Despite the concerns of the Ministry of Tourism regarding the increase in e-tourist visa fee, it will not undergo a review soon. The reason is considering the reciprocity with other countries. K J Alphons Union Tourism Minister had sent a plea, to the Home Minister, regarding reviewing the hike in fee for the e-tourist visa.
Moreover, this issue was discussed at a meeting, under the guidance of the Cabinet Secretary P K Sinha. The representatives of the Ministry of External Affairs said that this decision, on visa fees, was made on the principle of reciprocity. Moreover, the revised fee structure was reasonable.
The Tourism Ministry Officials expressed the opinion, that the increase in Visa Fee would have a negative impact. It will be difficult to double overseas tourist arrivals, in the future. Speaking on the issue, the Tourism Minister said that in his ministerial capacity, he wrote to the Home Ministry, and requested for a review in the fee. The Ministry took this call, for the country. He also agreed with that.
Four slabs in the past
There were four slabs in this fee earlier with the figures of Zero, US Dollars 25, 48, and 60. Presently there are three slabs only with the figures of Zero, US Dollars 80, and 100. Moreover, there is a bank fee of 2.5 percent of the visa fee. In the USA and the UK, this visa fee is US Dollars 100, for Indians. India presently issues e-tourist visa to nationals of 150 countries. There are facilities for people entering the country through five seaports and 25 airports. This e-visa provides an opportunity to a prospective visitor for applying online from the home country, without paying a visit to the Indian mission. He/she can also make the fee payment online. Upon approval, the applicant gets an email of authorization for travelling to India. The person can travel having the print out of such authorization.
Method of working
On reaching India, the visitor presents the authorization to the immigration officials, for stamping the entry into the country. This convenience helps the foreigners to visit India for sight-seeing, recreation, medical treatment, or just a casual business visit. It holds no validity for other purposes. Through this e-visa the visitor can opt for a double entry, for 60 days from the arrival date. It gives a boost to the people to travel for a short-term, take routes to reach other countries, or also to undertake business visits.