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India Travel Guide

What can you do in India?

Here find more on your India & Nepal trip!! The contact with the local people will be more useful to know their custom. It realizes that foreign guest in a country where people show more manners toward you; that is not different between you and them, you also act different!! We here provide a few tips, which you follow and can get comfortable stay during your Travel:


Always Act like the locals People

For Example of how the local people is think; if you want to visit a mosque, cover your arms, legs, and head (for women). Leave your shoes at the entrance - For women it is often only some part of the mosque is accessible. Do Respect and do not criticize populations skin colour, fashion & dressing style, working approach, their language. This respect & praise will make you local and useful for cool & long travel.  To get the background information about your visiting destination will utmost bothered, so find out about local people and  always aware of what and how you do better. Must Read more about cultural differences it can be found in the books and our websites.


General Information about Local People

As a tourist, you will continuously come across people who want to strike up a discussion. Here English not being first language, they may not be familiar with the straight ways of doing this, and thus their opening work or line may seem unexpected, same time they be very formal  saying "Excuse me good gentleman, what is your mother country?" is a typical one. It is also the first in a series of questions that Indian men seem sometimes to be friendly in order to ask Western tourists.. Some make queries about the ways of the West or the purpose of your trip, but mostly they will be about your family and your job.

You may find it odd or even intrusive that complete strangers should want to know that sort of thing, but these subjects are considered polite conversation between strangers in India, and help people place one another in terms of social position. Your family, job, even income, are not considered "personal" subjects, and it is completely normal to ask people about them. Asking the same questions back will not be taken wrong – far from it. Being interested does not have the shame in India that it has in the West.


Stick to the dress code

Tourist are often expected to dress properly. In Islamic countries, for example, the clothing covering the shoulders and skirts and pants should at least to the knee. It shows respect to the choice of clothing to take into account the fact that you're aware of what country you are traveling. Women who dress to disclose her skins that they are at all people eyes and under risk of harassment. Women can take that as provoking or challenging behaviour of Local People.

 

SOME SPECIAL TIPS FOR WOMEN TRAVEL IN INDIA:

a)            Women who are travelling alone used to be frowned upon in India, but times are slowly changing.  In mosques, women should be fully covered, and in temples and gurudwaras (Sikh temple), person should cover their head properly.
b)            One needs to be on the right side of caution while entering into conversations with strangers, accepting invitations to drinks and late night dinners.
c)            The Southern and the Eastern parts of the country are more fun to travel for the women traveller.
d)            Don't wear very short clothes while in India. They do not appeal to Indian Men susceptibility, you will attract unwanted.
e)            Attraction and advances if you are wearing scanty outfits.
f)             Woman who smokes /drinks is not acceptable anywhere in India, except for the metro cities, this thought to be having a loose decent character, especially amongst the middle class people & families.
g)            Discos, dance clubs, pubs, 5-star hotels are areas with a modern touch. You can easily go there for some entertainment or for drinks. However, having a male companion or at-least another female with you is quite a good always.
h)            In local trains & Metro Trains, some compartments reserved only for women. It is advised for you to travel in those, there are ladies’ queues for train tickets and even ladies’ seats in buses & trains.
i)             A way to get more respect and sensibilities from Indians is to wear traditional Indian clothes, such as salwaar kameez or sari.
j)             Do not attempt in lonely places alone. It is also advised not to go outside alone after it is very late night and dark even in Metro Cities also.


SOME SPECIAL TIPS FOR PHYSICALLY CHALLANGED TRAVELLERS IN INDIA.

Travelling in India for the physically challenged is not easy somewhere.  Airports, Hotels, and most of the buildings are equipped for the wheelchair and Elevators. But footpaths cannot be used by the physically challenged person without any help. Most of the Restrooms & restaurants have not been designed for the physically challenged person. Nevertheless, many physically challenged travellers are should be brave to en-counter with these difficulties.

