India Embassy Changes US Visa Outsource Provider Again

India outsources visa processing in the US and has gone from provider to provider. In 2013 the much-praised Travisa was switched to the much-criticized BLS. The situation got so bad that the Times of India reported a switch, effective May 21, 2014, to Cox & King Global Services Ltd.

The Embassy of India in Washington, D.C. has issued two press releases. The first confirms the switch and provides details for those with in-process applications. The second lists contacts for the new process, which can be found at the new Cox & King India visa website.

The Cox & King India visa offices are:

Washington DC– Suite 100, 1250, 23rd Street NW, Washington, DC 20037

New York– 2nd Floor, 235 West, 23rd Street, New York, NY 10011

Chicago- Suite 1003, 19 S, La Salle Street, Chicago, IL 60603

San Francisco– 1st Floor, 225 Bush Street, San Francisco, CA 94104

Houston– Suite 550, 1001 Texas Avenue, Binz Building, Houston, TX 77002

Atlanta– 1st Floor, Suite 180, 5883 Glenridge Drive, Atlanta, Georgia 32328

Cox & King exclusively handles visa applications, so working with other visa agencies just adds a middleman and fees.

There have been reports that India will begin Visa on Arrival for US citizen tourists sometime late in 2014, though it is not finalized and any launch date should be taken with skepticism.

Until then, for frequent visitors, there is a bilateral agreement that provides for 10-year, multiple-entry tourist visas for US citizens, which is $150 plus fees compared to $60 plus fees for the standard 6-month, multiple-entry tourist visa.

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  • Joey

    The 10 year multiple visa entry is AWESOME! I got mine in late 2012 back when the India visa office was on east 53rd st. Hopefully it will become visa on arrival by 2022 (when my visa expires!)

  • Captain

    When I applied for my Visa in December, it was a total nightmare. I filled the form 3 times only to have the website crash towards the end of the process. The next day I simply wanted to talk to someone at BLS with a few quick questions. I called 57 times during the day and never spoke to a single person. I finally took all of my paperwork to A. Briggs and paid them to deal with the idiots for me.
    Smart move by India to make a change.

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  • DaveS

    Basically I think the IHG move is a good one. People booking too many places speculatively, as some bloggers have long recommended, does serve to block out anyone else. It’s a selfish thing to do. From IHG’s perspective, the idea was never to just accommodate a select few, so this will indeed open it up to more customers.

  • sonia

    Its a nightmare with the new provider in San Francisco, read more here: http://www.sfexaminer.com/sanfrancisco/outsourced-indian-visa-company-angers-crowd/Content?oid=2806904

  • @sonia – thanks for sharing. I need to figure out what happened back with Travisa, when I did my 10-year India visa with them in NYC, the process was perhaps the best I have had for any visa, anywhere.

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  • ffi

    Travisa worked very efficiently. A bit too efficiently.

    I went without reserving a spot and even though they were empty, they refused to see me and sent me back online to rebook a spot for the next day.

    From what I can tell BLS and CGKS are much much worse