Almost 10 million tourists visited India 2019 — and a quarter of them preferred e-visas


  • In 2019, almost 10 million foreign tourists visited India — spending over ₹1,800 billion ( ₹188,364 crore) during January to November period.
  • This may be attributed to easy access to e-visas and other government schemes.
  • Of the total foreign visitors, over 2.5 million arrived on an e-tourist visa.
  • The government undertook over 100 development projects to fulfil the infrastructural demands of Indian tourism, infusing ₹68.75 billion ( ₹6875 crore)
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As many as 10 million foreign tourists visited India in 2019. And they spent over ₹1,800 billion (₹188,364 crore) between January and November. That is 3.2% growth from last year.

This may be attributed to easy access to e-visas and government schemes. Of the total foreign visitors, over 2.5 million arrived on an e-tourist visa — which grew by 24%.

The government launched a five-year duration visa and one-month e-tourist visa. It also reduced application fee on e-visas. The one-month e-visa now costs between $10 - $25.
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“Foreign Exchange Earnings (FEEs) during the period January- November 2019 were ₹188,364 crore as compared to ₹175,407 crore during January to November 2018 registering a growth of 7.4%,” the tourism ministry said.

According to the Ministry of Tourism, the government spent ₹68.75 billion ( ₹6875 crore) to improve tourism infrastructure. This includes over 100 such projects under the Swadesh Darshan Scheme and National Mission on Pilgrimage Rejuvenation and Spiritual, Heritage Augmentation Drive (PRASHAD) scheme.

These projects are being implemented across the country to develop pilgrimage destinations and other thematic tourism circuits.
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India’s rank in the Travel & Tourism Competitiveness Index (TTCI) crawled up 30 spots to rank 34th in 2019 — compared to 65th in 2013.

In the budget session 2019-20, the Indian government also introduced a Tax Refund for Tourists (TRT) scheme, allowing foreigners to spend more.

“This sector has the capacity to boost the economy, foreign exchange earnings and provides a large number of jobs at every level,” the ministry said.
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