  1. With regards to physically challenged person travel within the city of India. our drivers are very well trained, helpful and professionals. Along with them our ground personnel would ensure that their rides are very smooth at all places wherever they visit. If the numbers of travellers are more than six then we convert our existing fleet of cars/coaches to provide the needs of their relax travel in India.
  2. We have enthusiastic staff, personal helpers, nurses & doctors, at all major cities who can efficiently handle the travel and other needs of physically challenged travellers.
  3. For lodgings, we have very carefully selected hotels in all categories that we provide to these kinds of individual travellers. Apart from the hotel staff, our associate offices would be 24x7 at services.

 

SOME SPECIAL TIPS FOR SENIOR CITIZEN TRAVELLERS IN INDIA.

a)            Senior Citizen and Elders are respected and esteemed in all over India. Thus Senior Citizen Travellers will not have any problem in touring India. Unless you have poor vision or are otherwise challenged, there shouldn’t be any reason for not visiting India.
b)            All senior travellers have senior citizens’ reservation quotas and discount in trains and senior citizens’ queues for train tickets counters, Banks, and reserved seats in Bus, Trains, Metro’s. Senior Citizen Travellers stay in India will be a memorable one.


TRAVELING WITH CHILDREN IN INDIA :

a)            Travelling with children is a real enjoyment as it often boosts the chances of having interesting encounters with the local people. Children are easily welcomed everywhere and hospitality is extended to those accompanying them. One of the causes for this might be that children are not self-conscious and they do not feel cultural variations as intensely as some adults are likely to. It is thus easier for them to make friends with the local’s population.
b)            However, travelling with children can also be very tiring, because they fall sick very easily.
c)            In big hotels, obtaining safe baby food is not a problem. Disposable nappies are available in all major towns and cities. Most big hotels provide babysitting facilities.
d)            Extra care should be taken to protect children from the Indian high temperature by avoiding the sun during the hottest part of the day. Cool showers, swim pool and baths always help.
e)            Dehydration can be remedied by drinking plenty of water that is either boiled or purified with tablets.
f)             Diarrhea can best be avoided by staying away from uncovered street food and unhygienic foods. If travelling with children, it is best to visit India in the cooler months.      
                               
“PHOTOGRAPHY” - FILM SHOOTING, BUT CLEVERLY! 

India is always a photogenic, not only for nature but also because of the people. When photographing people do it with respect. Take time to take a picture and show interest, 1st greet and a chat. People always ask for permission if you want to photograph. A positive or a self-protective response is easily recognized. Respect it when people do not want to be photographed and stay friendly. People can have very good reasons for not wanting to be photographed. They may wonder what happens to their image. Sometimes religious motives play a role: it is suggested that a photograph with a piece of the soul is taken away. Others cause’s are unwashed and in dirty clothes in the picture. Some women do not like to be photographed by strangers. Somewhere it may also happen that people only want the photo fee. Respect this condition and go in such a case a distance of secretly photographing. It is indecent and can lead to violent response.

 

Photograph Exposure:
In India, shootings are best taken early in the morning while sun rise and late in the afternoon while sunset. The noontime sun tends to eliminate the shadows of objects cutting down on the depth to your shots.


Photography Restrictions:

a)            Indians could be very moody about what you photograph. You need permission of restricted area and buildings like military importance including railway stations, bridges, airports, military installations, tribal areas and sensitive border regions.
b)            Some temples prohibit photography in the main hall and the inner chamber. Usually such temples have prohibitory notice boards on their premises. It is always prudent to ask if there are no such indications. Some temples, forts, palaces, tombs and monasteries levy a fee to bring a still or video camera into the premises.
c)            A few wild life sanctuaries charge a higher fee.
d)            The Archaeological Survey of India issues special permits for photographing monuments with tripods and artificial lights.
e)            Men’s in India are always willing to pose with Westerns tourist. In places where tradition and social rule are in the Indian society, so care should be taken before training your lens on women.


