we call upon the government of India to work with us to establish processes, to uncover the truth of the matter and allow justice and accountability to be served.”

Amid mounting domestic pressure to release more information into the “credible allegations” that led to his claims in parliament earlier this week, Trudeau did not confirm his government would share the evidence.

On Wednesday, India updated its travel advisory for Canada, warning its citizens residing and travelling in the country to take “extreme caution” due to “growing anti-India activities and politically condoned hate crimes” in Canada.

Canada’s own advisory for its nationals travelling to India includes warnings of a “threat of terrorist attack throughout the country”. The two sides announced they were also suspending trade talks.

A spokesperson for Canada’s foreign ministry had also told Canadian media that after some diplomatic employees in India had received threats online, they were “temporarily adjusting staff” in their high commission in Delhi.

According to Bagchi, Canadian diplomatic staff are likely to be reduced in India due to discussions between the two countries on having “parity” in their diplomatic presence.

On Thursday, Global Affairs Canada confirmed it had started reducing staff.

“In light of the current environment where tensions have heightened, we are taking action to ensure the safety of our diplomats. With some diplomats having received threats on various social media platforms, Global Affairs Canada is assessing its staff complement in India,” the spokesperson Jean-Pierre Godbout said in a statement. “As a result, and out of an abundance of caution, we have decided to temporarily adjust staff presence in India.”

While the high commission will remain open, the Canadian government did not say how many staff had been removed, but said it expected India to continue providing security amid rising tensions.

“In the context of respect for obligations under the Vienna conventions, we expect India to provide for the security of our accredited diplomats and consular officers in India, just as we are for theirs [in Canada],” Godbout said.

Canada blames India for alleged assassination as tensions rise – video report

The issue of Khalistan, a secessionist movement fighting for Punjab to become an independent Sikh state, has long been a sore spot in India-Canada relations. Canada is home to a large Sikh diaspora community and India has alleged that the Canadian government is turning a blind eye to Khalistani extremism on its own soil.

Nijjar, the Sikh activist who was killed in June , had been named as a terrorist by the Indian government in 2020, which accused him of playing a role in a violent attack on India and being part of the Khalistan Tiger Force, an organisation that it has banned.

Should Canada impose similar visa restrictions on Indian citizens, it could have a significant impact. Indians topped the list last year of legal immigrants to Canada, with more than 118,000 becoming permanent residents in 2022. There are also more than 320,000 Indian students studying in Canadian universities.

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Why Are India And China At Loggerheads Again, Over Travel Visas?

The move comes at a time when nearly 22,000 indian students enrolled in chinese universities haven't been able to go back for physical classes..

Why Are India And China At Loggerheads Again, Over Travel Visas?

Amid the ongoing tension between India and China, India has now suspended the tourist visas issued to Chinese nationals, according to reports . The news came to be known after global airlines body IATA (International Air Transport Association) issued a circular on April 20, saying, "Tourist visas issued to nationals of China (People's Republic) are no longer valid."

It said the following passengers are allowed to enter India: nationals of Bhutan, India, Maldives and Nepal; passengers with a residence permit issued by India; passengers with visa or an e-visa issued by India; passengers with an overseas citizen of India (OCI) card or booklet; passengers with a persons of Indian origin (PIO) card; and passengers with a diplomatic passport.

Why has India suspended tourist visas for China?

Several media reports have called it a 'tit-for-tat' move.

India's move to suspend tourist visas for Chinese nationals comes in the backdrop of China denying entry to around 22,000 Indian students enrolled in different universities there. These students had returned home to India after the pandemic broke out and a lockdown was imposed back in 2020. The students haven't been able to return for physical classes since then.

India has been pleading with China to allow the students back in their classrooms.

On March 17, MEA spokesperson Arindam Bagchi said that India has urged Beijing to adopt a "congenial stance" in the matter as the continuation of the strict restricts is putting the academic careers of thousands of Indian students in jeopardy. He said that a Chinese foreign ministry spokesperson had stated on February 8 that China was looking into the matter in a coordinated manner and that arrangements for allowing foreign students to return to China were being examined.

