Passport Services - Frequently Asked Question

1. When should I apply for passport?

The passport can be applied for reissue, one year before its expiry or for change in the entries in the existing passport.

2. Where can I apply for my passport?

The Consular jurisdiction of Embassy of India, Panama coavers whole of Panama, Costa Rica and Nicaragua.

Applications for reissue of passport, from Indian nationals resident in these countries, can be submitted at the Consular counter of Embassy of India, Panama during consular service hours from 9AM to 12AM from Monday to Friday except holidays. Indian nationals residing in Costa Rica and Nicaragua can also send their duly completed applications alongwith supporting documents and payment of applicable fee + US$20.00 towards bank charges( per bank draft/cheque) by international bank draft/bankers cheque in favour of Embassy of India, Panama through registered mail/courier with all charges paid & arrangements made  directly by the applicant for the delivery and Collection of documents.

3. My passport is expiring, I want to renew it. Where can I find application form ?

Online NRI passport application forms as available on the website of the Embassy can be used for submitting passport applications( link : https://passport.gov.in/nri/.).bullet  Dimensions of photographs required for Machine Readable Passports are 3.5 cm. x 3.5 cm (square shape) with a light background. Photos not meeting this specification will not be accepted. Applicant should put his/her signature in Black ink at the box specified on top of the front page of the application form.
Application forms should be filled in fully, legibly (in capital letters) accurately with black/blue ink only and submitted with the passport. Misrepresentation/suppression of the facts may result in denial of passport service. Incomplete/incorrect applications, applications with inadequate fee and the fee not paid in the prescribed manner will be returned without service.

4. Should I send copy of passport or original passport?

Duly filled in & signed application for reissue of passport alongwith original passport, copy of passport and copy of valid resident/work permit/cedula alongwith  prescribed photographs with applicable fee needs to be submitted.

5. When will my passport be issued?

The normal processing time of electronic (Machine Readable  Passport) is 1-2 weeks. Older handwritten passports issued from Passport issuing Authorities other than Embassy of India, Panama could take longer where it has not been found possible to carry out necessary verification online).
In case of Indian nationals applying from  Panama, Costa Rica and Nicaragua, the passports will be printed and issued from India.  Such passports will be delivered to the applicant concerned on receipt from India.

6. Can addition like change of address, addition/deletion of spouse name can be done at the time of re-issue?

Yes. This is, however, subject to requirements are met for such services.

7. I have handwritten passport which is still valid. Do I need to change it?

Yes, all Indian citizens holding handwritten passports are required to apply for reissue of Machine Readable passports as the International Civil Aviation Organization has mandated phasing out of all non-machine readable passports.

8. I have acquired foreign nationality and I am still keeping my Indian passport. Can I have dual nationality?

Indian Citizenship Act does not allow dual citizenship. You need to surrender your Indian passport to the nearest Indian Mission if you have acquired foreign nationality. Misuse of Indian passport constitute offences under Section 12(IA) of the Passports Act 1967.

9. My passport has expired and I need to travel to India in emergency.  What is the facility?

In such case of emergency for travelling to India, a one way Emergency Certificate could be issued by the Embassy on request by the applicant for travelling to India. Holder can apply for reissue of passport after reaching India to the concerned passport office. In case of loss of passport reported by Indian travelers abroad, a short validity passport may be issued to undertake onward journey if they are travelling to their countries of normal residence.

10. I cannot come to collect my Passport personally, What should I do?

A member of the family or the person authorized by the applicant bearing an authorization letter and original identity paper/document  of the bearer can collect the passport on behalf of the applicant.

FAQ about Visa

Visa Services - Frequently Asked Questions

1. Where and how to apply for visa? To apply for a visa, applicants are required to complete the online application form  using "Internet Explorer" or "Google Chrome" browser at: https://indianvisaonline.gov.in/visa/index.htmlbullet After applying online and printing application form, the applicant is requested to submit the printout of the online filled application form along with all required documentation to the Embassy of India, Panama for issue of Visa. More details are available on the website of the  Embassy of India, Panama website:  www.indianembassyinpanama.com.bullet

2.   Can I get a visa on arrival to enter India? No, you need to obtain a visa before taking a flight to India. e-Tourist Visa Scheme is available with prior authorization from India.   Panama, Costa Rica and Nicaragua are also covered under the e-Tourist visa scheme. Details of the scheme, procedure and the countries for which it is applicable, is available on the website: https://indianvisaonline.gov.in/visa/tvoa.html.bullet

3.I want to visit India for tourism/to attend a friend's marriage/ to meet my friends. Which visa should I apply for? You apply for a tourist visa.

