Applying for a visa to India will be more difficult after December, when the door closes on online applications, writes Michael Gebicki.
For a number of years, Indian visas have been outsourced to VFS Global and Australian passport holders have been able to apply for a visa over the internet.
This has been a convenient and speedy process but according to VFS Global, a new system will come into effect at some time in December 2014 invoking a biometric rule, which will require all visa applicants to make a personal visit to a VFS office.
These offices are located in Melbourne, Sydney, Adelaide, Brisbane, Canberra and Perth.
Anyone living in a rural area will have to make an appointment with VFS and travel to their nearest office.
Those in Tasmania will be obliged to make a trip to Melbourne while for anyone living in Darwin, the closest VFS office is Perth.
Just over a year ago, a visiting high official from India's Ministry of Tourism held out the prospect of visas on arrival for Australian passport holders.
If implemented as planned, this new proposal is a step in the opposite direction.
For at least some Australians, the process of obtaining a visa will consign India to the too-hard basket, and visitor numbers will almost certainly fall.
Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi will visit Australia in mid-November and I hope he's reading.