"But let me clarify that till date, the Chinese side has not given any categorical response about the return of Indian students. We will continue to urge the Chinese side to adopt a congenial stance in the interest of our students and that they facilitate an early return to China so that our students can pursue their studies," Bagchi had said.

What is a tourist visa?

A tourist visa is an official document that allows an individual to visit a foreign country for tourism and travel purposes, while visit visa is given to nonimmigrants to visit any country for a short period of time for purposes like tourism, visiting relatives, friends, business trips, medical treatment, etc.

Why Do Indian Students Go To China?

China has in recent years become one of the top choices for Indian students to pursue higher education, particularly MBBS. The ease of getting admission and cheaper admission fees are some of the reasons. Australia, New Zealand, Canada, Germany, UK, are some other countries preferred by Indian students. A recent report claims that China is fast-growing a favourite destination for international students. In fact, China ranks number 3 in terms of international student intake, only after US and UK.

Chinese Business Representative's Reaction

According to Chinese media, a Chinese business representative in India has said the suspension of tourist visas has 'very little impact on either Chinese or Indian businesses'. The Global Times reported that there aren't many Chinese travelers in India owing to high ticket prices, approximately USD 6512 for one-way ticket, and lack of direct flights between the two countries. Chinese state media quoted Yang Jinsong of the China Tourism Academy terming the visa suspension as meaningless since 'given the fact that there are hardly any Chinese tourists going to India these days, because of the virus situation in the country and China's tightened epidemic control.'

China Vs India- A Quick Glance

The recent tension between India and China started back in 2020. According to reports, on May 5 that year, Chinese and Indian troopers were engaged in an intense battle along the border in Galwan valley of Ladakh. Skirmishes were also reported from border areas between Sikkim and the Tibet Autonomous Region. Both sides started deploying a huge number of soldiers on the respective sides of the border.

The fighting intensified on June 15 in Galwan Valley. In the ensuing clashes, one of the worst face-offs in almost 45 years, 20 Indian soldiers were killed. It was only after over 11 rounds of military talks that the disengagement process began. While much wasn't known about the casualties on Chinese side, China acknowledged that five soldiers and military officers were killed in the past year's clashes with India.

While the military level talks were going on, India announced to ban Chinese mobile phone apps like TikTok, Shareit, Shein, Applock, WeChat, Weibo, Club Factory, etc. As of now 224 Chinese apps are banned in India.

India's diplomatic boycott of Beijing Olympics

India called for a diplomatic boycott of winter Olympics held in Beijing early this year because the soldier who was among those who fought Indian troops in Galwan was made the torchbearer. The torch relay Beijing on February 2 had over 130 participants, including Qi Fabao, the soldier of Galwan Valley fame, sports legends, Covid warriors and space scientists. India's foreign ministry termed China's move to include Galwan Valley soldier in the Olympics ceremony as "regrettable". National broadcaster Doordarshan had also said it will not show the live telecast of the opening and closing ceremony of the Winter Olympics.

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Local travel agency reports suspension of indian tourist visas for hong kong sar passport holders, bn(o) visas unaffected.

indian tourist visa suspension

30th September 2023 – (Hong Kong) A local travel agency has revealed that India has temporarily suspended issuing tourist visas to holders of Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (SAR) passports. However, business visas remain unaffected, and individuals with British National Overseas (BN(O)) passports can still apply for both types of visas. The suspension is believed to be related to the recent border conflicts and increasing tension between China and India in recent years, which has consequently affected Hong Kong. In response, a government spokesperson stated that the Immigration Department has been actively seeking the latest information from the Consulate General of India in Hong Kong, in order to advocate for greater travel convenience for Hong Kong SAR passport holders. They also advised SAR passport holders to check the official websites of their intended destinations or directly contact relevant authorities for the latest updates before travelling.

In a search of the website of the Consulate General of India in Hong Kong, no official announcement regarding the visa suspension has been made thus far. However, the Indian Embassy in China has issued a notice stating the temporary suspension of electronic visas for Chinese passport holders and individuals of other nationalities residing within China due to “certain current developments.” The online Indian visa platform does not include Mainland China, Hong Kong, and Macao in the list of countries or regions eligible for visa applications, but Taiwan remains on the list.

