Visa on Arrival for Indians in Bhutan

By Mridula Dwivedi September 20, 2014 29 Comments , ,

Visa on arrival for Indians in Bhutan is a simple process. My experience of getting was quite smooth. As only Druk Air, the national carrier of Bhutan, flies into the country, it is quite unlike other airports in the world. There are no jet planes landing one after the other, leading to huge queues at visa counters! At Paro International Airport in Bhutan, it doesn’t get crowded as there are not too many flights that are landing at the same time! And it you were wondering, Druk means dragon in the local language.

Druk Air is the only Carrier that Flies into Bhutan!
Druk Air is the only Carrier that Flies into Bhutan!

When you are flying into Bhutan you should ask for a left hand side window seat to get the views of high mountains. While coming back it is the other way round. There is no online check-in available with Druk Air so it pays to go to the airport early if you are keen on that window seat.

The Landing at Paro, Bhutan
The Landing at Paro, Bhutan

Indians need a valid passport or a voter’s ID card to enter into Bhutan by air. I was using my passport but a journalist in our group could easily enter on his voter’s ID card. At the immigration counter they usually ask for the name of the hotel you are going to stay at. They did not ask me for the reservation proof but I had it ready if they wanted to inspect it.

Immigration at Paro Airport, Bhutan
Immigration at Paro Airport, Bhutan

As it was only our flight that had landed and there were many counters, getting the visa on arrival was a breeze. I handed my passport, the immigration officer asked for my hotel name and just as he was about to stamp my passport, I made my request with folded hands, “Please use a used page of my passport, there are very few fresh pages remaining.” I have 5 pages left in my passport which is valid for the next five years! He was kind enough to listen to me and stamp a used page. Since I became aware that my passport pages may run out before its validity, I have been requesting immigration officers at various airports, including Delhi, not to use a fresh page. Surprisingly they are quite accommodating about it!

It was that easy, in the end, to get a visa on arrival for Bhutan on my Indian passport!

PS. I was invited by Makemytrip to visit Bhutan

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29 thoughts on “Visa on Arrival for Indians in Bhutan”

  1. Just saw at your blog : 100 things to know about India before you travel

    Nice design/photo and congratulations but a wish:
    1. Is it FREE for travel bloggers? 🙂 If not, I wish it was for all or selected ones.
    2. Author name if was somewhere else better at least Sky was more visible.
    3. When is the party party party as you have launched a book.

    1. Tushar as I said to you in the mail too, I did it just for the heck of it. I used Kindle Direct Publishing and thanks for noticing.

  2. Hey,
    Do you know if Bhutan has restrictions on solo travelers, i’ve come across contradictory information and i was wondering if you knew. Thanks

    1. Hi,

      As I am an indian the solo travel restriction doesn’t apply to me 😀 Otherwise you are right, it is there in place.

  3. Hi Mridula,

    Great post 🙂 … I am an Indian and plan to visit Bhutan later this year… I’ve come across some posts stating that solo indian travellers are being denied entry permits when entering via road .. Just wondering if you know anything about this recent development?? Any forum I could confirm this??

    I’d hate to turn back from phuentsholing empty handed if this is the case…
    Thanks

    1. I have also only read on them on travel forums. But when people as k to quote someone who was actually turned away, I do not find anyone coming forward and saying they were turned away. But no personal experience to back up this observation!

  4. I am travelling to Bhutan via Air, I have an Indian Passport, but a resident of Australia. I am staying at my friends place in Bhutan. What do I say to them if they ask me about the hotel booking?
    do they need any proof of my friend that I will be staying there?

    Regards

  5. Pl check the visa expiry date before leaving the counter which I had not..The immigration officer made the visa for 5 days inspite of me showing the itinerary for 7 days. I had to pay the fine unnecessarily for no fault of mine while returning.

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Mridula Dwivedi

I started my India travel blog, Travel Tales from India in 2005. In 2016 I realized Travel Tales from India and Abroad better reflected my writings. I love to walk and ride in metros around the world. I have not been everywhere, I am not even close, but it is on my list. I also quite my job as a professor in 2015, it was a happening year! I did a Ph.D. from IIT Kanpur ages ago!

If you wish to collaborate with me, please check out my media kit. You can write to me at mridulablog@gmail.com

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