CASUL TIPS WHO VISIT INDIA
Travel as light as possible. Clothing and laundry are both quite inexpensive.
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. 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
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 be
offended - they mean no harm, it is just curiosity.
public toilet 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.
Do not let them hassle you, and do not encourage them by giving them money.
Food And Drink
Drink only bottled water. Many popular brands are available. In restaurants insist that they bring a sealed bottle 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.
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 is 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.
In hotels and restaurants, tips are not normally included in the bill.
Some hotels include service charges on their bills. In such cases tipping is not necessary.
The standard tip is 10%.
hotels, porters and room service attendants are normally tipped at the
end of the stay, though an early tip is likely to get you better
Tipping of taxi drivers is not customary.
codes for religious places can include covering your head, being
barefoot etc. Ask, so that you don't unwittingly give offence.
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 Mondays and Site Museums, those near archaeological monuments, on Fridays.
The dry summer heat can drain you completely. Drink lots of water and fluids.
The sun is strong. Remember to use sunscreen on exposed parts of the body. Wear sunglasses to screen out harmful rays.
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.
is not allowed at public places. All properties of the Indian Railways
including trains and railway stations are strictly non smoking 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,
Italian or Russian.
Always drink bottled water.
For the first few days it might be advisable to clean your teeth in bottled water.
Eat fruit 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.
carry a kit of the basic emergency medicines you might need for
diarrhoea, 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 the following tips to keep it down:
Drink lassi - a yoghurt drink. It will help tone down the bacteria.
Eat plain rice, or try a 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.
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.
extra photocopies of the relevant pages of your passport. This will be
required for Indian permits. Also, keep extra photographs of
yourselves. These will be required for permits, filling out forms,etc.
and auto-rickshaw fares keep changing, and therefore do not always
conform to readings 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. As much as
possible, especially from the airport or railroad station insist on
using the pre paid services which are available at most important
In cities you can change most major foreign currencies
and brands of travellers' cheques - but you'll widen your options and
save yourself hassles if you stick to US dollars or pounds sterling,
and either Thomas Cook or American Express travellers cheques.
big cities have ATMs which accept both Visa and Mastercard as well as
American Express. The ATM network is ever expanding and in some states,
you can find them even in some smaller towns.