Freddy Yip Hing-ning, the Managing Director of Goldjoy Travel, expressed that as early as the beginning of this year, India had suspended tourist visas for Chinese and Hong Kong SAR passport holders, while business visas remained unaffected. Consequently, all Indian tour groups organised by travel agencies are currently suspended. He speculated that the differential treatment between SAR passports and BNO passports might be due to India considering SAR passport holders as Chinese citizens, while regarding BN(O) passport holders as British citizens.

Yip further mentioned that the suspension of tour groups to India has not significantly impacted business as there were only around 5 to 6 Indian tour groups with approximately 20 people per month before the pandemic. He believed that apart from India, Hong Kong residents have plenty of alternative destinations to choose from.

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indian tourist visa suspension

Visa-free travel to Russia! Good news for Indian travellers likely soon - All you need to know

India-Russia Visa Free Travel: In what could be a big development for the tourism industry, India and Russia are on the brink of finalising a landmark visa-free travel agreement, anticipated to come into effect by the close of 2024. Talks between the two nations have been underway, with a focus on easing travel restrictions and fostering stronger tourism ties, according to TOI.

Scheduled to commence discussions in June, both parties are keen to facilitate visa-free group tourist exchanges, aiming to bolster cultural and economic relations between Moscow and New Delhi. Nikita Kondratyev, Director of the Russian Economic Development Ministry's Department of Multilateral Economic Cooperation and Special Projects, emphasized India's preparedness for the forthcoming agreement, citing progress in internal state coordination.

India-Russia Visa Free Travel

Speaking at the sidelines of the International Economic Forum "Russia - Islamic World: KazanForum 2024" in Kazan, Kondratyev revealed that negotiations are progressing well, with a tentative timeline in place for the agreement's signing by year-end. The initiative seeks to replicate the success of existing visa-free tourist exchanges with China and Iran, which commenced on August 1 of the previous year.

Tourism Boost: India-Russia Visa Free Travel

In anticipation of the visa-free agreement, travellers are already planning their itineraries. Among the must-visit destinations in Russia once visa-free travel becomes a reality are the iconic Red Square in Moscow, the illustrious Hermitage Museum in St. Petersburg, the breathtaking Lake Baikal, and the majestic Peterhof Palace, often hailed as the "Russian Versailles."

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  • European Union – New Visa “Cascade” Regime for India

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Travel to the Schengen area for Indian nationals is significantly easier with the introduction of new rules that allow frequent travelklers access to a longer visa period overall.  

On 18 April 2024, the European Commission adopted more favourable rules for visas issued to Indian nationals residing in India. 1  The new rules, known as the visa “cascade” regime, will allow Indian nationals who reside in India to have access to long-term, multi-entry Schengen visas valid for two years after having obtained and lawfully used two visas within the previous three years.  The initial two-year visa can then be followed by a five-year visa, provided that the passport has sufficient remaining validity, providing for a longer stay by the individual. 

WHY THIS MATTERS

The new visa cascade regime for Indian nationals residing in India who apply for Schengen (short stay) visas in India will allow easier access to visas with longer validity for travellers with an established travel history, if the passport validity allows.

In effect, this means that the holder of the new visa would enjoy travel rights equivalent to visa-free nationals.  

The new rules are expected to enhance mobility between India and Schengen-area European countries.

Schengen visas allow the holder to travel freely in the Schengen area for short stays of a maximum of 90 days in any 180-day period. 2  Although the Schengen visa grants entry to the Schengen area, it does not grant a right to work.

The Schengen area consist of 29 European countries: Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Germany, Estonia, Greece, Spain, France, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Hungary, Malta, the Netherlands, Austria, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovenia, Slovakia, Finland, Sweden, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway, and Switzerland.

According to a press release, "This decision comes in the context of strengthened relations under the EU-India Common Agenda on Migration and Mobility, which deals with comprehensive cooperation on migration policy between the EU and India." 3   The Common Agenda on Migration and Mobility was signed in 2016. 4

Indian nationals who held and used at least two Schengen visas within three years preceding their application, can obtain a Schengen visa for a two-year period followed by a visa for a period up to five years.

