What is ECR & Non ECR Category Passport – Complete Guide

What are ECR and Non ECR category of passports? Let’s find out. Here’s a full guide.

Having a non-ECR passport offers several benefits, including avoiding the emigration desk at the airport.

How to acquire a Non-ECR passport? Discover the prerequisites for a non-ECR passport and how to get one in this article!

But first, let’s figure out what is the ECR category.

What is an ECR Category Passport

In India, there are two types of passports: ECR and Non-ECR. When applying for a passport, you will either be ECR or Non-ECR.

Emigration Check Required An Emigration Check verifies. Your ECR passport will need an emigration check if you wish to work in specific countries. This is true for unskilled occupations.

If you hold a non-ECR passport, you may skip the Emigration Check.

Your passport will be ECR category if you have not completed 10th grade or cannot present your Matriculation or higher education pass certificate.

This implies that if you wish to work in particular nations, you must first pass an emigration check. The Emigration Check verifies that you have a secure and safe work in your new country.

So essentially, an ECR category passport is issued for those who haven’t completed their tenth grade of school or cannot present their Matriculation or higher education certificate.

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What is the Non-ECR Category Passport

So, here’s what non-ECR category passports are.

To work in some countries, you need not undergo an emigration check (ECNR). Your passport will be Non-ECR if you have completed high school or have a college degree.

This passport is for educated Indian nationals who desire to travel for business or pleasure. Non-ECR passport holders may travel everywhere in the world without a visa.

If you believe you qualify for a Non-ECR passport, you must bring the required papers to the passport office for verification.

ECR Category vs/ non ECR category Diffference

The ability to travel and work in specified countries is the major distinction between ECR and Non-ECR.

When applying for a job in some countries, you must get “Emigration Clearance” from the Office of the Protector of Emigrants (POE).

Afghanistan, Bahrain, Iraq, Indonesia, Kuwait, Jordan, Libya, Lebanon, Malaysia, Oman, Qatar, Sudan, Syria, Thailand, UAE, and Yemen are among the countries that need ECR passport holders to get Emigration Clearance.

The Emigration Clearance for ECR passport holders protects unskilled employees from exploitation while working outside India. The Emigration Clearance procedure protects you against fraud and exploitation.

How to get Non ECR passport

If you have the required academic credentials, you will automatically be qualified for the Non-ECR passport. If you need Emigration Clearance or are not going for business, you may still get an ECR passport.

Qualifications for a Non-ECR passport

  • You have a high school diploma and the required documentation.
  • You are over 50 years old and have a polytechnic diploma from a recognized institution
  • You have an Indian Nursing Council Diploma (1947).
  • You spent three years abroad.
  • You are a Government Official.
  • You are a spouse or child of a GPO
  • You have permanent residence visas for the US, UK, and Australia.
  • You have a diplomatic passport.
  • You are a taxpayer (including agricultural income taxpayers)
  • You are a dependent of a taxpayer (including agricultural taxpayers), or
  • You work with Sea Cadets and Deck Cadets.
  • “Are you qualified for a Non-ECR category passport?” asks the passport application form.

If you have not completed the 10th grade and do not meet any of the Non-ECR category standards, you must pick NO.

A non-ECR passport is available to all minors under the age of 18. When they turn 18, they must present evidence of age to have their passport categorised as Non-ECR.

How to convert ECR passport into Non-ECR

In the event that your life circumstances change, you may request to be removed from the ECR list.

Your age, education, or marital status may change, making you eligible for the Non-ECR passport.

How to convert ECR passport into ECNR

A Non-ECR passport is easily converted from an ECR passport if you are qualified.

Simply follow these procedures to change your ECR passport to a non-ECR passport.

  • Apply for a passport re-issue first.
  • The reason for re-issue should be “To change your status from ECR to Non-ECR.”
  • Select “YES” for the question “Are you eligible for Non-ECR Category?”
  • Go to the Passport office and submit all the relevant proof for your eligibility.
    (10th or matriculation pass certificate or degree certificate, income tax statements, etc)


Your passport will be Non-ECR if you have completed high school or have a college degree.

When applying for a passport, answer “YES” to the question “Are you qualified for Non-ECR?” After submitting the proper documentation, you will be awarded a Non-ECR category passport and be permitted to travel without an Emigration Check.

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Mani Karthik

About the Author

Mani Karthik

Ex “NRI” and Founder of the “Back to India” movement. I share my experience about immigrating to USA here.

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