Welcome to Smile Train’s Journey of Smiles to India! Below you will find some information that will be useful while planning your travels.
Please complete the following Guest Profile form at your earliest convenience (Click here). This allows us to easily record your vital travel information.
FLIGHTS FROM THE US:
International flights are booked by travelers independently. If you would like the contact information for a trusted independent travel agent we are happy to provide you with this information. Kindly forward your international flight information to Meredith (firstname.lastname@example.org) once you have booked your flights.
- Arrive at Chennai International Airport (MAA) no later than 4pm on November 12, 2018.
- Leave Cochin International Airport (COK) any time on November 18, 2018.
*While the trip officially begins on November 12th, we are happy to help make arrangements for you to arrive earlier.
Elevate Destinations strongly recommends that all travelers have travel insurance for any trip they wish to take with us. Please note that some insurance options require purchase within 24 hours of making payment for your trip. We encourage you to review your travel insurance options before making payment to Elevate Destinations.
Elevate Destinations is partnered with the Travel Insurance Center, a broker of travel protection products. For assistance, contact Alan Lightbody, Agent Representative, Email email@example.com, Toll Free 1-866-979-6753 Ext. 3648, or Direct 402-343-3648.
Guests may acquire travel insurance through the Travel Insurance Center, or any other travel insurance company of their choosing. Elevate Destinations recommends that travelers evaluate the insurance options available for their needs, and inquire with providers about insurance that will provide coverage if the trip needs to be cancelled.
Travelers to India should ensure that the validity of their passports extends at least six months beyond the end of their intended stay, and should have at least two blank (unstamped) visa pages in their passport to enter the country. The last two amendment pages are unacceptable for visas and immigration stamps.
All US citizens will require a visa to travel to India. We recommend applying for the tourist visa. Most travelers should qualify to apply for the e-Tourist Visa.
For the e-Tourist Visa (visa-on-arrival): Applicants may apply online minimum 7 days in advance of the date of arrival with a window of 120 days. Please keep in mind it may take some time for the visa to be processed. The validity of e-Visa will be 60 days from the date of arrival in India. Double entry is permitted on e-Tourist Visa and e-Business Visa.
For the regular Tourist visa: You may apply for your visa directly through your local Indian embassy or consulate, or through a visa processing company. We recommend A1 Passport and Visa in Washington, DC, for their great customer service.
Indian visa regulations change frequently, often with little advance notice, and changes may be poorly advertised and inconsistently enforced. Travelers are urged to check the website of the Indian Embassy in Washington, D.C. and the U.S. State Department Website before any travel to India to review the most current information.
*Please let us know if you have traveled to India in the last 6 months to India, or plan to travel again in the following 6 months after your program. Your frequency of travel to India will affect the type of visa you will want to apply for.
*Please also let us know if the following items apply to you as it may affect your visa application process:
-You or your spouse works in journalism.
-You or your immediate family are of Pakistani descent.
Please be sure check the CDC Website for India for updated information about vaccinations and health concerns, and check with your medical provider or travel clinic about your individual requirements.
In addition to being up-to-date on routine vaccinations 4-6 weeks before travel, the CDC recommends that most travelers be vaccinated for Hepatitis A and Typhoid. The CDC also recommends some travelers to be vaccinated for Hepatitis B, Japanese Encephalitis, Rabies, *Yellow Fever, and to take prescription medicine before, during, and after your trip to prevent Malaria.
* The government of India requires proof of yellow fever vaccination if you are arriving from a country with risk of yellow fever.
Note: Zika virus is a risk in India. Because Zika infection in a pregnant woman can cause serious birth defects, women who are pregnant should not travel to India. All travelers should strictly follow steps to prevent mosquito bites and sexual exposure to Zika virus during and after the trip.
If you have any additional questions please feel free to reach out to our Donor Travel Team: