Seychelles – Visa on Arrival with Indian Passport

Wife and I landed at Mahe Airport in The Seychelles last month. Had to fill out an immigration form and a health declaration. The immigration officer asked us for our return tickets. Then stamped a permit on the passport and let us through. No trouble at all and super easy. The permit was set to expire on our date of departure as per the ticket – no grace period of any sort there.

There is no excuse to not go to Seychelles. No visa and its only a 5 hour direct flight from Mumbai. The photos below should inspire you further!

 
Cat Cocos Jetty - Praslin Island, Seychelles

Granite Boulders - Anse Georgette, Seychelles

More Anse Georgette, Seychelles

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Hong Kong & Macau

My wife and I recently visited both Hong Kong and Macau on our Indian passports. Our passports were brand new with new previous visas from any country. We were issued visas on arrival and allowed entry into both HK and Macau with no questions asked, no visa fees or any other complication. We got 14-day stay permissions. Both regions no longer stamp visitor passports, but instead give you a small paper slip with details of how long you can stay – try not to loose this slip.

Fiji – Hassle free Visa on Arrival

Fiji gives visa on arrival to a large number of countries. My wife and I recently visited Fiji using our Indian Passports, and had no trouble entering or exiting without a visa. We had to fill an immigration form and a health-declaration (ebola related). The immigration officers didn’t ask for anything else. They just stamped our passport with a 4 month stay permit and let us in. Didn’t cost any money either.

FYI – we used fresh passports – with no previous visas or even entry stamps from any other country.

India’s Visa on Arrival – torn down

For those of us hoping that other countries would reciprocate and give Indians visa on arrival – I hate do dash your hopes.

Quoting the Indian Express: “The Bureau of Immigration will set up a website for this and upon submission of an application, it will email an electronic visa/travel authorisation within 2-3 days, allowing the tourist to enter India and also facilitate easier verification at airports.” (http://bit.ly/1fyO2U2)

You may have noticed statements like the above buried at the bottom of all newspaper articles announcing “Visa on Arrival” in India for 180 countries. This above statement doesn’t suggest “visa on arrival” at all!!

For it to be actually “visa on arrival”, the tourist should just be able to turn up at an Indian airport and complete all visa formalities there. Looks like India will still be requiring tourists to get a visa before travel. 

Of course, if they implement what they promise, applying for a visa online and receiving it electronically is a far cry above having to wait in line for hours at various Indian Embassies around the world. So Kudos anyway!

Indonesia Visa on Arrival (Denpasar, Bali).

Visa Type: Visa On Arrival

Country: Indonesia

Airport: Ngurah Rai Airport, Denpasar, Bali

Experience:

It was a breeze. No questions asked. No documents viewed. Only a fee of USD 25 per head taken. Good idea to have US Dollars at hand – they do take other currencies but exchange rates are bad.

I did not have side-by-side blank pages in my passport. I had 2 blank pages but far apart from each other. This did not present any problem. The officer used literally half-a-page for the visa sticker and his stamps (the entry & exit stamps were both on top of the visa sticker – no additional space used).

Official guidance says the following are required: Two blank pages in passport, 6 month passport validity, onward air tickets, hotel bookings. But the officer didn’t look for any of these things (except I presume he checked my passport for validity – but that wasn’t an issue for me as the passport is valid for many years yet).

Note: You need to pay IDR 150,000 per head departure tax on your way out. Ensure you keep that much in Rupiah at the end of your trip.

Visa Free Travel to Mexico – if you have a US visa

I just read on the website of the Mexican embassy in London that people of ALL nationalities do not require a visa to Mexico, if they hold a valid USA visa. Have you tried entering Mexico on a US visa? Please share your experience in the comments below.

Here is the exact wording from the Embassy of Mexico …
“According to the new regulations, from the 1st of May 2010 it is not necessary to apply for a tourist, business or transit Mexican visa if you hold a VALID VISA for the United States of America -regardless the nationality- . Immigration authorities in Mexico will ask for your US visa and a valid passport when you arrive. ”

“Permanent residents in Canada, Japan, The United Kingdom (Indefinite Leave to Remain in the UK), The United States of America or the Schengen countries wishing to travel to Mexico do not require a visa to enter the country as a tourists and business visitors for a 180-day stay and as a visitors in transit for a 30-day stay.”

This is an extract from an email I got from the Consulate of Mexico in Washington DC: “If you have a valid passport (any nationality) and a valid US visa (any kind of visa) or green card, you do not need a tourist visa to visit Mexico”

Adding my first hand experience below
The wife and I traveled to Mexico in August 2012. We have US L1 and L2 visas, and we also have older B1/B2 visas. The Immigration Officers at Cancun Airport just looked at our US B1/B2 visas, stamped our passports and let us in. No questions, no hassles, no need for a Mexico visa.