For anyone who frequently travels to and from India, an OCI Card (Overseas Citizens of Indian card) is an absolute must. This card makes it incredibly easy to travel back into India, without having to worry about common international travel hiccups. If you used to live in India and frequently return to visit family and old friends, then you know how important your OCI card is to a smooth and successful trip.
However, what happens when weeks or days before your planned trip, you realize you can’t find your OCI card? Since this is a physical card, the chances of misplacing or losing it are high, and such an oversight can significantly impact your trip. Do you cancel and risk not receiving a full refund? Do you apply for another OCI card?
Why You Shouldn’t Apply for a New OCI Card Moments Before Your Trip
Many people would immediately apply for a replacement OCI card, hoping their new card arrives in time for them to possibly still make their journey. Applying for a new card is not a simple process. To begin you must first:
File a police report – even if you firmly believe your card is just misplaced, you should take this precaution in case someone tried to steal your identity. In fact, to apply for a new OCI card now, you must have a copy of this police report.
Interview – in some cases a personal interview may be requested so that foul play can be ruled out.
Apply online for your new card – you may then proceed to apply for your new card. You’ll need your police report, passport number, OCI registration or file number (alternatively a U-Visa number will work), and date of birth. This will then lead you through the process of reapplying for your OCI card. You’ll then need to print, sign, and mail all required papers and documents and wait for your new card. In general, you can expect to receive it within a month (possibly longer).
Find A Better Option with iVisa
If you don’t have a month to spare, you’re not completely out of luck! While you will need to reapply for your OCI card eventually, you don’t have to cancel your trip because of your misfortune. Instead, apply for an eTourist Visa with iVisa. This tourist visa will allow you to safely and quickly enter India and won’t delay your time at the airport.
You’ll receive your eTourist Visa from iVisa electronically, within 18 hours of applying (if you choose the rush service). You won't have to worry about losing it since it's stored safely and securely in your email inbox. This visa is valid for 30 days from your arrival in India, and the application process is handled entirely online. All you need is a passport and digital photo to get started.
If you’re worried about missing a trip to India because of a lost OCI card, apply for your eTourist Visa with iVisa and make your trip with peace of mind.