Travel Tips

A general guide to making sure you have a pleasant time on your holiday. Enjoy!

  • Carry your passport, other travel documents and your money separately. You don't want to lose them all together.
  • Place a photocopy of your passport in each and every checked-in bag that you give at the airport. Helps in case you lose your luggage.
  • Keep extra photocopies of the relevant pages of your passport. This is needed for Indian permits.
  • If you order mineral water in a restaurant, make sure the bottle is brought unsealed at the table.
  • Never travel without mosquito repellents and other essential medicines.
  • It is a good idea to carry locks for your bags and suitcases. Try to keep your clothes flat and avoid carrying too many fragile goods that will be left at the mercy of careless luggage handlers.
  • Label your entire luggage and even try to carry an extra set of labels with you.
  • Carry an extra set of lock and keys, just in case.
  • It's not a good idea to travel with too much cash. Travelers' cheques are the best.
  • Don't use new shoes, however comfortable they may seem.
  • Try not to store liquids in a bottle in any of your bags. If you must, seal the mouth with white hospital tape.
  • Pack empty plastic zip lock bags to separate soiled clothes from the rest, especially if you're
    traveling to a rainy destination.
  • Ensure that your luggage is waterproof.
  • Confirm, reconfirm, confirm once again. (Your plane tickets, and other relevant bookings)
  • If traveling during monsoon, carry a raincoat and umbrella.
  • Make a list of all your personal medicines that you are carrying with you. Carry the list with you wherever you go.
  • Carry your own water bottle. This should be within arm's length at all times. It'll save you the problem of drinking unsafe water whenever you are thirsty.
  • Many women travelers prefer to carry a high pitched whistle that would scare away stalkers.
  • Women who are traveling alone should not admit they are traveling alone.
  • When asking for directions, ask shopkeepers, not pedestrians. Check with at least two persons or more.
  • Make a list of all the things you forgot while traveling and use the list before your next trip.

Clothing :

Travel as light as possible. Clothing and laundry are both quite inexpensive .It’s better for women to avoid tank tops or short skirts / shorts . The best outfit , especially during the hot summers, is a T-shirt worn with loose cotton trousers. on trousers. You can purchase them anywhere in India, at very reasonable rates , at any of the shops. Adventurous ladies can try wearing the Indian “salwar-kameez”. It is comfortable and free sized.

Social Interaction :

If you give the impression of being from a different country, chances are that you might be stared at , especially in the smaller towns. Don’t feel offended-they mean no harm, it is just curiosity.

Toilets :

In India, public toilets facilities are few and far between.. Take every opportunity you can to use a clean toilet in places such as hotels and restaurants. Make this a habit wherever you go.

Beggars :

Do not let them hassle you, and do not encourage them by giving them money.

Food and Drinks :

  • Drink only bottled water. Many popular brands are available. In restaurants insist that only sealed bottles are brought to your table.
  • Beef is not served in many parts of India. Pork is also not easily available.
  • Eat non-vegetarian food only in good restaurants. The meat in cheaper and smaller places can be of dubious quality.
  • Good quality vegetarian food is easily available.
  • Curd or yoghurt is served with most meals. It is a natural aid to digestion and helps temper the spicy food.

Shopping :

Try to shop only in government handicraft shops. There the prices are fixed and the quality is certified. If that is not an option, check the prices at a few shops before making a choice. Bargaining is standard in most places and enjoyed by all.
Get used to the fact that you will probably be charged more than the locals. If possible, take a local along when you go shopping.

Tipping :

  • In hotels and restaurants, tips are not normally included in the bill
  • Some hotels include service charge on their bills. In such cases tipping is not necessary.
  • The standard tip is 10%.
  • In hotels, porters and room service attendands are normally tipped at the end of the stay,
  • Though an early tip is likely to get you better service.
  • Tipping of taxi drivers is not customary.

Sightseeing :

  • Dress codes for religious places can include covering your head, being barefoot etc. Ask, So that you don’t unwittingly offend anyone.
  • Some temples do not permit any leather articles at all on their premises.
  • Certain temples are not open to Non-Hindus. Please check with the local tourist Information office.
  • Most museums in India are closed on Monday and Site Museums, those near Archaeological monuments are closed on Fridays.
  • The dry summer heat can drain you completely. Drink lots of water and fluids.
  • The sun is strong. Remember to use sunscreen of exposed parts of the body. Wear Sunglasses to avoid harmful rays.
  • Photography is not always permissible, and at many places it is permitted only at a fee.
  • There is usually a higher fee for using a video camera.
  • Smoking is not allowed at public places. All properties of the Indian Railways including Trains and railway stations are strictly nonsmoking zones with stiff penalties for violations.
  • English is spoken at almost all tourist centers, but you can also request Government-Trained and approved guides who also speak German, French, Spanish, Japanese, Chinese, Italian or Russian.

Health Precautions :

  • Always drink bottled water.
  • For the first few days it might be advisable to clean your teeth with bottled water.
  • Eat fruits you can peel.
  • Always wash fruit well before eating it.
  • Wash your hands before and after eating.
  • Always keep a tube of mosquito repellent with you.
  • Always carry a kit of the basic emergency medicines you might need for diarrhea, fever Etc. Also, band aids and an antiseptic ointment.
  • If you do catch a bug, do not panic. It will go away in a few days-but try to following Tips to keep it down:

    • Drink lassi - a yoghurt drink. It will help tone down the bacteria.
    • Eat plain rice, or try to simple khichdi – an easily digestible mixture of rice and lentils.
    • Drink plenty of coconut water. It’s cooling, and naturally sterilized!
    • Drink plenty of fluids and take some electrolyte salts if the bug persists.

    • Time
    • Everything in India takes time- longer than in most places. So always give yourself extra Time for whatever you may have to do- even it is just a visit to the Post Office or Changing money.
    • Indians joke about the concept of “Indian Stretchable Time “(IST). Certainly, if you’re a super- punctual sort, India can be frustrating. Make allowances for this.


  • Keep extra photocopies of the relevant pages of your passport. These are required for Indian permits. Also, keep extra passport sized self photographs which are also required for permits / taking a sim card for your phone etc.
  • Taxi and auto-rickshaw fares keep changing, and therefore do not always confirm to reading on meters. Insist on seeing the latest rate card (available with the driver)and pay accordingly.
  • Insist on the taxi/auto meter being flagged down in your presence. Best option is to use a prepaid taxi especially from the airport or railroad station. Prepaid taxi services are available at most important places as well. Also all the metropolis have dial a cab service which is safe and secure.
  • In cities you can change most major foreign currencies and brands of travelers’ cheques- but you’ll widen your options and save yourself hassles if you stick to US dollars or pound sterling, and either Thomas Cook or American Express travelers cheques.
  • Most big cities have ATMs which accept both Visa and Mastercard as well as American Express. The ATM network is ever expanding and you can find them in small towns as well.


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