This visa allows multiple entries into the Schengen area.

MEIJBURG & CO. INSIGHTS

It is important to note that the validity of the new visa is linked to the validity of the individual’s passport.  Issued visas cannot have a duration that exceeds the validity of the passport it is issued for.

Parties affected by the new rules may wish to consult with their immigration counsel or a professional with the KPMG Immigration network .

1  Delegation of the European Union to India and Bhutan, "European Union adopts more favourable Schengen visa rules for Indians," (22.04.2024) at: https://www.eeas.europa.eu/delegations/india/european-union-adopts-more-favourable-schengen-visa-rules-indians_en?s=167 .

2  For more information on the Schengen area, see the EU’s Migration and Home Affairs webpage .

3  See footnote 1.

4  See the “Joint Declaration on a Common Agenda on Migration and Mobility” (March 2016) at: https://www.consilium.europa.eu/media/23674/20160329-joint-declaration-camm.pdf .

To learn more about the Common Agenda on Migration and Mobility signed in 2016, and developments since then, see:

- The International Labour Organization (ILO) webpage . 

- Government of India, Ministry of External Affairs "Joint Press Statement: 7th India-EU High Level Dialogue on Migration and Mobility" (October 27, 2023) at: https://www.mea.gov.in/Speeches-Statements.htm?dtl/37212/Joint+Press+Statement+7th+IndiaEU+High+Level+Dialogue+on+Migration+and+Mobility .

- The website for the Delegation of the European Union to India and Bhutan.   

* Please note the KPMG International member firm in the United States does not provide immigration or labour law services. However, KPMG Law LLP in Canada can assist clients with U.S. immigration matters.

The information contained in this newsletter was submitted by the KPMG International member firm in the Netherlands.

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Visa-free travel agreement between India, Russia likely by end of 2024

Times of India TIMESOFINDIA.COM / TRAVEL NEWS , RUSSIA / Created : May 18, 2024, 12:31 IST

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Kondratyev stressed that the intent of this initiative is to replicate the success of visa-free tourist exchanges which are already operational with China and Iran. Notably, Russia and China initiated their visa-free group tourist … Read more

Kondratyev stressed that the intent of this initiative is to replicate the success of visa-free tourist exchanges which are already operational with China and Iran. Notably, Russia and China initiated their visa-free group tourist exchange on August 1 of the preceding year, followed by a similar initiative with Iran on the same date. Read less

Visa-free travel agreement between India, Russia likely by end of 2024

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Visa-free travel agreement between India, Russia likely by end of 2024

Kondratyev stressed that the intent of this initiative is to replicate the success of visa-free tourist exchanges which are already operational with China and Iran. Notably, Russia and China initiated...

indian tourist visa suspension

India TV News

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India-Russia talks on visa-free travel deal to begin next month: Russian minister

Russian minister nikita kondratyev said consultations over a bilateral visa-free travel agreement would begin in june and a signing was expected at the end of the year. russia had announced earlier that it planned to launch visa-free tourist exchanges with india in 2024..

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"India is at the final stage of internal state coordination," Kondratyev, director of the Russian Economic Development Ministry’s Department of Multilateral Economic Cooperation and Special Projects, was quoted by RT News as saying on the sidelines of the 'Russia-Islamic World: KazanForum 2024' event.

He further said a signing was expected by the end of the year after holding discussions over the draft agreement on bilateral visa-free travel in June. "Russia and India are set to strengthen their tourism ties as they gear up for the launch of visa-free group tourist exchanges. The first round of consultations between the two nations is scheduled for June, with an aim to finalise a bilateral agreement by the end of the year," the minister said.

Kondratyev said Russia planned to replicate the success of visa-free tourist exchanges already established with China and Iran. Moscow initiated visa-free group tourist exchanges with Beijing and Tehran on August 1 last year, ushering in a new era of tourism cooperation.

In 2023, the Russian capital was visited by 3.7 million business tourists - 7 per cent more than in 2022. And India remains one of the leaders among visitors from non-CIS (Commonwealth of Independent States) countries in terms of the number of business travellers.

