All travellers must comply with all instructions and screening requirements at the airport. More information and detailed guidance is available on the website of the Ministry of Health. You may need to provide contact details and be asked to download the Aarogya Setu app (India’s COVID–19 “contact tracing and self-assessment” digital service).
If you’re fully vaccinated
All travellers should submit a self-declaration form on the online “Air Suvidha” portal before scheduled travel. On 14th February 2022, the Ministry of Health and Welfare announced COVID-19 vaccination certificates can be uploaded in place of a negative COVID-19 RT-PCR report.
As of 14th February 2022, for all international travellers, there is no longer the requirement to test on arrival or to quarantine at home for 7 days.
The requirement for a COVID-19 RT-PCR test on the 8th day of arrival in India has also been removed.
The only requirement on arrival currently is to self-monitor for 14 days. Other requirements may be introduced at short notice. More information and detailed guidance is available on the website of Ministry of Civil Aviation.
Some travellers may be subject to random testing on arrival in airports, and if you test positive, you may be subject to institutional quarantine.
All passengers will also be subject to thermal screening. If symptomatic, you may be isolated and taken to a medical facility.
You may be asked to present your self-declaration form, vaccination certificate or negative RT-PCR report to airport staff.
If you’re not fully vaccinated
If you are unvaccinated, you will need to upload a negative COVID-19 RT-PCR report, with the test having been conducted within 72 hours prior to undertaking the journey.
You also need to submit a declaration to prove the authenticity of this report and will be liable for criminal prosecution, if found otherwise.
You should not use the NHS testing service to get a negative PCR test to facilitate your travel to another country; you should arrange to take a private test.
Residents of India
Special permits may be needed to cross land borders with Bangladesh, Bhutan, Myanmar and Nepal in East and North East India. You should contact local authorities for more information and relevant permits.
Children and young people
Children under 5 years of age are exempt from COVID-19 testing before or on arrival. If found symptomatic for COVID-19 on arrival, you will need to follow the instructions of the health authorities, which may include testing or mandatory quarantine. Travelling parents/guardians should note that it may not always be possible for parents to have access to the child/children during their period of isolation. This guidance applies across India.
If you’re transiting through India
Since the requirement for on-arrival testing has been removed for those who are fully vaccinated, there is no requirement for you to quarantine before transiting. However, if you are unvaccinated, and you test positive on arrival, and do not have an address in the city of your arrival, you may have to follow institutional quarantine.
There are no exemptions to India’s entry requirements.
Check your passport and travel documents before you travel
To avoid possible problems at immigration, make sure your passport is valid for a minimum of 180 days at the time of entry into India.
Your passport must be machine readable, with 2 blank pages for your visa and valid for a minimum of 180 days at the time of your visa application.
OCI and PIO card holders
In March 2016, the government of India announced that OCI cardholders would no longer need a visa to enter India. The ‘U’ visa sticker that was placed in the foreign passport of OCI cardholders has been discontinued with immediate effect and you’ll no longer need to show this sticker to the immigration authorities when you enter and leave India. You’ll only need to present a valid passport and your OCI card. For more information, visit the website of the Indian Ministry of Home Affairs.
The Indian Ministry of Home Affairs has issued new guidelines permitting all OCI and PIO cardholders to visit India. British nationals who do not hold these cards may also travel to India if they have a valid visa but are not eligible for eVisas at present. For information on categories and process, visit the Indian Bureau of Immigration website.
You’ll need to get a visa before travelling to India.
Make sure you get the right visa for your travel and that it’s valid for the purpose and duration of your stay. If you enter India on the wrong visa, you could be detained on arrival and you may be deported and blacklisted, meaning that you cannot enter India again. Make sure you meet entry requirements. You can find further information on the Indian High Commission website or the Indian Immigration Bureau website.
You should check your visa for any endorsements that state you should register your arrival in India within a certain amount of time. Failure to do so could lead to you being denied permission to leave.
There have been changes made by the Indian government on visa formalities for foreigners who are hospitalised in India when travelling on a short-term tourist visa. If you or someone you’re travelling with is travelling on a tourist visa and is hospitalised, get in touch with the local Foreigners Registration Office (FRO) to check if visa conversion is needed.
India’s Bureau of Immigration has announced that with immediate effect, foreign nationals who arrive at an Indian port holding non-machine readable passports will be denied entry. Carriers who transport foreign passengers holding non-machine readable passports may be subject to a fine.
Overstaying on your visa is an offence. Make sure you leave the country before your visa expires.
Applicants of Pakistani origin
All applicants of Pakistani origin who hold dual British-Pakistan nationality must apply for an Indian visa on their Pakistan passport. If you have renounced your Pakistani nationality or cancelled your Pakistani passport, you will need to submit documentary proof of this.
The processing time for visa applications received from persons of Pakistani origin is 7-8 weeks or more. Processing time for applications from those holding dual British-Pakistan nationality will be substantially longer. For further details see the Indian High Commission website.
User Development Fees (UDF) apply at many airports. The fees are around Rs.1,000 per international passenger and Rs.150 to 260 per domestic passenger. This should already be included in the cost of airline tickets. If for any reason the fee is not included in your ticket it will be collected at the airport check-in counter in Indian rupees.
If you travel to India from Pakistan, Israel, Kenya, Ethiopia, Nigeria, Afghanistan or Somalia you may need to hold a valid polio vaccination certificate. Contact your nearest Indian Embassy or High Commission for further information.
Yellow fever certificate requirements
Check whether you need a yellow fever certificate by visiting the National Travel Health Network and Centre’s TravelHealthPro website.
Accommodation and C-Forms
Make sure you stay in accommodation that is licensed with the Indian authorities. Ask your accommodation provider whether they’re registered to file ‘C-Forms’ with the Foreigners’ Registration Office (FRO). You’re strongly advised to use accommodation that is registered with the FRO.