IFS Exam

Indian Foreign Service Exam

What is IFS Exam?

What is Indian Foreign Service?

The Indian Foreign Service is the administrative diplomatic civil service under Group A and Group B. It is one of the Central Civil Services of the executive branch of the Government of India.

IFS members

The members of the IFS represent the country in the international territory. The IFS is unlike other civil services as it deals with the country's external affairs like diplomacy, trade and cultural relations.

Why have an IFS?

The IFS is responsible for framing the Government's foreign policies and management of Indian missions abroad.

UPSC Civil Service 2023 Prelims Exam will be conducted on 28 May, 2023

Union Public Services Commission will release the notification on 01 February, 2023 and the last date to submit the application form is on 21 February, 2023.

UPSC - Indian Foreign Service (IFS) 2023 Mains Exam will be conducted in a Pen and Paper-Based Test mode on 15, 16, 17, 23 & 24 September, 2023. As per the UPSC IAS Exam Schedule 2023, the Civil Services Exam will be held in two sessions every day.

UPSC CSE Forenoon session will be conducted from 9AM to 12 Noon and the 2nd Session will be held from 2PM to 5PM.



  • Main Syllabus

  • Prelims Syllabus


Eligibility Criteria

  1. Nationality:

    The nationality of a candidate must be either of the following:

    • Citizen of India
    • Subject of Nepal
    • Subject of Bhutan
    • A Tibetan refugee who came to India before January 1, 1962, for permanent settlement in India.
    • Migrant from any of the following countries for permanently settling in India:

    Pakistan, Burma, Sri Lanka, East African countries of Kenya, Uganda, the United Republic of Tanzania, Zambia, Malawi, Zaire, Ethiopia and Vietnam

  2. Education qualification:

    Candidate should hold a degree from any of the recognised universities or must have an equivalent qualification

    Skills Required

    • Decision-making ability
    • Good communication skills
    • Excellent knowledge about foreign nations and current affairs
    • Leadership ability
    • Good analytical ability0
  3. Age limit:

    • Minimum age 21 years
    • Maximum age 30 years as on 1st of August in the year of examination.

    Relaxable age limit is as follows:

    • Upto max. 5 years for SC/ST candidates.
    • Upto max. 3 years for OBC candidates.
    • Upto max. 5 years for candidate from the State of Jammu & Kashmir
    • Upto max. 5 years for Defence Services personnel
    • Upto max. 5 years for Ex-servicemen including Commissioned officers and ECOs/SSCOs who have rendered at least 5 years Military Service and have been released.
    • Upto max. 5 years for ECOs/SSCOs who have completed an initial period of assignment of 5 years of Military Service.
    • Upto max. 10 years for Blind, deaf-mute and Orthopaedically handicapped persons
  4. Number of atempts:

    The maximum number of attempts is as follows:

    • General Category Candidates: 7 attempts
    • Scheduled Caste/Scheduled Tribe (SC/ST) candidates: No restriction
    • Other Backward Class candidates: 9 attempts

Roles and Responsibilities

IFS officers deal with diplomacy, trade and cultural relations of the country


  • Representing India in its embassies, high commissions, consulates and multilateral organizations
  • Protecting India’s national interests in the country where the officer is posted
  • Improving and promoting friendship between India and the country that the officer is posted in
  • Including non-resident Indians or persons of Indian origin
  • Informing about the developments in the foreign country that could affect India's policy
  • The role of an IFS officer is a very promising and a challenging one.
  • To represent India on international forums and platforms and in the countries they are appointed, An IFS officer is thus a very important thread for India who plays vital role in shaping Indian foreign policy and building all diplomatic and economic ties with countries
  • To handle and manage all diplomatic relations between India and of the country they are appointed
  • To create, co-create and maintain economic cooperation between India and other countries
  • To constantly keep updating Indian MEA office, about recent developments


Latest Updates

Indian Foreign Service (Prelims) 2021 Postponed

The UPSC has postponed the Indian Foreign Service (IFS) Prelims exam scheduled on June 27 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The Commission has announced that the IFS Preliminary will be held on October 10, 2021.

The official notice reads, "Due to the prevailing conditions caused by the Novel Corona Virus (COVID-19), the Union Public Service Commission has deferred the Civil Services (Preliminary) Examination, 2021, which was scheduled to be held on 27th June, 2021. Now, this Examination will be held on 10th October, 2021."

14 May 2021
IFS 2020 Interview Dates Announced

The UPSC has released the IFS interview dates 2021. Candidates who have passed with flying colours in the UPSC Mains exam were shortlisted for the final phase of the exam, i.e., interview.

The Commission will be conducting the IFS interview between April 26 and June 18, 2021. It will release the e-summons letters of personality tests (interviews) of the candidates will be available soon on the official website. The air tickets will be reimbursed booked through the Airlines or travel agents. 

7 April 2021
IFS Mains Result 2020 Released

The UPSC has released the IFS Mains Exam 2020 result on March 23, 2021. Candidates who have appeared for the IPS Mains examination conducted between January 8 and 17 can visit the official website to check the result. 

The UPSC has released the list of candidates shortlisted for the personality test (PT)/ interview. The Commission will begin the interview process in the last week of April. The shortlisted candidates are required to fill up the attestation form online and submit the same online till April 5, 2021.  

23 March 2021
UPSC IFS 2019 Reserved List And Marks of Recommended Candidates

The UPSC has released the marks of candidates recommended in the reserve list in Civil Services Main examination 2019. Candidates can check the marks list on the official website at upsc.gov.in.

The UPSC has released IFS reserve list 2019 on January 5 and recommended a total of 89 candidates for the Civil Services taking it to the total number of recommended candidates to 918.

The UPSC will release the Civil Services 2021 Prelims exam notification on February 10.

3 February 2021
IFS Mains Admit Card 2020 Released

The UPSC has released the IFS Mains admit card 2020. Aspirants who were shortlisted for the Civil Services Mains 2020 exam can download their admit card on the official website with their registration number or roll number.

The official notice reads, " The Commission has uploaded the e‐Admit Cards on its website. The eligible candidates are advised to download their e‐Admit Cards and take a printout thereof. No paper Admit Card will be issued for this examination by the Commission."

The IFS Mains 2020 exam will be held on January 8, 9, 10, 16 and 17, 2021. The Mains exam result will be declared in March 2021.

18 December 2020
IFS 2019 Marksheet Released
UPSC IFS 2020 Admit Card Released
Indian Foreign Service 2021 Exam Dates Announced
UPSC IFS Final Result 2019 Declared
Indian Foreign Service (Prelims) 2020 To Be Held On October 4
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