Wagah Border Crossing - India to Pakistan
This is the only border crossing between India and Pakistan 3000 kilometres long border. You can cross this border by foot and on your own vehicle too. This Border crossing is between Lahore (Wagah) at Pakistan side and Amritsar (Attari) at Indian side. Both cites are around 30kms from border crossing gate. The border stay open daily for international travellers crossing, border also stay open on the holidays. The timings of crossing border is, Summer (April to October) 08:30 to 14:30 hours and Winter (October to March) 09:00 to 15:00 hours. Its known as an intense border because of the relationship between these two nations but the border crossing is very simple and easy compare to what you are expecting. The total process of border crossing including both sides immigration might took 2 hours. Its good to go early, check out from your hotel at 8am from Lahore or Amritsar.
Crossing from Indian side:
There is couple of check points where you have to show your passport and they will enter your details. Like entering in the border crossing compound, immigration check (Passport stamped, you have to fill immigration form and they will scan your luggage here too). Immigration to border crossing gate is on two minutes ride. Here again have to show your passport twice both side of gate. Pakistan and India both sides know what to do with carnets and will do it with a minimum of fuss. Crossing into Pakistan may took an hour. It depends how many people are crossing border at the same time with you.
After crossing the border into Pakistan, Pakistan Rangers will direct you to the immigration section. There you need to fill arrival card. You need to mention, the address where you are going to stay in Lahore and phone number. Mostly they don’t check your bags on Pakistan side. After Immigration you can go straight to exit the border area towards Lahore. The will might stop you once after immigration to show your passport and it might be can the last check point/ exiting border area.
the Indian side did a pretty thorough search of all luggage.
Crossing process is slower on India side
India is 30 mins in front of Pakistan, hence India border closes 30 mins before Pakistan border.
Crossing from Pakistan side:
As you are coming from Lahore and entering border area for crossing, there are two check points before the actual border where they want to see your passport and sometimes check your bags. After that leaving the country is very simple and fast. The immigration will be on your right side and they have a small waiting area there. Its good to go early in morning as Pakistani people are not early riser. If you cross border early as they open the border crossing, there will be no queues. Customs and getting Carnot papers stamped is a bit process. Multiple forms, signatures, bike checks and finally the stamps. Now you are ready to cross into India.
Crossing on foot:
The cheapest way is to take Bus from Amritsar to Wagah Border. The ticket is 35 INR (bus will drop you at Attari which is 3kms so you have get a cycle rickshaw from Attari to the border). Taxi cost around 800 INR from Amritsar to Border.
After Immigration, you can find tuk tuk in parking area. They mostly charge 800-1000PKR to drop you to Lahore at your destination. If you are crossing from Pakistan to India. Best Option is Uber or Careem. They might cost you 500-800PKR. Other option is to get a tuk tuk (Riskshaw) from the road, bargain with them and agreed him 500-800PKR. There is not proper local transport bus service which goes to Wagah border and its not clear. You can try to reach one of these destination (UET, Shalamar garden and Batapur) and from these destination you can easily find a motorcycle riskshaw (Chingchi) which will drop you at Wagah border.
Wagah Border Flag ceremony:
Lowering flag ceremony is a daily military practice by the security forces of India and Pakistan have jointly followed since 1959. Both sides have stadium, everyday thousands of people come before sunset to see this ceremony. It is one of the famous tourist attraction for international travellers, those who visits Lahore. Experiencing the patriotic actions of both nations for their country and armed forces. Its literally feels like you are entering in a sporting event, its pretty crazy right? Ice creams, chips, cold drinks and popcorns. Loud national songs will be playing on both sides of border and people cheering at their soldiers, every single act they do. Its a pretty unique experience which you might not do that in your life before.
The ceremony starts between 5pm, timing don’t stay same, it get change according to the sunset timing. Its good to reach border one and half hour before ceremony get started to avoid complications.