The Ministry of Tourism has been working very closely with Ministry of Home Affairs and Ministry of External Affairs for easing of the Visa Regime in the country over a period of time. The Ministry supported the initiative regarding the implementation of Tourist Visa on Arrival enabled with Electronic Travel Authorisation (ETA) (renamed as e-Tourist Visa) strongly and committed all support to Ministry of Home Affairs and Ministry of External Affairs and Ministry of Civil Aviation for implementing this programme.
How e-Tourist Visa Work
The e-Tourist Visa enables the prospective visitor to apply for an Indian Visa from his/her home country online without visiting the Indian Mission and also pay the visa fee online. Once approved, the applicant receives an email authorizing him/her to travel to India and he/she can travel with a print out of this authorisation. On arrival, the visitor has to present the authorisation to the immigration authorities who would then stamp the entry into the country.
This facility is available to Foreigners whose sole objective of visiting India is recreation, sight-seeing, short duration medical treatment, casual business visit, etc. and not valid for any other purpose/activities. This will allow entry into India within 30 days from the date of approval of e-Tourist Visa and will be valid for 30 days stay in India from the date of arrival in India. The e-Tourist Visa cannot be availed more than twice in a calendar year. The facility will encourage people to travel with short-term planning, take via routes while travelling to other countries and bring family members while on business visits.
e-Tourist Visa Fee
Government of India w.e.f November 2015 has also revised the e-Tourist Visa (e-TV) fee in four slabs of 0, US$ 25, US$ 48, and US$ 60 from November 3, 2015. Presently e-TV application fee is US$ 60 and bank charge is US$ 2 which is uniform for all the countries. The revision of Visa fee has been done on the principle of reciprocity. Bank charges have also been reduced from US$ 2 to 2.5% of the e-TV fee. There is no bank charge for zero visa fees.
Commencing from 27th November 2014, e-Tourist Visa facility was available until 25th February 2016 for citizens of 113 countries. The Government of India has extended this scheme for citizens of 37 more countries w.e.f 26th February 2016 taking the tally to 150 countries.
e-Tourist Visa facility is now available in the following 16 airports (as on 26.02.2016) – Delhi, Mumbai, Chennai, Kolkata, Hyderabad, Bengaluru, Thiruvananthapuram, Kochi, Goa, Varanasi, Gaya, Ahmadabad, Amritsar, Tiruchirapalli, Jaipur and Lucknow.