Tourism in India is booming! More people are traveling to India than ever before.
And yet, traveling to the world’s second most populous country can still be daunting for many tourists.
Traveling to India can become the dream vacation you’ve been thinking about your whole life. However, you need all the advice you can get before you head over.
In our ultimate India travel guide, you’ll learn everything you need to know to get started planning your trip to India. Let’s go!
1. Don’t Try to Visit Everywhere
You’ve probably heard that India is huge. But, you don’t realize how big it is until you get there. India is actually 3.287 million km².
If you’re too ambitious with your travel plans, you could end up disappointed. You’ll only fail if you attempt to cover too much ground in a short time.
Remember, you need to build into your travel plans recovery and relaxation times. You’ll quickly get exhausted after a couple of hours wandering around a city.
You want to get beneath the surface a few places. Don’t be satisfied by checking off somewhere on your map.
2. Prepare for Upset Stomachs
Everyone gets traveler’s diarrhea eventually on their trip around India. Just when you think you’ve overcome the bug, the infamous “Delhi Belly” will surprise you.
Your body is taking a shock to its system. The water, the food, the air, and the bacteria are all new to you.
You shouldn’t wait until you arrive in India to get diarrhea tablets. Take them with you to always be on the safe side.
Don’t be caught running around looking for a pharmacy when you’re in the middle of a toilet emergency. If you continue to experience the symptoms for up to a week, you should speak with a doctor.
3. Remember Dress Conservatively
India can reach temperatures of over 100 degrees Fahrenheit regularly. You may be tempted to walk around in swimwear rather than clothes.
This isn’t recommended, especially for women. You could find that you’re at the end of a significant amount of unwelcome attention.
This is especially important if you plan to visit temples and other religious sites. It is considered highly offensive to wear revealing dress for in particular locations.
You need to bring clothes which are made with thin fabrics but which still cover up your shoulders and legs.
4. Get a SIM Card
You may be in two minds about whether to buy a SIM card or not during your time in India.
The answer is that you definitely should get one.
You’ll be grateful that you can always get directions on your phone, read reviews of hotels and restaurants and check information about scams.
Immediately when you arrive in India, you should buy a SIM card. Get an International SIM to cover you for your whole travel trip.
5. You’re Going to Experience a Culture Shock
India is probably quite different from what you’re used to. You can pretend that the effects of culture shock don’t influence you.
However, don’t try and be strong. It’s much better to prepare yourself mentally before you go.
Do your homework about what to expect. Be open-minded about the differences rather than rejecting them out of hand.
Lastly, if you think you’re going to struggle to adapt, take home comforts with you. That might be a cuddly toy or your favorite snack.
You can also always call home to check in with your family and friends while you’re traveling. You know they have your back.
6. Go Vegetarian on Your India Trip
While in Europe and North America, vegetarian diets are still quite unusual. It’s totally normal to vegetarian in India.
You can enjoy lots of wonderful tasty vegetarian dishes without any meat involved.
In fact, it is a myth that the majority of Indians are vegetarian. However, there is another reason to be vegetarian on your travels.
Avoiding eating meat can also reduce your risk of eating contaminated meat during your time in India.
7. Get Ready to Eat With Your Hands
You may be used to be given knives and forks when you’re about to eat a meal in a restaurant.
However, across India, it’s common to eat with your hands. It’s similar to how you would eat in McDonald’s.
You’ll quickly learn the technique of using the naan bread to scoop up the curry into your mouth. Another tactic to stuff food into your hungry hole is to pinch rice and curry at the same time.
Make sure you carry sanitizer with you all the time. You’ll need to regularly wash your hands before you eat anything.
8. Enjoy the Travel
You shouldn’t focus on getting from one place to another fast. Things don’t really happen very fast in India.
If you want to enjoy your travel experience, you should embrace the slow pace of life in these parts.
Remember, things in India run on “India Time.” Don’t even try to rush things, you’ll be left frustrated.
9. Be Aware of Scams
Tourist scams are extremely common in India. You should be alert about what could happen if you’re not careful.
You may encounter places which display tourist information offices or ticket offices which are only out to scam you.
Make sure you don’t pay for fake tickets to get on a train or bus. You’ll be sadly left behind when your ticket is a scrap of paper.
Make sure you always look up a company on your phone before you part with your money. You can also save yourself the trouble by booking online on this website.
10. Buy Travel Insurance
Up to 41 percent of Americans don’t purchase travel insurance when they travel abroad.
You should always have travel insurance when you leave your home country. It’s no different when you go to India.
If you require medical treatment during your time in India, you need to have insurance to cover your expenses.
You may also decide to get insurance to cover you for theft or lost property, such as your luggage. It’s better to have peace of mind rather than take any risks.
Your Ultimate Guide to India Travel
Now you know our top tips for your guide to India travel. When you’re planning your trip to India, make sure you remember our tips.
Are you considering traveling to Asia? Check out our blog post on the 5 Destinations That Everyone’s Talking About.