Whenever one is travelling to another country, that respective country’s authorities have the jurisdiction over the setting up and enforcement of rules concerning entry. In case one has any doubts or uncertainty as to entry related requirements, one should contact the embassy or officials of the concerned country.
One should always ensure that their documents and other essentials related to travel are in order from their consultant or travel company. Visa is one of the most important documents to hold, to gain entry to another country. One should ensure that the visa requirements are met to progress through the international travelling process smoothly. This article outlines information regarding travel to India by a UK citizen or people bearing a ‘British Citizen’ passport.
Visa for certain categories
In the wake of the pandemic, the ministry of Home Affairs of India recently permitted a few categories of foreigners to travel into the country via new guidelines. For the same, one has to get a new business or employment visa.
For further details regarding the permitted categories and instructions for the process, one should visit the website of the Indian Bureau of Immigration.
Any travel to India requires a visa. Several types of visas are issued by India, such as e-visas, visa on arrival and transit visas. One should ensure that one procures the correct visa for travel and its validity regarding the reason and duration of stay. This is a crucial step, as if on the off chance, one obtains the wrong visa, one might be detained on arriving – further being blacklisted or deported from India. This could remove the possibility of ever entering India again. Hence, one should ensure that their travel documents are in order – especially the visa is valid and correct.
Firstly, one should ascertain if any endorsement that stipulates the requirement of registration of arrival in India in a limited duration exists.
Secondly, if one is getting an e-visa, one should ascertain their eligibility for the same. If one doesn’t possess a full ‘British Citizen’ passport, one might not be eligible for the same. One can find out more about the same on the official website for India’s e-visa.
There have been certain guidelines issued by the Indian government on the requirements for a visa of foreigners who are undergoing medical treatment in India if their travel is short term, and on a tourist visa. One should contact the Foreigners Registration Office for checking up details on that.
Further, the Indian Bureau of Immigration has stipulated that foreign nationals arriving at any Indian port, and in possession of a non-machine-readable passport shall not be accorded entry. If one has such a passport, they might be fined.
Another point to note is that staying beyond the duration for which the visa is issued is an offence. Hence, one should ensure that they leave the country before the expiration of their visa.
Is a Visa required for a UK citizen?
The Indian government offers an Indian Visa to the citizens of 166 countries. The UK is one of them, and this has significantly reduced the hassle involved in the obtainment process. It is a quick, and easily accessible process, which is done purely online.
One need not go to the Indian embassy for any requirement such as the application, payment of fees or document submission as all of them can be done online. One might get a business, visa or tourist visa. The application form needs to be filled with educational details and other information such as travel history, one’s itinerary and reasons for stay in India, etc.
All one needs to do after filling the application form online, payment of fees and submission of documents is waiting for its approval. Once approved, one can simply take a print of the digital copy and carry it with oneself to the airport. Further, it is advised to have a copy of this visa whenever one is exploring India. The application process involves merely three steps and can be finished within half an hour.
The Cost of Indian Visa for UK citizens
The cost of Indian visa varies according to the span of duration as well as the type of visa one is applying for. A tourist visa for 30 days requires a fee of $25 or £20. A 1-year tourist visa costs $40 or £32. A business visa is valid for a year and costs $100 or £78. Further, a medical and medical attendant visa also costs $100 or £78 and is valid for 2 months in both cases. A conference visa costs $100 or £78and is valid for a month.
Further, since the payment method is online, there is an additional 2.5% charged by banks in addition to the fees, as service charge. Moreover, if one is employing the help of a travel agent, then one can expect to pay around £10 to £20 above the visa fees as a service fee.
Passport and Visa Validity
To ensure a smooth process during immigration, one should ascertain that they hold a passport which is valid for at least 180 days from the time of visa application. Additionally, the passport should be machine-readable, should consist of 2 blank pages for the visa. One must make sure that they leave India before the validity of their visa expires, to avoid any unforeseen action and possible barring of entry to the country in the future.
Airport tax fee
Many airports have a user development fee. This fee ranges up to Rs. 1000 for international travellers. This is usually included in the price of the aeroplane tickets. But, on the off chance, it is not, then it can be collected at the check-in counter at the airport in Indian currency.
One should make sure that their accommodation is registered with the Foreign Registration Office. It is critically advised to get accommodation which has due registration. Hence, one should make sure to keep the above requirements and steps in mind, to avoid any hassle during immigration.