We are in a digital age in travel and visas are no exception! When traveling to a country that offers an E-Visa (electronic visa) we need to decide if that visa is the best for our current and future travel plans. It might be more cost effective short term, but It might not work well for future travel because of validity.
India is a perfect example where they issue an E-Visa for short term tourist and business travel. Further, a traditional Indian visa stamped in one’s passport is still available for multi-entry tourist and business trips.
The Indian E-Visa is valid for 4 months and is only good for a double-entry with a maximum stay of 60 days. A maximum of two E-Visas can be issued for the same calendar year. It is valid at 24 airports in India and three designated seaports. Once you apply for the Indian E-VISA you receive an e-mail confirmation that you must print and carry with you. E-visas are NOT valid for private jet travel into India.
A traditional visa stamped in the passport is valid for anywhere from one to ten years multiple entry, and is issued for business or tourist travel. A traditional stamped visa is for those travelers that are making repeated trips to India for business or tourism or are doing a travel itinerary that involves entering India more than twice on a single trip.
E-visas can be processed in a few days, but the site tends to be cumbersome and slow and the traditional stamped visa though issued for a longer validity takes anywhere from 2-4 weeks or longer for processing based on the Indian jurisdiction in the US where the visa has to be processed.
Each traveler needs to evaluate their current and future travel to India to determine which Indian visa works best with their current and future travel plans.