Travel from USA to India: Need Passport and Tourist Visa by March 17th


New Member
Hi everyone. I am in quite a crappy situation and am looking for any help/advice I can get.

So my friend is having his engagement party in India next month, the plan is for everyone to be over there from March 17th to the 27th.
As someone who hasn't really traveled very much, I was super naïve to how much actually goes into planning a trip like this. Am now realizing that I may be screwed unless I can find some way to swing this.

Basically the situation is this. I was under the impression from talking to my parents that my passport that I used for a family trip to Europe many years ago was still valid, as adult passports expire every 10 years, and they assured me that it would still be good. But it turns out that I actually was a 2 months under the age of 16 when I got this passport so it actually expired after 5 years. I wasn't aware of this until now so I will need to apply for a new passport. After finding this out today, my plan was to have the documents submitted with everything expedited that I possibly can (the app process, the shipping) by early morning this coming Monday 2/6. With everything expedited I was hoping that even if it took the full 5 weeks (expedited estimates I've seen say 3-5 weeks), that would still be slightly before the trip (5 weeks from Monday is March 13th). But now after looking at the Tourist Visa Application which is also required for travel to India, it seems I will actually need to supply a picture of my Passport to complete that application. That process apparently takes 10-15 days to complete as well. So my only real chance here is that the expedited process takes only 3 weeks so then I can get my Visa in time as well, but I know that probably won't be the case.

TLDR: I want to travel to India, with my flight leaving from Atlanta, GA March 17th and staying there until the 27th. But I need to get a new passport, and once I get that I need to complete the India Tourist Visa Application as they require a picture of your passport. Is there any chance I can get all this done in time?
Money is not an issue here, as I just really want to be there for my friend. Willing to pay any reasonable amount to get this done. Basically my main questions are the following:

1. Does anyone have any advice on what steps I can take to try and complete this process as fast as possible?
2. I've read that you can schedule an appointment to have your application expedited at an agency or center if your travel date is within 14 days or within 28 days if a visa is required. So could I submit my app on Monday, and then when it is 28 days from the 17th schedule an appointment ASAP? I live in Atlanta so I can visit the passport agency here, not an issue as far as traveling there.
3. Do expediting services like rushmypassport or travelvisapro actually work? if so would that be worth trying?
4. On a scale of 1-10, how screwed am I in terms of it being possible to get all this done in time?