U.S. citizens require a passport and visa to enter and exit India for any purpose. Visitors, including those on official U.S. government business, must obtain visas at an Indian Embassy or Consulate abroad prior to entering the country as there are no provisions for visas upon arrival. Those arriving without a visa are subject to immediate deportation. The U.S. Embassy and Consulates in India are unable to assist when U.S. citizens arrive without visas. Each visitor should carry photocopies of the face page of the traveler’s U.S. passport and the page which contains the Indian visa in order to facilitate obtaining new U.S. passports from the U.S. Embassy or Consulate and exit visas from the Indian government, in the event of theft or loss of the passport. For the most current information on entry requirements, please check our India visa service section.
In an effort to prevent international child abduction, many governments have initiated additional screening procedures at entry/exit points. These often include requiring documentary evidence of the relationship such as an original birth certificate and family photographs. A photocopy of the passport of the absent parent(s) or legal guardian and their notarized written consent may also be necessary to facilitate entry/departure.
Foreign citizens who visit India to study, do research, work or act as missionaries, as well as all travelers planning to stay more than 180 days are required to register within 14 days of arrival with the Foreigners Regional Registration Office where they will be staying. FRRO maintains offices in New Delhi, Mumbai (Bombay), Chennai (Madras) and Kolkata (Calcutta), and recently opened an additional office in Amritsar. In smaller towns the local police headquarters will normally perform this function. The address and telephone number of each major FRRO office can be found at http://www.airportsindia.org.in/aai/immigration/immigration.htm . General information regarding Indian visa and immigration rules can be found at the Indian Ministry of Home Affairs website for its Bureau of Immigration at http://www.immigrationindia.nic.in.