Indian Visa Requirements// Medical Checklist// In Transit// Jet Lag and Motion Sickness
All foreign nationals, including children, require a visa to enter India. The only exceptions are nationals of Nepal and Bhutan who can enter India without a visa. (Note: Nepalese nationals need a visa if entering India from China).
Residents of the UK can obtain a visa by applying online on the in.vfsglobal.co.uk website. Full details of the types of visas and the application procedures are on the website. There are many other websites which offer visa services but these will charge a fee in addition to the normal visa fees. The VFS Global website is the official visa website and offers the cheapest way to obtain the visa.
A Tourist Visa may be valid for 3 months, 6 months or 1 year with single, double or multiple entries. Irrespective of the duration of validity of the visa, on each visit the maximum period of stay in India is limited to 6 months (180 days). Please note the validity of the visa is effective from the date of issue and not the date of travel on your application form.
If you are applying by post for your visa then please allow at least two weeks for your application to be processed. You can also apply in person at one of the regional application offices and can make an appointment for submitting your documents.
If you are visiting India after coming from or through a yellow fever country then you must have a valid vaccination certificate.
Foreigners entering India on long term visas valid for more than 180 days should follow the relevant registration formalities. All persons who hold a Student Visa, Employment Visa or Research Visa which is valid for more than 180 days are required to register themselves with the nearest Foreign Registration Office (FRO) or Foreigners Regional Registration Office (FRRO) within 14 days of arrival in India.
Please ask us for advice if you require assistance with completing the visa application form.
Recommended items for a personal medical kit:
Remember to take any prescribed medicines with you and to consult your doctor in plenty of time about any vaccinations needed. Depending where you are visiting in India you may also need to take anti-malaria prophylactics.
Deep vein thrombosis (DVT) occurs when blood clots form in the legs during plane flights, chiefly because of prolonged immobility. The longer the flight, the greater the risk. Though most blood clots are reabsorbed uneventfully, some may break off and travel through the blood vessels to the lungs, where they may cause life-threatening complications.
The chief symptom of DVT is swelling or pain of the foot, ankle or calf, usually but not always on just one side. When a blood clot travels to the lungs, it may cause chest pain and difficulty in breathing. Travellers with any of these symptoms should immediately seek medical attention.
To prevent the development of DVT on long flights, walk about the cabin, perform isometric compressions of the leg muscles (ie contract the leg muscles while sitting), drink plenty of fluids, and avoid alcohol and tobacco.
Jet lag is common when crossing more than five time zones; it results in insomnia, fatigue, malaise or nausea. To avoid jet lag try drinking plenty of fluids (non-alcoholic) and eating light meals. Upon arrival, seek exposure to natural sunlight and readjust your schedule (for meals, sleep etc) as soon as possible.
Medicines taken before travelling can reduce or prevent the symptoms of motion sickness, and they work by interfering with the nerve signals being sent to the brain. Some of these medicines may cause drowsiness or have other side effects.
Rather than wait for nausea or vomiting to develop, antiemetic can be given beforehand to prevent motion sickness. Hyoscine is the most effective medicine for preventing motion sickness. It’s best to consult your GP or pharmacist before taking it as hyoscine is not suitable for everyone.
For people who cannot have hyoscine, antihistamines are an alternative but they are not as effective and can cause drowsiness. If you are taking other medication, ask your doctor or pharmacist if the medicines may interact. As alcohol can interact with some medicines, also check if you can drink while taking medication for treating motion sickness.
Ginger supplements work like a charm for some people. Their effectiveness has not been proven but they have no adverse effects.