India and UAE have been having a good economic relationship since ages. UAE and India enjoy historic ties with as many as 2.5 million economic migrant workers of Indian origin residing in the oil-rich Gulf state. Indians also make up the largest ethnic group in the UAE making up roughly 27% of the total UAE`s residents. Indian government implemented E-Visas in 2015 making it easier to get India E-Tourist visa for UAE citizens.
As per the statistics of the Bureau of immigration, the number of tourists to India has increased after the implementation of E-Visas. The numbers are estimated to go up in the coming years.
This article will be of help to UAE citizens on applying for an India E-Tourist visa.
Do UAE citizens need a visa for travel to India?
It is mandatory for foreign nationals visiting India to have a valid E-Visa before arrival at any Indian port. Those tourists arriving without a valid visa will not be allowed entry into the country.
Is it possible to get a visa on arrival in India for UAE citizens?
No, not anymore as India replaced the existing visa on arrival system with E-Visas similar to other countries. Foreign nationals planning to visit India should apply for an E-Visa before arriving in India. E-Visa application cannot be done after arriving in India.
How to choose the right visa?
In this section, we shall discuss the different types of India visa and how to choose the right visa. India basically provides two types of visas;
- E-Visas: E-Visas are electronic travel authorization issued to those foreign nationals visiting India for short duration business or tourism purposes and short duration medical treatment purposes. Out of the 3 E-Visas, only E-Medical visa holds triple entry benefits. None of the E-Visas are extendable or convertible.
- Regular visas: These are traditional visas with longer validity and multiple entry benefits. Unlike E-visas regular visas cannot be applied online. One has to make a prior appointment with the concerned Indian embassy and apply in person for a regular visa.
This includes Conference Visa, Diplomatic Visa, Employment Visa, Emergency Visa, Entry Visa, Journalist Visa, Medical Visa (for long-term treatment), Missionaries Visa, Tourist visa, Permit to re-enter within 2 months, Research Visa, Student Visa Transit Visa, Intern Visa, and Film Visa.
One needs to apply and procure a valid visa according to the intention of visiting India before the journey to India.
UAE citizens who wish to visit India for tourism for a period of fewer than 60 days can apply for an E-Tourist visa.
What documents do UAE citizens need to submit for getting Indian E-Visa?
- A scanned copy of the first and last page of your American passport (PDF format)
- Passport size photograph with white background in JPEG format.
Along with these documents one need to have details of his/her
- Parents’ passport details
- Work-related information
- Port of arrival in India
Extreme care has to be given while uploading the details, scanned copies and photographs because even a small variation from the required specification will result in the rejection of your application. To avoid these risks you can avail the service of an India visa agent for a very nominal service charge. These agents have a lot of experience in this field that they can do the job for you with minimum hassle to you. The India visa agent we work with accepts photographs taken on your iPhone.
If you want to apply by yourself make sure that you keep all the needed information and documents to avoid the last minute confusions. Doble check that all the needed documents are in the needed format and specification.
Beware of fake India Visa agents and other scams
The issues with the E-Visa portal has led to the growth of many scamming websites because of the users after being frustrated with the portal end up being prey to the scammers. These scam websites offer services that do not exist for a very high price, like express visas for $300. One needs to keep in mind that the government of India has not authorized any agents to issue E-Visas. The visa agents can only help you process your visa and not issue a visa.
The only websites we would recommend are:
- indiavisainfo.com: This website offers best in the industry visa processing service with a workforce of experienced India visa experts.They also have a solid team to handle customer grievances with an active live chat support.
- indianvisaonline.gov.in: This is the official website of Indian immigration department. Frequent server crashes make this site unreliable.There are a lot of issues with the payment portal too.
Avoid all the other websites to not fall victim of the visa scams. Ask all your doubts directly to your agent make sure that the agent is a genuine one and pay them in advance.
How much does it cost UAE citizens for Indian E-Tourist Visa?
It costs UAE citizens $50 for an India E-Tourist visa. This is exclusive of the service charge the credit card companies claim for their service. If you chose to hire a travel agent to do it for you, then you can expect to pay around $25 more.
