Visa applications in India this year set to surpass 2019 record
The number of visa applications filed in India this calendar year is all set to cross pre-pandemic 2019 levels. This despite the continuing crunch for two major destinations, the US and Schengen states, which have long interview wait times and appointment count capping, respectively, and sky-high airfares.
VFS Global, which manages visa applications for more than 50 countries, says it has from January to June 2023 processed well over 30 lakh visa applications in India as opposed to 60 lakh in 2019, which had faced none of the challenges currently being seen. Incidentally, 2019 was a record year for visa lodgements in India, which 2023 is now all set to better.
“We are expecting to surpass pre-pandemic visa application volumes by the end of this calendar year. There has been a robust rebound in outbound travel sentiments. Despite initial scepticism, the level of bounce-back has resulted in a demand-supply gap,” said Prabuddha Sen, VFS Global COO (South Asia) . International airfares have refused to drop after the 2021-22 reopening of borders globally. It is not uncommon to find what once used to be return fare is now just the one-way price. Despite this crunch, the demand is back. (Source TOI)