Sunday, September 26, 2010

Planning India Travel

Traveling to India is one of the best things that you can do in your lifetime. The amazing beautiful landscapes, the snow-clad high mountains and peaks, breathtaking views and scenes, highly spiritual, lovely and humble people wishing you with the affectionate smiles are some of the reasons with which you can relax and enjoy the comfortable journey. The tour can be a memorable and enjoyable one if you pre-plan your journey and keep some things in mind.

  • Get a multiple entry visa as it can be used to visit a neighboring country and the cost is the same as the single entry visa.

  • Make sure you have adequate copies of the passports and documents related to your travel itinerary. You must keep them with you always so that they may not get stolen. Leave copies of the same in your home and hotel.

  • A few passport size photographs can be really handy if you want to travel to some restricted areas where a photograph is needed.

  • The whole itinerary should be pre-planned and the hotel must be booked earlier and a printout of the receipt should be with you before arriving in the hotel.

  • It is always a good idea to do some research and reading at the places you are planning to travel in India, so that your overall experience becomes all the more interesting and memorable.

  • Ask your hotel to send a car for you when you arrive at the airport before you actually begin your journey. The tour operator or the hotel you are going in usually provide a car to pick you up from the airport and also vice-versa in the package that you have taken. If this is not possible for some reason, you can take pre-paid taxis from the airport.

  • You can exchange currency at the currency exchange counters available at the airports. The counters of some banks are available inside the terminal and once you go past customs, you cannot go back to the currency exchange counters. So it is advisable to not go past customs. Remember to keep the exchange receipt of the currency converted as this will help you to reconvert unspent Indian Rupees back to your original currency when your holiday is over and you leave India.

  • When you exit from the airport, the red route is used if you have dutiable items to declare at customs and the green route if you have no items that require customs duty to be paid. If you brought something for your own use and are asked to pay customs duty, then make sure you tell the customs officer that the item will leave with you when you depart. The customs officer will make an entry on your passport to insure that the item is taken back when you leave. This way you don’t need to pay duty on goods that you have taken for your personal use.

  • Some places you go have entrance fees and restricted timings for the visit. These fares are to be bear upon by you.

  • The electric plugs in India are rounded and electricity voltage is 220 volts AC, 50 cycles. It can be a good idea to bring voltage converter if you wish to use gadgets that may otherwise not work. Although, you can get that from an electronic goods store here in India as well.

  • Get your proper vaccination from the doctor before you begin to travel to India. As the water and air is different, you can attract water-borne diseases and infections. So, get a proper vaccination done by your doctor.

  • Make sure you have adequate medicines as first-aid in times of emergency. An antiseptic, a few bandages and pain killers should be taken along.

  • Avoid tap water and bring/buy bottled mineral water in India. Wherever you go, the bottled water like Bisleri mineral water is readily available. Make sure the bottle is seal-packed.

  • Make sure you have read the travel-advisory issued by your respective country for information on travel to certain areas. For more accurate information, visit the travel advisory website of the ministry of foreign affairs of your country.

  • Make sure to cover yourself with travel-insurance for thefts, loss and medi-claim.

  • Carry proper maps of the places you would like to visit in India.

  • Women should wear dress which do not expose as the culture is totally different here in India, this can hurt the religious sentiments of the people and you can also become a victim of a crime.

  • Do not give money to beggars. Instead if you have something which they can eat, that will be much better.

  • Shop and buy goods and take a receipt along with you. Remember to bargain for sure as the shop owners already tell you a hefty price as they come to realize that you are a foreigner.

  • Don’t take sweets or anything to eat by fellow travelers in your train or bus as they may be contaminated and might contain sleeping pills. It might lead to your luggage getting stolen.

  • Do carry a pair of bathroom slippers.

  • The Indian food is really spicy. Make sure you tell the person to not make it too spicy if you are eating from outside the hotel as the hotel menu already contains western, continental and Mexican dishes that might suit you.

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