Applying for Indian E-Tourist visa
Application for E-Visas can be done in two ways;
- Through an India visa agent, applying through these agents will save you a lot of headache and time. They are experts in the visa processing industry committed to providing their customers the best in the class service.
- Through the official website of the government of India, this is the official E-Visa portal. Frequent crashes make this website an unreliable one apart from this the payment gateway too is unreliable. There will be no customer support from their side.
Can you recommend any reliable visa processing agents?
From our experience the only reliable agent we would recommend our customers is indiavisainfo.com. We have been doing business with them for the past few years and they have always kept good standards and has given immense importance for customer satisfaction. The main merit of applying through them is the best in the class service they offer for a very nominal fee.
They charge only $50 as their service charge for handling the entire visa application and $25 for handling only the payment part. One needs to make an advance payment of 50% of the fee for them to start processing your application.
Applying for Indian E-Tourist visa with agent
Follow the following steps to apply for Indian visa with indiavisainfo.com
Step 1: Visit the website indiavisainfo.com.Click this link to open the website in a new tab
Step 2: Select “Apply for India Visa”.
While submitting the form you need to make an advance payment of 50 %. Once they receive the advance payment and the form an agent will start processing your visa. He/she will call you within 2 hours to collect the needed information from you.
You only need to make the rest of the payment after they call you back with a valid vis ID which can be verified on the official website.
Applying for Indian E-Tourist visa on the official website
Step 1: Go to the official Indian e-visa website and click on “e-Visa Application” on the top left corner
Enter the relevant details about your passport, personal details and the port of arrival. Select the desired Visa service you want to apply for and continue to the next page. Before you continue make sure that you have all the required documents in scanned PDF format and photograph in jpg/jpeg format.
Step 3: Fill in your personal details and click submit. Note down the temporary application ID generated.
Step 4: You need to make the payment (Visa Fee).
Problems with the Indian E-Visa website
There has been a lot of issues with the website from the day it was hosted, we shall discuss some of the major issues.
- Website crashing:
The poor design and implementation of the E-Visa website has lead to a lot of reliability issues with the website. The site was not properly developed and the poor maintenance of the servers has led the incapability to handle traffic. One can expect the website to crash almost any time.
Unfortunately, there aren’t any other solutions to this issue other than to avail the service of a visa agent.who is an expert in this field. These agents always monitor the website and they will finish the job for sure with a minimum headache for you.
- Payment gateway crashing:
The banks in India are incapable of handling international transactions without hassles. They poorly maintained payment gateways crash almost every time. You only get a maximum of three attempts to make a successful payment.Failure to do so shall result in blocking of your application ID.
The SBI (state bank of India) bank’s ePay solution is not capable of accepting cards from international customers without hassle. This complaint is persistent even on their internet banking solution that they offer.
FAQ’s on Indian E-Tourist visas
Can I extend my E-Tourist visa from India?
No, it is not possible to extend or change your E-Visa from India.
Can I apply for a Visa on Arrival at the airport?
No, it is not possible to apply for a visa on arrival from India. You need to have a valid visa before you arrive in India.
What is the validity of E-Tourist visa?
E-Tourist visa is valid for a period of 60 days from the day of arrival in India.
If I cancel my e tourist visa application, will the fee be refunded to me?
The visa fees are non-refundable. Therefore, you will not get a refund if you cancel your visa.
Do children require a visa to visit India?
All travelers including children must have a valid visa to travel to India.
Is the E-Tourist visa a single or multiple entry visa?
E-Tourist visas hold double entry benefits, that is one can enter and exit India twice.
What to do after I receive my E-Visa online?
You have to take a print out of the travel document you received through email and keep it with you during the entire stay in India.
Is the e-Tourist Visa valid for cruise ships?
From April 2017 the e-Tourist visa (eTV) for India is valid for cruise ships docking at the following designated seaports: Cochin Goa Mangalore If you are taking a cruise which docks in another seaport, you must have a traditional visa stamped inside the passport.
Is it mandatory to get vaccinated before traveling to India?
Vaccination is not mandatory before your trip to India, it is highly recommendable that you do.