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The long anticipated visa application process change for travelers to India is off and running and making strides. The process that was in place before was difficult and left India behind many of its Asian counterparts in the big tourism numbers. Travelers just preferred to go places with an easier visa regime.
As of December 2014 India launched the new e Tourist Visa application process for 45 countries. At the beginning of May 2015 an additional 31 countries were added to the list bringing the total to 76. The government has stated that the aim is to extend it to a total of 150 countries by the end of this fiscal year.
Passport holders of the following countries at this time can apply:
Anguilla, Antigua & Barbuda, Australia, Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Brazil, Cambodia, Canada, Cayman Island, Chile,
Cook Islands, Costa Rica, Djibouti, Dominica, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, Estonia, Fiji, Finland, France, Georgia, Germany, Grenada, Guyana, Haiti, Honduras, Indonesia, Israel, Japan, Jordan, Kenya, Kiribati, Laos, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Marshall Islands, Mauritius, Mexico, Micronesia, Montenegro, Montserrat, Myanmar, Nauru, New Zealand,Nicaragua, Niue Island, Norway, Oman, Palau, Palestine,
Papua New Guinea, Paraguay, Philippines, Republic of Korea, Republic of Macedonia, Russia, Saint Christopher and Nevis, Samoa, Singapore, Solomon Islands,Sri Lanka,Thailand, Tonga, Tuvalu, UAE, Ukraine, USA, Vanuatu,
Vatican City-Holy See, Vietnam
The e tourist visa applies only to these passport holders whose intentions are sightseeing, casual family/friend visits, short medical visits, casual business and recreation.
Passports must have at least 6 months validity remaining at time of arrival to India. 2 passport pages must be blank.
Potential tourists can apply online for eTourist Visa twice a year, each visit not exceeding 30 days, with the visa duration non-extendable.
Tourists can travel to India through 9 designated international airports (Bangalore, Chennai, Kochin, Delhi, Goa, Hyderabad, Kolkata, Mumbai and Thiruvananthapuram)
The eTV will include the capturing of biometric data of the visitor upon arrival at the airport.
The first step in the process requires eligible travelers to go to the Government’s e tourist visa (eTV) website which can be found here.
The applicant fills out a registration form online with all pertinent details of the trip.
Pay the visa fee online $62 with a debit/credit card.
Permission for the eTV will be received through email.
The applicant is expected to take a print of this email along with passport to be admitted to the country.