I. Guidelines on Travel Related Matters
Q.1. How much foreign money exchange can be brought in while visiting India?
Ans. A person coming into India from abroad can bring with him foreign exchange without any limit. However, if the aggregate value of the foreign exchange in the form of currency notes, bank notes or travellers cheques brought in exceeds USD 10,000 or its equivalent and/or the value of foreign currency alone exceeds USD 5,000 or its equivalent, it should be declared to the Customs Authorities at the Airport in the Currency Declaration Form (CDF), on arrival in India.
Q.2. What is formalities (KYC) to convert Foreign currency to Indian Rupees in Money Exchange in chennai?
Ans. An Indian National can exchange forex to INR by submitting the ID cum Address proof such as Passport, Driving Licence, Voter ID, Citizen Card etc as KYC documents of him/her and foreign exchange converted in INR will be paid by Cash upto USD 1000 or its equivalent and where ever the amount exceeds it will be paid through an account payee/demand draft or direct wire transfer to his/her bank account.
Foreign Nationals / NRIs / PIOs can exchange forex to INR by submitting the ID Cum Address proof such as Passport & Indian Visa, Citizen card, PIO card etc as KYC documents of him/her and foreign exchange converted in INR will be paid by Cash upto USD 3000 or its equivalent and where ever the amount exceeds it will be paid through an account payee/demand draft or direct wire transfer to his/her bank account.
Q.3. How much foreign exchange can one buy / draw when travelling overseas on private visits?
Ans. For private visits abroad, other than to Nepal and Bhutan, viz., for tourism purposes, etc., any resident can obtain foreign exchange up to an aggregate amount of USD 10,000, from an Authorised Dealer, in any one financial year, on self-declaration basis, irrespective of the number of visits undertaken during the year. This limit of USD 10,000 or its equivalent per financial year for private visits can also be availed of by a person who is availing of foreign exchange for travel abroad for any purposes, such as, for employment or immigration or studies.
No foreign exchange is available for visit to Nepal and/or Bhutan for any purpose.
A resident Indian is allowed to take INR of denomination of Rs.100 or lesser denomination to Nepal and Bhutan without limit.
Q. 4. How much foreign exchange is allowed for a business trip visit?
Ans. For business trips abroad to countries, other than to Nepal and Bhutan, a person can avail of foreign exchange up to USD 25,000 per visit. Visits in connection with attending of an international conference, seminar, specialised training, study tour, apprentice training, etc., are treated as business visits. Release of foreign exchange exceeding USD 25,000 for business travel abroad (other than to Nepal and Bhutan), irrespective of the period of stay, requires prior permission from the Reserve Bank.
No release of foreign exchange is admissible for any kind of travel to Nepal and Bhutan or for any transaction with persons resident in Nepal.
Investments in Bhutan are permitted in Indian Rupees as well as in freely convertible currencies. If investment is made in freely convertible currency/ies, sale/winding up proceeds are required to be repatriated to India in freely convertible currencies.
Q. 5. How much foreign currency notes can be taken while buying foreign exchange for travel abroad?
Ans. Travellers going to all countries other than (a) and (b) below are allowed to purchase foreign currency only up to USD 3000. Balance amount can be carried in the form of travellers cheque or banker’s draft. Exceptions to this are (a) travellers proceeding countries like Iraq and Libya who can draw foreign exchange in the form of foreign currency not exceeding USD 5000 or its equivalent; (b) travellers proceeding to the Islamic Republic of Iran, Russian Federation and other Republics of Commonwealth of Independent States who can draw entire foreign exchange in the form of foreign currency notes.
Q.6. How much foreign exchange can be allowed for medical treatment abroad?
Ans. AD Category I banks and AD Category II, may release foreign exchange up to USD 100,000 or its equivalent to resident Indians for medical treatment abroad/overseas on self declaration basis, without insisting on any estimate from a hospital/doctor in India / overseas. A person visiting abroad for medical treatment can obtain foreign exchange exceeding the above limit, provided the request is supported by an estimate from a hospital/doctor in India/abroad.
