Official advice for New Zealanders living and travelling overseas

ALERT - COVID-19 - Do not travel overseas at this time. Due to the difficulty travellers are experiencing returning home, New Zealanders overseas need to take steps to stay safely where they are and shelter in place....Read more

ALERT - COVID-19 - Do not travel overseas at this time. Due to the difficulty travellers are experiencing returning home, New Zealanders overseas need to take steps to stay safely where they are and shelter in place....Read more

  • Reviewed: 18 April 2020, 14:47 NZST
  • Still current at: 7 July 2020

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COVID-19 (Coronavirus)

There have been confirmed cases of COVID-19 (coronavirus) in India.

Local authorities in countries and territories with confirmed cases of COVID-19 may impose containment measures including travel restrictions and quarantine requirements to prevent the spread of the virus.

Such measures may be imposed at short notice and specific details may change rapidly, including where and to whom they apply to and for how long. All travellers should stay informed of measures being taken by authorities in the areas they are travelling to. We recommend that all travellers consult the official website or the nearest embassy or consulate of your country or territory of destination to find out about any border controls and other measures that may apply to you.

For information on countries and territories which have COVID-19 related border restrictions affecting foreign nationals, including travellers in transit, please check the International Air Transport Association (IATA) website before you travel.  IATA provides a comprehensive list of all countries and territories that have imposed COVID-19 related border restrictions and is being continually updated.

As part of its response to managing the COVID-19 outbreak, the New Zealand Government has some temporary travel restrictions in place in New Zealand. Please refer to the New Zealand Ministry of Health website for up to date information.

For further travel advice and information about COVID-19, please see our webpage here. We encourage all New Zealanders living and travelling overseas to register with us.

Terrorism
There is a significant threat from terrorism in India. Terrorist groups have in the past issued statements threatening to carry out attacks in India.

On 29 October 2019, a terrorist attack occurred in Kalgum district, Jammu and Kashmir, which resulted in 7 people being killed and 1 injured.

On 14 February 2019 a terrorist attack occurred on the Jammu - Srinagar highway in Kashmir which resulted in a number of fatalities and casualties.

Terrorist attacks may be directed at national institutions within major cities, religious sites, festivals, tourist sites, hotels, markets, fairs, major sporting events, and public transport. Attacks have in the past targeted public places that are frequented by tourists and foreigners. Further attacks cannot be ruled out, including in large cities and popular tourist destinations such as New Delhi, Mumbai and Goa.

New Zealanders should exercise a high degree of caution and security awareness when travelling in India and avoid all rallies and demonstrations. Significant dates (such as religious festivals or dates of national significance) could be a particular focus for attacks.

There have been recent media reports suggesting ISIL interest in attacking targets in India. We recommend following any instructions issued by the local authorities and exercising vigilance in public places.

Crime
Personal safety, particularly for women and girls is a concern in India. There have been a number of sexual offences reported against foreign women in different parts of India, including in major cities and tourist destinations. Women travellers should take particular care, even when travelling in a group and avoid travelling alone, especially at night. We recommend all travellers respect local dress codes and customs and avoid isolated areas.

There have been occasional reports of food or drink being spiked with sedatives so extra care should be taken to ensure your food or drink is never left unattended. We recommend being cautious accepting food or drinks from strangers or recent acquaintances. There are reports where food and drink has been drugged, and travellers robbed of their possessions. 

Petty crime, including pickpocketing and bag-snatching, is common, particularly in crowded areas such as markets, airports and on buses, metros and trains (including overnight and long-distance trains). We advise New Zealanders to be alert to their surroundings at all times and take steps to safeguard and secure their personal belongings.

Exercise vigilance and avoid taking public transport or hailing taxis and auto-rickshaws after dark. Avoid walking alone at night in less populous and unlit areas, including city streets, village lanes and beaches.

Scams are common throughout India. Some scams targeting travellers include fake tour guide services and train tickets, taxi drivers taking clients on unwanted tours and extended rides, or bank card details being copied from compromised ATMs. If you believe you are the victim of a scam we advise contacting the police immediately.

Road travel
Road conditions and road safety are poor throughout India. Most roads and vehicles are not well maintained, and drivers often do not follow traffic rules.  Avoid travelling by road outside city centres after dark.

Civil unrest
Protests and demonstrations (or “bandh”) occur sporadically throughout India. We advise New Zealanders to closely monitor developments that might affect their safety. We recommend you avoid all demonstrations, protests and political campaign rallies as they could result in spontaneous violent confrontations, particularly around elections. You should follow the instructions of the local authorities, including curfews and exercise a high degree of personal security awareness at all times.

Political violence/insurgency
The risk of politically-motivated violence remains high in parts of north-eastern India. There is a risk of armed insurgent activity in Manipur, Tripura, Nagaland and Assam. Attacks by insurgents usually target Indian government and security forces, however bystanders are susceptible to being caught up and insurgents have attacked local transport and train services.

Violent extremist groups are also active in the rural areas of Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand, Odisha to the west of Delhi, Maharashtra, Telengana, Andhra Pradesh and in remote parts of Bihar and West Bengal, primarily targeting Indian government facilities and security forces. Strikes and disruptions in these areas can affect rail and road transport networks.

General travel advice 
New Zealanders should familiarise themselves with local laws and customs in India. There are serious penalties for activities that may not be illegal in New Zealand, such as carrying a satellite phone, or consuming alcohol without a permit in some states or territories.

Air pollution in some parts of India can spike to hazardous levels, especially during winter months and those with pre-existing medical conditions, the very young, or the elderly may be particularly vulnerable. If you intend to travel or live in India, you may wish to seek medical advice in advance of your trip. 

New Zealanders living or travelling in India should have a comprehensive travel insurance policy in place that includes provision for medical evacuation by air. 

New Zealanders in India are encouraged to register their details with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade.

Travel tips


The New Zealand High Commission New Delhi, India

Street Address Sir Edmund Hillary Marg, Chanakyapuri, New Delhi 110 021, India Telephone +91 11 4688 3170 Fax +91 11 4688 3165 Email nzhcindia@mfat.net Web Site http://www.nzembassy.com/india Hours Mon - Fri 0830 - 1700 hrs

New Zealand Consulate-General Mumbai, India

Street Address Level 2, 3 North Avenue, Maker Maxity, Bandra Kurla Complex, Mumbai 400 051, India Telephone +91 22 6131 6666 Fax +91 22 6131 6673 Email nzcg.mumbai@nzte.govt.nz Hours Mon - Fri 0830 hrs - 1700 hrs

New Zealand Honorary Consulate Chennai, India

Street Address Maithri, 132 Cathedral Road, Chennai 600 086, India Telephone +91 44 2811 2472 Fax +91 44 2811 2449 Email l.ganesh@rane.co.in

See our regional advice for South Asia

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New Zealand High Commission India

Street Address
Sir Edmund Hillary Marg, Chanakyapuri, New Delhi 110 021, India

Telephone: +91 11 4688 3170

Fax: +91 11 4688 3165

Email: nzhcindia@mfat.net

Website: http://www.nzembassy.com/india

Hours: Mon - Fri 0830 - 1700 hrs

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