Sign in | Register  
Did You Know?(Travel Tips)
Do s & Dont s

If you just cannot avoid extra-marital sex in India,Use a condom even if the other person is not a commercial sex worker.

If you are a male introduced to a lady or a grown-up girl, don't take the initiative of offering a  handshake. If she extends her hand, you must reciprocate, but don't be the first to extend your  hand. If you are female and are being introduced to a male: it is up to you – the female – to take  the initiative for a handshake. The rule of thumb is: the female extends her hand first, and the male reciprocates.

The Western practice of a peck on the cheek as a form of greeting a lady or a grown up girl is just not in when you are in India unless you happen to be in 'Westernised Indian' circles or in the   company of people in the glamour industry such as models and beauty queens (even then, dont    take the initiative if you are male).

The namastay is a local form of greeting. It involves the joining of your palms as during prayer in church – well, not exactly, but it can pass (in church, the two thumbs are crossed, in the Indian        'namaste', the thumbs join but remain parallel to each other: this is only for information as the difference is not visible to the person in front of you).

 If you find the lady is not extending a hand shake, go for the namaste. Even with men, the namastay can be an excellent little gimmick.

 Politics can be freely discussed in India and most people will have an opinion which they will not mind being contradicted. But avoid discussing religion, as India is a diverse country with many       religions.

Avoid visiting Kashmir in the extreme north as well as areas in the extreme north-east. Foreigners, especially West Europeans and Americans, are at risk to hostage-taking by terrorists   in those areas. The rest of India is safe haven for everybody.

Don't trust strangers with money. Trust your hotel, but not people you may bump into on the streets.

If somebody has invited you home for dinner, carry with you a box of sweets or at least a chocolate bar for the kid.

If you are buying from roadside stalls or hawkers, bargain you must. Start by offering half the price they ask for and settle for 60 per cent. Don't bargain in proper shops especially those that display "Fixed Price" signs.

Never buy food from roadside stalls or mobile canteens. Not that they are bad, but your system may not be accustomed to such delicacies and you might end up spending more time in the loo than normal.

Drink bottled water only. Even many Indians who have lived out of India for a few years  sometimes suffer stomach upsets on drinking local tap water. If there is no alternative to tap water, ensure it is boiled.

Don't offer bribes to get any job done. Bribe-taking and bribe-giving are a common practice in India but they are intended to speed up things or win a favour that you are not entitled to. Plan          well in advance. Use consultants or trade and industry associations. If you expect favours, let  them come free or not at all. Warn anyone (even in government) who asks you for a bribe that you   would report him to the Anti-Corruption Bureau or the nearest police-station. If he persists, do it discreetly so that he can be caught red-handed.

Indian English has its own delights especially to foreigners of English nativity. Don't show amusement at the different Indian accents and choice of words. This does not take away from  the fact that many Indians speak and write better English than many native English speakers.

Many Indians are in the habit of shaking their head in the course of conversation or taking  instructions. Don't show amusement if you witness this.

Avoid offers of spiritual salvation and magic remedies from saints, godmen and quacks. There     may be some spiritually elevated people in India, but there is no way you can distinguish the           genuine ones from the crooks. If you are seriously interested in these aspects of India, take help   from someone you know or visit one of the respected spiritual organizations in India.

Avoid driving in India unless you have been trained on Indian roads.

Don't wear clothes which can attract even more attention. Wearing shorts and a tank top might be okay in the city, but a strict no-no in the towns and villages. Men can wear almost anything           though.

Don't accept food from people in the railway station or on the road, unless you think he is  trustworthy. Cases have been reported when travelers have been duped and robbed. Though this   is not a travelers only concern.

Do remember that most people are just curious. That might be because they have never travelled to your country, or maybe because they have never had guests from your country either. So, smile   and gently start a conversation. Nine out of ten times you will come across a  beautiful family willing to share the history and culture of our country over a cup of tea.

Do take pictures, of things, people and architecture - whenever allowed. You never know, in our bid to develop the country, half of the sights and scenes might not be there in the next twenty            years. You may also get kids and elders willing to pose for you. Maybe at times, people will ask      you to pose so that they can take a picture with you. Again, that trusted intuition will come in              handy.

Do try the cuisine. Remember, the country has over 28 states, and therefore over 28 totally  different kinds of cuisine. Most will be spicy, some on the hotter side. Take your pick, go slow and always insist on bottled water. A small digestive medicine might be a good addition to your handbag at this point of time.

Once you are in India, you will be surrounded by loud, colourful things. A larger than life idol of  Goddess Durga, or a day when everyone is throwing colours at each other - even at strangers, a    celebration of Diwali and the new year which it signifies or the fasting days of Ramzan - each festival is a community affair in the country. Be ready to be a part of it. If you show interest people will be more than happy to let you have the front seat, to light the first lamp during Diwali or do an   impromptu jig for you during Navratri. They will tell you about the celebrations - the reasons, the practices and the food. They will ask you to come home and be a part of their family celebration. Typical to the Indian mindset - the more the merrier - follows here.

However, remember when you are in a group, or in public, some topics are almost taboo, or at  least, sensitive. Religion being one of them. After the partition of 1947 when Pakistan, India and     Bangladesh split up into 3 different countries - Hindu-Muslim relationship soured. Then came the Sikh riots of 1984 and the recent killings of Catholics in Kerala. We are all a very peaceful country, but like the current situation in London must have made you understand, people take heart to things you may never expect. It is just better to steer clear of these things. If you have  doubts or questions, ask a friend. Or at least a person who seems to be tolerant.

Along with all that, remember to learn three-four useful words in Hindi and speak a bit slowly in    English. The accents would be difficult for many people to understand. There should be helpful      people everywhere. Don't hesitate to ask for help. Mix with the people, do what they are doing and   you'd be set for a fun holiday in India.

Have any questions?
Name :
Email :
Phone :
Message :
Photo of the Week
Posted by : Ajeesh Taken at : Bangalore
Remember Me
Forgot your password?
Create an account
Mother India
•  Festivals
•  Geography
•  History
•  People
•  Religions
•  Sports
•  Foodview all 
Did You Know?(Travel Tips)
•  Car Rental
•  Do s & Dont s
•  During Stay
•  Health
•  Honeymoon TIps
•  India Visa Information
•  Packing
•  Planning
•  Research
•  Travelling with your kids
•  Travel Trip Checklistview all 
Scary Reviews
Travelogue of the week
Scuba Diving
Scuba Diving & Snorkeling   Hidden away from our familiar human world is a spectacular natural underwater world full of vibrant co...
Read More
  Disclaimer | Privacy Policy | Advertise With Us | Terms & Conditions | Contact Us   Copyright 2012 MY TRAVEL DON. All rights reserved. Website designed by 3ACES