In order to visit India, most foreign nationals are required to apply for an India visa. India uses an online application system for the vast majority of its visa types, which means that you will need to apply through the India Visa Online Application website before you can schedule your interview at the Indian embassy or consulate in your home country. In order to ensure your India visa application goes smoothly, make sure you follow these five tips as you complete your online application form and schedule your interview.
1) Do your research before applying
One of the most critical steps to applying for an India visa online is researching. Find out which type of visa you qualify for and confirm that your paperwork is in order. Read up on what you need to submit with your application, including photocopies of all documents, such as passports and birth certificates. If you have additional questions, get in touch with someone at your local Indian consulate or embassy. This preparation will help prevent any delays once it’s time to apply online.
2) Make sure you have all the required documents
Before you start your India Visa Application Online, make sure you have all of your supporting documents in order. The list may be extensive, but it’s important to ensure that you have everything before submitting your application. First, do a quick review of the official India visa website to see what specific documents are required by your consulate. Then take some time to gather all of these items together and make sure they are on hand when you submit your application. Most offices recommend doing so at least two weeks prior to departure, just in case any delays pop up during processing. Your best bet is to also request an India visa appointment ahead of time so that you can take care of things right away once all your materials are assembled.
3) Double check with Indian Embassies on travel advisories
Travel advisories can help you prepare yourself should you have issues while traveling. For example, in 2011, India placed advisories on travel to Punjab after disturbances broke out in Amritsar during events celebrating Vaisakhi (an important Sikh holiday). In 2009, there were attacks on two hotels and one restaurant in Mumbai; as a result, Indian Embmissions issued travel advisories to anyone planning trips to Maharashtra. While your trip may not be impacted by an advisory—some states are only occasionally included—it’s good practice to double-check with Indian Embassies so that you know where things stand when traveling abroad.
4) Add extra time in case something goes wrong
You don’t want to be stuck in transit without being able to go back home and fix any issues, so give yourself plenty of time. If you’re not sure how long it will take, leave yourself with an extra week in case anything goes wrong. If you can avoid overstaying your visa by a few days when there are no flights out, it’s definitely worth it! Traveling from India isn’t always convenient (due to safety concerns), but that doesn’t mean you should shortchange yourself by trying to save money or time on your India visa application online.
5) Keep in mind different regional requirements
One of the first things to remember when applying for an India visa online is that while you may be making an application at one processing center if you live in New York, but want to travel to Mumbai, then all applications will need to be handled by their counterparts. Different regions have different requirements and regulations. For example, I’m in California, so I am using a travel visa agent called ExpressIndiaUSA. They help me with everything from getting started with my India visa online application to organizing my medical exam appointments and hotel reservations as well. It’s important that you read up on regional differences before applying for your India visa online so that you can make sure that your plans are aligned with your regional processing center’s needs.