General Tips for India
New Delhi, India
General Tips for India New Delhi Reviews
My Tips for New Delhi Mar 25, 2013
Day trip to Taj Mahal
Akshardam Temple and Light and Sound show
x I wouldn't suggest Red Fort Light and sound show, but good if you like a factually history show.
1) Don't go budget hotels
Unless you don't mind a grotty toilet that looks like it should be for public convenience and dirty sheets i suggest to splash a bit more money to get a decent hotel. I stayed in Hotel Yuvraj in New Delhi and it was filthy but cheap i didn't mind as i was only staying for 4 nights and just a bed to sleep in but they also tried to make me pay 500 rupees because i didn't see the guy who was collecting me from airport which was complimentary. I have heard this hotel have tried to get people to pay for their breakfast which is complimentary too.
2) Travel Smart
A good way to get around New Delhi is it metro stations, very easy and i got a smart card for one day for 150 rupees. this gave me unlimited use on metro minus airport link. I believe you can also take it back after finished to get 50 rupees back as it is a deposit that can be returned. I kept mine to put in travel book. In metro very easy as they list destinations, announcements are english as well.
NOTE: In the front carriage it is just for women; a good way to travel around for ladies.
Also the Tuktuk are great and cheap for short distant journeys, i wouldn't advise minicab unless you are in a group as they can be pricey compared to Tuktuks.
3) Taste India
Pick a Tahli which is a dish with variety of mini dishes nan and rice to get a varied taste or book hotel with buffet as i am sure they have a lot of variety.
They are lots of vegetarian options too if you don't eat meat or wouldn't not like to.
Remember your malaria prevention, suncream and so on.
5) Beware of Pickpockets
Divide money up into different places or have good secure money wallets attached to your person.
6)Issues with the tissues
In all the public conveniences i went to they had no toliet tissues so if not a fan or the bootyshaking then i suggst to take some tissues with you.
7) Avoid traveling at night I did once but not long distance and even in daylight don't go done a street which isn't busy. it quiet safe and ignore strangers if you don't want to talk to them, likelyhood is they just wanting to sell you something.
8) book tours before you go or know that they are apart of association of Indian Tourism.
They ask for my Id I don't normally use internet cafe so i don't know if it is a normal thing and at the time i didn't have my ID on me.
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General Tips for surviving in India! Apr 24, 2008
I thought it could be helpful for some people to have a few general tips on how to get by in India. These tips are not intended to turn anyone away from travelling to India because there are so many good things about the country too...these are just some things to be prepared for!
Tip #1: HOW TO AVOID SCAMS!
This might be your most important piece of advice when travelling to India. As soon as [some] people know you are a foreigner they will try to get as much money out of you as possible! I think it is best to have accomodation booked in advance or at least a general idea of where you will be staying before you arrive at any city in India. Taxis and rickshaw drivers will try to take you to a 'less expensive' hotel where they make a commission...if you already have accomodation booked you can be firm and tell them exactly where they need to take you. They will most likely keep telling you about how much better their recommended hotel is but just tell them you have already paid and do not want to waste your money. DO NOT let your taxi or rickshaw driver try to take you to any 'travel agency' because again, they will try and make you book expensive tours and hotels from which they will receive a commission. You will also have to deal with taxis that try to take you to shops and government emporiums...though you are not obligated to buy anything, if you REALLY do not want to go, tell them! When finding a taxi, get one with a meter. Airports and train stations also have prepaid taxi booths where you pay set prices. If your hotel calls a taxi for you, they most likely will send one that is costly and will try and take you places you do not want to go! Lastly, everybody will try and be your 'tour guide' at any tourist attraction. Just say no (unless you really want one)...people will even start explaining things to you and you think they are just being friendly but will soon ask for money for being your 'unofficial guide'.
Tip #2: WHAT TO PACK
I cannot say what to pack for travelling around the entire country, nor in specific seasons, but I found that most of what I packed became useful at one point or another.
- Toilet paper!!! this is a must! I don't think I used one public bathroom (even in some hotels) that had toilet paper in them.
- For girls: a scarf or shawl...for covering your head up if you enter a mosque or for keeping dirt, dust, and weird street smells from your face!
- Spare camera batteries - while it was easy to find normal AA/AAA batteries all over, it was very difficult to find a Lithium battery when I needed one. To avoid searching all over, I would recommend bringing a spare!
- Pepto Bismol - I think these saved my life :) or some other stomach pills/antacids
- Guidebook - while some India guidebooks are big and heavy, it was still good to carry around because often things at tourist attractions are not labeled so you will end up walking around a fort like "cool...we are in a fort". The guidebook usually has a description so you can at least know what you are looking at!
- Torch or headlamp - I maybe only used this during a power outtage in Varanasi but I imagine it could be useful when staying in hostel dorm rooms or in trains at night.
- Oral rehydration powders - mix with water for instant rehydration. Works great for hangovers too!
- 1 or 2 small padlocks for your bags. I felt much safer knowing that my backpack was locked behind me!
* If you are travelling around via train, bus, etc it is best to pack as light as possible because you won't want to be weighed down with a large, heavy pack!
Tip #3: TRANSPORTATION
Trains: I have never been so confused in my life than in an Indian train station. I would suggest booking your train tickets in advance online (http://www.irctc.co.in/) if you want to travel in a class with air conditioning. You can get e-tickets online that serve as a printable ticket. Arrive at the train station early and make sure you know what station you are departing from (as most cities have multiple stations).
Taxi: Only use taxis with meters!
Rickshaw or auto rickshaw: obviously, rickshaws do not have meters so just name a price you are willing to pay and they will name something higher. Start to walk away and suddenly, your price is ok. Some autorickshaws have meters and some do not, again, just name a price and be prepared to walk away.
Metro in Delhi: the metro was very fast and efficient. Easy to use
Hired driver: You can hire a driver to take you around and between cities for fairly inexpensive. Most hotels can book this for you...but you will probably be ripped off in some way or another. Having a personal driver is good because you can ask them to stop just about anywhere and leave your stuff in the car when you get out.
* I don't know about hiring a car or riding a bus!
No matter how prepared you are, there are some things that are unavoidable...like staring. People will stare at you and laugh and you just have to deal with it!
Part of the India / Dubai 2008 travel blog
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