Travelling to India can indeed be a very exciting experience for a first timer. However, given the tremendous difference in culture, first timers can feel greatly overwhelmed. With an extremely large population, several different religions and independent little cultures, it can indeed be very bewildering for a first-time tourist.
In this post, we will take a look at some essential survival tips for first-time travelers to India:
Tip No. 1: Watch what you consume
For the first time traveler, it will be difficult to adjust to the Indian cuisine and a first time travelers will probably face stomach problems initially, but these will pass away pretty soon. While you can choose to indulge in some types of street food, do not consume local tap water and stay away from ice and salads offered on the streets.
Tip No. 2: Avoid burning yourself out
India is a vast country and every part of it exhibits a different culture, which is what makes it so appealing to tourists. However, many first timers complain of fatigue and overexertion because of planning to do too much in too little time. You must have a realistic expectation of what you will do with your time. Unlike Europe or other parts of the world where one can travel quickly, travelling in India can be extremely tiresome.
Tip No. 3: Plan out your travel route
India presents something for every type of tourist – ranging from hills to trek on, desert safaris, ruins, forts and old cities, lots of temples, mosques, tombs and monuments and of course, a very bustling and active culture. Plan out your travel route wisely and consider what you would like to see as India’s massiveness cannot be covered in a single trip alone.
Tip No. 4: Understand the locals and the culture
While Indians are generally friendly and open about their culture to foreigners, at times it may feel like they are too pushy, inquisitive and they often tend to ask personal questions. You must understand that the Indians are not trying to be rude. It is only part of their culture to be inquisitive about something or someone new around them.
Tip No. 5: Stay Safe
India is also notorious for scammers, hoodwinks, pickpockets and thugs. You should definitely never venture out alone in the dark. Conversely, you should also try and avoid areas which are a little too crowded. Never carry too much cash with you. You will often find that people will demand more money than what rates are. Try and keep your cool and haggle with the Indians. Haggling can be unpleasant, but if you are firm, it will always work out in your favor.
Tip No. 6: Watch your hands, feet and body
The left hand and the feet are considered to be unclean in the Indian culture. You should watch your feet and take off your footwear at religious places or when entering someone’s home. Refrain from using your left hand for eating or accepting something from someone. Also, remember to dress appropriately in public.
Tip No. 7: Understand that most things take time
In India, most processes and things take more time than expected. This is because chances of unprecedented interruptions happening in a country of over 1.25 billion people are quite high. There are always delays in timings, traffic jams and many other unfathomable delays.
Tip No. 8: Stay prepared for noise
In India, you will always need to be prepared for all types of noise. There will always be people shouting on top of their voices, cars honking around in traffic jams and children everywhere. One good way to avoid noise is to carry around noise cancelling headphones.
Bonus Tip: Saving up
You can also save up on your trip to India by making use of coupons and travel vouchers. Follow this link to obtain some great travel vouchers which can help you save money on your trip to India!