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Travel Information

Passport & Visas

You are required to bring a valid non-expired passport of your country and a visa from an Indian mission abroad to enter India.

Visa on Arrival for 43 Countries

Government has taken an admirable step the ease of tourism sector by starting the service Visa on Arrival enabled by ETA (Electronic Travel Authorization) for 43 countries starting from November 2014.

Visitors from many countries, including Australia, Israel, Ukraine, Russia, United States, Germany, can avail the electronic visa facility. For the entire list of approved countries, please visit https://indianvisaonline.gov.in/visa/tvoa.html

One needs to apply through the assigned website and go through the required four steps. Once verified the traveller would get the ETA through an E-mail.

The nine approved international airports where arrival is permitted with ETA are Delhi, Mumbai, Chennai, Kolkata, Hyderabad, Bengaluru, Kochi, Thiruvananthapuram and Goa.

The following travellers do not require a visa:

  • The Following travellers do not require a visa:
  • Nationals of Maldives who do not require a visa for visits of up to 90 days.
  • Persons of Indian Origin and Non-Resident Indians who possess either an OCI or a PIO card, which are the equivalent of a long India visa.

The different types of visas issued by Indian authorities are:

  • Tourist Visa: Up to 6 months. Apply with: documents supporting your financial standing.
  • Business Visa: One or more years. Apply with letter from the sponsoring organisation.
  • Student Visa: For the duration of the academic course of study or for a period of five years whichever is less. Apply with: proof of admission to recognised Universities / Institutions in India
  • Transit Visa: Maximum period of 15 Days. Apply with: Evidence of onward travel to a destination outside India.
  • Conference Visa: For the duration of the conference or seminar. Apply with: letter of invitation from the organiser of the conference.

When applying for a visa at an Indian Embassy, you must bring the following:

  • Your passport valid for at least 6 months.
  • Visa fee in cash or by postal order (cheques are normally not accepted).
  • Two passport-size photographs.
  • Supporting documents, where necessary.
  • Duly completed application form.
  • Note: Allow one month’s processing time for postal applications.
  • Some parts of India are “restricted areas” and require special permits.

Business Hours

Government Offices/Shops: Monday – Friday, 10:00 – 17:00 hrs.

Banks: Monday – Friday, 10:00 – 14:00 hrs, Saturdays, 10:00 – 12:00 hrs. Shops open up at different timings. In metro cities, the malls generally remains open until 21:00 hrs, entire week. In tourist areas, small stores stay open till late evenings, and in small cities, shops tend to close around 20:00 hrs.

Bars and restaurants have different closing hours in different states, this would be around midnight or earlier. The only food establishments that you would find open 24 hours a day are coffee shops in five-star hotels.

Climate

India is a tropical country. However, there are variations according to the region and season.

  • The Coolest months are from November to March, which is considered to be the tourist season.
  • In the south, and on the coasts, the day time temperature would be around 20s centigrade, although nights are cool
  • In Central India the temperature can drop below 10’C in winter.
  • In north, winter temperatures can reach 0’C and even below it in Himalayan regions.
  • Summers are very hot, getting temperatures over 40’C.
  • The rainy season stretches from June till mid-October.

Clothing

Summer – Loose cotton clothing is advisable. Avoid wearing synthetic tights and slacks. Sun hats or caps, and sunglasses are recommended. Instead of jeans go in for loose or bigger bottom cotton trousers. For those travelling in the hills or mountainous areas light woollens may be needed for the nights.

Winter – It is recommended to dress in layers because the temperature of India varies drastically in different states. In north, you may need to dress warmer. In the south, and in the hills you may need to wear jacket or lined blazer.

Rainy Season: Always carry a raincoat or an umbrella or both and wear light, quick-drying clothing.

Airport & Customs

For the purpose of Customs clearance of arriving passengers, a two channel system has been adopted

  • Green Channel for passengers not having any dutiable goods.
  • Red Channel for passengers having dutiable goods.

Officials are liable to carry out sudden spot check on passengers. In order to carry some items duty free in India, you may be asked to fill in a Tourist Baggage Re-export Form (TBRE), which also allows you to take them back when you area leaving.

