- India will grant new tourist visas to foreigners traveling on chartered flights from October 15.
- Tourists can enter India on non-chartered flights with a new tourist visa from November 15.
- Travelers to India must present a negative COVID-19 test to enter regardless of their vaccination status.
After more than a year of travel restrictions, India is preparing to welcome international tourists again.
The country, which has been hit hard by the COVID-19 pandemic earlier this year, should start granting new tourist visas to foreigners traveling on charter flights on October 15. Tourists can enter by non-chartered flights with a tourist visa from November 15.
India suspended all existing visas in March 2020. Travel via other visas – such as business and student visas – resumed earlier this year, but the country has delayed the recovery of tourism. That changes later this month, according to a statement from India’s Interior Ministry.
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“All due protocols and standards regarding COVID-19 (…) must be observed by foreign tourists, carriers bringing them to India and all other stakeholders at landing stations,” the ministry said in a statement. press release Thursday.
India faced a massive surge of COVID-19 earlier this year, reaching a new high of 414,188 new daily cases in May, but the number of cases has since fallen. As of Friday, 21,257 cases were reported in the past day, according to data from Johns Hopkins University.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, India has a “moderate level of COVID-19”, and suggests travelers get a full vaccine before entering.
What are the entry requirements?
Travelers to India must present a negative COVID-19 test on arrival regardless of immunization status, according to the U.S. Embassy and Consulates in India. The test should not be taken more than 72 hours before travel and can be downloaded from the Air Suvidha portal.
India also requires that travelers submit a self-declaration form at least 72 hours before departure via the same online portal.
Follow USA TODAY reporter Bailey Schulz on Twitter: @bailey_schulz.