Covid-19 India Travel Approved, Tourist Visas Granted: Important Dates October 15 & November 15, 2021

Just as the United States announces the lifting of the travel ban in November, India is removing all travel restrictions for non-citizens and international travelers. India will begin issuing new visitor visas to all tourists coming to India after November 15. For those coming on chartered flights, India will issue visitor visas starting October 15.

Related Article: US Travel: New Norms After The Travel Ban Is Lifted In November 2021

While regular visitor visas will be granted for eligible international visitors to India, certain additional measures will also be implemented to ensure that Covid safety is maintained and the infections rate is kept at a minimum at least until mid-January 2022. The following steps are being executed for travelers entering India after October 15, 2021:

  • Every visitor to India should have proof of Covid-19 vaccination
  • Show proof of negative Covid-19 test result taken 72 hours before boarding a flight to India 
  • Have an online copy as well as have a physical copy for submission on arrival
  • Upload personal details as well as attest to the negative result of the Covid test onto the Arogya Setu app provided by the Indian government
  • If arriving from South Africa, Brazil, UK or the Gulf countries, submit for another Covid test on arrival. This is at the traveler’s expense of Rs. 800 per traveler. The results of this will be sent to the local mobile phone number provided.
  • Provide local residential address, email address and mobile phone number to implement contact-tracing protocols
  • Wear a mask during the entire duration of the international flight and at the Indian airport on arrival.

Until November 15 when regular tourist visas will be issued by the Indian embassies aboard, those having to travel to India may apply for an emergency visa. They will have to provide supporting documentation to prove the nature of emergency and get it approved in person at their closest Indian embassy.

Air Travel Into The USA

The Biden administration has announced that come November 2021, all travel restrictions imposed on travelers entering the US from certain countries will be lifted. Until then, physical presence in the below mentioned countries within 14 days prior to direct travel prohibits them from entering the country.

  • China;
  • Iran; 
  • European Schengen area (Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Monaco, San Marino, Vatican City); 
  • United Kingdom (England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland); 
  • Republic of Ireland; 
  • Brazil; 
  • South Africa; 
  • India

After November, travelers entering the United States will be required to provide proof of being fully vaccinated for COVID-19 prior to boarding an airplane flying into the US in addition to showing a pre-travel negative COVID-19 test result.

Children under 12 years of age are exempted from the mandatory vaccination requirement. This is until WHO approves a universal vaccination for minors.

Land Travel Into The USA

Land borders around the US have been closed since March 21, 2021. These land border closures are expected to be revised after October 21, 2021. The following are applicable until then – 

  • Except for essential workers and services, land borders between the US and Canada and US and Mexico will remain closed until October 21, 2021.
  • Since July 5, 2021, fully vaccinated Canadian citizens and permanent residents are not required to quarantine upon entry.
  • U.S., Canadian, and Mexican citizens and permanent residents are exempted from the border crossing restrictions if they are returning to their home country
  • Travel restrictions are not applicable to those entering the US for medical purposes
  • Travel restrictions are not applicable to those entering the US for educational or work purposes including cross-border trade like truck drivers
  • Border crossing is also not applicable to individuals engaged in official government or military-related travel or operations