Tag Archives: United Kingdom

UK encourages visitors to apply early for visas

The UK has launched a new campaign to encourage Indian visitors to apply early for their visas in the quieter, off peak period, during January and February.  Visa applicants can expect to get a visa decision more quickly outside of the peak period, and benefit from quieter Visa Application Centres and more available appointment slots. They can now request for their visas to be post-dated by up to three months, so the visa starts on their intended travel date. Those planning to travel in April can apply for their visas now and the six month validity can start on their intended departure date. The initiative was announced at the Destination Britain India, currently being held in Pune and hosted by the UK’s national tourism agency VisitBritain. The three-day tourism trade fair brings together more than 75 travel agents from across India and more than 20 UK travel suppliers for three days of networking and business appointments. British High Commissioner to India, Sir Dominic Asquith KCMG, said, “We are delighted that more and more Indians are choosing to come to the UK either on holiday or for business. The latest visa statistics show that visitor visas issued have increased by six per cent in the year ending September 2016 and last year we issued more Indian visit visas than ever before. There has never been a better time to visit the UK – 2017 is the Year of Culture, which will see an exciting festival of events celebrating the vibrant cultural history of UK and India held in both countries.” India will become the first visa country to benefit from the Registered Traveller Service, as announced by the British Prime Minister …

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253% growth in eTVs in Jan ’16 over Jan ’15

A total of 88,162 foreign tourists arrived in the country on e-Tourist Visa (eTV) in January 2016 as compared to 25,023 during the same month in 2015 registering a growth of 252.3 per cent. According to the Ministry of Tourism, this high growth may be attributed to introduction of e-Tourist Visa for 113 countries as against the earlier coverage of 43 countries. United Kingdom occupied the top slot in the top 10 countries availing the facility with 25.37 per cent. The share of the other top countries availing eTV facility were USA (15.17%); Russian Fed. (9.58%); France (6.00%); Australia (5.25%); Germany (4.23%); Canada (4.10%); China (3.96%); Republic of Korea (3.72%) and Ukraine (2.86%). The New Delhi airport received the highest percentage of foreign tourists with 33.18 per cent. The other top ports in foreign tourist arrivals on eTV during January 2016 were Mumbai Airport (20.81%); Goa Airport (19.10%); Chennai Airport (6.95%); Bengaluru Airport (5.35%); Kochi Airport (4.17%); Kolkata Airport (2.99%); Trivandrum Airport (2.29%); Hyderabad Airport (2.13%) and Ahmedabad Airport (1.75%).

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16.5% rise in UK visas issued to Indians

United Kingdom (UK) granted over 360,000 visitor visas, until September 2015, a 16.5 per cent increase year on year, according to recently released statistics. With the commercial partner VFS, UK offers 15 visa application centres across India, more than in any other country. Visa application centres are situated in Delhi, Chandigarh, Jalandhar, Mumbai South, Mumbai North, Pune, Ahmadabad, Chennai, Bangalore, Hyderabad, Cochin, Kolkata, Gurgaon, Jaipur and Goa. A number of premium services are offered to the UK Visa applicants at the Visa Application Centre (VAC). VFS Users can avail walk in appointments where urgent travellers or those who have missed their appointment, can pay Rs 2537 to get a walk in appointment. Digital Assistance is provided in filling out the visa application form on the visa4uk website. The staff reads out questions on the form, and records the answers verbatim on behalf of the applicant for an extra cost of Rs 400. Group Appointments is available for group travellers who can apply at the same visa application centre at a particular time and day. This service is extended to all groups including tour operators, large families, conferences etc for Rs 500 per application. Travellers can pay for their visa by cash at the VAC, using VFS Global’s Credit Card at an additional cost of Rs 1000 per transaction. Certification service enables travellers to keep hold of their original documents. Applicants need to bring original documentation to the VAC to show VFS staff, who photocopy the documents and send to the decision hub along with the application. This service costs Rs 50 per document page. In 2015, India became the second country to benefit from the British Irish Visa Scheme, allowing Indian …

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