Tips and Hints for
travelling in India.
- Take Indian Rupees with you. Have a mixture of notes if you can.
Mainly carry 1000 notes, but you will need 50 for porters in the better
hotels. And water and small items are all under 50. You can spend 500
easily, but 1000 is a large note outside of the hotel or big shopping
- Tipping is not normal, but porters in large hotels expect
something (suggest 50 rupees). Hotel arranged transport where you pay
the hotel, pays little to the driver, so if the service was good, give
them a tip. Otherwise, remember that wages are low in India and your
tip makes a big difference.
- ATM machines allow the withdrawl of up to 10,000 Rupees at a
time, multiple withdrawals are ok. Mostly in 1000 notes. They will
allow withdrawl from credit cards.
- ATM's are not always close at hand. The nearest to Bir is half an
hour away by car.
- Most hotels will have Internet access. It is very cheap. Although
how reliable it
will be is another matter. If you
must have Internet wherever you are, then get local 3G wifi as a backup.
<>2G and 3G wifi is available for the whole area of the tours.
Delhi and Bir are in different areas, so to have phone and wifi
available for the whole tour, you will need to buy 2 plans, 1 for each
area. Phone and internet wifi are cheap however, although 2G is very
slow and sometimes not available. 4G is not available at all. Internet
access on your phone takes 8 days to activate, as they verify your
passport first. You need a copy of your passport and 2 photos. We can
organize this for you if you plan ahead, so the sim is ready at the
airport when you arrive. Ask for details.
- Credit cards are
taken in all major hotels, but most places
outside of major hotels only accept local cash.
- The tap water is not drinkable. The major hotels supply free
bottled water each day, and they also sell it if you need more. Bottled
water is very cheap, but if buying from roadside vendors, ensure the
seal is unbroken. Avoid salads, as you can never tell what water was
used to wash them. This includes burgers or other food that includes
salad. Do not use tap water to wash your toothbrush.
- There is very little red meat in India. The better hotels have
Lamb, but other areas only have Goat. If you eat red meat or are blood
group O, take an Iron Suppliment.
- Take Anti Diarrhoea tablets with you. Most people get some the
first time in India, until their body adjusts to the different food,
and any mistakes you make (like washing your toothbrush in tapwater).
Taking these tablets when afflicted means it takes longer to get over,
but allows you to be functional for more of each day.
- Take all of your medications with you, enough for the entire time
you are away from home. Have the normal packaging with you and a
prescription, in case Indian customs question you or you need to show
them to a doctor.
- If you suffer from athsma or have trouble with smog, take an
inhaler. Indian cities do have a major smog problem.
- Bir is just above the 5000 meter hight level. As we get near Bir
on the way there, some will experience ear popping and may experience
some difficulty with breath, until they get used to the hight. This
wont last long, but an inhaler will help if you feel short of breathe.
- Delhi and Agra are in a hot climate. Temperatures will be 30+
celcius. Bir, Dharamsala and Manali are in the foothills of the
mountains, so are cooler. 15-25 C during the day, but you will need a
jacket if out at night. The towns below Bir are 30+, so on the day 7
shopping trip, be prepared for it to suddenly get hot on the way down,
and get cooler on the way back.
- Mosquitos are not a major issue for this tour. Delhi and Agra
have mosquitos. Normal day travel is not usually a problem, evenings be
wary. Mosquitos can find their way into hotel rooms. Up the mountain,
there are very few, but there can still be some. Carry tropical
strength repellant, but you should not need it often.
- The further you are travelling to get to Delhi, the more likely
you will have some jetlag to deal with when you arrive. Getting into
Delhi a day or 2 early ensures that any jetlag you suffer does not
interfere with your Tour. Advise us if you plan to arrive early, and we
can arrange additional days in the Delhi hotel for you. Likewise, if
you plan to take a few extra days in Delhi after the tour, we can
arrange that for you too.
- If you are flying out after the tour on an early morning flight,
be aware that the Delhi hotel is about 1 hour away from the airport in
non-peak times. A 9am flight therefore requires leaving the hotel at
5am. If you do have a very early flight out, there is a partner hotel
we can move you to that is 15 minutes from the airport. Let us know if
you need to organise something like this.
- India requires a visa inside your passport. Forms can be easily
found online. Allow 10 days to receive your passport back. You need an
ordinary tourist visa.