SHOPPING TIPS - Careful when buying souvenirs

Note down the most essential rule while shopping and purchasing handicrafts specially from street hawkers – need to do the right Bargain. It wouldn’t shock to know the facts of quality and rate of buying item. It is always valuable to purchase The State Emporia and the Central Cottage Industries Emporia recognised by Government which located in all Cities in India, the quality and price of items is best amongst others, here the prices are fixed and will give you a fair idea of how much you could expect to pay while purchasing similar items from regular dealers.


Be cautious when export items that include delivery charges or not. You may have to pay additional customs as well as the handling charges. Be careful of purchasing gems and carpets unless you’re an expert on this. Export of items such as skins fur and ivory antiquities, the purchase of these souvenirs is a major risk to protected species and have a loss of animal . Popular carvings and jewellery of elephant ivory products from the shields of both sea and land tortoises are manufactured skins of big cats, handbags reptile leather coasters and lampshades of porcupine quills, coral and shells and countless other products are banned in India.


Hence it is compulsory to get a certificate of legal sale and permission for export before you purchase  and take any of these items out of the country.

 

Get hold of your Waste / litter.
Waste and garbage is a major crisis in walking areas in India. Due to pollution and heavy population many areas do not have the proper resources to regularly clean tracks by the government departments. Do not leave anything behind and drop it to a place where you can discard. Even organic resources like fruit’s & vegetable peels and cores its takes many years to dispose off


Safari rules

If you stand in a Canter / open Jeep / truck do it gently in wildlife surrounding area. The driver will always maintain and give distance from wildlife and minimize wild animal while chasing them.
It is prohibited to disturb animal during safari, do not litter in jungle and do not take unnecessary items and specially plastic items in Jungle.

Stay within the beaten track -  In order to conserve wildlife: do always walking or cycling on marked track’s. As long as you continue on the path, you will find the high impact of nature. Once you go off the paths you will be in big danger, always need to follow jungle rules informed by the naturalist.


Do Not Encourage Begging

In India & Nepal the wages of local people is extremely low and in-fact not sufficient to meet their needs. Therefore, it is often a tip is expected. Beggars are normal seeing in cities and roads signals with small children’s, ladies and physically challenged people easy target to get beg.
Please do not offer them any money this encourage them to stay in this begging business. Also do not buy their street items like pens, balloons and sweets what they try to sale you.
If you want something to give these poor people then donate some product or donate to charity firm to help the local community. Do not give individual gifts its make differences between people and children.


Save the Water and Electricity.

In India or in Asian countries always remember to turn-off the water tab and switch-off lights, television / radio and air-conditioning (in warm climates), Heater & Water Heaters (in cold climate) need to check always when you leave the room.

Do not waste and use excessive water: in India & Nepal and in many of the countries where we stay is water scarce. Government and our hotels are increasingly taking measures to reduce energy consumption, but be conscious of this themselves.


Communication, Internet and Emails  access in India

India is huge market for IT Industry, from Bog hotels to small street indide home you can get Internet excess and Cyber cafe with Local and international telephone connections, it can be slow somewhere in Internet cafes.

Mobile phone coverage is wide-ranging in all over India, with the exception of some remote areas like in wildlife and National Parks area and remote village and tribal area, where network may not work. Please check with your mobile provider for network tie-ups.


COSTS, CURRENCY & BANKS ATM’s .

There are no restrictions on the amount of foreign currency or travellers cheques a tourist may import to India & Nepal, provided a declaration form is completed on arrival. This will also facilitate the exchange of imported foreign currency as well as the export of un-spent foreign currency on departure. Cash notes and traveller's cheques up to US $ 10,000 or equivalent need not be declared at the time of entry. Use authorized money changers for converting foreign currency.


Cost of your Tour

India is one of the least expensive destinations to travel, but also is beautiful, delightful and mysterious country, with many multiplicity of thing to see and do; and you are having several opportunities and destinations to visit. You can go with minimum budget and stay in India for a long time, or if you like go with a good budget, to enjoy of all comforts and to spend a bit more than you thought. The minimum budged that you need per day is $25 - $30, and if you want to stay in a decent clean bed, to wake up to an attached bathroom and to eat decent three meals, you need to spend $45 - $50 per day. But if you want to enjoy totally of your trip and to spend much more than that, India offers you many destinations with hotels five stars, exquisite restaurants, luxury transports and excellent services; you will expect to pay international prices for accommodation and food. Souvenirs and crafts are in different prices and models, and you wouldn’t spend a lot of money in these things. Other thing in that you need to think is in the Entry tickets of the sightseeing places, as monuments, museums and other, which are more expensive for Foreign travellers. Seeing these recommendations, you decide when to go?, where to go?, with who?, and how much money you would like to spend?


