TAAI meets Sanjay Verma in Ministry of External Affairs regarding visa issues

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TAAI

On June 17, 2022 Jyoti Mayal, President, TAAI had an interaction with Sanjay Verma, Secretary – West, Ministry of External Affairs, Government of India. The meeting request was made to the MEA to discuss and deliberate on the delay in the issuance of Visas to the United States, Schengen and other countries. In a communication addressed to the Minister of External Affairs TAAI sought interference of MEA through a government-to- government dialogue to address the issues.

TAAI has been regularly taking up issues related to the ease of travel & tourism with concerned ministries & stakeholders & thus increasing footfalls for outbound, inbound & domestic markets. While sharing the concerns of the industry with Verma, Mayal said that we at TAAI are seeking MEA’s assistance by way of addressing the issues and challenges faced by the travel trade fraternity of India to make it more robust.

Mayal conveyed that the issuance of Visas to the United States, and many Schengen countries, especially Greece is a major hurdle that travel trade fraternity is facing these days. Members; clients have been reaching out to TAAI that they are unable to secure an appointment for visas for travellers & then the long delays in visa issuance with no proper communication is another challenge.

In addition, some missions keep the passports for an indefinite period resulting in uncertainty & cancellations which incur a huge cost to the traveller given that confirmed air tickets & hotel vouchers are a requirement for visa applications, which must be done away with, requested Mayal. Further, she conveyed that the extension of the free visas to India and the duration to be of minimum 6 months with multiple entries must be resumed immediately. In line with that, e-Visa must be reinstated for all countries including UK & Canada as pre covid, to boost inbound tourism.

Verma took the note of suggestions and issues and conveyed his assurance to look into some of the matters on priority.