Travel Information India
What should I know about India?
Avoid drinking tap water while in India. Consumption of bottled water is advisable. Please do not forget to check that the bottle is sealed before you purchase it, and please remember to dispose it properly. You can consume RO filtered water at the resorts, which in turn reduces use of plastic bottles and is environmentally positive.
Electricity – What plugs are used in India?
The voltage supply at most of the hotels across India is 230-240 volts. As most of the plug-in pins in India are different from western made plug-in pins. It is best to carry an adaptor and dry cells.
Equipment – What else do I need?
We also recommend carrying a torch, padlocks for your bags, sun block, a small sewing kit, safety pins and spare glasses or contact lenses if you wear them. Always keep a copy of your passport and visa in your email as well as a xerox copy of your documents which can be stored in in the hotel incase you misplace them.
Health and Vaccination
For advice on vaccination and immunizations you may please visit www.masta.org.
Indian Sightseeing Tips – What should I know?
Dress codes for religious sights do apply. In other words, you may need to cover your head and shoulders. Please remember to ask, so that you don’t unknowingly offend anyone. Some temples do not permit any leather articles at all on their premises. Certain temples are not open to Non-Hindus. Most museums in India are closed on Mondays, and Site Museums, those near archaeological monuments, on Fridays. When you are visiting religious sites, it is advisable to wear trousers, full-length skirts. Try and wear shoes that can be slipped on and off easily, as in most religious places you may need to enter the sanctorum barefoot.
English is spoken at almost all tourist centres. You can also book the services of trained and approved guides who also speak German, French, Spanish, Japanese, Italian or Russian through the tourist office in advance.If you are travelling to smaller cities, forests and villages it is advisable to take an English speaking escort with you for ease of conservation.
Money – Foreign Currency
Most International airports in India have money exchange counters where you can easily change money. It is recommended that you keep enough Indian money on you, which you may require for any purchases. Most big cities have ATMs which accept Visa and Master Card as well as American Express. The ATM network is fairly spread out you may even find them in smaller towns. Most hotels and resorts have money exchange facilities, however, this is not always guaranteed. It is advisable to research this before your departure. In rural and wildlife areas currency changing facilities and ATM’s are not available.
Mobile | Hand phone
Mobile phone coverage is extensive all over India, with the exception of some remote areas in National Parks, where it may not work. Please check with your mobile provider for network tie-ups.
Most national papers are published in Hindi, English and all regional languages.
If you do not use a digital camera, it may be difficult to get photography film in smaller towns or in national parks / reserves, so please ensure you either bring them along or buy them on arrival at the port of entry. Photography may also not be permissible at some railway stations, bridges, airports and all military installations and at many places it is permitted only at a fee. There is usually a higher fee for using a video or professinal camera. If in doubt, please ask.
Safety – Am I safe in India?
Traveling in India is relatively safe. Simple precautions, however, should always be applied when traveling to any foreign country. Use the hotel safe to keep your documents secure; i.e. passports and visas. Avoid wearing heavy jewellery or carrying large amounts of cash during sightseeing – tourists are easy targets for pickpockets. Try not to keep your wallet in your back pocket, and do not accept food or drinks from strangers during your travels. You should never walk around in deserted areas, especially at night.
Smoking is not allowed at public places. All properties of Indian Railways, including trains and railway stations, are strictly non-smoking zones with stiff penalties for violations. There are designated smoking zones in hotels and airports.
Tipping guidelines – What is the standard in India?
Your lodge manager will provide you with guidelines for tipping, although many of the lodges have a central tip box where you can leave your gratuity at the end of your stay, we reccommend a 10 dollar per day/per room tipping guideline for guests. Where restaurant meals are involved, the tipping standard is usually 10% of the bill.
Adequate travel insurance is important for your personal safety. Mountain and other adventure sports enthusiasts should have insurance that covers trekking, climbing and mountain biking.Insurance: Emergency medical cover and travel insurance. It is advised that before you travel to India, you may subscribe to comprehensive travel insurance covering personal effects, personal accident, medical exigencies, emergency travel expenses, cancellation and curtailment.
All non-residents require visas for India, which must be obtained prior to departure. Tourist visas are usually valid for 6 months from the date of issue. Passports must have at least 2 blank pages and be valid for 6 months after your return from India. Two passport photographs are also required at the time of application. In case you are travelling to neighbouring country and are coming back to India after that visit, ensure you have double entry visas. Visa on arrival is available for certain countries. Please contact Indian Embassy/ Mission for more details.