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INDIA - Transit Visa required?

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We are a family, 2 adults 2 children, ( 16 yr old twins) NZ passport holders travelling for Europe to Paris for two weeks early December, from Colombo Sri Lanka, via India - Chennai airport as our transit both outward and inward journeys from/to Colombo.

We bought our tickets through cheapoair hence it came with 2 x airlines, ie, Sri Lankan airlines takes us from Colombo to Chennai and then few hours there at the airport and then Air India takes us from Chennai to Paris. It again happends few hours of transit at Chennai, but not many enough hours us to go out and see the city - as it costs approx $60 per head for transit visa we decided it is not worth for few hours to go out of Chennai airport to see the city and determined to stay at the Chennai airport to catch the next connecting flight.

NOTE: our ticket states for both inward and outward travels , Baggage Alert: This particular flight requires you to claim your baggage at the connecting airport (Chennai) and check it again for your onward flight (Chennai). If you have excess/checked-in baggage, there may be applicable baggage fee to each airline.

Please advise if we decide not to go out of Chennai airport, during our following 'transits', do we still need to apply for a Visa to be in the airport , to catch the next plane - though our connection flights are only few hours apart, for an example , ie on 9th Dec we are in Chennai airport from 7.55pm till 8.45am till we catch the flight to Paris, on 10th December 2013. So connecting flight wait time 12 hours 50 minutes. Also, on our way back from Paris , again back in Chennai on 24th Dec 2013 from 4.45pm till 9.20am on 25th Dec. (before the flight to SL). Connecting flight wait time 16 hours 35 minutes.

A) Do we need visa to stay in Chennai airport in this context?
B) Is it transit visa or tourist visa?
C) The ticketing issuer / Cheapoair has exlpained the 'baggage alert' , however, not of 'visa alert', which is going to be very expensive and we did not budget for it?
D) Again , does it mean we need 2 X transit visas , for both journeys as they are 2 weeks apart, and both inward and outward trips need us using Chennai as our 'transit' .

Any help/advise/suggestions/tips to make

We appreciate your help in advance.

Anita Smith

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