India is one of the oldest civilizations in the world, and is considered a mosaic of cultural experiences. With a rich heritage and a great number of attractions, the country is one of the most popular tourist destinations in the world.
Defined as it is by natural borders, the country of the Indus is well-known for its vast and unique geographical identity. It extends over an area of 32, 87,263 sq., featuring snow covered peaks as the Himalayan mountains up North to the warmer tropical rain forests of the south, all the way to the ocean. India ranks as the 7th larger country in the world, standing apart from the rest of Asia.
India is well-known not only for its unique geography, but also for its multicultural nuances, making it a great destination for adventurers. More than a million United States citizens visited the country in 2018.
As you travel the expanse of the territory, you are greeted by diversity. Culinary culture, arts, crafts, music, nature, lands, tribes, history and adventure sports are among what this beautiful country has to offer.
The India Tourist Visa is an official document permitting entry into and travel within India. Filling the Indian Visa for United States Citizens have never been so simple, easy and straightforward.
American citizens are eligible for an Indian Visa (eVisa India) since 2014 and Tourist visas can be availed for the purposes of Tourism, Sight Seeing, Visiting Friends, Visiting Relatives,a short term Yoga program, and even for one month of unpaid volunteer work
Visa with double or multiple entrances
Travelers can now apply for a Tourist eVisa with either 1 month, 1 year or 5 years of validity, allowing for double or multiple entries, according to the validity.
Applicants can select from the following eVisa validity options (from date of issue):
- 30 days (Double Entry)
- 1 year (Multiple Entries)
- 5 years (Multiple Entries)
- Required documents to apply
- Applicant Photo
- Passport Personal Details Scan
- Last Page of Passport (if applicable)
- The applicant’s passport should have at least six months validity from the date of arrival in India, and also have at least two blank pages.
The Government of India has launched electronic travel authorization or ETA for India which allows citizens of 180 countries to travel to India without requiring a physical stamping on the passport. This new type of authorization is called an eVisa India (or electronic India Visa)
Indian Visa online method of procurement or eVisa India is the preferred, secured and trusted method of entry to India. Paper or conventional India Visa is not considered as trusted method by the Government of India. As an additional, benefit to the travelers, they do not need to visit local Indian Embassy/Consulate or High Commission to secure India Visa as this visa can be procured online.
The electronically delivered Indian Visa (eVisa India) is only for a maximum visit of 180 days, if you need to enter India for a longer period then you need to apply for another visa.
American citizens can enter from 28 Authorized Airports and 5 Seaports as mentioned in Authorized Ports of Entry for Indian Visas.
Easy steps to apply for Indian electronic Visa for United States citizens
US Citizens need to complete the following simple steps to get Indian Visa:
- Step A: Complete simple Indian Visa Application Form, (Estimated time to complete 2 minutes).
- Step B: Use any payment method to complete the payment online.
- Step C: A link will be sent to your registered email address to provide additional information, depending on the purpose of your visit and the duration of the Indian visa.
- Step D: You have received an approved electronic Indian Visa online (eVisa India) at your email address.
- Step E: you go to any airport in the United States or abroad.
Please note that you do not need to visit the Indian embassy in any step of the process. You should also wait at the airport until we send you an approved electronic Visa for India (eVisa India).
Visa processing time and costs
The price of eVisa will depend on the processing time chosen between these options:
Standard processing – 5 Business Days. Because it is the cheapest option, most applicants go for standard. It only costs USD 86.00 (service fees included).
Rush processing – 3 Business Days. The cost goes a bit higher than with the previous option. You will be charged USD 116.00 (service fees included).
Super Rush processing time – 2 Business Days. As you can expect, the price goes even higher. This option will cost you USD 151.00 (service fees included).
Payment can be made in any of the 135 world currencies.
Important facts and frequently asked questions:
Do citizens of the United States need to visit CKGS?
No, it is not necessary for US citizens to visit CKGS, Embassy of India, High Commission of India or any other office of Government of India. This process will be completed online.
Are separate electronic Visas necessary for my minor children?
Yes, all individuals require a Visa for India regardless of their age including new born babies with their own separate Passport.
Guardians who apply for Indian Visa online application must exclude their children in their application. There is no concept of group Visa to India or family Visa for India.
What activities are allowed with this visa?
Visitors entering India on a Tourist eVisa are mainly entitled to recreation activities and to meet friends and relatives. Indian Tourist Visa also allows visitors to take short term courses on local languages, music, dance, arts & crafts, cooking and medicine with duration of less than 6 months
Voluntary work of up to 1 month which do not provide monetary compensation. No other activities (Work, study, volunteer work, etc…) are allowed.
