How to Upgrade your Indian Passport ?

I know how frustrating it can be when your Indian passport allows only visa free entries to 58 countries. Having to wait endlessly and applying every time when you want to go to a exciting country.  Fortunately there a few loopholes in this system, that i have found after travelling extensively 

So recently an incident happened that prompted me to write this blog and make a video about this.  I had applied for a New Zealand tourist visa like a month back. After waiting and calling them endlessly eventually we had to cancel our flight tickets, accommodation and activities. 

I had just 1 week to plan for another trip and not waste my Diwali vacation.  I was able to plan an entire trip about which you will learn in the next blog but while doing that i learned a great deal about how to upgrade our sub standard Indian passport. 

1. No Visa Required –  To begin with our passport allows us Visa-free entry to the following countries. That is you just need to book your flight tickets and not even pay visa fees at the immigration desk. 

  Bhutan   El Salvador    Fiji   Grenada   Haiti   Dominica   Ecuador

 Indonesia   Jamaica   Maldives   Mauritius  Micronesia   Qatar

 Saint Kitts and Nevis  Saint Vincent and the Grenadines   Senegal   Serbia

 Trinidad and Tobago  Tunisia  Vanuatu    Nepal   Seychelles

But let’s be honest here. There are some countries up here that you have not even heard of or are so far away it would really burn a whole in you pocket just to reach there.  

The only real places that an Indian traveler would be visiting are Seychelles, Nepal, Bhutan, Maldives, Mauritius and Indonesia. Although I highly recommend you considering Serbia, Tunisia and Qatar. Really beautiful places.  

2. Visa On Arrival – Certain countries also provide visa on arrival but will demand a small fee for the visa and will have a stipulated time before which you must leave the country

 Bolivia   Cape Verde   Comoros   Iran   Jordan   Laos   Madagascar 

 Marshall Islands   Mauritania   Mozambique  Palau   Saint Lucia

 Somalia  Tanzania   Thailand   Timor-Leste   Togo   Tuvalu   Ukraine

 Samoa   Suriname

Most of the above mentioned countries would not be in someone’s bucket list. But countries like Bolivia, Iran, Jordan, Laos, Madagascar, Ukraine are a must do for Indian travelers

3. E – Visas – So basically e-visas are nothing but applying online for a visa without any help and it is just like filling up any form and usually all applications are accepted. This is a very easy way of getting a visa without hassle. Although processing times may vary from country to country so check that out before you apply 

 Antigua and Barbuda    Angola  Azerbaijan  Bahrain   Côte d’Ivoire

 Djibouti   Georgia   Kyrgyzstan   Lesotho   Myanmar  Singapore

 São Tomé and Príncipe   Tajikistan   Uzbekistan   Vietnam   Zambia

In this list the best countries to visit are Georgia, Azerbaijan, Vietnam, Singapore

4. Both – VOA + E-Visas: Now there are a few countries which have option for visa on arrival and E-visas. Go with whatever suits you best.  

 Armenia   Benin   Cambodia   Ethiopia   Gabon   Guinea-Bissau

 Kenya   Rwanda   Sri Lanka   Uganda   Zimbabwe  

 Malaysia – For Malaysia it is applicable if you are travelling from Singapore, Thailand or Indonesia or have a Valid tourist visa for the same countries 

UPGRADING YOUR INDIAN PASSPORT

Now that you have an idea of what countries you can visit with your current passport statues, it is now time for an upgrade

Once you have traveled to a few countries apply for a US visa. If you apply US visa without travelling anywhere else there are chances that you might not get it. Usually they give a tourist visa for 10 years. With a US tourist visa you get VOA/ no visa required for 24 awesome countries. 

List of countries Indians can visit with a valid US Visa  

Asia

  1. UAE (Visa on arrival for 14 days)
    Free transit in Dubai & Abu Dhabi for 48 hours even if you don’t have US visa
  2. Philippines (Visa-free entry for 14 days)
  3. Singapore (Visa-free transit for 96 hours)
  4. Taiwan (Online Travel certificate is a must)
  5. Malaysia (Transit pass for 120 hours only in group tours)
  6. South Korea (Visa-Free for 30 days if you transit to or from USA from or to India. Visa-Free to visit Jeju island for 30 days)
  7. Oman (e-Visa for 30 days)

Europe

  1. Turkey (e-Visa for 30 days)
  2. Georgia (Visa-free entry for 90 days)
  3. United Kingdom (Free transit)
  4. Montenegro (Visa-free entry for 30 days)
  5. Albania (Visa-free, only with multi-entry US visa, visited US atleast once)
  6. Macedonia (Entry for 15 days)
  7. Bosnia & Herzegovina (Visa-free entry for 30 days)

North & Central America

  1. Mexico (Visa-free for 180 days)
  2. Guatemala (Visa free entry)
  3. Belize (Visa-free for 30 days US multiple entry visa holders only)
  4. Honduras (as mentioned by other tourists, official document awaited)
  5. El Salvador (as mentioned by other tourists, official document awaited)
  6. Nicaragua (as mentioned by other tourists, official document awaited)
  7. Costa Rica (Visa-free for 30 days for US multiple entry visa holders only)
  8. Panama (Visa-free, only with multi-entry US visa, visited US atleast once)
  9. Cuba (Free transit for 72 hours, Tourist card needed for more than that)
  10. Bahamas (Entry letter upon arrival, official document awaited)

South America

  1. Colombia (Visa-Free entry)

 

Benefit of a Singapore Visa – sometimes you can get a valid Singapore visa for 2 years. With this Singapore visa you can travel to Philippines and Malaysia where you will get Visa on arrival for 14 days, which i think is excellent

So do not let your Indian passport hold you back. Follow these few guidelines and i am sure you will have multiple immigration stamps on your passport.

Just a word of caution, visa laws keep changing all the time. Best to research every time before you leave

Check out my Video on the same topic for a more visual experience   

    

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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