Types of Visa
The Information below provides an overview on the types of Visas issued by the Embassy.
A Transit visa is issued to an individual who is transiting through India to another destination and is able to provide enough proof of such travel plans by way of valid tickets for onward journey (via India). Single/Double entry visas, valid for a maximum of 15 days, are issued to applicants who would be transiting through India. The validity of the visa starts from the period of issue of the visa and therefore if an individual is unable to travel to India within 15 days of issue of the visa, he should obtain another Transit visa. During Transit, the individual can remain in Transit in India for a maximum of 3 days at a stretch. The applicant should have visa[s] for the final destination, before applying for the transit visa. Transit visa is not available at airports in India.
Only those on bona fide tourist visits should apply for tourist visas. A Tourist visa cannot be used for any other purpose such as business, education, research, writing articles, social work etc. A Tourist visa should not be applied for, if the purpose of visit falls under any of these categories. Tourist visa is nonconvertible. Tourist visas are issued upto six months only with single entry. For double or triple entry tourist visa, a copy of flight reservations for all the planned trips to India is required. A Tourist visa is non-extendable. Long term tourist visa is normally issued to travel agents who have to visit India frequently.Information for those visiting India on Tourist visaThose in possession of a one year multi-entry Tourist visa will require to ensure a gap of 2 months between any two visits to India. Those with such visas will also need to register with the Foreigners Regional Registration Office (FRRO) in case they stay continuously in India for more than 180 days. Those with six month multi-entry visas do not have to register with the FRRO. However, a six month multi-entry visa holder cannot visit India before 2 months of return from India.
It may be noted that there should be a gap of two months (60 days) between any two visits to India. Those who have availed for a TOURIST visa to visit India once, can apply for another tourist visa only after a gap of two months from the time of return from the first visit. There is a mandatory requirement of two months gap between any two visits to India.
People of Indian Origin holding foreign Passport are advised to apply for X Visa
People of Indian origin holding a foreign passport are eligible for X visa only. As per rules, such people can not be issued a Tourist visa. As an advice it is recommended that people of Indian Origin may apply for OCI/PIO cards to tide over the visa proble in the long run”.
Business visa is granted to a foreign national who wants to visit India to establish an industrial/business venture or to explore possibilities to set up industrial/business venture or wants to purchase/sell industrial products in India.
Eligible for Business Visas are:
- Foreign nationals coming to India for consultations regarding exhibitions, for participation in exhibitions, trade fairs, business fairs etc.
- Foreign buyers who come to transact business with suppliers/potential suppliers at locations in India to evaluate or monitor quality, give specifications , place orders, negotiate further supplies etc., relating to goods or services procured from India.
- Foreign experts / specialists on a visit of short duration in connection with an ongoing project with the objective of monitoring the progress of the work, conducting meetings with Indian customers and/or to provide some high level technical guidance.
- Foreign nationals coming to India for pre sales or post sales activities not amounting to actual execution of any contract or project.
- Foreign trainees of multinational companies / corporate houses coming for in-house training in the regional hubs of the concerned company located in India.
- Foreign nationals who are coming to India on short visits to customer location to repair any plant or machinery as part of warranty or annual maintenance contracts.
- Foreign engineers/technicians coming to India for installation and commissioning of equipments/machines/tools in terms of the contract for supply of such equipment/machines/tools.
- Foreign experts coming to India for imparting training for personnel of the Indian company.
- Foreign personnel deputed for providing technical support/services, transfer of know-how, services for which the Indian company pays fees/royalty to the foreign company .
Documents required to be submitted along with application for Business Visa
- Invitation letter from the Indian organization/institution/company with which business is being established. The letter should clearly state the purpose of the business invitation. This should be accompanied by a letter of recommendation from the company which the applicant represents.
- Proof of financial standing and expertise in the field of intended business.
- A valid travel document.
An applicant for business visas might be interviewed by the consular office if the need so arises.
Employment visas are issued to skilled and qualified professionals or persons, who are engaged or appointed by companies, organizations and economic undertakings as technicians, technical experts, senior executives etc.
