You can bring as many US dollars as you like into or out of India. All foreign currency exceeding $5,000 in cash (or $10,000 if you include traveller’s checks) must be declared in India first. Customs rules still apply in India because cash forex must have been brought into the country before being taken out of the country. Foreign banknotes can be brought into India, according to the Reserve Bank of India (RBI).
As per RBI, There is no restriction on the foreign currency you can bring into India. Although it is not required, if the value of the foreign currency in cash exceeds US$ 5,000, and the value of the cash plus the TCs exceeds $ 10,000, it must be notified to customs authorities at the airport upon arrival in India.
In contrast, if you’re planning to leave India with cash forex over this amount, you’ll likely have already declared it so that you won’t be subject to customs requirements.
Foreign currency brought from India may need to be declared when you arrive in a foreign country like the USA, so be aware of this. The fact that declaring forex is generally quite simple also deserves mention (later on). Since you can take any USD amount out of India without declaring it, the declaration-free limit isn’t a major obstacle.
To avoid carrying cash from India, there are a number of alternatives.
Using a forex card is an excellent substitute for carrying large amounts of foreign currency with you when you leave India. Forex cards, in contrast to debit and credit cards, are prepaid cards, which means you must first load money onto them before you can use them. However, because they’re specifically designed for international spending, they’re typically much less expensive than debit and credit cards. Furthermore, they’re much safer than cash because they’re PIN-protected. There are two types of forex cards available in India from most banks and forex companies. They are
- A prepaid card with a single balance in a desired foreign currency. This prepaid card has multiple balances in many (up to 22+) different foreign currencies.
- Multi-currency forex cards are covered in this section, but the same rules apply to single-currency forex cards. Multi-currency forex cards have the following key features:
- Relatively low costs for issuing, withdrawing and refilling.
- It is possible to avoid currency conversion fees by making purchases in another country.
- Customer service is available all over the world.
- Reward points and access to airport lounges can be found on some credit cards.
In many nations, cash is more convenient than a credit card or a combination of both. Low-cost ATM withdrawals from international networks in other countries are possible with many currency cards, a convenient feature. There is no restriction on the foreign currency you can bring into India. Although it is not required, if the value of the foreign currency in cash exceeds US$ 5,000, and the value of the cash plus the TCs exceeds $ 10,000, it must be notified to customs authorities at the airport upon arrival in India.