Australia's Department of Immigration and Border Protection (DIBP) and VFS Global have joined hands to provide visa application services through 3 new and 10 upgraded Australia Visa Application Centres (VACs) in India and Nepal.
"Our High Commission in New Delhi issued more than 1 lakh tourism visas to Indians in a single financial year, which is increasing by 10 per cent in the first three months of this year. This follows a 50 per cent increase in Indian student visa applications over the last year," Australian Consul General Mumbai Mark Pierce said in a release.
"We hope this will help to increase the numbers of Indian business leaders, students and tourists to our country," he said.
Travellers to Australia from India and Nepal can now apply for their visas more conveniently from nine upgraded VACs located in Ahmedabad, Bengaluru, Chandigarh, Chennai, Hyderabad, Kochi, Kolkata, Mumbai (north) and New Delhi, and Kathmandu, Nepal.
In future, visa applicants can lodge their visa requests from three new Australia VACs, to be rolled out in Jalandhar, Mumbai (South) and Pune over the next two weeks.
This enhanced service network will save time and travel expense and will speed up the entire visa application process.
"Catering to the growing demand of Australia bound travellers in India, we aim to offer high-quality applicant-friendly services to provide a seamless visa application experience to all travellers applying through our Visa Application Centres," VFS Global COO - South Asia - Anil Katoch said.
VFS Global, wholly-owned subsidiary of the Switzerland headquartered Kuoni Group, is a leading outsourcing and technology services specialist for governments and diplomatic missions worldwide with 1,226 VACs located in 111 countries across five continents.