Things To Know Before Traveling To India: Essential Tips For A Smooth Trip

User By Azure Lee

Welcome to the mesmerizing world of India, where ancient traditions blend harmoniously with modern wonders. Embarking on a journey to this captivating country is an invitation to discover a tapestry of vibrant cultures, breathtaking landscapes, and warm hospitality. However, before you embark on your journey to this incredible nation, there are a few things you should know to ensure a smooth and enjoyable trip. In this article, we will explore a comprehensive list of things to know before traveling to India that will help ensure a smooth and enjoyable trip to the country.

Planning A Trip To India? Here Are 8 Things To Know About India Before Visiting  

India, a land of diverse cultures, ancient traditions, and breathtaking landscapes, is a country that attracts millions of tourists every year. From the majestic Himalayas in the north to the serene backwaters of Kerala in the south, India offers a rich tapestry of experiences. 

Can you expect the unexpected when visiting India, a country with a population of over 1.2 billion? Here are 8 things to know about India before visiting for your next adventure.

Essential things to know about India before visiting

Essential things to know about India before visiting

The best time to visit India

Because the monsoon season affects different regions of the country in different months, different Indian states are best visited at different periods of the year. The best season to visit India is, however, usually agreed to be between October and March, when the weather is typically sunny, dry, and warm without ever being oppressively hot.

The Himalayas are inaccessible in the winter (unless you want to experience snow, that is! ), so bear that in mind. December and January bring cold weather and a lot of fog to the northern states. It is ideal to travel to Ladakh in the north of the country between June and September while the rest of India is experiencing the monsoon season. After November, after the monsoon season has passed, is the finest time to travel to the south of the country.

Learn more about the best time to visit India 

Bring cash with you

ATMs are readily available in major cities throughout the country; however, it is advisable to carry cash with you. The only accepted currency in this nation is the Indian Rupee.

Auto-rickshaws, which are a popular mode of transportation in India, as well as small vendors and many services in remote areas such as rural towns and Himalayan villages, often only accept cash. It is worth noting that ATMs in India are sometimes non-functional and may run out of cash, so it is wise to ensure you have an adequate amount of local currency exchanged prior to your travels.

You need a visa to visit India

Before planning your trip, familiarize yourself with India's visa requirements. Travelers can apply for an Indian visa through our India Immigration Services website. Our website allows you to complete the visa application process and submit the necessary documents online. It is recommended to use our website to ensure the legitimacy and reliability of the e-visa service. 

The e-visa service is available for tourism, business, and medical purposes. It allows eligible travelers to apply for a visa without having to visit an Indian embassy or consulate in person. The process is straightforward and streamlined, saving you time and effort. And please ensure that your passport is valid for at least six months beyond your planned departure date.

You need a visa to visit India

You need a visa to visit India

Safety in India

While India is generally a safe country for travelers, it's important to be vigilant and take precautions. 

While India is generally a safe country for travelers, it's important to be vigilant and take precautions. Keeping a close eye on your personal belongings is essential, particularly in crowded areas. Use a money belt or a secure bag to carry your valuables and avoid leaving them unattended. Be cautious when approached by strangers offering unsolicited help or deals that seem too good to be true.

Opt for reputable hotels or guesthouses that prioritize guest safety. Ensure your room has secure locks, and use safety deposit boxes for valuables. Avoid displaying expensive items or large amounts of cash, and double-check that all doors and windows are properly locked when leaving your room.

Solo travelers should take extra precautions. Avoid walking alone late at night in unfamiliar or poorly lit areas. Instead, use reputable transportation options or join group activities. 

It is important to prioritize modest dressing while in India, which includes wearing loose-fitting pants or long skirts, t-shirts or shirts that cover your shoulders and chest, and having a scarf handy to cover your hair if necessary. It is common for people, including women, children, and occasionally men, to gaze at you, but it is typically harmless. In fact, you may find that many locals approach you and request to take selfies together, including couples. These interactions are usually innocent, enjoyable, and often endearing.

Eating and drinking in India

One of the things to know before going to India is that this is a foodie paradise that tickles your taste buds. There are so many options!

Indulging in India's culinary delights is a must, ranging from flavorful curries and tandoori dishes to lassi and chai.

For vegetarian travelers, India offers a wealth of options as vegetarianism has strong cultural roots, and many local dishes are naturally vegetarian. However, when it comes to vegan food, it can be a bit more challenging, and finding dishes that are completely free of dairy products can be difficult. Therefore, if you are vegan or lactose intolerant, you may have to be content with a limited selection of choices. These may include dishes like tadka dahl (lentils), plain rice, plain naan, chapati or roti, aloo gobi (potatoes and cauliflower), and a few other vegetable-based options.

One of the things to know before going to India is that this is a foodie paradise

One of the things to know before going to India is that this is a foodie paradise

Pack light and choose comfortable clothing

India's vast geographical diversity leads to varying climates across its regions. For instance, Delhi experiences scorching summers with temperatures reaching 40°C, while Kashmir enjoys pleasant weather around 20°C during the same period. Before your trip, it is important to check the weather of the specific state you will be visiting and pack accordingly.

To avoid the burden of excessive luggage, it is best to pack conservatively. Opt for lightweight and versatile clothing options. Wearing loose-fitting garments will provide comfort, especially in hot and humid conditions. Additionally, it is advisable to have a stole or shawl with you, as they can be used to cover up while visiting temples or conservative areas.

Women travelers may consider wearing a cotton salwar kameez, a traditional Indian outfit that is both stylish and comfortable, particularly in the sweltering heat. It allows for better airflow and provides ease of movement, ensuring a pleasant experience throughout your journey.

Places to go in India

Before deciding on your itinerary, it is essential to consider your personal interests, preferences, and available time for your trip. Take some time to reflect on what truly captivates you and what activities you enjoy. Whether you have a penchant for historical sites, crave spiritual experiences, yearn for natural landscapes, or seek culinary adventures, India has something to offer for every interest.

You can check out the best places to visit in India during the summertime

India is a country that attracts millions of tourists every year

India is a country that attracts millions of tourists every year

Train and bus travel need to be booked in advance

Among the important things to know before visiting India is that local transportation, including flights but especially buses and trains, must be reserved in advance. While there are plenty of trains to get to larger cities with good connections, there are fewer trains to smaller ones, which means those will be unbearably crowded. 

The likelihood that tickets will be sold out makes it impossible to go into the railway station, purchase a ticket, and board a train. Or, if something is still accessible, you could have to travel in less-than-comfortable circumstances. You are generally better off purchasing your train tickets online because scams are frequently used to obtain train tickets in India. Make sure to watch out for the right class seat when taking the train, as that will significantly impact your trip!

As you prepare to embark on a magical journey through India, armed with the essential things to do before traveling to India that are shared in this guide, you are ready to unlock the wonders of India with grace and ease. So, pack your bags, open your heart to new adventures, and let India's magic unfold before your eyes. As you journey through this diverse and captivating country, may you find yourself enriched, inspired, and forever touched by the beauty that India has to offer.

Bon voyage, and may your trip to India be a truly unforgettable and transformative experience!