India business visa London UK

India standard (paper) visas – all you need to know before applying

India: a land of vibrant colours, rich history, diverse cultures, and captivating landscapes. From the snow-capped peaks of the Himalayas to the sun-kissed beaches of Goa, India is a treasure trove of experiences waiting to be discovered. If you’re eager to immerse yourself in this fascinating country, securing an Indian visa is your key to unlock its wonders. In this article you will find everything you need to know before obtaining an Indian visa.

How long it takes to process an India visa?

In general it takes 3-10 business days for the High Commission of India to process a visa application.
The processing time for applicants of Afghanistan, Bangladesh, China, Iraq, Iran, Nigeria, Somalia, Pakistan or Sri Lanka origin can be considerably longer (7-8 weeks on average) as the visa application will be sent to authorities in India for consultation.

Am I required to submit biometrics when applying for an India visa?

Visa applicants aged from 12-70 are required to submit their fingerprints and a photo for the following visa categories:

  • Employment visa
  • Journalist visa
  • Research visa
  • Student visa
  • Visit visa (applicable to Pakistani nationals only)
  • Project visa
  • Missionary visa

What documents are required for former Indian nationals when applying for an India visa?

Former Indian nationals in addition to standard required documents have to provide a copy of surrender certificate and self-attested copy of the cancelled Indian passport

What type of utility bills are accepted as proof of residency for non-UK passport holders?

Landline Telephone/Internet Service, Gas, Electricity, Water, Council Tax or Tenancy Agreement. Bank statements would not be considered as proof of residency. Also mix-and-match of utility bills are not acceptable.

Can journalists apply for India tourist visa?

All foreign journalists, regardless of the purpose of their visit, should apply for a “J” (Journalist) visa, for up to three months stay in India

Additional India visa requirements for media related professionals, police or armed Forces, commercial pilots/crew Members, charity/social workers, researchers and priests

  • Letter of employment addressed to the High Commission of India, London OR its respective consulates
    stating the applicant’s job profile and purpose of visit to India. The letter needs to be on the company’s letterhead paper
    and signed by the head of HR or applicant’s line manager.
  • Self-employed media related professionals are required to provide a letter of undertaking stating no professional related activities will be undertaken during their stay
  • Who doesn’t need a visa to travel to India?

    Citizens of Nepal or Bhutan entering India by land or air do not require a visa unless they are entering India from
    China, Macau, Hong Kong, Pakistan and Maldives.

    How long my passport should be valid for to apply for an India visa?

    Your passport should have at least six months validity at the time of making an application.

    Are the India visa requirements different for applicants of Pakistani origin?

    Yes, in general applicants of Pakistani origin are required to provide additional documents and the visa processing time is 7-8 weeks. A full list of requirements can be found here: here.

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