How many days prior to the trip must the application be submitted?
India requires tourists to fill the application within 30 days or 120 days prior to the intended arrival date, depending on the type of.
That being said, it is advised that to Apply for an India visa 4-7 days in advance of flight date, to avoid inconveniences in case of unexpected delays.
Do you need a courier service to process the visa?
After successful payment verification you will be sent an email link to upload an electronic copy / PDF / JPG / GIF, etc. of your face photograph and the scanned copy of the passport.
It is not necessary to publish, send by courier, send them physically to any office or PO box. These scanned copies or photos taken from mobile phone can be uploaded to the website.
Should a face photograph or passport scan be uploaded for the Application?
After payment has been verified, face photograph should be uploaded. Please note that you must follow the face photography guidelines as required by the Government of India. Applicant’s full face should appear in front view in the photograph, without a hat or sunglasses. Clear background and no shadows is needed. Photograph should be at least 350 pixels or two inches in size.
The passport scan copy for Indian visa should also be clear. Must not have flash in passport making passport numbers, passport expiration date not readable to read. Also, it must have the four corners of the passport clearly showing including the two strips at the bottom of the passport.
Can you receive medical treatment with the electronic Visa?
It is now possible for foreign citizens traveling on a tourist visa, to obtain certain types of medical treatment without having to change their visa type.
The new visa policy allows holders of a visa for India who fall ill to get treated in any hospital/medical treatment center for up to 180 days, Excepting Pakistani national hospitals.
The new policy applies to those who:
Are suffering from a minor medical condition which only needs Out Patient Department consultation or treatment
Had been suffering from a condition before entering the country, but it had only come to light during diagnosis by a doctor in India, necessitating medical treatment in a hospital in India.
If applying for a Medical visa, India requires the traveler to provide a letter from the hospital containing some details, such as the medical procedure, the date and the length of your stay.
Citizens of the United States can also bring medical assistance or family members for assistance. This secondary visa for the primary medical patient is called the Medical Assistant Visa.
Cox & Kings Global Services (CKGS) is a premium outsourcing partner for governments and businesses around the world. What CKGS has to offer includes consular services, identity management solutions, document processing services, and an extensive suite of technology-enabled business process accelerators.
CKGS was born in 2008, and since then, has developed several path-breaking innovations over the years to deliver transformational solutions that keep its customers a step ahead of the curve. CKGS is known for providing secure, efficient, and cost-effective services to customers while continuing with the highest levels of integrity and process transparency.
CKGS is the only authorized Service Provider for the Embassy of India and its Consulates across the USA for Visa, OCI, and Renunciation of Indian Citizenship services from May 21, 2014.
How to apply for the Indian Visa?
A tourist visa is appropriate for those who would like to visit India for tourism or other non-business related purposes.
You are required to possess a valid passport with a valid Indian visa before you start your travel to India. Every traveler, including minor children, must each have a valid visa to travel to India.
You must apply inside the CKGS website. (https://passport.in.ckgs.us)
Do not go directly to the Government of India website to fill the online application. You must go via the links on the CKGS website provided below. If required, you will be directed to the Government of India’s website to fill your online form/s at the appropriate step via the CKGS website.
For USA applicants, the CKGS website has been customized so that the supplementary documents, forms, fees, and documents checklist are displayed as per the requirements of the CGI New York.
The CKGS website will identify your passport category, type, duration, fees, and help avoid errors. To assist you, further many forms and letters that have repetitive information will get auto-populated and you only have to fill in the missing fields.
Applying for the Visa.
STEP 1: VISA Application – Get Started
Click on the “VISA Application – Get Started” button to begin your VISA application process.
Keep these details handy before you VISA fill your form:
Your Current US / Foreign Passport should be valid for at least 6 months from the date of application and must have a minimum of 2 blank pages:
- Passport number
- Issuing date
- Expiration date
- Place of Issue
- Details of your previous India Visa (if you have applied in the past)
- Details of the countries you visited in the last 6 months.
- Details of current citizenship
Travel itinerary details:
You have to give details of your proposed travel itinerary in India and Mention the cities/places covered in the sequence of the itinerary. Also, include the “Entry place into India” and “Exit place from India”
Aditional passport/certificate information:
If you carry any other Valid Passport/identity certificate, details should be included in this application as well. (Passport / Certificate Number, date of issue, place of issue, nationality described therein).
Reference contacts information:
When applying for the India Visa, define your Indian and American reference contacts, and provide the CKGS with their personal information and contact numbers.
