Additional visa services available to Indian applicants

31 Mar 16

UNITED KINGDOM

IMPACT – MEDIUM

What is the change? The U.K.’s visa contractor, VFS Global, is offering several new services to visa applicants in India for additional government fees.

What does the change mean? The new services include walk-in appointments for urgent travelers, “home-to-home” options such as chauffeur service, longer business hours, premium lounge and other personalized services, group appointment booking, a digital assistant, an online payment option, and a final application review.

Implementation time frame: Immediate and ongoing.

Who is affected: U.K. visa applicants in India; some services are limited to certain jurisdictions in India. The walk-in service is also available to Indian applicants applying for Irish visas.

Impact on processing times: The service options do not necessarily affect processing times but may expedite the overall process in completing the application steps.

Business impact: The additional services provide flexibility and convenience for those needing urgent service or personalized assistance.

Background: The new options are as follows. Government fees for the special services are on top of normal government visa fees.

Service Description Government fee Availability
Walk-in Applicants who need urgent service or who cannot book an appointment at their preferred time may obtain walk-in service. Also available for Irish visas. 2,548 rupees per applicant Ahmedabad, Bangalore, Chandigarh, Chennai, Cochin, Hyderabad, Jalandhar, Kolkata, Mumbai North, Mumbai South, New Delhi, Pune.
Home to Home Chauffeur service to/from visa application centers, extended business hours, premium lounge, personalized staff assistance, free return courier and photo copy service, digital assistant and “get it right” services. 9,000 rupees per applicant Ahmedabad, Bangalore, Chennai, Hyderabad, Gurgaon PL, Mumbai North, Mumbai South, New Delhi.
Group Booking Group travelers may book their visa appointments at the same location and time. 502 rupees per applicant All visa application centers.
Certification Applicants may submit color copies of supporting documents to be certified by VFS, enabling applicants to retain original documents. 50 rupees per page Please contact your BAL representative for availability.
Digital Assistant Applicants may have their answers to the visa application form transcribed verbatim into the online format. 402 rupees per applicant Ahmedabad, Bangalore, Chandigarh, Chennai,  Cochin, Hyderabad, Jalandhar, Kolkata, Mumbai North, Mumbai South, New Delhi, Pune.
Online Payment Applicants may pay visa fees in cash by using a VFS credit card. 1,004 rupees per applicant-transaction Hyderabad, Jalandhar, Kolkata, New Delhi.

 

“Get It Right” Applicants may have their applications reviewed for completeness by VFS staff and may email missing documents within seven days after their appointment. 300 rupees per applicant All visa application centers.

BAL Analysis: The U.K. is expanding optional services to applicants in India that have proven popular in other countries. Applicants are reminded that use of these optional additional services does not guarantee a successful visa decision.

This alert has been provided by the BAL Global Practice group in the United Kingdom. For additional information, please contact uk@balglobal.com.

Copyright © 2016 Berry Appleman & Leiden LLP. All rights reserved. Reprinting or digital redistribution to the public is permitted only with the express written permission of Berry Appleman & Leiden LLP. For inquiries please contact copyright@balglobal.com.