FAQs on Visa Online

Q. What is a visa and why is it important?

A. A Visa is an official certificate of endorsement on your passport giving you the permission to enter, stay and leave a particular country, whether permanently or for a specific period of time. A visa is issued to you by the immigration authorities of the country you intend to travel to after verifying your credentials, the accuracy of your submitted visa form and other necessary documents. Many countries such as UK and USA among others grant you visa only after an in-person interview with the immigration officers. Of all kinds of visas, tourist visas are less hassle and always easy to gain. Where no physical interview is required a visa is even sent to you electronically. Although, the visa is a grant to entry, your actual entry into a foreign country is only subject to approval from the immigration officer at the point of entry.

Q. Do I need a visa for travel?

A. Yes, you do by all means for every international trip you make. Even if you are a passport holder, the absence of a visa to your destination country may not even qualify you to board a flight, far less get to your destination. You need to have a valid visa to travel to any foreign destination. Though some countries like Thailand, Cambodia, Indonesia among others offer visa-on-arrival. In such a case you will have to carry all the essential documents including proofs of your hotel stay, your return flight tickets and presence of a pre-stated amount in your bank account, only then will you be granted a visa-on-arrival. So, for any international travel, you cannot bypass the visa process.

Q. Does it cost to have a visa processed?

A. Yes, there is a visa processing fee charged by the government of the country you are planning to travel to. The sum varies from one country to the next. This processing fee applies to both regular and e-visas. Now, if you plan to get your visa done through an agent, the agent will charge his commission over and above the pre-fixed processing fee that applies in addition to taxes among others.

Q. How long does it take to process a visa?

A. Typically an e-visa takes 72 hours for processing, and in case more documents are required on your visa you will be intimated of the same within 48 hours and you need to comply in the next 72 hours. In case you take any longer than that, your visa application will be deemed cancelled. For a visa within Asia, you can expect it processed in 5 working days, but for a US visa you will have to wait for 3 to 5 weeks for your visa application to be processed. After processing, you can expect a positive response to your application and the consulate will deliver the document in two working days. Generally, it takes about 5 working days for you to receive your passport once your visa interview is a success. But for a US visa this could be about 10 days. A UK visa, on the other hand, is normally processed within 15 days. Though you are advised to apply about a month prior to your date of travel. You can always track your e-visa application status online.

Q. What is a visa on arrival?

A. Visa on Arrival is an authorisation document provided by the consulate or immigration department of the country you are travelling to only after you have arrived at the destination. This saves you the hassle of going through a lengthy visa application form submission process. In a visa-on-arrival too you need to keep all necessary identification documents handy along with photographs so that the immigration desk can quickly put it together and hand you over your visa-on-arrival. Without the necessary id proofs you shall not be entitled to a visa-on-arrival. Countries that offer the facility of visa-on-arrival to Indian citizens include Thailand, Cambodia, Maldives, Bhutan, Sri Lanka, Indonesia, Myanmar, Laos, Macau in Asia. Serbia in Europe, Bolivia and El Salvador in America, Jordan and Armenia in the Middle East and Kenya, Mauritius, Seychelles and Tanzania in Africa among others.

Q. How do I get a travel visa?

A. When filling up your visa application form you need to establish your purpose of visit, whether it is casually for travel or for business or studies. All travel-related visas qualify as tourist visas which is granted to an individual visiting the country with the sole intention of travelling. To enter the United States, you need to first get a visa which could either be a non-immigrant visa for temporary stay or an immigrant one for permanent residence. The tourist visas are always of the former category for those wishing to enter the United States for purposes of tourism alone, the visa category being B-2. An e-tourist visa could have a one-month validity, a one-year validity, five-year validity or for a continuous stay that does not exceed more than 90 days. For USA, UK, Canada and Japan you can stay continuously provided your stay doesn’t exceed beyond 180 days.

Q. What is the process of online visa booking with Yatra.com?

A. For any international ticket booked, Yatra will assist you with the visa application process, by helping you fill up the form, apprising you of the support documents, checking the accuracy of the documents before sending it ahead to the consulate of the country you wish to travel to. It will intimate you of the interview date, if there is one involved, and give you an update of the visa processing status until to finally receive the visa.

Q. How can I track my visa status?

A. In order to check your visa status online you need to go into the enquiry tab of the consulate website of the country you plan to travel to. There you may be required to enter your application id and the passport number. And in case you have submitted your visa forms through an agent website you need to enter your date of birth and your passport number there, and you will get an update on its status.

Q. What are the different types of visa?

A. Tourist visa is granted for 180 days, granting multiple entries, a transit visa allows single entry and is typically valid for 15 days. Business visa can be granted for a maximum of 5 years, making your eligible for multiple entries. An employment visa is usually for a maximum of 2 years or until your employment contract ends. This too is a multiple entry visa. A student visa is granted for 5 years or till the duration of your course, whichever is less. This entitles you to 3 entries per academic year.

Q. What are the documents needed to get a tourist visa?

A. To get a tourist visa you need to hold a valid Indian passport with 6 months or more of validity remaining. A photo id such as a PAN card or a voter id as provided by the Indian government, a proof of your financial standing, your flight return tickets, voucher confirming your hotel stay during your tenure, among other related documents. In case you are staying with a friend, then an official letter of invite from them establishing your residence in the duration of your travel.