Guidance on Foreigner Registration (FRRO) Process for hosts in India
These information pages can help you get started in learning about some of the laws and registration requirements that may apply to you. These pages include summaries of some of the rules that may apply to you, and contain links to government resources that you may find helpful.
Please understand that theseinformation pages are not comprehensive, and are not legal advice. In addition, the process for FRRO registration and Form C submission may vary from state to state. If you are unsure about how local laws or this information may apply to you, we encourage you to contact your local FRRO office or consult a local lawyer.
Please note that we don’t update this information in real time, so you should confirm that the law has not changed recently.
1. When should a host submit a Form C (“C-Forms”)?
Any person hosting a foreign guest for monetary consideration in India, even for a few hours, should submit C-Forms.
The submission of C-Forms and maintenance of guest registers stems from the Foreigners Act 1946 and Registration of Foreigners Rules, 1992. These requirements extend across India, and apply to all persons who accommodate foreign guests for monetary consideration, including hotels, guest houses, lodging houses etc. The C-Form mechanism helps the authorities locate and track foreigners in India to enhance security and safety. Failure to comply with reporting requirements could result in fines and imprisonment of up to 5 years.
2. How does a host submit C-Forms?
Hosts may submit C-Forms through the online platform of the Bureau of Immigration (BoI). Prior to doing so however, hosts will need to first complete the FRRO registration process.
FRRO registration process
The FRRO registration process is different for hosts who operate hotels/homestays/B&Bs/dharamshalas/institutes and hosts who accommodate guests in their own individual houses.
Procedure for registering:
- Visit the C-Forms page ---> Register and give pertinent details ---> Submit the registration form online ---> Visit the local FRRO Office (or submit the documents via post or courier, depending on your local office’s requirements) with supporting documents to activate registration ---> Complete registration
- Supporting documents required for hotels/homestays/B&Bs/dharamshalas/institutes: Two copies of the duly signed registration form printed from the website, address of premises, ownership details and license for operating the premises on a commercial basis.
- Supporting documents required for individual houses:
a) Two copies of the duly signed registration form printed from the website;
b) Utility bills in the name of the host;
b) Property tax receipt issued by local authorities;
c) Sale deed or rent agreement in the name of the host; and
d) Such other documents as may be requested by the local FRRO Office.
- Once the host completes the FRRO registration by submitting the registration form online and submitting the supporting documents in person (or by mail/courier, depending on your local office’s guidelines) and activates the FRRO registration, subsequent submissions of C-Form may be made online (see question 9).
3. Are all hosts required to submit or furnish a B&B license to register with FRRO?
No, hosts who accommodate foreign guests in their individual houses/apartments do not need to submit a B&B license to register with the FRRO. Such hosts may simply submit their address proof to activate registration.
4. What documents need to accompany an online C-Form submission?
- Completed online C-Form
- Visa copy of the foreigner
- Passport copy of the foreigner (the photo page)
- In some localities, per the local office guidelines, the host may also be required to submit the host’s address proof again, such as a utility bill
5. How many C-Forms should be submitted for a given guest?
C-Forms should be submitted twice for each foreign guest, once when they check-in and once when they check-out. C-Forms must be submitted within 24 hours of a foreign guest check-in. While there is currently no explicit timing for submission of the C-Form upon check-out, you may wish to submit within 24hrs of check-out. If a guest plans to check out within a few hours of check-in, then C-Forms should be submitted as soon as they check-in.
6. Should a C-Form be submitted for every single foreign guest even if they arrive as one group with a group leader?
Yes. One C-Form must be submitted for each individual foreign guest, even if they are travelling in a group.
7. Should hosts submit physical copies of C-Forms to the local FRRO office?
No. Typically, hosts are not required to visit the FRRO office or submit physical documents once they complete their one-time registration with FRRO. Generally, hosts will only need to complete the online submission of C-Forms although it is advised that they keep printed copies of C-Forms for their record. However, some local FRRO offices may demand that hosts submit physical copies of each C-Form, purely for their administrative convenience. In this case, hosts may submit the C-Forms personally or delegate someone else to do so on their behalf.
8. Should hosts submit any documents to local police?
No. Typically, hosts are not required to submit additional information to the local police. Where hosts are unable to complete the online submission of C-Forms whether due to connectivity issues or otherwise, they may submit the physical form to the local FRRO (see question 13). If there is no local FRRO office, hosts should submit the C-Form to the local Superintendent of Police (SP) and not to the local police station.
9. What if the host loses internet connectivity and is unable to submit the C-Form online?
If the host does not have have internet connectivity, the host should call up and inform the FRRO office or the local SP. Lack of internet connectivity is not an acceptable excuse for failing to report a foreign guest when alternative reporting options exist.
10. Are there any additional reporting requirements when hosting a Pakistani national?
If you host a Pakistani national, in addition to submitting the C-Form, immediately call, email or fax the FRRO office or local SP.
11. Should hosts maintain a register in addition to C-Form submission?
Yes, in addition to C-Form submission for foreign guests, hosts are required to maintain separate registers for Indians and foreigners with details of every guest, now referred to as Form B (formerly Form F). You can see a sample template here, which outlines the information required. The Form B register has to be maintained irrespective of the nature of accommodation, and shown to the relevant government officer when requested.
The register is a hand-written record of host and guest information. In the event there is any issue with the C-form submissions, the register helps the host and FRRO to track guests. It is a permanent, hand-written document and should have the signatures of each guest and the host. Parents can sign on behalf of minor guests.
12. How should hosts inform guests about the documents required for C-Form submission?
There is no fixed way to do this. Many hosts in India have outlined the following requirements in their ‘House Rules’ section:
- “Government issued ID needed for every guest staying”
- “Foreign nationals need to show valid passport/visa”
- “Guests may be required to sign a visitor register”
Mentioning this in advance as part of the House Rules or in early interactions with the guests before they start their trip will make for a smoother process.
13. Where can a host find out more information about the FRRO requirements?
The following are some additional helpful resources on FRRO requirements:
- FRRO Offices in India:http://boi.gov.in/content/frro-contact-list
- Goa C-Form Overview (Bureau of Immigration): Registration and Filing
14. Is there anything else a host should think about?
Hosts should be prepared to assist foreign guests to understand FRRO registration requirements that apply to the guest. For this, hosts should at least try to have a basic understanding of the visa rules. For example, hosts should note that while a guest may be from a country whose citizens don’t need a visa for India, that particular guest may nonetheless hold a visa that requires reporting of their stay with the local FRRO office. Hosts may refer to pages on visa exemptions and e-visas to learn about basic visa rules that apply to foreign guests.
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