New Delhi: Continuing the growth trajectory, a total of 15,557 foreigners availed the e-tourist visa in June 2015 as compared to 2,112 during the same period in 2014, registering an increase of 636.6%.
While maximum tourists from USA (41.71 per cent), followed by Australia (9.67 per cent) and Germany (7.21 per cent) availed the relaxed visa regime, visitors from Canada (4.86 per cent), Republic of Korea (4.29 per cent), France (3.38 per cent), Singapore (2.73 per cent), UAE (2.70 per cent), Russian Federation (2.53 per cent) and Mexico (2.47 per cent) also came, according to Tourism Ministry data.
The high growth is being attributed to introduction of e-tourist visa for 76 countries as against the visa-on-arrival scheme for 12 countries.
As per the ministry's data, a total of 1,26,214 tourists availed e-tourist visa facility during January-June as compared to 11,953 during the corresponding period last year, showing a growth of 955.9 per cent.
On November 27, 2014, the government had launched Tourist Visa on Arrival (TVoA) enabled by Electronic Travel Authorisation (ETA), presently known as e-Tourist Visa scheme for 43 countries.
The scheme was extended to the citizens of Guyana and Sri Lanka in January, 2015 and April, 2015 respectively. The e-Tourist Visa facility was further extended to the nationals of 31 countries in June, 2015.