CURRENCY

Currency unit in India is the Rupee (Rs / INR), which is divided in a hundred Paise (p), and is available in denominations of Re 1, Rs 2, Rs 5, Rs 10, Rs 20, Rs 50, Rs 100, Rs 500 and Rs 1000, the coins of Re 1, Rs 2, Rs 5, and also is available the denominations in coins of 10p, 20p, 25p, and 50p. You can exchange your foreign currency in the banks or maybe in exchange establishment, the rate of the exchange of some currency is approximately in Rs 45 per $ 1 or Rs 60 per € 1.


BANKS & ATM’s machine

India is now opened many ATMs and Banks in each streets and banking in India has become quite easy now. With the capability of India economy, banks become most efficient in the all area in India, In many places ATMs are usually placed and several licensed currency exchange bureaus or shops, who exchange currency with good exchange rates as good as banks. In village and small towns probably your best option will be the government banks, which maybe only change US dollars, euro or sterling; on other hand you can change money in hotels, some of them offer this service, but the rates usually is not good, and if you are worried about your exchange rate, you can use the black market to change your money. Banking hours generally are 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. from Monday to Friday, and 10 a.m. to 12-noon on Saturday; the ATMs of the airports, hotels, or banks in the metros are opened 24 hours; the exchange bureaus also is opened the several hours to day. Wiring money to India is a more easier, now, Indian banks has branches abroad, which wire money in two working days by telex, other possibilities are the foreign banks with their branches in India, and companies as Western Union, American Express and Thomas Cook.


Tipping

Tipping meaning in Local language called “Baksheesh”, It is advisable to carry small notes / change in a local currency because tipping in India & Nepal is a matter of personal judgment of the given service, more demanding is ‘money paid’ as tipping.
a)            Local city taxis and small restaurants normally do not expect to be tipped.
b)            Some hotels include service charges on their bills; in such cases tipping is not necessary, a tip of 5 to 10% on total bill but you need only tip a few rupees, not a percentage of your bill.
c)            Hotel and airport porters should be tipped around 20-50 Rupees.
d)            Tipping to taxi drivers for airport/railway station transfers is not customary. Tour guides and drivers do expect tips depending on the assignments and number of days spent on the tour. The drivers and tour guides should be tipped around Rs. 100 to Rs. 300 per day.
e)            The porter who takes your baggage to your room can be tipped Rs.20 per bag or Rs.50 per trolley. (These estimates are for 5 and 4-star hotels and would be proportionately less in 1, 2 or 3 star hotels).
f)             In fancy restaurants and good hotels waiters, room service boy, housekeeping, porters, doormen will expect tips. Paying few rupees to the people like snake charmer, camel rider, cart puller, shoe-keeper is also fine.


HEALTH

Be extra careful about food and water. Eating raw salads and fried food from a street-side vendor is a no-no. Avoid pork too. If the temptation is soaring, go to a clean restaurant that you can trust. Eat balanced and healthy meals. Keep popping those friendly multi-vitamins.

Water has to be from a reliably clean source. If not sure where the water comes from, ask for a known brand of mineral water. Always carry a water bottle with you - this will save you from dehydration too.

While traveling take all precautions that will keep you from that running nose (or tummy !), dizzy body temperatures, giddy hangovers etc. Make sure you carry the first aid kit with all the medicines.
If you believe in taking precautions, take all the vaccinations one needs. To avoid malaria and dengue, carry mosquito repellents, nets and sprays. If you can bear the heat, wear clothes that cover most of the body.


