Nicolas Bouliane

How to apply for an Indian Tourist Visa in Kathmandu Posted on

This is how I got my Indian Tourist Visa at the Indian Visa Service Center in Kathmandu, Nepal in October 2022. There is almost no information about this online, so these instructions might help.

This is possible for all visa applicants, not just Nepalese people. This is my experience as a Canadian citizen.

Tourist visa or e-Visa?

People from certain countries can apply for an Indian e-Visa. It’s faster and easier to get, but you must enter India by air. An e-Visa does not let you enter India by land.

Apply for an Indian eVisa here

The instructions below are for the regular tourist visa, not the e-Visa.

Step 1. Fill the visa application form

Go to It doesn’t look like it, but it’s the official website. Select the Regular/Paper Visa application.

You will need to fill the application form online. It takes around 15 minutes. At the end, you get a PDF that you can print.

The form is confusing, and people often make the same mistakes:

Print the form and sign it.

Attach a 51 mm x 51 mm (2 inch x 2 inch) passport photo.

This business can review your application form, print it, and make passport photos for you. It’s right next to the Indian Visa Service Center. It cost me around 500 rupees. I highly recommend it. They are very busy when the IVSC opens. Try going the day before.

This business can print your application form and make photos

Step 2. Submit your application in person

Go to the Indian Visa Service Center near Thamel, not the Indian Embassy on the same street. It opens at 9:30. Arrive a bit earlier if you can, especially on a Monday or after a public holiday.

The Indian Visa Service Center in Kathmandu

At the counter, give your application form and your passport.

If you made a mistake in your application, two things can happen:

If they tell you to fill the form again, just go to this business. It’s faster.

You can keep your passport. You don’t need to pay anything yet.

Step 3. Wait

10 to 30 days later, you will get an email from visa.india ( In my case, it took 20 days because of holidays.

The email tells you to go to the IVSC at a certain time (mine said “tomorrow, 10AM sharp”) to pay for your visa.

I was not in Kathmandu, so I called them. On the second try, they answered the phone and told me that I can come a few days later.

Step 4. Pay for your visa

Go to pay for your visa. They only accept cash. They only accept Nepalese rupees. Bring the exact amount, because they don’t always have change. In my case, it cost 12,580 NPR, or around 100 USD.

You can withdraw money from ATMs along this road. ATMs in Nepal are very unreliable, so you might have to try a few ATMs to find one that works. My MasterCard did not work anywhere that day, but my Visa card worked on the first try. There is usually a 500 NPR withdrawal fee.

The IVSC employee will take your passport, give you a receipt, and tell you to come back tomorrow at 10 AM.

Step 5. Collect your visa

Come back the next day at 10 AM, and pick up your passport with your visa in it.

My tourist visa was valid from the day I paid and gave my passport. It was valid for 3 months as I asked.

Bonus tip: be kind

In my 3 visits, I saw dozens of angry, stressed, impatient travellers. Everyone needs to catch a plane, to go somewhere else, to get everything right now. Don’t be one of them. Be kind and patient to the staff. They have to deal with the worst people all day, every day.

Do not try to bribe the staff with chocolate. I’ve seen it fail.

Let me know how it went

I will not go through this process again, but I will try to keep this post updated. If this helped you, give me a little bit of feedback. It will help other people. Just email me.