India makes it easier for Brit tourists by cutting visa red tape

20th Feb 2014

Brits wanting to travel to India will find it easier from this autumn under plans to reduce the country's notorious red tape.

The UK is one of 180 countries which will benefit from the Indian government's visa-on-arrival scheme.

It is likely to be rolled out by October to coincide with the country's peak tourism season - and under the plans visitors will get a 30-day visa at the airport on arrival.

This will enable holidaymakers to savour the best of India's many eclectic delights.

The south Asian country offers vibrant festivals and events, especially religious ones for visitors looking for tailor-made holidays in faith tourism.

Holidaymakers can take a tour around one of India's myriad tea plantations, or they may prefer the sandy peace and solitude of one of Goa's award-winning beaches.

For travellers in such of something a bit livelier, few city breaks come more energetic than ones to Mumbai. Visitors here can enjoy the Gateway of India, the city's most recognised monument, Haji Ali's mosque and tomb, a Bollywood tour in Film City, or its many markets and bazaars.

No trip to India is complete without a trip to Agra's fabled Taj Mahal mausoleum.

The new visa process will still involve a charge, with the amount yet to be confirmed. Visitors will be encouraged to visit an official website to apply and pay the fee before they travel.

The visa will then be available for collection at one of 26 leading airports after three days.

Under present rules tourists have to submit an online form, send their passport to the Indian High Commission together with photographs and a pre-paid envelope. The visa costs £80 with an additional £12.20 handling charge. It can take at least a fortnight to receive permission to visit.

Whether holidaymakers travel before or after October, visitors will find India well worth the wait.

Copyright Press Association 2014


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