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There are many countries who allow Indian citizens to travel without a Visa on gratis. Some countries allow Indian nationals to obtain Visa On Arrival (VOA) either with a fee or at times without a fee. The remaining countries would need Indian nationals to obtain Visa before their stipulated travel.

A visa is a travel document, which conditionally allows a person to enter or leave the region for which it is issued. If you are travelling to a foreign land, you always need a visa to ensure that you are entering the country legally. A visa application in advance of arrival gives the country a chance to consider the applicant's circumstance, such as financial security, reason for applying, and details of previous visits to the country.

  • Transit visa- for passing through the country to a destination outside that country
  • Tourist visa - for a limited period of leisure travel, no business activities allowed
  • Visa for medical reasons- for undertaking diagnostics or a course of treatment in the host country's hospitals
  • Business visa - for engaging in commerce in the country
  • On-arrival visa (also known as Visa On Arrival, VOA), granted at a port of entry
  • Electronic visa - The visa is stored in a computer and is electronically tied to the passport number; no label, sticker or stamp is placed in the passport before travel
  • Any other specific category of visa defined by the country based on the common nature of applicants (For e.g.: Seamen Visa, Religious Worker Visa, Cast and Crew Visa etc.)
  • Yes, original passports are required to apply for visas even in cases of the visas being issued as a separate document. There are exceptions with certain countries like Srilanka, Malaysia (online), UAE etc. who issue the visas/ETAs online where the copies of the passports are good enough.

    The jurisdictional limits defined by consulates are as per the geographical area where consulates responsibility is divided to issue visas pertaining to applicant’s residence in the respective areas. Some consulates have strict enforcement of jurisdiction for all visa categories, some consulates’ jurisdiction is limited to certain types of visas and others do not have any jurisdictional limits.

    Validity defines the period of expiry of the visa whereas duration is the maximum stay allowed in the country of visa issuance during each visit.

    An embassy is a permanent diplomatic mission (read: a delegation of diplomats) led by an ambassador. The term is often also used for the physical building they occupy, predominantly in the capital cities (New Delhi in India). A consulate or consulate general is generally a representative of the embassy in locales outside of the capital city. Consulates are extended offices of Embassies and the applications are taken as per the jurisdictions defined.

    The Visa fee varies from country to country. For some countries, there would be charges from the assigned Visa Facilitation centres as well. BPVS would charge a Service Fee depending upon the type of visa processed.

    This depends on the country you’re visiting. Some visas will be issued the same day; others can take weeks (or even months) to process.

    A visa on arrival is issued once you enter the respective country. For Indians, it is usually issued for tourism purpose for countries like Thailand, Bhutan, Cambodia, Maldives, Macau, Indonesia, Iraq, Nepal, Laos, Jordon, Mauritius, Seychelles, Kenya, Tanzania, Madagascar, Cook Islands, Fiji and some more.

    Yes, Consulates / Embassies can ask for additional documents if they are not convinced with the existing documents.

    There are certain embassies where bio-metrics is required. In such cases applicant has to appear personally at the defined counters. There are instances when applicants or any specific applicant are required to appear in person at the consulate after the visa application. In such cases, the applicant will have to appear before the Consulate personally, however there are some consulates which allow third parties to collect the passports on the applicant’s behalf after the visa process is completed.

    For most countries, your passport should be valid for minimum 6 months from your scheduled date of return.

    Photographs should be as per specification of the country. Photos should not be used for previous visas, should not be stapled. Let the photographs be with clear visibility of the face and eyes.

    Yellow fever certificate is required for travellers traveling to African and South American countries. African Countries which require Yellow Fever Certificate:- Angola, Benin, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Chad, Congo, Cote d'Ivoire, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Equatorial Guinea, Ethiopia, Gabon, The Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Kenya, Liberia, Mali, Mozambique, Niger, Nigeria, Rwanda, Sao Tome and Principe, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Somalia, Sudan, Tanzania, Togo, Uganda, and Zambia. American Countries: Bolivia, Brazil, Colombia, Ecuador, French Guiana, Guyana, Panama, Peru, Suriname, and Venezuela. Caribbean: Trinidad and Tobago.

    Yes you need to apply for a new passport booklet. If you have valid visas on your old passport booklet, you will need to carry both the passports while travelling.

    It is advised to provide the bank statement of the most active account which reflects your regular income.

    You can pay for your visa application online with, get the list of mandatory documents for your visa, enter your personal and passport details, and select a nearby branch where you would go along with your documents and application forms.

    You can enter your File Number and Passport Number on and check your visa status.

    Generally, most visas are processed within 15 days. It may be more or less depending upon the consulates processes, rush of applications, time for courier and logistics etc.

    A visa does not guarantee entry into the country. The entry may be denied at the immigration check, a very rare eventuality though.