In February, Iran scrapped visa requirements for Indian tourists, although the waiver was subjected to several conditions. Last year, Iran announced the removal of visa requirements for Indian citizens and tourists from 32 other countries to boost global tourism and counter negative perceptions. The decision by Iranian authorities follows similar decisions by countries like Malaysia, Sri Lanka, Thailand and Vietnam to waive visa requirements for Indian tourists.

The surge in outbound Indian tourists, reaching 13 million in 2022, has prompted nations to facilitate travel. The Iranian Embassy in New Delhi on Tuesday announced the government's decision to waive visa requirements for Indian tourists starting from February 4 subject to certain conditions, in a development that is a testament to growing India-Iran ties despite significant disruptions in the geopolitical order.

Indian citizens can travel visa-free to 30 countries across the world. These include Nepal, Bhutan, Indonesia, Qatar, the Maldives, Macau, Mauritius, British Virgin Islands, Dominica, Oman, Thailand, Trinidad and Tobago and others.

(with inputs from PTI)

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COMMENTS

  1. India restores tourist visas 2 years after suspension due to Covid-19

    The valid e-tourist visas issued for five years stand restored to nationals of 156 countries with immediate effect. The regular paper tourist visa, which has a validity of five years and is issued ...

  2. India Restores Tourist Visas Effective Immediately After 2 ...

    The tourism sector in India was significantly impacted due to the 2-year suspension period, so opening back up travel into India will help boost the economy and reinvigorate a sense of normalcy that was lost over the pandemic. ... More information on Indian tourist visa's and eligible nationalities can be found here. 1508 views. Share ...

  3. India Restores Suspended Tourist Visas, Electronic and Paper, with

    In March 2020, India - the second most populous country in the world - took several measures to combat the pandemic, like cancellation of scheduled/regular international flights, suspension of tourist visas, and nationwide lockdown.With foreign countries having vaccinated their populace and the COVID graph being flattened in India, the government has relaxed the pandemic-induced ...

  4. India restores valid e-visa of tourists from 156 countries after 2-year

    India restores valid e-visa of tourists from 156 countries after 2-year suspension due to Covid pandemic. All currently valid old long duration (10 years) regular tourist visas given to nationals of the US and Japan have been restored. Fresh long duration (10 year) tourist visas will also be issued to the US and Japanese nationals.

  5. India restores 5-year e-tourist visas suspended in 2020

    India restores 5-year e-tourist visas suspended in 2020. The move, announced as the pandemic situation is improving in the country, aims to boost tourism and the economy. Ten-year tourist visas have also been allowed. International tourist arrivals could grow by 30 per cent to 78 per cent this year, as compared to 2021.

  6. India Visa Online

    Authorized Portal for Visa Application to India. All foreign nationals entering India are required to possess a valid international travel document in the form of a national passport with a valid visa from an Indian Mission/Post or eVisa (Limited Categories) from Bureau of Immigration, Ministry of Home Affairs. Avail Indian Visa plus services ...

  7. India Restores E-Tourist Visa and Regular Visas: Here Are the New Rules

    Two years after visa suspension due to the pandemic, India has now restored, with immediate effect, all valid five year e-tourist visas that are given to nationals of 156 countries along with ...

  8. After 2 Years of Visa Suspension, India Restores E-Tourist Visa

    Currently, India has restored valid e-tourist visas issued for five years to the citizens of 156 countries and regular paper tourist visas to nationals of all the countries with an immediate effect, two years after suspension due to the COVID-19 outbreak. On Tuesday, 15th March, the order has been issued by the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA ...

  9. India stops new visas for Canadians, asks Ottawa to downsize missions

    India on Thursday suspended new visas for Canadians and asked Ottawa to reduce its diplomatic presence in the country, sharply escalating a spat triggered by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau's ...

  10. India has suspended visa service for Canadians. Here are your top

    If you have a valid visa or an Indian passport, you can travel. There is no travel restriction. The announcement is about suspension of visa services in Canada, which means Canadian nationals can ...

  11. India to resume visa services at high commission, consulates in Canada

    1:55 India's visa suspension in Canada upends travel plans "Further decisions, as appropriate, would be intimated based on continuing evaluation of the situation," reads a press release from ...