Applicants are advised that they DO NOT print the document on both the sides of the paper as “DOUBLE SIDED PRINTED DOCUMENTS ARE NOT ACCEPTED”.
(All data should be filled in on BOLD LETTERS)
STEP 2: Fill in the widget
For USA applicants, the CKGS website has been customized through a widget so that the website, documents, forms, and letter requirements are as per the instructions of the Embassy/Consulates of India in the USA.
The widget will help you identify your VISA category, type, duration, fees, and help avoid errors. Further to assist you, many forms and letters that have repetitive information will get auto-populated and you only have to fill in the missing fields.
STEP 3: The results page
Read the document checklist carefully which lists the documents, forms, letters, whether originals / or copies are required and whether they have to be self-attested or notarized, and the number of documents needed to complete your Visa application before submission.
You will be provided with the following information:
- VISA fees
- Processing Time
- Web Reference Number
Using this web reference number you can access the CKGS website in case you want to apply later or get disconnected. Remember to write this number down.
STEP 4: Government of India Online Visa Form
On the CKGS website, you are provided with a sample of how to fill the Government online VISA forms. It is recommended that you print the sample form to assist you during the process.
On the website, you’ll find a list of the common mistakes that are made, so that you can avoid making the same errors.
Now, you will have to leave the CKGS website and click on the link to go to the Government of India Online VISA website.
Clicking there will redirect you to the Government website, then you must select Regular Visa Application to start your online Visa application process.
On the Government website, you must complete the Online Visa form. Remember to fill it with the correct information, and the same you provided earlier at the Widget Stage.
Upload your photograph on the Visa form following the requirements and sign where ever indicated.
Requirements of a photograph for VISA
Based upon the specifications of the International Standards Organization (ISO) and ICAO, which is responsible for standardizing travel documents, the crucial requirements for a photograph for e-passport are:
The face must be taken from a full frontal position and the height of the face must meet the prescribed specifications. The eyes must be open, level, and clearly visible within the indicated area. The face should be centered within the frame.
Advice for applicants to submit a proper quality photograph.
The quality of the photograph appearing on the passport depends on the photograph that is submitted at the time of application. The passport seekers are, therefore, advised to submit the photographs, as specified, to avoid delay in processing their passport applications.
- Photograph for VISA cannot be the same photograph that is already in your passport
- Recent Passport photo taken within the past 6 months, showing current appearance
- Photograph to be affixed on the application should be square-shaped OR 2 inches by 2 inches size (80% coverage of face)
- Photographs NOT to be stapled and must NOT be adhesive taped.
- Must be in color.
- Must be against a white background
- Must show a full face, front view.
- Must be taken in normal street attire.
- The photograph must be taken in a colored attire, for example, a medium blue shirt, etc.
- The attire should not be patterned/textured or pure white.
- Photograph has to be an original and printed on GLOSSY PHOTO PAPER ONLY.
- Uniforms should not be worn in photographs except religious attire that is worn daily.
- If you normally wear prescription glasses, a hearing device, wig, or similar articles, they should be worn for your picture and dark glasses or non-prescription glasses with tinted lenses are not acceptable unless you need them for medical reasons. A medical certificate may be required.
- Glare on eyeglasses should be avoided with a slight upward or downward tilt of the head.
- Do not wear a hat or headgear that obscures the hair or hairline. Head coverings are not permitted except for religious reasons.
Web reference number
You will receive a new web reference number from the government site which will allow you to access the CKGS website to track the status of your VISA application available for all references to your application and other further inquiries.
STEP 5: Return to CKGS website
Once you complete the Government VISA form, on the last page of the Government’s website, you must click on the Appointment and Payment option.
When you hit the Appointment and Payment button, you will be prompted with the PDF of the Application Form. Please save and print the Application Form.
Then you will be redirected to the CKGS website where you have to complete the rest of the process.
STEP 6: Complete the Forms and Letters
You have returned to the CKGS website to complete your application process.
You must fill in and sign supplementary forms and letters. Wherever possible the website will have auto-filled the fields. You only need to fill in the pending blanks. Some forms and letters have to be self-attested or notarized, everything is indicated.
- Fill the forms with the correct information.
- Review and check the forms and letters.
- Print the forms from the ‘My Account’ page on the website.
- Sign the forms/letters where indicated.
Check which documents are copies and have to be self-attested or notarized and accordingly get that done.
STEP 7: Choose Mode of Submission
Choose the mode of submission of your Application to CKGS either by Shipping or Walk-in.