PASSPORT  & VISA

The traveller need to ensure that all passports are valid at least six months after date of return and that all the necessary visa requirements have been fulfilled.

All non-residents require visas for India, which must be get prior to the departure. Tourist visas are usually valid for 6 months from the date of issue. Passports must have at least 2 blank pages and be valid for 6 months after your return from India Two passport photographs are also necessary at the time of submission of visa form.

In case you are travelling to neighbouring country and are coming back to India after that visit again, ensure you have double entry visas. The Government of India has announced a scheme of granting Tourist Visa on arrival for the citizens of Finland, Japan, Luxembourg, New Zealand and Singapore for a short period upto a maximum of 30 days. Please contact Indian Embassy/ Mission for more details and terms and conditions of this.


TRAVEL INSURANCE

Sufficient travel insurance is important for your individual security. Mountain and other adventure sports enthusiasts should have insurance that covers you your and items and trekking, climbing and mountain biking.

General Travel Tips what to Do and what not to do

a)            Drink only bottled or boiled water, or carbonated (bubbly) drinks in cans or bottles. Avoid tap water, fountain drinks, and ice cubes. If this is not possible, make water safer by both filtering through an “absolute 1 micron or less” filter AND adding iodine tablets to the filtered water. “Absolute 1 micron filters” are found in camping/outdoor supply stores. Buy bottled water from respectable outlets to guard against stomach upsets. Some of the better known brands are Bisleri, Kinley, Aquafina, Himalaya etc. Make sure that the seal of the bottle is intact.
b)            Always use an insect repellent if you find yourself in a mosquito-prone area. But remember, not every place is mosquito-infested and low temperatures in winters (when most tourists come to India) kill most bugs in the northern plains and hills.
c)            Watch out for spicy dishes, especially at the outset of your tour. Avoid eating food from road side stalls. Eat unpeeled fruits and avoid fresh salads, especially in small hotels. If you are forced to eat food at some place that you have doubts about, make sure the food is served hot.
d)            Pharmacies or chemists are available in every little town and village and you can buy medication. In case you need to see a doctor for a specific condition, ask for help from your hotel (most have doctors on call) or your tour operator. The cost of visiting a doctor is fairly low (less than a dollar) compared to western countries.
e)            If travelling in scorching heat, remember to drink enough water, use hats, sunglasses & UV lotions. Do not venture out in the mid day sun.
f)             Carry your passport, traveller’s cheques, money, cards etc. in an inner shirt/jeans pocket. Better still; shove them in a hidden money belt against your skin. Always beware of   pickpockets in Rush & haunts area like airports, railway station, markets and tourist spots.
g)            The worst thing to do is to carry them in a zippy bag hung over the shoulders. You will never know when someone just slips it out. The fanny bags or waist packs spell 'money' to pickpockets and make you an easy prey to swoop on. You cannot escape their nimble fingers and sharp razors.
h)            You can travel through many modes of transport available- cycle rickshaws, Tongas, buses, trains, cars, planes but always confirm the rate/fare before or ask them the fare conversion tariff card.
i)             Never buy rail/air tickets and hotel rooms through touts, they might cheat you. Always go to A Approved Travel Agent.
j)             Get you domestic tickets and hotel room booked well in advance as in the peak season there is a great rush, so you may not face any discomfort later.
k)            Avoid self driving as it is risky. If you still opt to take precaution for stray animals that walk around, in the night truck drivers can be rash. Also carry a spare can of petrol/diesel.
l)             Always avoid taking/ having/ buying Drugs as its prohibited in India & Nepal, always beware some tourist area are restricted with this law. 
m)          In India Smoking is prohibited in Local public area.
n)            Most parts of India, use local language to speak, but you need not to worry English is now a days commonly spoken and understood language in cities and towns.
o)            People tend to be generally friendly and helpful, but please take extra caution to recognize them.
p)            Never leave an unlocked suitcase in a hotel room or an unattended one at airports/railway stations.

q)            Hindus do not eat beef and Muslims don't eat pork. Don't upset them by offering what they cannot eat.