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India extends visa-on-arrival facility to 180 countries

India extends visa-on-arrival facility to 180 countries

Feb 5th, 2014, 08:24 PM
  #1  
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India extends visa-on-arrival facility to 180 countries

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/i...w/29919007.cms

In a significant step towards liberalization of the visa regime, the government on Wednesday cleared two initiatives: visa on arrival and electronic travel authorization for all countries barring eight "prior reference'' countries including Pakistan, Iran, Sri Lanka and China.

ETA will allow foreign travelers to apply for a visa from home and receive an online confirmation in five working days.
Visa-on-arrival at 9 airports initially

The extension of visa-on-arrival and electronic travel authorization to citizens of 180 countries will be implemented initially at nine airports including Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata, Chennai, Cochin, Hyderabad, Goa and Trivandrum. Both facilities are likely to be implemented by the end of the year.

India currently offers visa-on-arrival to tourists from 11 countries like Finland, the Philippines, Singapore and Japan. The decision was taken in a meeting convened by the Planning Commission that included representatives from the PMO, ministries of home affairs, external affairs and tourism.

ETA will be available for a 30-day period from the date of the tourist's arrival in India while VoA will also be for the same period for a single entry.

The move, aimed at boosting the tourism sector, would not need the Cabinet's nod, Shukla said, adding that the home ministry would notify the same at an appropriate time.

"The facility will provide a major boost to the country's tourism sector. This is historic," Shukla said.

A separate website would be set up for extending the facility to foreigners intending to visit India as tourists.

To get a visa, they would need to apply on the designated website along with the required fees. They would be granted an electronic version of the visa within three days.
ashwinb is offline  
Feb 5th, 2014, 08:25 PM
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IMO 30 days is a little less, the could have made it a little more than that maybe...
ashwinb is offline  
Feb 5th, 2014, 08:26 PM
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But better than nothing at all!! And I hope the website functions well..and I hope Indians are allowed visa on arrival in atleast a few more countries.
ashwinb is offline  
Feb 6th, 2014, 08:24 AM
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Well, that wouldn't have helped me. Both my visits have been for more than 30 days, and each time I arrived overland (from Bhutan and Nepal), plus I have several years left on a ten year visa. However, it is an encouraging sign, especially for those who have been wrestling with BLS International.
thursdaysd is offline  
Feb 6th, 2014, 10:39 AM
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I wonder when this will actually start. I've seen articles on this for a while, but no start date.
Kathie is offline  
Feb 6th, 2014, 12:33 PM
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Kathie, the link seemed to quote an official as saying October of this year it would start (in time for the next big tourist season).

I guess I'm getting a bit confused about what this means. Is it saying that as a resident of the US, I'd be able to go to a website, pay the fee, and get an e-confirmation for an Indian visa? We're only there for 22 days, so I guess that means we'd qualify?
filmwill is offline  
Feb 6th, 2014, 12:44 PM
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"It will take 5-6 months to put the infrastructure in place. We hope to implement this from the next tourist session beginning October," planning minister Rajiv Shukla said. " (My emphasis.)

I wouldn't rely on this myself...
thursdaysd is offline  
Feb 6th, 2014, 01:37 PM
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We first saw this over a year ago as I remember, and they thought it would be up and running in a few months. I wouldn't hold my breath, Filmwill.
Kathie is offline  
Feb 6th, 2014, 01:46 PM
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I read this in Oct. when we were in India so the question is as Kathie has said is when? As we know the Indian govt. can be a bit slow in implementing things.
jacketwatch is offline  
Feb 6th, 2014, 08:16 PM
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And I do hope,whenever the website begins working,it does actually work!!
ashwinb is offline  
Feb 9th, 2014, 01:02 AM
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Ah! ashwinb - that's the crux. In Australia VFS - who currently process visa applications - run a website assembled in India!

Defaults are unlikely choices; timed 'cut-offs' way too short - and the concept of using highlights or colour to indicate areas needing attention - completely unknown.

Acquiring our visas - with the requirement that ALL information be first submitted online - was an exercise in frustration and 'ennui'!

The VFS staff themselves were excellent - the website - ABYSSMAL!
obione980 is offline  

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