India’s new online visa makes the process easier for Americans

American tourists visiting the Red Fort in New Delhi (shown here) or anywhere in India may now apply for a visa online.
(Raveendran / AFP/Getty Images)

Good news for travelers heading to India: The government has eased rules for U.S. citizens and others who now may receive a tourist visa on arrival that’s good for 30 days.

Streamlined visa rules apply to tourists from America as well as 42 other countries.

The online application process allows travelers to receive visa authorization by email ahead of their trip. It was launched Thursday, according to the Times of India.

Here’s how it works: Apply at least four days ahead of your travel date at the Indian government’s Tourist Visa on Arrival website. For example, if you apply Jan. 1, you may enter India anytime between Jan. 5 and Feb. 4.


in the online application, you need to upload a photo and the page of your U.S. passport with relevant details (name, date of birth, etc.), and pay $60 by debit or credit card plus handling fees.

You then will receive an email authorizing you to travel in India; print a copy of this to take with you and present it with your passport when you arrive. Your passport must be valid for at least six months.

India rolled out visas on arrival to boost tourism from selected countries starting in January, the Times of India reports. The country received 6.9 million visitors in 2013, with the largest number of tourists coming from the United States.

For details on how to apply online, go to the Tourist Visa on Arrival website, email or call 011-91-11-2430-0666.