Personal allowances are one litre of spirits, 200 cigarettes or 50 cigars or 250 gms of tobacco per passenger over the age of 18 years.

Security

The security measures are rigorous like airports all over the world. Your luggage might get searched more than once.

In domestic flights in India, knives and other sharp objects, liquids, lighters and some electronic devices are not allowed in your cabin baggage. It is advisable to pack them into your check-in luggage, or they will probably be either confiscated or taken from you till the end of the flight.

Baggage Allowance

The allowance for Indian airlines is 30 kg in Economy and 40 kg in first class. For the private airlines it is 20 kg in economy and 30 kg in first class.

Currency

The Rupee, which is divided into 100 paise.

Currency code: INR.

Coin Denominations: 1, 2, 5 and 10 rupees.

Note Denominations:5, 10, 20, 50, 100, 500, 1000 rupees.

Importation of foreign currency is allowed to carry, provided a declaration form is completed on arrival. The import and export of the rupee is, however, prohibited. Changing currency through unauthorised persons is illegal.

Credit Cards

Most hotels, restaurants and some shops accept major credit cards such as American Express, Diners Club, Visa and MasterCard.

TIME GMT+ 5 hours and 30 minutes.

Health

Medical treatment in India is less expensive comparable to other countries and India has some of best doctors in the world.

Yellow Fever – Vaccination Certificate is required if arriving from an infected area.

Cholera/Typhoid – Inoculation recommended.

Malaria – No certificate required, but advisable to have a course of pills.

Sunscreens and lotions are required for protection from the sun.

Eating and Drinking

Always prefer mineral bottled water as tap water is not purified for drinking, unless you boil it or have access to water filter.

Avoid food sold by roadside vendors because that could be unhygienic in nature.

Electricity

Most of electrical appliances works on 220 volts AC 50 Hz. However certain areas have DC supply and it is advisable to double check before using the appliance.

Note: You will probably need to get an adapter for your devices. It’s pretty easy to get “all-in-one” adapters that you can use to plug your device’s power chord into before plugging into the power supply.

Language

English is spoken and understandable in many areas, though accents and grammar may vary. Hindi is the most spoken language in the country. There are totally 15 major languages in India in addition to English.

Note that we always ensure that our clients are paired with guides who can speak their language.

Communication

Both GSM and CDMA cellular phone system works in India. Check with your phone service provider on whether they have tip-ups with Indian telecom providers to get you free roaming and cheap call rates prior to your trip. You might need to buy and Indian phone while you stay. We can help you choose a best plan while you stay.

Connectivity – wireless or conventional broadband – in five-star hotels tends to be many times more expensive than cybercafés in the same areas though some hotels are now Wi-Fi.

Cuisine

India has diverse number of dishes present at different parts of the country. Every state is known for its own dishes and specialities.

Dishes with gravy are normally called curries but prepared with different spices. The traditional meal is served in large plates called ‘Thali’, with small bowls holding the gravy. The upmarket hotels provides international cuisines as well. You can find Italian, Chinese, Indonesian, Malaysian, Mexican, Thai, Japanese, and Lebanese speciality restaurants. Aside from international fast food franchises.

Tea of India is very popular as it grows some of the finest, most in demand tea in the world.

NOTE: Gujarat is the only dry state in India at present. However, foreigners visiting India can obtain liquor permits either from embassies/missions/tourist offices abroad or at a Government of India Tourist office at Bombay, Delhi, Madras or Calcutta.

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Testimonials

We are safely home and that i thanks for making a terrific tour for us. we tend to had a good time and that i especially enjoyed the farm, wherever i used to be able to do plenty of horseback riding and luxuriate in the cool, quiet, solitude of the mountains. We tend to got a taste of the various faces of india and your drivers were very good at obtaining us through India's traffic.   Thanks from Bradget Scott, USA

A major thank you to RD India to taking me for my First visit to the awesome Bhagoria celebrations in Madhya Pradesh and Gujarat I have voyaged widely around the world and keep coming back because it is among the most colorful, exuberant and friendly festivals I have experienced anywhere   Thanks from Danielle Evans

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