Applying for an Indian visa can be a straightforward process, but one critical aspect that applicants often overlook is the visa photo requirements. The “Indian visa photo requirements” are specific, and adhering to them is crucial for the approval of your visa application. This article provides a comprehensive guide on these requirements, helping you to avoid common pitfalls and ensure that your visa application proceeds smoothly.

General Guidelines

When applying for an Indian visa, you must submit a photograph that meets specific criteria. These guidelines are designed to ensure that your photo is clear, identifiable, and compliant with international standards. Failure to meet these guidelines can result in delays or even the rejection of your visa application. Below are the essential general guidelines for an Indian visa photo:

  1. Size: The photo must be 2 x 2 inches (51 x 51 mm) in size.
  2. Color: The photo must be in color and printed on high-quality photo paper.
  3. Background: The background of the photo must be plain white or off-white.
  4. Face Position: Your face should be centered and occupy about 70-80% of the frame.
  5. Expression: A neutral expression is required, with both eyes open and mouth closed.
  6. Recent Photo: The photo should be taken within the last six months to reflect your current appearance.

Detailed Specifications

Size and Dimensions

The photo size is one of the most critical specifications. It must be precisely 2 x 2 inches (51 x 51 mm). This dimension is crucial as it ensures that your face fits within the biometric standards used for identification. Photos that do not meet this size requirement will be rejected.

Color and Quality

Your photo must be in color, providing a clear and accurate representation of your appearance. Black and white photos are not acceptable. Additionally, the photo must be printed on high-quality photo paper without any creases, stains, or damage. Poor quality photos can compromise the visibility of your facial features and lead to rejection.


A plain white or off-white background is mandatory. This uniform background helps in clearly distinguishing your facial features and is essential for biometric scanning processes. Avoid backgrounds with patterns, textures, or shadows.

Face Position and Size

Your face should be centered in the frame, looking directly at the camera. It should occupy about 70-80% of the photo. This ensures that your facial features are large enough to be clearly visible and identifiable. The head (from the top of the hair to the bottom of the chin) should measure between 1 inch and 1 3/8 inches (25 mm – 35 mm).

Expression and Eyes

A neutral expression is required. Smile naturally without showing teeth and ensure your eyes are open and looking directly at the camera. The visibility of your eyes is crucial, so avoid photos where your eyes are closed or obstructed by hair.

Recent Photo

The photo must be taken within the last six months. This requirement ensures that the photo reflects your current appearance, which is crucial for identification purposes. Using an older photo can result in discrepancies during the verification process. INDIAN VISA PASSPORT REQUIREMENTS

Attire and Accessories


Your attire in the photo should be simple and should not blend with the background. Dark colors are preferable as they contrast well with a white background. Uniforms should be avoided unless they are religious attire worn daily.


Headgear is generally not allowed in visa photos unless it is worn for religious purposes. If you wear headgear for religious reasons, ensure that it does not obscure your facial features or cast shadows on your face.


Wearing glasses in your visa photo is not recommended. If you must wear glasses, ensure that there is no glare on the lenses, and your eyes are clearly visible. Sunglasses or tinted glasses are not permitted.

Jewelry and Accessories

Avoid wearing large or distracting jewelry. Simple, everyday jewelry is acceptable, but it should not obscure your face. Avoid wearing accessories such as headphones or wireless hands-free devices in the photo.

Common Mistakes to Avoid

Incorrect Size

Submitting a photo that does not meet the 2 x 2 inches size requirement is a common mistake. Ensure your photo is accurately sized before submission.

Poor Quality

Low-resolution photos, or those printed on poor-quality paper, are often rejected. Use a professional photo service to ensure high-quality prints.

Busy Backgrounds

Avoid backgrounds that are not plain white or off-white. Patterns, textures, or outdoor settings are not acceptable and will lead to rejection.

Obstructed Face

Ensure your face is fully visible. Hair covering your eyes or wearing accessories that obstruct your face will result in rejection.

Non-Neutral Expression

Smiling broadly or having an unusual expression can lead to rejection. Maintain a neutral expression with a closed mouth.


Meeting the “Indian visa photo requirements” is a critical step in your visa application process. By following the guidelines outlined in this article, you can avoid common mistakes and ensure that your photo is accepted without issue. Remember to pay attention to the size, quality, background, and your facial expression. Special considerations for infants, religious attire, and the elderly have been addressed, making the process simpler for everyone. When in doubt, use a professional photo service to guarantee that your photo meets all the necessary specifications. With the right preparation, your Indian visa application can be processed smoothly and efficiently.

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