taj mahal india

Of all the trips in the world, few leave visitors with as much joy for life, reflection and spirit than a trip to India. Like many other world class destinations, what you see and taste in one area will be completely different to the next, creating a lifetime worth of exploration ahead.

After nearly two years of being closed off to the world, amid one of the most heartbreaking battles with the global pandemic, India has now reopened quarantine free travel, and that’s exciting news for eager travelers the world over.

Even better, the country is waiving the first 500,000 visitor fees to encourage trips.

India Reopens International Travel

A setback in planning trips to India has always been the somewhat cumbersome pre arrival visa process, which require both a bit of time and money.

Until March, 2022, in hopes of kickstarting the economic recovery with as many foreign visitors as possible, India is waiving the first 500,000 visitor visas. Entering the country has also been made relatively seamless.

Fully vaccinated visitors from countries which reciprocally recognize India’s vaccination passport simply need a covid-19 PCR test before departure, and are not subject to any additional travel restrictions upon arrival.

The UK, Singapore, China, South Africa and Brazil are among the short list of countries which does not reciprocally recognize India’s vaccine pass, but countries including the USA and most of Europe do.

Potential visitors can check their specific requirements using the latest travel advice from IATA, or via this relatively hokey page from the Indian Government.

taj mahal india

The first 500,000 visitors before March 31st, 2022 will receive free entry, according to The Hindu, which eliminates a small, but pesky step in entering the country. Hotels will undoubtedly be eager to capitalize on international tourism, which should represent fantastic deals for early adopters.

Bilateral talks are currently being held with a variety of tourism partners in hopes of securing more recognition for India’s vaccination passports as well, to help streamline travel in both directions.

India Is Back

The “where can we go” map has been pretty depressing for the last year, but that’s beginning to rapidly change.

Some countries have taken incredibly cautious approaches which continue to make travel all but impossible, yet India seems to have found the balance. Passengers must be fully vaccinated and test negative before departure, and statistically, that should be enough.

Being able to land and immediately proceed to hotels, attractions, restaurants and bars will allow business travel to resume in tandem with leisure, and with so much natural draw to the country, it won’t be long before visitors are back.

If you’re one of the first 500,000, there’s something in it for you.

Gilbert Ott

Gilbert Ott is an ever curious traveler and one of the world's leading travel experts. His adventures take him all over the globe, often spanning over 200,000 miles a year and his travel exploits are regularly...

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  1. You’re a little out of date. The UK and Singapore have recognised the Indian certificate and India has reciprocated.

  2. It appears you can only get a visitor visa for India when flying from UK on one of the two Charter flights. The situation of opening it up to everyone is still under review according to the charity that I work with over there.

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