Visa Information for Expats

They are unsaid yet familiar scenariof for most expats, getting a visa for India is a purely formal matter, as no restrictions are currently in place on skilled immigration, except for Pakistani or Bangladeshi nationals. First point of contact when applying for a visa should be the nearest Indian Embassy or Consulate.



They are unsaid yet familiar scenariof for most expats, getting a visa for India is a purely formal matter, as no restrictions are currently in place on skilled immigration, except for Pakistani or Bangladeshi nationals.

First point of contact when applying for a visa should be the nearest Indian Embassy or Consulate.

EY – Visa requirements for expatriates

Table depicting the types of visas courtesy- ey.com

All visa applications must consist of the following:

  • Completed application form (please note that in some countries, you can only fill this in online)
  • your valid passport with two blank pages facing each other
  • the correct fee for the type of visa you are applying for
  • two passport-sized photographs

In some countries, you will also have to provide the following:

  • your ID card or an official document/letter stating your current address
  • a copy of your birth certificate
  • a copy of your marriage certificate if your name has changed as a result of your marriage

Depending on the type of visa applied for, further documents are often required.

The Working Expat

There are two types of work related Visas, namely:-

1. Business Visa designated as ‘B’ Visa

2. Employment Visa designated as ‘E’ Visa

Pic Courtesy- loopng.com

B-Visa

Can be applied for at the Indian consulate in your area. Certain links have been provided below where one can find downloadable application forms on these sites, visa fee structures, location maps, driving instructions and other details.

How long does it take to get a visa to India

In many countries you should get your visa within the course of a working day: submit your passport and visa application at the consulate in the morning between 9.00 a.m. and 12.30 p.m., and pick it up in the evening, between 3.30 p.m. and 5.00 p.m. or at the timings mentioned at the consulate websites.

Application via E-mail

The application can be submitted by mail as well the drawback being slightly extra process time. For example in the USA it might take upto 3 days to process and additionally 2 extra weeks (or more) to be reverted to you. You may send a self-addressed pre-paid return envelope with the application instead of paying the mailing charges.

What are the documents to be submitted alongwith application for a Business Visa?

  1. The foreign national must have a valid travel document and a re-entry permit, if required under the law of the country concerned.
  2. Proof of financial standing and expertise in the field of intended business.
  3. Documents/ papers pertaining to proposed business activity such as the registration of the company under the Companies Act, proof of registration of the firm with the State Industries Department or the Export Promotion Council concerned or any recognised promotional body in the relevant field of industry or trade etc.

Payments 

Personal checks and credit cards are not accepted. Payment can only be made with money order/certified check/cashier's check drawn in favor of Embassy of India/Consulate General of India.

Duration 

A Business Visa with multiple entry facilities is granted for a period upto 5 years or for a shorter duration as per the requirement. A stay stipulation may be prescribed for each visit by the concerned Indian Mission.

Pic Courtesy- Khaleejtimes

Employment Visa

The employment visa is granted to employees sent to India on an intra-company transfer or to expats with a guaranteed offer of employment from an Indian company. An employment visa will be issued subject to the applicant being skilled and qualified and on the condition that the job for which the visa is being applied is neither routine, ordinary or secretarial/clerical in nature nor one for which qualified Indians are available. An employment visa will be granted to a foreign national if his or her salary exceeds US$25,000 per annum.

Duration

An employment visa is initially valid for 2-5 years, which can subsequently be extended at the local FRRO office. It is also available as a one-year visa to foreigners wishing to do voluntary work for a registered NGO.

Documents Required

In addition to the documents listed above, you will need to provide additional paperwork. It mostly includes proof of employment (e.g. a signed work contract), company information on your employer in India, and proof of your ability to do the job (e.g. academic and professional qualifications).

Those who are applying to work for an Indian company should apply for an Employment Visa.

The duration of the visa is at the sole discretion of the Issuing Authority. All visa fees once paid are non-refundable irrespective of the outcome of the visa application and duration granted.

