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Planning a business trip to India from Singapore? One of the first things to do is get hold of an Indian business visa. This grants you access to the country for all kinds of business purposes, from setting up a new company to meeting with potential new suppliers.
Here, we’ll cover everything you need to know about applying for a business visa for India. This includes the different visa types, the documents you’ll need to provide as a Singaporean resident and of course, how much it costs.
Open a Wise multi-currency account, and you can cover all your business expenses in the local currency with your own Platinum Business Mastercard. Tap, spend and move onto the next meeting - it’s that simple.
But more on that later. First, let’s get you an Indian business visa.
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There are two main types of Indian business visa available to Singaporean citizens. The first is a standard business visa, while the second is a business e-visa.
The main difference between these two types is that you can apply for the e-visa online.
Not all countries are eligible for the India business e-visa, but the good news is that Singapore is¹. This means you should be able to save yourself some time and effort by applying for your business visa online.
A standard business visa lasts for 5 years and covers multiple entries into India from Singapore. However, you can only stay for a maximum of 6 months per visit.²
The Indian business e-visa is also multiple entry, with a maximum stay of 6 months per visit. But this type of visa is only valid for 1 year.¹
Whether you apply online or through an application form, you’ll need to provide certain documents. Singaporean residents are required to supply the following with their application:³
- A valid passport with a minimum validity of six months.
- A colour photograph of yourself, with a white background.
- An invitation letter from a relevant Indian business.
- A recommendation letter from your company in Singapore - both this and the invitation letter should ideally set out the purpose and duration of the business trip.
- A certificate of incorporation for the Indian company which has issued your invitation letter.
Now, let’s look at the steps you need to follow to apply for your business visa to India. Let’s start with the standard business visa application:
- Head to https://indianvisaonline.gov.in/visa to fill in your application form.
- Submit your form and supporting documents to an Indian Visa Application Centre (IVAC) in Singapore. IVACs are the only authorised agency for Indian visa services, and there are two branches in Singapore - one on International Plaza on Anson Road, and the other in Sim Lim Tower on Jalan Besar.⁴
- Pay your visa application fee in cash.
- Wait for your application to be processed, then pick up your business visa from the IVAC or receive it through the post.
For Indian business e-visas, the process is a little different. Follow these steps: ¹
- Go to https://indianvisaonline.gov.in/evisa/tvoa.html and apply online.
- Pay the fee for your eVisa using a credit or debit card.
- Once your application is processed, you’ll receive Electronic Travel Authorisation (ETA). This gives you the go-ahead to fly to India for your business trip.
- On arrival in India, your eVisa will be stamped on your passport.
Applications for Indian business visas take around three working days to process.⁵ This is the same for both the standard business visa and the e-visa.
It’s always recommended to apply for your Indian business visa in advance of your trip, just in case of any delays. Get your application in early while you’re still in Singapore, then all you’ll need to do is pack.
Just like other visa applications, there is a fee to pay to get an Indian business visa. This fee varies depending on your visa type, and which country you’re applying from.
As a Singaporean resident, you’ll pay an application fee of S$443 for a standard multiple entry Indian business visa lasting 5 years. This fee must be paid in cash only when you drop off your application at an Indian Visa Application Centre.⁶
A business e-visa is by far the cheaper option, as for residents of Singapore it’s only S$33. You can pay this online using a credit or debit card, but be aware that additional bank transaction charges may apply.⁷
Got your Indian visa application in already? Great. Now there’s just the matter of managing your money during your business trip.
Open a Wise Business account and you can spend in the local currency using your own Platinum Business Mastercard. With a few taps of your contactless card, you can cover all your expenses during your trip, from paying suppliers to making use of local transport. There are no hidden fees to worry about, and money is automatically converted if you don’t already have Indian rupees in your account.
And if you need to send money back to Singapore, or anywhere else in the world, you can do it for tiny fees and the mid-market exchange rate from your Wise account. Keep an eye on your money on the move, with just a few taps of the Wise app.
Applying for an Indian business visa should be relatively straightforward, provided you have all the right documents to hand. It’s great that there’s an online option too, so you can apply in Singapore just before your business trip.
After reading this guide, you should be all set to secure your visa and plan your trip to India - good luck!
Sources used for this article:
- Indian Bureau of Immigration - e-Visa
- Government of India - Ministry of Home Affairs - FAQs
- High Commision India - Singapore - Business Visa
- High Commision India - Singapore - Application Process
- India Visa Online
- High Commision India - Singapore - Visa Fees and Processing Time
- Government of India -Indian Online Visa - Country/Territory Wise e-Visa Fee (e-Business, e-Medical, e-Medical Attendant and e-Conference Visa)
Sources checked on 9 February 2021
This publication is provided for general information purposes and does not constitute legal, tax or other professional advice from Wise Payments Limited or its subsidiaries and its affiliates, and it is not intended as a substitute for obtaining advice from a financial advisor or any other professional.
We make no representations, warranties or guarantees, whether expressed or implied, that the content in the publication is accurate, complete or up to date.
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