  12. India has suspended all visa applications for Canadians. Here's what

    BLS, the agency that processes visa requests for India, including for entry, tourist, student and employment purposes, posted on its website: "Due to operational reasons, with effect from 21 ...

  13. India suspends visa services in Canada with immediate effect

    Sep 21, 2023, 12:21PM IST Source: TOI.in. India has suspended visa services in Canada with immediate effect. The Indian government has said that the suspension of visa services is a temporary ...

  14. India suspends visas for Canadian nationals as diplomatic spat deepens

    India has suspended visa services for Canadian citizens over what it says are "security threats" against diplomats in Canada, escalating a spat between both countries after Ottawa accused New ...

  15. India-Canada news: How the visa office suspension affects travellers

    The suspension of Indian visa services for Canadians this week has prompted uncertainty among many who had hoped to travel to India in the near future. The news came Thursday as India's visa ...

  16. How does India's visa office suspension affect Canadian travellers?

    Published Friday, September 22, 2023 6:09PM EDT. TORONTO - The suspension of India n visa services for Canadians this week has prompted uncertainty among many who had hoped to travel to India in ...

  17. Consulate General of India, Toronto, Canada : Press Releases

    Toronto. PRESS RELEASE. RESTORATION OF VALID TOURIST VISA. The Government of India has further relaxed visa and travel restrictions to India keeping in view the improvement in the COVID situation in India-. - All Regular (Paper) valid Tourist visa issued before March 2020, except 10 years Tourist Visa, shall stand restored with immediate effect.

  18. India suspends visa services for Canadians in further decline in

    First published on Thu 21 Sep 2023 06.59 EDT. Relations between India and Canada have further deteriorated after Delhi announced it was suspending visa services for Canadians due to "security ...

  19. India Suspends Tourist Visa For Chinese Nationals: All You Need To Know

    Amid the ongoing tension between India and China, India has now suspended the tourist visas issued to Chinese nationals, according to reports. The news came to be known after global airlines body IATA (International Air Transport Association) issued a circular on April 20, saying, "Tourist visas issued to nationals of China (People's Republic ...

  20. Local travel agency reports suspension of Indian tourist visas for Hong

    30th September 2023 - (Hong Kong) A local travel agency has revealed that India has temporarily suspended issuing tourist visas to holders of Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (SAR) passports. However, business visas remain unaffected, and individuals with British National Overseas (BN(O)) passports can still apply for both types of visas. The suspension is believed […]

  21. UK Graduate Route Visa: What it means for Indian students?

    The Graduate Route visa has, no doubt, been significant for Indian students for several reasons, with work opportunities and bringing their families to the UK being on top of the list. Here, it is ...

  22. Visa-free travel agreement between India, Russia likely by end ...

    We really need to reconsider visa free travel between India and Russia. I'd rather have a high bar for visas than import criminals and their vices from another country. We need PhDs, engineers, scientists, and entrepreneurs. Thailand is a better destination for sex tourism, the Russian hookers and their clientele would be better off going there.

  23. Visa-free travel to Russia! Good news for Indian travellers ...

    Tourism Boost: India-Russia Visa Free Travel. As per TOI, Reflecting on recent tourism trends, Moscow experienced a significant uptick in business tourists in 2023, with Indian travellers notably ...

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    Travel to the Schengen area for Indian nationals is significantly easier with the introduction of new rules that allow frequent travellers access to a longer visa period overall. New rules from the European Union, known as the visa "cascade" regime, will allow Indian nationals who reside in India to have access to long-term, multi-entry Schengen visas valid for two years after having ...

  25. Visa-free travel agreement between India, Russia likely by end of 2024

    Credit: iStock. As per the latest reports, Russia and India are holding talks, aiming to initiate a bilateral agreement facilitating travel ease. Scheduled to commence in June, these discussions ...

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  27. India-Russia talks on visa-free travel deal to begin next month

    Indian citizens can travel visa-free to 30 countries across the world. These include Nepal, Bhutan, Indonesia, Qatar, the Maldives, Macau, Mauritius, British Virgin Islands, Dominica, Oman ...