Top 10 India Travel Tips
India is one of the most intriguing unique countries in the world to visit, due to its distinct culture, vibrant cities, and breathtaking natural beauty. Traveling to this massive country might be a little intimidating or stressful for many people, even the most experienced travellers, if you don’t know what to anticipate. You won’t be sorry if you’ve already booked our incredible India tour, or even if you’re just thinking about it. Here are some travel recommendations for first-time visitors to India to ensure you have the best time whilst you’re there.
Be patient and expect delays
Like most countries in Asia, India operates on a much more leisurely schedule than we are accustomed to, so expect delays, late transportation, or being stopped in traffic. This is also sometimes called Island time. When waiting for buses, airlines, taxis, and so on, keep in mind that India is one of the world’s busiest countries, infamous for its heavy traffic and cows in the middle of the road. So get a chai tea, sit back, relax, enjoy the trip, and admire the view!
Pack the proper clothes
The Taj Mahal is one of the top destinations in The world that you must see, but it’s important to know how to respect such sites beforehand. When it comes to clothing, Indians are quite conservative. Local women are constantly covered, and wearing miniskirts or crop tops is not as accepted as it is in the West. Another recommendation for respecting local culture when traveling in India is to wear loose trousers (hareem or hippie pants are always useful), long shorts for males (no hot pants please! ), baggy t-shirts, and shawls or sarongs for the ladies (to cover any cleavage or shoulders). Loose-fitting garments made of a light material, such as cotton, are great for keeping cool in this tropical region. Remember that you should dress modestly when visiting religious temples or sacred locations.
Eat like a local
We always encourage trying local cuisine when traveling, especially in India where they utilize so many herbs and spices in their dishes, which makes the food so delicious! Your group leader will always help you find new things to try, and you will even learn to prepare some (try eating with your hands like a native)!! If you’re not used to street food in India, it might make you ill and give you the famed Delhi belly, so we recommend sticking to restaurants, avoiding salads, and even asking your tour leader for tips on the finest meal sites. Another great travel tip is to bring some Imodium or diarrhoea medications with you just in case!
Don’t drink from the tap
Tap water, as in many Asian nations, is not clean or safe to drink or brush your teeth with (this can include putting ice in your drink)! There may be a few drinking fountains in airports or cities, or table water at restaurants. The locals are used to drinking this every day with no issues; but, for most westerners, it can make you ill and ruin your trip. There are many places to get bottled water, and keep in mind that India is quite hot, so stay hydrated!
Bargain, Bargain and Bargain some more!
If you have time, there are several markets to visit in New Delhi, Jaipur, and even Kerala. Another of our India travel tips is to always barter for the best price when shopping for souvenirs. If you want to buy something from the market, start at roughly 50% off the original asking price and work your way up to a price you’re willing to pay. You have the option to walk away if you are unhappy and do not want to pay it. Everything in India is extremely cheap, and you can buy some excellent gifts for yourself and others, but keep in mind that if you’re negotiating over a few rupees, they’ll mean a lot more to the locals than they would to you. This helps in the support of someone who makes a lot less than most of us in the west.
Tip the locals if you can
The typical daily pay for most people in India is not that much, therefore food and drink are quite cheap here, but the locals nevertheless work hard to provide an amazing service to visitors that come to visit. Bus or taxi drivers, waiters in restaurants, local guides, and so on would anticipate a tip for their services; even minimal change to us might mean a lot to the Indian people here! So always tip, support the locals, and if you’re confused whether or not to tip, always ask your tour leader for guidance!
Beware of scams
Tourists are frequently pursued by scammers and fraudsters, depending on where they go. Deals for an India tour are a frequent scam. Book your tour strictly through trusted travel companies or through the Ministry of Tourism or Government of India-approved travel agencies. Never book something from strangers on the street.
Learn some basic words in Hindi
India is a culturally diversified country, including its language. In reality, most states speak a different language, yet English is widely used and understood throughout India. While Hindi is not everyone’s native language, it is widely understood, so learning a few simple Hindi terms might assist. namaste (hello/goodbye), shukriya or dhanyawad (thank you), theek hai (alright or OK), haan/haanji (yes), nahi (no), garam paani (hot water shower), madat (help), kripya (help/please), aaj (today), kal (tomorrow), chai (Tea), khaana (meal). You can use Duolingo to learn some basic language for free and this can help you enjoy your travels even more! We recommend doing this for all countries you visit, not just for India.
Make sure you have travel insurance
Emergencies and mishaps are unpredictable. It is better to plan ahead of time. Purchase travel insurance from your own country before you travel so if something goes wrong, you will be financially covered.These events can include things such as lost baggage, medical bills, or delayed flights – travel insurance will be your greatest friend. There are many excellent businesses to pick from, but keep in mind that not all of them will cover you once you have left your home country. If you haven’t already purchased travel insurance, we recommend World Nomads as your best alternative. You can get a free quote with World Nomads here.
Get visa sorted before you travel
You must apply for this e-visa before departing for India. You will also require an onward travel ticket indicating your exit from the country, which you must have printed out together with your e-visa upon arrival. Most tourists to India can apply for an e-visa online before arrival; however, this is mainly depending on your home country; always check with your local consulate or embassy for the most up-to-date information on your country of origin. To apply you can click here.
We hope that our top India travel tips and techniques will help you while you explore one of the most magnificent nations in the world, and that you will have a fantastic time! Your group leader will also be available to assist you with any additional concerns or issues you may have so it is best to book a tour with us! Click here for our India departure dates for 2022 and 2023.