3 Things You Must Know Before Visiting India

by Rebecca Carey, Feb 14, 2018 | Destinations: India / Jaipur / New Delhi / North India / Rajasthan

In recent years India has quickly become a traveller’s paradise. It’s a huge country filled with colour, culture, history and most importantly great food. It can be described as wonderful and fantastic but also overwhelming and dauting (especially if you are visiting for the first time).  If you haven’t been yet, what are you waiting for? It is common to try and cram in as many destinations as possible. India has a lot to offer over a massive space and its unlikely you’ll be able to see everything you want in one trip. Before booking your trip, it’s a good idea to think realistically about what areas interest you and how you can get the most out of your visit.

Be sure to check out this A-Z guide to India before planning any trips.

Be wary of water and street food

Staying away from the water is a given. The water supply in India is full of all kinds of pollution. As most diseases are waterborne, stick to drinking bottled only water and soda, ensure lids are sealed on purchase.  Branded water products should be easily accessible in most parts of India. Depending on how sensitive your stomach is, it is a good idea to avoid ice in drinks or brushing your teeth using tap water. For more tips on staying safe, click here.

There is salivating worthy street food on every corner in India. Although this can be tempting it’s a good idea to stay clear. Most food is cooked in oil which hasn’t been changed and food is kept out in hot temperatures without being refrigerated. If you do decide to brave street food, ensure the food is cooked fresh in front of you. Also look for stalls that are busy and have people queuing up, this is an easy guarantee the food is being cooked there and then.

Respect the culture

Before travelling to India, it is important to remember the clothes you wear at home might not be appropriate. Both in terms of climate and culture. Regarding culture, India is not a place you can safely dress the same way you would do in the West. It’s a good idea to read up on Indian dress code and the reasons behind it. Basic standards require you cover up your knees, shoulders, cleavage and midriff. In cities such as Mumbai and Delhi these rules are becoming less and less enforced with women starting to adopt fashion from the West. However, as a tourist it is best to stay modest at all times.

Public transport like no other

Although India’s public transport network is the most heavily used in the world, it doesn’t mean it’s easy to navigate. A train or bus journey is highly recommended and will soon become one on your most memorable adventures whilst in India. Not only will you be able to interact with locals, you’ll also see village life you wouldn’t have seen had you chosen to fly. When travelling on the trains and buses ensure you stay covered up. Now is not the time to start expressing yourself, especially if you are travelling on local buses or on a lower-class train. It is uncommon to see tourists traveling by these means so being looked at isn’t rare.

For any journeys you make without a fixed fare, ensure this is agreed before you start your journey and check the fee covers all luggage and passengers. Tickets for rail travel should be booked in advance, for more information click here.

There is so much information out there on travelling to and around India, this is just three tips to help you on the way.