Other Types of Visas

  • Family members and dependents of expats working in India should apply for an 'Entry visa'. Please note that an entry visa does not give you the right to take up paid employment. It is, however, possible to work as a volunteer or an unpaid intern and attend courses. You will need to provide a copy of the principal visa your entry visa is tied to, e.g. your spouse’s employment visa.
  • Research professors and scholars may be granted a 'Research visa' valid for the duration of their project if they submit the following: an entry clearance, a research proposal, evidence of their financial resources, and a letter of admission from a recognized university.
  • There is a niche category for project workers in the power and steel industries: the project visa.
  • Journalists, irrespective of the purpose of their stay, always need a journalist visa. If you do not intend to carry out any journalistic work during your stay in India, you must submit a written statement to that effect. Journalists going to India for journalistic purposes need to register with the Press Information Bureau of the Government of India in order to obtain a PIB card. You need to produce a letter from your employer stating the purpose of your trip.

Pic Courtesy- 123fstock

Information regarding where to seek further information in certain countries-

United Kingdom

Where to get your Indian Business Visa in the UK

Working Hours:
Queue numbers are issued to visa applicants between 8.30 a.m. and 12.00 noon Mondays to Fridays, except holidays

Address:
High Commission of India, London
India House, Aldwych, London - WC2B 4 NA
Visa information

Address:
20 Augusta Street, Jewellery Quarter, Hockley
Birmingham, B18 6JL 
Telephone: (00 44) 121 212 2782, Fax: (00 44) 121 212 2786, Telex: 333 483 CGIBIR
E-Mail: cgi@congend.fsnet.co.uk

Working Hours:
Monday - Friday (0900-1300 and 1330-1730 Hours) except on holidays*

European Union

  • Embassy of India, Brussels

Visa and passport information

United States of America

Consular Jurisdiction:
Delaware, Washington D.C., Kentucky, Maryland, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, West Virginia, The Bahamas.

Address:
2107 Massachusetts Ave., Washington DC 20008, Tel. 202-939-7000, Fax: 202-265-7532. 

Timings, addresses and contact form
Telephone numbers specifically to answer Visa and Passport information, downloadable visa application form in PDF format.

Consular jurisdiction:
Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Puerto Rico, Rhode Island, Vermont and the Virgin Islands

Address:
3 East, 64th Street, New York, NY 10021
(Between Madison Ave & 5th Avenue)
Tel : 212-774-0600 - Fax : Central 212-861-3788 - Cable : CONGENDIA

Visa information
Applying for a visa by mail
Directions
Doing business with India

  • Consulate General of India, Chicago

Consular Jurisdiction:
Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, North Dakota, South Dakota, Wisconsin

Address:
Consulate General of India, 455 North Cityfront Plaza Drive, #850 Chicago, IL 60611, U.S.A.. Telephone:(312) 595-0405

Contact numbers and location

Consular Jurisdiction:
Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Kansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Oklahoma and Texas

Address:
1990 Post Oak Boulevard, Houston, TX – 77056. Telephone PABX: 713-626-2148, 713-626-2149. Consular Inquiry: 713-621-5576, 713-621-8408. Fax: 713-626-2450, 713-627-2034, 713-993-9347
Email: cgi-hou@swbell.net
Visa guidelines, forms and fees
Inquiries

Consular jurisdiction:
Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Hawaii, Idaho, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Mexico, Oregon, Utah, Washington, Wyoming.

Address:
Consulate General of India , 540 Arguello Boulevard, San Francisco CA 94118
Tel: (415) 668-0662 | Fax: (415) 668-9764

Canada

Consular Jurisdiction:
National Capital region of Ottawa-Hull, Kingston, Comwall, Hawksbury, Arnprior, Renfrew, Perth Prescott, Brockville, Carleton Place, Smith Falls, Morrisburg (Ontario), Montreal (Quebec).

Address:
Consular Section, High Commission of India
10 Springfield Road, OTTAWA, ONTARIO K1M 1C9
Telephone: (613)744-3751/52/53, Fax: (613)744-0913
Email: hicomind@hciottawa.ca

Consular Jurisdiction:
Ontario and Quebec (except places falling under the jurisdiction of HCI, Ottawa), Manitoba, New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island and Newfoundland.

Address:
Suite 400, 1835 Yonge Street, Toronto,
Ontario M4S 1X8
Tel: 416-960-0751, Fax: 416-960-9812 
Email: cgindia@cgitoronto.ca
Visa information

Consular Jurisdiction:
Saskatchewan, Alberta, British Colombia, Yukon Territory

Address:
Northwest Territories, 325 Howe Street, 
Vancouver, BC V6C 1Z7 
Tel: 604-662-8811, Fax: 604-682-2471 
Email: indiapsconsulci@telus.net
Visa information
Visa application form