Having a passport to travel to India:
First of all, if you want to go to India, you must of course have a valid passport. This must be valid but must also be valid for at least 6 months after the date of your return. This passport must also have at least three consecutive blank pages if you are applying for a classic visa.
It should also be noted here that the emergency passport is not accepted everywhere and you should ensure that it is authorised for an India visa application before applying for it.
Another important point to remember about the passport is that it is now compulsory for all minors, regardless of age. Minors travelling with a parent do not need a travel permit, but if they are travelling without at least one parent, they will need to have this permit and a copy of the signing parent's identity document.
Minors travelling with a parent whose name they do not bear must be able to prove their parentage or present an exit permit signed by the parent whose name they bear, together with a copy of the latter's identity document.
Having a visa to travel to India:
Another essential document to have with you when travelling to India is a visa. It is required to enter the country and will be requested on arrival. To simplify this once very long and tedious process, it is now possible to apply for an e-visa for India online.
All you need to do is fill in an online application form and send a scanned copy of your passport and a good quality ID photo. The e-tourist visa for India is then sent to the applicant within a maximum of 3 to 4 days and directly by email. The traveller will then only need to print it and present it at the airport of arrival with his passport and his return flight ticket. This visa will be valid for all stays of less than 90 days on Indian territory and its validity will be from 30 days to one year depending on the type of e-visa subscribed to from the date of its issuance. Please ensure that the names on the passport are the same as on the e-visa.
The price of e-visa is much lower than the price of the traditional visa which is done at the Indian embassy or consulate of your country of residence. In addition, the time taken to obtain the visa is much shorter. Be careful though, as there are e-visa's which only allow 30 days to enter India after they have been issued, with only one entry possible. It is therefore necessary not to apply too early before departure.
It should also be noted that the e-tourism visa for India will not allow you to travel to certain regions including Sikkim, Arunachal Pradesh, Himachal Pradesh, Jammu and Kashmir, Ladakh, Manipur, Mizoram, Nagaland, part of Uttarakhand, part of Rajasthan.
Requirements for ID photos:
If you wish to apply for a regular visa for India, you will also need to provide two recent ID photos which must meet certain criteria:
The photos must be 5cm x 5cm in size and be taken against a white background. Only colour photos showing natural skin tone are accepted.
Scanned photos of poor resolution will also be rejected. Photos must be sharp, without folds or streaks and printed on standard photo paper.
The background must be clear and plain, as photos with coloured or fancy backgrounds will also be refused.
As far as framing is concerned, the photo should show the face in close-up and the shoulders. The face should be centred in the photo and should not be tilted. It should take up between 70% and 80% of the height of the picture.
The expression should be neutral with the mouth closed and the hair should not obscure the face. The eyes should stare into the lens and be open. Eyeglass frames are accepted if they are discreet and do not hide the eyes. Thus, tinted glasses or red eyes are systematically refused.
Finally, no headgear, hats or caps should appear in the photo. However, some accessories worn for religious reasons are still accepted by the Indian government provided that the face is fully visible.
Security measures to be aware of at Indian airports:
Several new security measures have recently come into effect at airports in India. For example, electronic devices such as smartphones, tablets or mobile phones must be charged and in working order for all flights to and through the US and London. They must be able to be switched on, so it's best to take a charger with you. A device that does not turn on may be confiscated.
If you wish to drive a vehicle in India and plan to use your driving licence, even if it is valid outside Europe, it is advisable to obtain an international driving licence or a sworn translation of your driving licence.
Don't wait any longer to apply for your India visa with e-visa.