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Written by Alex on May 15, 2020 Share on

Visa For Bhutan – Do Indians Need To Get Bhutanese Visa?

Bhutan is one of the friendly nations of India and one of the popular travel destinations for Indians. The country offers so much more than mountains. Being a part of the Silk Road, the Kingdom of Bhutan has a wide variety of flora, palaces and museums. The country is beautiful and rich in its own way and definitely worth a visit. Like any other country, Bhutan also has its own procedure of allowing foreign nationals. Here’s what everything you should know as an Indian before you enter Bhutan. Read on to find whether Visa is needed or not for Indians to enter Bhutan.

Amazing view of Paro taktsang in Bhutan
Photo by Sam Power on Unsplash

Is a Visa for Bhutan necessary for Indians?

The answer is No and Yes, Indian passport holders need not possess a visa to enter Bhutan. Bhutan shares the border with India and the two governments have been in very good terms for a long time. These had let to few relaxations to access the Bhutanese land. Though the Indians don’t need Visa, there are certain credentials that they have to carry to gain entry to Bhutan.

The Permit to Enter Bhutan

Indian passport holders are required to hold a permit issued from the Immigration Office in Phuntsholing in order to enter Bhutan. The permit holds its value for a period of seven days from the date of issue. You must display the permit whenever asked in the checkpoints. If you wish to extend your stay over there beyond 7 days, you will have to visit the Immigration office again and apply for the prolongation of the permit’s validity. The permit to Enter Bhutan for Indians is completely free of cost.

Documents required for the Permit

As stated above, there are some documents that the Immigration office requires to issue a Permit to enter Bhutan. You have to produce the below documents to get the entry permit to Bhutan.

  • Passport: Alike any other country, it is mandatory that you have your passport and you need to submit a copy of the same.
  • Passport Alternative: If you don’t hold a passport, you can submit a copy of Voter ID issued by Election Commission of India. This is possible as a result of the good relationship between both countries.
  • For children: The Children below the age of 18 will have to submit their Birth Certificate and credible school identity card.
  • Photographs: You should submit 2 passport-sized coloured photographs to the Immigration office.
  • Accommodation info: The submission of details regarding accommodation or lodging details along with the address is mandatory.

You can only visit Thimpu and Paro with the Entry Permit. There is a special Bhutan permit to get if Indian citizens need to access other regions. This “Special Area Permit” can be applied by producing the following credentials.

  • Route Permit: A photocopy of the Route Permit needs to be produced. Your Entry Permit contains the Route Permit.
  • Application form: You have to submit the justly filled application form to the immigration office.
  • Car Permit: If you want to admire the beauty of Bhutan with driving, you will also need an Extension Permit. You can get this at the office of Road Safety and Transportation Authority (RSTA).

Where to Get the Permit?

You will have to get the permit to enter Bhutan from the Immigration Office of the Royal Government at Phuentsholing. It is located at the Indo-Bhutanese Border and you will have to submit your required credentials here. You will have to get your “Special Area Permit” at the Royal Government of Bhutan Immigration Office at Thimpu. The issue of the permit will not take more than an hour in most cases. In the event of driving your own car, it is mandatory to visit RSTA to get your Extension Permit.
Important Note: If you enter Bhutan by air, you should apply and get your permit at the Paro International Airport. The Airport authorities will guide you on the same.

Indian Embassy in Bhutan

The Indian Embassy of Bhutan is located in the Thimpu region. The Embassy operates on all the weekdays and closes on Saturdays and Sundays.

Address of Embassy : 193, Jungshina, Thimpu.
Contact number : +975 2 322162
Website of Embassy : www.indembthimpu.gov.in
Emergency consular : +975 17128429

Now that you have known that you don’t need a Visa to enter Bhutan and aware of the procedure, it is time to start planning to Visit beautiful Bhutan.
Bhutan is one of the countries that are easily accessible and it is a country with marvellous landscapes. Start Planning and Happy Travelling!

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