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Guide to Residency in India

Learn how to obtain a residency visa in India. Expats, Retirees and others who have navigated the process offer advice and guidance for newcomers in India.
|-Guide to Residency in India

Obtaining a residency visa in India is not always easy, but our Guide to Residency in India gives newcomers an overview of the steps involved and advice from others who have already navigated the process.

  • Gather the necessary documents for residency status in India. These include a valid passport, visa, proof of address, and proof of income.
  • Visit the local Foreigners Regional Registration Office (FRRO) in the city where you are living. You may need to make an appointment in advance.
  • At the FRRO, fill out the application form for residency status and submit it along with the necessary documents.
  • Pay the applicable fees for the residency status.
  • Wait for the FRRO to process your application. This may take several weeks.
  • Once your application is approved, you will receive a Residence Permit (RP) card.
  • Apply for a Tax Number:
    • Visit the local Income Tax Office.
    • Fill out the application form for a Tax Number and submit it along with the necessary documents.
    • Pay the applicable fees for the Tax Number.
    • Wait for the Income Tax Office to process your application. This may take several weeks.
    • Once your application is approved, you will receive a Tax Number.
  • Keep your Residence Permit (RP) card and Tax Number with you at all times.

What tips do expats have about residency and visas in India?

“If you are planning to stay in India for a while, you will need to get a visa. Depending on the length of time you plan to stay in India, you may be eligible for a tourist, student or work visa. You will also need to provide copies of your passport and other relevant documents, such as proof of financial stability and health insurance, in order to obtain the visa,” said one expat living in India.

“The process of applying for a visa in India depends on the type of visa you are applying for. Generally, you must complete an online application form and submit copies of required documents, such as a passport, valid passport-sized photos, bank statements, and an authorized travel itinerary. You may also need to provide medical or employment documents, or proof of a valid Indian visa, depending on the type of visa you are applying for. If you are applying for residency in India, you must first obtain a valid visa, such as business or employment visa, or a spouse visa if married to an Indian national. Once you have the necessary visa, you are required to apply for a Resident Permit before you can reside in India for more than six months. To do so, you must submit an application form and copies of your passport, visa, address proof, bank statements and marriage certificate (if applicable) to the Foreigners Division of the Regional Passport Office. The Indian government then issues the Resident Permit,” commented one member living in India.

Betsy Burlingame Betsy Burlingame is the Founder and President of Expat Exchange and is one of the Founders of Digital Nomad Exchange. She launched Expat Exchange in 1997 as her Master's thesis project at NYU. Prior to Expat Exchange, Betsy worked at AT&T in International and Mass Market Marketing. She graduated from Ohio Wesleyan University with a BA in International Business and German.

Some of Betsy's articles include 12 Best Places to Live in Portugal, 7 Best Places to Live in Panama and 12 Things to Know Before Moving to the Dominican Republic. Betsy loves to travel and spend time with her family. Connect with Betsy on LinkedIn.

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