4.Can I study in India? Yes. With a valid student visa for a recognized university/educational institution.

5.Can I work in India? Yes. With a valid employment visa.

6.Can I take Satellite phone to India?
Kindly note that as per the existing guidelines of Ministry of Home Affairs, Government of India, carrying satellite phones by foreigners into India is banned.

7.I travel to India frequently for business meetings/to explore opportunities for partnerships with Indian companies. Which visa should I apply for? You may apply for a business visa valid for multiple entries for either six months or one year along with the requisite documents as per the checklist. Kindly note that a Business Visa does not permit you to work in India. In case you wish to work in India, you should apply for an Employment Visa.

8.I go for one or two months every year for tourism. Which visa should I apply for? You can apply for a Tourist visa. This visa is not extendable in India.

9.I will be changing flights/airports in India to travel to my final destination (say Nepal, Thailand etc.) Do I need a visa to change flights/airport terminals? You need to apply for a transit visa if you are going to change from an international terminal to a domestic terminal of any Indian airport or if you are going to stay in an airport hotel even for a few hours. You don't need a transit visa if you stay in the waiting area reserved for international transit passengers in an Indian airport. Note that you can stay for a maximum period of 72 hours in India on a transit visa. You should have a confirmed air ticket for the onward journey.

10.I have to participate in a Conference/Seminar/Workshop in India. Which visa should I apply for? You should apply for a Conference Visa to enable you to participate in the Conference/Seminar/ Workshop along with invitation letter, details of the Conference etc. Clearance from the competent authorities in India are required.

11.I will travel at a much later date. Can my visa be issued to coincide with the date of travel? No. Post - dated visas are not issued. The validity of the visa begins from the date of issue.

12.I will be going to India for work/employment along with my family. Which visa should I apply for? Would my children be able to study in India? You must apply for an employment visa along with the requisite documents. Once your visa application is approved, your spouse and children may apply for entry visas in case they are accompanying you on your stay in India. Your children will be able to secure admission in schools/colleges in India once they have been granted entry visas. Kindly note that you have to undergo mandatory registration formalities at the nearest office of the FRRO/FRO within 14 days of your arrival in India if you are planning to stay in the country for a period longer than 180 days

13.I will be studying in India Indian university. Which visa should I apply for?
You should apply for a student visa along with a copy of the letter from the institute/university confirming your acceptance as a student. You would also be required to submit proof of financial standing to support your stay in India.

14.I had applied for a visa for India but I have changed my mind about visiting the country. Can I claim a refund of the visa fee? Visa fees are non-refundable. Once the visa application is accepted and cannot be refunded even if the visa is refused/not granted.

15.Do I need a visa for my pet who is accompanying me on my visit to India? Visa is not required for taking a pet to India but certain customs and vaccination-related regulations have to be complied with. Kindly consult your airline/travel agent for details of these regulations and necessary documentation to facilitate the visit.

16.Do I have to submit my passport and visa application with the Embassy of India, Panama only? Yes .
Embassy of India, Panama’s area of jurisdiction covers whole of Panama, Costa Rica and Nicaragua.

17.How do I pay for the visa fee charges?
Visa fee in cash can be paid at the Consular Services counter of the Embassy of India, Panama. Nationals of Costa Rica and Nicaragua and foreigners resident in these countries: Visa fee payment can also be made by international bank draft/bankers cheque  in favour of Embassy of India, Panama. However, there is additional charge of US$20.00 per international bank draft/cheque .

18.Will I be allowed to carry liquor to India? Yes. But if you are traveling to Gujarat:  Government of Gujarat has started issuing online e-permit. For this kindly visit the Gujarat Prohibition website: www.eps.gpeonline.co.in.bullet After arrival, applicant is required to show original documents like passport in the liquor shop alongwith the receipt of his online submission for issue of a liquor permit. Please check with your airline for other restrictions on alcohol.

