If you've searched the web for private medical insurance that covers expats in India then you are probably for looking for trusted UK based health insurance providers that will cover your medical expenses in India.
Living as an expatriate in India you want to avoid any nasty unexpected health care costs. In some countries these can run into hundreds of thousands of pounds for very serious conditions.
Our advice when shopping around for private medical cover that covers expatriates living in India is to speak to a insurance broker. Health insurance is incredibly complicated and if you want complete certainty that India is covered by your policy you should consult with a broker who can explain which providers will cover medical costs for expatriates in India and which will exclude it.
There are many advantages to using a broker but the largest by far is that you're using their expertise at no cost. They are paid by the insurer (Aviva or Bupa etc) rather than by you so it costs you no extra to use their services.
- Do you live in many different postcodes? Some will give you a cheaper premium than offers. A insurance broker will be able to advise whats best.
- Do you have a hobby that may invalidate your insurance claim? A broker will know this critical information.
- If you are a couple and one of you has claimed on your insurance policy this year would it be cheaper to separate you both onto two different policies?
- You've developed a certain condition and want to know which policy provider offers the biggest amount of cover for it. A broker will know this instantly saving you so much time and effort.
You can call around every medical insurance provider you can find and ask if they provider cover for expats in India, however this will be a very time consuming process. Each insurer will ask for your medical history because its not normally a simple yes or not if a medical condition is covered or not.
Its far far quicker to speak to one medical insurance broker which will know which providers on the market offer cover for expats in India and under what conditions they do or don't cover it.
Tourism in India is important for the country's economy and is growing rapidly. The World Travel and Tourism Council calculated that tourism generated ₹16.91 lakh crore (US$240 billion) or 9.2% of India's GDP in 2018 and supported 42.673 million jobs, 8.1% of its total employment. The sector is predicted to grow at an annual rate of 6.9% to ₹32.05 lakh crore (US$450 billion) by 2028 (9.9% of GDP). In October 2015, India's medical tourism sector was estimated to be worth US$3 billion, and it is projected to grow to US$7–8 billion by 2020. In 2014, 184,298 foreign patients travelled to India to seek medical treatment.
Over 10.93 million foreign tourists arrived in India in 2019 compared to 10.56 million in 2018, representing a growth of 3.5%. Domestic tourist visits to all states and union territories numbered 1,036.35 million in 2012, an increase of 16.5% from 2011. In 2014, Tamil Nadu, Maharashtra and Uttar Pradesh were the most popular states for tourists. Delhi, Mumbai, Chennai, Agra and Jaipur were the five most visited cities of India by foreign tourists during the year 2015. Worldwide, Delhi is ranked 28th by the number of foreign tourist arrivals, while Mumbai is ranked 30th, Chennai 43rd, Agra 45th, Jaipur 52nd and Kolkata 90th.
The Travel and Tourism Competitiveness Report 2019 ranked India 34th out of 140 countries overall. India improved its ranking by 6 places over the 2017 report which was the greatest improvement among the top 25% of countries ranked. The report ranks the price competitiveness of India's tourism sector 13th out of 140 countries. It mentions that India has quite good air transport infrastructure (ranked 33rd), particularly given the country's stage of development, and reasonable ground and port infrastructure (ranked 28th). The country also scores high on natural resources (ranked 14th), and cultural resources and business travel (ranked 8th). However, some other aspects of its tourism infrastructure remain somewhat underdeveloped. The nation has many hotel rooms per capita by international comparison and low ATM penetration. The World Tourism Organization reported that India's receipts from tourism during 2012 ranked 16th in the world, and 7th among Asian and Pacific countries.
The Ministry of Tourism designs national policies for the development and promotion of tourism. In the process, the Ministry consults and collaborates with other stakeholders in the sector including various central ministries/agencies, state governments, union territories and private sector representatives. Concerted efforts are being made to promote niche tourism products such as rural, cruise, medical and eco-tourism. The Ministry of Tourism maintains the Incredible India campaign focused on promoting tourism in India.
India requires citizens of most countries to hold a valid passport and apply for a travel visa at their local Indian embassy or consulate, before their visit. Travellers can apply directly by mail or in person, or through their local travel services company. India has recently implemented an online method for citizens of 168 countries to apply for an e-Tourist Visa.
Nationals of Bhutan, Maldives and Nepal do not require a travel visa to enter India. Citizens of Afghanistan, Argentina, Bangladesh, DPR Korea, Jamaica, Maldives, Mauritius, Mongolia, Nepal, South Africa and Uruguay are not required to pay a fee when obtaining an Indian visa.
A Protected Area Permit (PAP) is required to enter the states of Nagaland and Sikkim and some parts of the states of Arunachal Pradesh, Himachal Pradesh, Jammu and Kashmir, Manipur, Mizoram, Rajasthan and Uttaranchal. A Restricted Area Permit (RAP) is required to enter the Andaman and Nicobar Islands and parts of Sikkim. Special permits are needed to visit the Lakshadweep islands.
As a measure to boost tourism, the Indian Government implemented a new visa policy in November 2014, allowing tourists and business visitors to obtain a "visa on arrival" at 28 international airports, by acquiring an Electronic Travel Authorisation (ETA) online before arrival, without having to visit an Indian consulate or visa centre. In April 2015, the "visa on arrival" scheme was renamed "e-Tourist Visa" (or "e-TV") to avoid confusion.
The e-Tourist Visa facility requires a tourist to apply online on a secure Government of India website, at least four to thirty days before the date of travel. If approved, the visitor must print and carry the approved visa with their travel documents. The visa allows holders of an ETA to enter and stay anywhere in India for a period of ninety days except for citizens of US, UK, Japan and Canada. Citizens of these countries can stay for up to 180 days at a time. an ETA can be obtained twice in a single calendar year.