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Are there really any benefits to me of having a PAN card?

You should only apply for a new PAN card when you haven’t had one allocated to you already. If you’ve lost your PAN card or it’s been issued with a mistake on it, then ask for a duplicate or replacement rather than going through the process to apply for a new one. It’s illegal to have more than one PAN card.

PAN cards are needed to legally complete any of the following transactions:

  • Opening a new bank account in any bank based in India
  • Selling or buying property valued over 500,000 rupees (approximately £5500 or $7800)
  • Buying or selling any motor vehicle
  • Depositing 50,000 or more into an Indian bank account or withdrawing that amount or more on a banker’s draft
  • Getting a landline phone connection installed or taking out the contract for a mobile phone
  • Paying a restaurant or hotel bill with comes to 25,000 rupees or more
  • Paying for international air tickets which cost 25,000 rupees or more

PAN Cards are all about reducing tax evasion and fraud, and making financial transactions more transparent. It’s pretty much impossible to live and work in India without one.