Following category of applicants will be eligible for Employment visa:
- Foreign nationals coming to India as consultant on contract for whom the Indian company pays a fixed remuneration, (may not be in the form of monthly salary)
- Foreign artists engaged to conduct regular performances for the duration of the employment contract given by Hotels, Clubs, other organizations
- Foreign nationals who are coming to India to take up employment as coaches
- Foreign sportsmen who are given contract for a specified period by the Indian Clubs / organizations
- Self-employed foreign nationals coming to India for providing engineering, medical, accounting, legal or such other highly skilled services in their capacity as independent consultants
- Foreign language teachers / interpreters.
- Foreign specialist chefs.
- For issuing of Employment visa to skilled/ highly skilled foreign workers in the IT software and IT enabled services sector (ITes), following two conditions must also be satisfied.
- The sponsor must declare that they are an IT / ITes company.
- The sponsor must confirm that they are an EOU or an STPI unit or an IT unit delivering services from an SEZ.
Please Note: Family members / dependents of an applicant who is granted ‘E’ visa will be granted ‘X’ visa provided the family members are otherwise eligible for grant of such a visa. The validity of such ‘X’ visa shall be co-terminus with the validity of the visa of the principal visa holder or for such shorter period as may be considered necessary by the Indian Mission.
Documents required to be submitted along with application for Employment Visa:
- Proof of contract / employment/ engagement of foreign nationals by the company or organization; and
- The employing company / organization should be registered in India and a copy of such registration should be submitted;
- Certificate by the employer mentioning the salary of the foreign national employed in India;
- The employing company / organization should certify that the nature of job is such that qualified Indian national are not available for this job;
- The applicant must submit proof of employment or contract or engagement by the company / organization in India;
- The applicant must submit documentary proof of his educational qualification and professional expertise;
- The Employment Visa can only be issued from the country of origin, or from the country of domicile (more than two years stay). Non-Austrian passport holders applying for an Employment Visa must submit a copy of their Austrian residence visa showing that they have been resident in Austria for more than two years.
A student visa is issued to an individual, whose sole objective is to pursue regular and full time academic studies in India and for no other purpose/activity. Such visas are issued for the duration of the course or for a period of five years, whichever is less, to bona fide students to pursue regular studies at recognized institutions in India. Proof of financial support for applicant’s stay in India has to be furnished. It can be in the form of a finanical guarantee provided by the parents with a copy of Bankstatement.
A Research visa is issued for pursuing a course of research in a recognized educational institution in India. A detailed set of documents will have to be produced by the applicant regarding the area of research and other particulars.
Conference visas are issued to individuals whose sole objective is to visit India to attend a conference/ seminar or workshop being held in India. Such visas are issued for the duration of the conference to be attended, based on letter of invitation and documents pertaining to the conference from the Conference organizers.
Journalists can obtain visa for three months (single entry) to visit India for any purpose other than film shooting. The initial three month period can be extended by applying to:
The Publicity Officer (PR)
Ministry of External Affairs
Journalists who are going to India to work in any branch office of Foreign Media/TV can obtain six months multiple entry ‘J’ visa directly (This is applicable also to Journalists replacing a correspondent in India as well).
Foreign journalists visiting India on long term assignment (i.e. to be based in India), may please fill up the online Form found on bpibaccreditation.nic.in (under the category ‘new users’, select option ‘I am applying through Indian Mission abroad’) for issue of PIB cards simultaneously with submission of Journalist visa application.
‘J’ Visa for shooting Films in India
This applies to both feature as well as documentary films.
Foreigners need prior approval to shoot films in India, both feature as well as documentary. Application for permission to shoot documentary films has to be made to the Embassy in a prescribed format. Click here to download the filming application Form.
The list of documents needed to be attached with documentary shooting application are:
- Application Form for filming documentaries in India
- Undertaking Form
- Synopsis of the proposed film project
- Exact location with dates for filming
- List of cinematic equipments with description and brand name
- List of team members along with name, nationality, date of birth,
- Passport number, place and date of issue and validity
- Details of TV Channel where the documentary will be screened (details of date/time/duration)
Application Forms, undertaking and information sheets may please be signed by the Producer and submitted in nine sets. Also, it may please be noted that it takes a minimum of 4-6 weeks after the receipt of the completed application in the Embassy to process the case and for the Government of India’ permission to come through. Note: Only after obtaining the permission the applicants may apply for the visa.
An entry visa is issued to a person visiting for professional work, meetings, study tours, or longer stay (other than for education, employment, journalism, commercial or business)