You can book your shipping at the appropriate step on the CKGS website. You will have to send your fully completed application (all documents and complete payment) through Shipping. It is recommended that you purchase your shipment through CKGS as this will save you the need to travel, parking charges, as well as waiting time at the CKGS Application Center.
Applications must be sent to the CKGS Application Center of your jurisdiction. It must NOT be sent to the Mission.
Simply print the label which will automatically be addressed as follows. Please see the example:
Attn To: New ‘Visa’ Application
CKGS Application Center Name
CKGS Application Center Address
CKGS Application Center Location
CKGS Application Center Zip Code
Important Note on Shipping bought through CKGS
Please DO the following:
- Send only 1 Application per package.
- The weight of the package should be less than 0.5Lbs.
- The shipping label provided by CKGS must be pasted on the envelope.
- Only use the envelopes shown below to send with the shipping label provided by CKGS:
Please DON’T DO the following:
- DO NOT enclose your application in any other packaging except for the ones displayed above.
- DO NOT request a pickup by FedEx / UPS as this is not included in the price.
- If more than one application is sent in the same package, then the application will be put on hold.
- DO NOT use the shipping label to apply outside of your jurisdiction.
Applications sent in the wrong packaging will not be processed until CKGS is reimbursed for the difference in the amount for shipping applications in the wrong packaging.
Please note that the conditions of the Shipping provider are in addition to the Terms and Conditions of CKGS.
Note on Prepaid/Own Shipping Label:
If you decide to use your own shipping label, ensure that you provide the AWB Number and Service provider’s details when you are prompted at the Shipping stage or you can print it later from the ‘My Account’ page. This is Compulsory to avoid further delays.
If you have used your own label, we cannot take any responsibility for pick-up and delivery to you. The Shipping Service providers often do not acknowledge receipt of the envelopes. Nor will CKGS drop off your prepaid envelopes to your shipping service provider as you have not bought the shipping service from us.
Please Consider the following when shipping your application:
- FedEx Prepaid Envelopes sent by you are NOT accepted.
- USPS Pre-paid labels have an expiry date and hence they are NOT accepted by CKGS.
- For Prepaid envelopes, CKGS will not be responsible to contact you, and if you ignore this point for any delay occurring will be your liability.
7B : Walk-in:
After selecting Walk-in as your submission option, you shall continue online to complete the so-called, Appointment Process.
First, Choose Your Appointment date. Then, Select Your Time Slot.
If the date/time slot is already booked, then the next available option will be displayed.
After selecting the date and time slot, you will get a confirmation of your appointment date and time booked from CKGS.
When you go in person to CKGS, do it at the designated appointment date and time and submit your application along with all the required documents at the CKGS Application Center.
Considerations for Walk-in Submissions:
Biometric enrolment for VISA application is mandatory for Walk-In Applicants of San Francisco and New York Jurisdiction.
The following categories of applicants are exempted from biometric enrolment:
- Applicants of the age below 12 Years or above 70 Years.
- Applicants holding official passport, Diplomatic passport, or UN passport.
- Applicants with no fingers
- Applicants with poor fingerprints need to sign the exception form.
- Applicants with less number of fingers will be required to give biometrics only of the existing fingers and need to sign the exception form.
STEP 8: Payment
Payment must be made by “Money order/Pay order /Cashiers/ Bankers check favoring Cox and Kings Global Services USA LLC” or at the CKGS Application Center.
Total payment is composed of CKGS fees and Consular fees.
CKGS fees consist of:
- CKGS Service Fee: $19.90 per application.
- Optional Fee: Courier Service, SMS, etc.
Consular fees consist of:
- Visa Fees: As per adult / minor and applicable Visa category.
- ICWF (Indian Community Welfare Fund): $3.00 per application.
Please note that:
- Each applicant must pay separately
- Credit card charges will be applied.
- You can’t pay with cash
- No checks are allowed for payment.
- If fees are not fully paid for, CKGS will not be responsible for any delays and consequential charges that you may incur.
STEP 9: Submit Your Physical Application to CKGS
When you are done with the online process, you will now have to submit your physical application via shipping or walk-in option selected by you to the CKGS Application Center as per theJurisdiction of your application.
Remember to arrange the filled and signed completed forms, documents and letters in the same order as mentioned in the document checklist and check that the number of documents have been collated and are correct as per your document checklist.
Tick off the boxes on both the checklists, as you put the documents into your envelope for submission of your ‘Complete’ Application and enclose 1 copy of the document checklist in your envelope and keep one for your reference.
Remember that the processing of your application will ONLY commence once your physical application package is delivered to the CKGS Application Center.
If you have used the CKGS shipping option, you will receive an e-mail advising you of the outcome of the verification process.