Published On : Mon, Jan 14th, 2019

Knowing your passport types

If you have the travel bug in you and would love to travel across the globe, before thinking cost, clothes, weather and food, the most important thing to think of is your passport. An Indian passport, which is issued by the President of India, is the only way you will get to enjoy constant international travel.

When you talk about passports, there are some small details that you ought to know when applying for one. Given that there are different types of passports, you need to know which would best suit your purpose and needs.

Types of Passports

  • The most commonly seen passport is the Ordinary Passport which usually has a dark blue cover. Also known as a ‘Type P’ passport, if you are planning on moving internationally either for vacation, study or business, this is the passport for you. Any kind of ordinary travel falls under this passport, which is why the ‘P’ stands for personal.

Under Ordinary passports, there are two other subcategories. The first is Tatkaal passports which are sometimes issued in case of urgency to travel. Then there is the Short Validity Passports, also known as SVP. Once issued, both these are considered to be Ordinary Passports.

  • The Diplomatic Passport, which may not be all that commonly seen around, is solely meant to be used by Indian Diplomats. Diplomatic couriers and top ranking government officials are also issued this passport. It comes with a maroon cover and is denoted as a ‘Type D’ passport where ‘D’ stands for diplomat.
  • The Official Passport, which is a ‘Type S’ passport is one that is issued only to those individuals going out on official business for the Indian government. The ‘S’ implying service category.

Application Process Variations

Since each type of passport is reserved only for certain kinds of purposes, the application for each does vary. For an Ordinary Passport, applicants need to approach the Passport Seva Online Portal and within a few seconds can go over the process of filling the application form and thereafter submitting the required documents to the closest Passport Seva Kendra (PSK) in the vicinity.  However, when it comes to an official or diplomatic passport, applying for it isn’t all that easy. Applications are only accepted at the Consular, Passport and Visa Division in Patiala House, New Delhi.

Benefits of Holding a Diplomatic Passport

The best part of holding a diplomatic passport is the privilege of diplomatic immunity in the country of visit. International governments will throw out a red carpet for you, on arrival. In addition, you will be exempt from delays and customer checks as you would have access to the diplomatic channels at airports.

Your social status as well as your prospect of success in conducting business will increase significantly thanks to your diplomatic passport. You will also be exempt from a travel or airport departure tax. This will allow you to travel quickly across states and also at a much cheaper rate. Thus, free movement and international accessibility is another one of the many privileges available to a holder of a diplomatic passport.

So if you are considering travelling internationally, do check out the passport that would suit your purpose before running in for the application process.

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