19.Do all the applicants need to be present at the time of submitting an application? No. An application can be sent either by Registered mail/courier or in person by an immediate family member. Applications are NOT received through agents or representatives. However, the applicant should be present in the area of jurisdiction of Embassy of India, Panama- at the time of submitting visa application.

20. Will the visa fee be refunded? No refunds. Fees once received would not be refunded, even if the application is withdrawn or service denied.

21.I wish to visit certain areas in India like Andaman & Nicobar Islands, Arunachal Pradesh, Sikkim, Nagaland etc. Can I obtain a visa to visit these areas? A tourist visa is not sufficient to visit these areas because all of these regions in India are restricted/protected areas for which it is necessary to obtain a Restricted/Protected Area Permit (RAP/PAP). This permit can be obtained in India either from the Ministry of Home Affairs or FRRO concerned after entering India with a tourist visa.

22.I want to go for tourism in India how should I apply for Tourist visa?
You have the option to apply for e-Tourist visa directly on the website https://indianvisaonline.gov.in/visa/tvoa.html.bullet However, please note that e-Tourist visa is granted for 30 days with single entry.

In case you intend to say in India for more than 30 days, then you have to apply for regular visa online to this Embassy. The detailed procedure is available on the website of this Embassy at the link http://indianvisaonline.gov.in/visa .bullet


1.   I have PIO Card for my minor son. How can I change it to OCI Card?

You are required to fill in online application for OCI Card in lieu of PIO card  on the link:https://passport.gov.in/oci/.bullet After reaching this website please Click  OCI Registration then click proceed and then select option OCI Registration in lieu of valid PIO card.  It is mandatory to upload Applicant’s signature  and image and documents supporting the application are also to be uploaded. Hard copy of  the duly filled in application may be submitted to Embassy of India, Panama from eligible applicants under the area of its jurisdiction( which covers whole of Panama, Costa Rica and Nicaragua) along with copy of the valid passport and  copy of PIO Card. No registration fee is payable for registration as OCI card holder in lieu of PIO card  whether one is major or minor. However, there is charge of US$3.00 towards Indian Community Welfare Fund per each such application. There is no need to submit original passport or documents.  In case of minor who cannot sign, his/her left thumb impression may be placed in the signature box. Parents should not sign in this box on behalf of the children. Please check that all fields in the form are filled in and all necessary enclosures are attached before submission of the form to this Embassy. You are encouraged to visit the link http://mha1.nic.in/pdfs/oci-faq.pdfbullet to get more details. The last date for submission of application for registration as  OCI card holder for erstwhile holders of  PIO Card,  as fixed by Ministry of Home Affairs, Government of India, is 30.6.2016.

2.   I am applying for OCI Card for first time. What is the procedure?

For new OCI Registration please visit the website : https://passport.gov.in/oci/bullet click new registration and follow the instructions therein.

3.   I have changed my passport. Do I need to apply for a new OCI Card?.

In case of change of passport you may apply for OCI Miscellaneous Services.

Please see the relevant instructions and fill up the form at: https://passport.gov.in/oci/capchaActionMisc.bullet More information is also available at the link:  http://mha1.nic.in/pdfs/FAQs-200709.pdf.bullet

4.         Whether passport and any other original documents are required for submitting application to the Embassy of India, Panama for issue of :-

(a) OCI Card in lieu of PIO Card?

 (b) Fresh OCI Card

(a)   For the purpose of conversion of PIO Card to OCI Cards, the only documents required are a copy of the PIO Card and a copy of current valid passport  to be submitted with the hard copy of the  duly  filled in & signed  online application to this Embassy. There is no fee charged. However, an amount of US$3.00 is to be paid towards Indian Community Welfare Fund (ICWF) by the applicant.

(b)   If the applicant is applying for a fresh OCI Card, passport and other supporting documents are required  to be submitted in original, with the duly filled in & signed hard copy of the online application and prescribed fee, once for the purpose of verification and are not retained by the Embassy and which can be collected by the applicant.


OCI Miscellaneous Services can be availed for re-issuance / issuance of duplicate OCI documents in the following category of cases:

1.In case of change of passport.
   2. In case of change of personal particulars viz. nationality etc.
   3. In case of loss/damage of OCI registration certificate/visa.
   4. In case of filling of wrong personal particulars while submitting online application viz. name, father’s name, date of birth etc.
   5. In case of change of address/occupation.