Visitors from South Korea to the country are expected to increase as the Indian government has initiated the facility of ‘visa on arrival’ to South Koreans. The new measure will come into effect from 15th April.
A senior official from the ministry of tourism has officially announced this and said that South Koreans will be offered ‘visa on arrival’ facility from 15th April and it would be the 12th nation to get this VoA facility. The ministry has initiated the necessary measures.
At present, there are 11 countries which have got visa on arrival facility and South Korea will be the 12th country to get VoA status.
In an effort to attract foreign tourists to the country, the government of India had initiated visa on arrival facility program from January 2010 for citizens of 5 countries viz. Japan, New Zealand, Finland, Luxembourg and Singapore who are visiting India on tourism purposes. Later on, this scheme was extended to another 6 countries viz. Indonesia, Cambodia, Philippines, Vietnam, Myanmar and Laos in the year 2011.
With an objective to boost tourism, the tourism ministry has decided to extend ‘visa on arrival’ facility for tourists from 180 countries that include countries such as US, South Korea, UK, China, Germany, Bangladesh, UAE, Russia and France. Though the government of India has approved this visa on arrival scheme for many countries, to put the infrastructure in place and to make all arrangements, it would take 4-5 months for the concerned departments. This new scheme is expected to start from the coming tourist season that begins from October.
In the meantime, ‘visa on arrival facility’ will become operational for South Korea from 15th April, 2014 and the required infrastructure for this would be prepared in time.
But, tourists from the so-called ‘prior preference’ countries such as Pakistan, Afghanistan, Sudan, Iran, Nigeria, Iraq, Sri Lanka, and Somalia have to apply through their embassies for visa.
Under this flexible visa regime, for electronic travel authorization, visitors from these nations may apply online at least 3 days before their date of journey. After arrival in India, they need to undergo biometric identification for the visa, and the visa’s validity will be up to 30 days and it cannot be renewed. The service is available at 26 airports in the country.