An amount up to USD 25,000 is allowed for maintenance expenses of a patient going abroad for medical treatment or check-up abroad, or to a person for accompanying as attendant to a patient going abroad for medical treatment/check-up.
The amount of USD 25,000 allowed to the patient going abroad is in addition to the limit of USD 100,000 mentioned above.
Q.7. What are the facilities available to students for pursuing their studies overseas?
Ans. For studying abroad the estimatation received from the institution abroad or USD 100,000, per academic year, whichever is higher, may be availed of from an AD Category I bank and AD Category II. Students going abroad for studies are treated as Non-Resident Indians (NRIs) and are eligible for all the facilities available to NRIs under FEMA, 1999. Educational and other loans availed of by students as residents in India can be allowed to continue. A student holding NRO account may withdraw and repatriate up to USD 1 million per financial year from his NRO account. The student may avail of an amount of USD 10,000 or its equivalent for incidental expenses out of which USD 3000 or its equivalent may be carried in the form of foreign currency while going for study abroad.
Q.8. How much foreign exchange is available to a person going overseas on employment?
Ans. A person going abroad for employment can draw foreign exchange up to USD 100,000 from any Authorised Dealer in India on the basis of self-declaration.
Q.9. How much foreign exchange is available to a person going abroad on emigration purpose?
Ans. A person going abroad on emigration can draw foreign exchange from AD Category I bank and AD Category II up to the amount prescribed by the country of emigration or USD 100,000. He can draw foreign exchange up to USD 100,000 on self- declaration basis from an Authorised Dealer in India This amount is only to meet the incidental expenses in the country of emigration. No amount of foreign exchange can be remitted outside India to become eligible or for earning points or credits for immigration. All such remittances require prior permission of the Reserve Bank. If requirement exceeds USD 100,000, the person requires to obtain the prior approval from the Reserve Bank.
Q.10. How many days in advance one can buy foreign exchange for traveling abroad?
Ans. Permissible foreign exchange can be drawn sixty days in advance. In case it is not possible to use the foreign exchange within the period of 60 days, it should be immediately surrendered to an authorised person. However, the residents are free to retain foreign exchange up to USD 2,000, in the form of foreign currency notes or TCs for future use or credit to their Resident Foreign Currency (Domestic) [RFC (Domestic)] Accounts.
Q.11. Can one pay by cash full in rupee equivalent of foreign exchange being purchased for travel abroad?
Ans. Foreign exchange for travelling abroad can be purchased from an authorized person/dealer against indian rupee payment in cash only up to Rs.50,000/-. However, if the Rupee equivalent exceeds Rs.50,000/-, the entire payment should be made by way of a crossed cheque/ banker’s cheque/ pay order/ demand draft/ debit card / credit card / prepaid card etc.
Q.12. Is there any time-frame for a traveller who has returned to India to surrender foreign exchange?
Ans. On return from a foreign trip, travellers are required to surrender unspent foreign exchange held in the form of currency notes and travellers cheques within 180 days of return. However, they are free to retain foreign exchange up to USD 2,000, in the form of foreign currency notes or TCs for future use or credit to their Resident Foreign Currency (Domestic) [RFC (Domestic)] Accounts.
Q.13. How much foreign exchange can a resident individual send as gift / donation to a person resident outside India?
Ans. Any resident individual, if he so desires, may remit the entire limit of USD 125,000 in one financial year under LRS as gift to a person residing outside India or as donation to a charitable/educational/ religious/cultural organization outside India. Remittances exceeding the limit of USD 125,000 will require prior permission from the Reserve Bank.
Q.14. How much Indian currency can a person take while going abroad?
Ans. Residents are free to take outside India (other than to Nepal and Bhutan) currency notes of Government of India and Reserve Bank of India notes up to an amount not exceeding Rs. 10,000 - per person. They may take or send outside India (other than to Nepal and Bhutan) commemorative coins not exceeding two coins each.
Explanation : 'Commemorative Coin' includes coin issued by Government of India Mint to commemorate any specific occasion or event and expressed in Indian currency.