My name is Diego, Spanish guy, and I will (hopefully, if no issues with getting the Visa) be spending 5 months in Mumbai area. It will be my first time in India and I will be mostly getting to know the city and its people and, meeting a friend (a girl) I have chatting and Skyping with for months .
Being just a tourist there for 5 months (so no special requirements for my VISA), I thought things would be pretty straight-forward, but if I want the stay not to be too expensive, things seem to be not so simple and I have a few doubts. I hope you guys can help me figuring out things as I have been searching for lots of info (all over the internet and also here) but even if I did found some info, there are mixing point of views, and most of it was outdated, so I don't still feel quite confident and the company that issues the VISAs in Spain, wasn't very helpul.
I will go there in about 50 days, ideally I would like to be in a stay just for myself (i don't care if a 1BHK or 2BHK or any other sort of apartment), because its quite a long stay, not just a few days, I am used to (and love to) live alone, and I would like to give big part of the day to some hobby projects I have, that require some peaceful environment. I would prefer to stay in Thane, cause they told me good things about the area and its very handy to meet my friend, who lives in Dombivil and passes by Thane every day.
1. On the e-Tourist visa website (https://indianvisaonline.gov.in/visa/tvoa.html) it says: "International Travellers should have return ticket or onward journey ticket,with sufficient money to spend during his/her stay in India.". My Visa won't be e-Tourist (it will be regular tourist Visa), but I guess this condition could still apply to me, and I really wonder how can they measure what "sufficient money to spend during his/her stay in India" means and what kind of probe they ask for... for example, in my case I might not have all the money available in a single bank account, and part of the money will be sent by my parents at some points of the stay. Did you have any experience with this at your arrival?
2. I know this has been asked before, but I have seen it in very old threads and there wasn't a consesus on it. Can I rent a flat for just 6 months in Mumbai with a tourist Visa? (i will be 5 months, but I guess renting half year would make more sense). I have seen prices in airbnb and similar sites, and montly price are really too high for an apartment (1000$ and above, sometimes even just a private room can reach this prices), so I was thinking that a less expensive way to stay there is to just rent a normal flat, as any Indian would do, for this 6 months. My doubts are, is it even legally possible?, how hard you think it will be to get a flat for just 6 months? (i might return another 5 months but I can't be sure that I will get another Tourist Visa for that) and finally, do you have any recommendations on what accomodation would be best for me?
3. Visa for India issued in Spain allows for 180 days in India, multi-entry, but maximum (continuous) stay in India is 90 days "Tourist visas can only be claimed for a minimum period of 3 months and maximum of 6 months. The maximum stay in India can not exceed 90 days and start the visa such request", meaning that after 90 days I have to go out to some other country for a couple of days, and come back, to enjoy the other 90 days. That's totally ok, but there is the part that says "Travellers should have return ticket or onward journey ticket", and I wonder if it will be ok that my return ticket is not for 90 days after entrance, but almost for 180 days after entrance (I will also have the tickets to go to nearby country for 90 days after entrance). Do you know if this will be OK?
4. Is it worth to open bank account there for just 5 months? what options do you recommend me? (with my Spanish bank I have a debit MasterCard, as far as I know 4,5% of commission but I guess they will charge commission for the currency conversion too!
Sorry for the long post and thanks a lot in advance!