Precipitable water vapour (PWV) is an important input for numerical weather prediction model, meteorology and highprecision navigational applications. Conventional methods for the determination of PWV using radiosonde are not sufficient owing to poor temporal resolution, whereas radiometer-derived PWV is reliable only in fair weather conditions. Global positioning system (GPS) is a very useful and cost-effective tool to determine PWV continuously in all weather conditions. The processing of GPS data to extract the PWV information is, however, very complicated due to very small effect of the PWV (~0.5% of total delay) on GPS frequencies than other sources of delay and errors and requires a network of GPS in differential configuration for such purpose. The authors show how the problem can be handled in a standalone dual-frequency GPS receiver in a relatively less complicated manner with reasonable accuracy. The performances of different dry tropospheric delay models are also investigated. The methodology is tested with GPS measurements at Kolkata (22.57°N, 88.37°E) and Bangalore (13.01°N, 77.5°E). The results indicate that the proposed methodology can be implemented for PWV estimation using single GPS receiver with satisfactory performance. © The Institution of Engineering and Technology 2014.