Things To Know When Planning A Trip To India

When I think of planning a trip to India, my mind wanders to everything from warm beaches, cultural festivals, peaceful temples, beautiful mountains to metropolitan cities. You are bound to spend an immense amount of time exploring the diversity of this large, densely populated country. For some travelers however, India can be somewhat overwhelming. Fear not as there is something suitable for everyone from luxury traveler to budget traveler to off the beaten track traveler. Here are some common questions and answers to help you plan a trip to India.

Planning A Trip To India

Planning A Trip To India: Taj Mahal, India

Taj Mahal, India | (c) Photo By Connect

When is the best time to visit India?

If you want to travel to India, you should know that seasonality is a big factor when traveling. The weather varies greatly from the North of the country to South. If you plan to visit South India, the best time to travel is winter, typically from November to February. South is warm throughout the year so there won’t be snow but it will be much cooler and travel-friendly than summer. If you plan to visit North India, it is best to visit during the summer time when it is not very cold. Major cities like Mumbai, Delhi and Rajasthan are best to visit from November to February when it is not too hot and muggy. Also keep in mind that if travel during the holidays such as Christmas, popular tourist destinations will be crowded than usual. Therefore book the hotels in advance.

What is the ideal amount of time to spend in India?

India is a huge country with so much of diversity so make sure to give yourself enough time to explore what India has to offer. If you plan to explore several parts of the country, I would recommend 2 to 3 weeks or longer. This will give you enough time to shop, rest and explore different parts of India. If you only want to see some of the major attractions, 7 to 10 days trip is recommended. This will give you enough time to see highlights of India like Taj Mahal.

What is the best way to get around in India?

Most people arrive in India by plane unless you live in India or surrounding countries like Nepal. Once in India, you have many travel options to get around in the country. You can pick from 3-wheel taxis, car/van taxis, buses, trains and planes depending on your budget and how far your destination is. 3-wheel taxis are very popular in India and cost you very little to get around. It is best suited for short distances. Car/van taxis and buses are great for few hours long trips while trains and flights are best suited for long distances. The railway system in India is very intricate. Therefore, you can get almost anywhere in the country by train. Some trains take two days to reach the destination. Driving in India could be a challenge due to large crowds, vehicles and poor traffic controls so it’s best to keep away unless you are aware of the risks.

How much does it cost for a trip to India?

The cost to travel to India can vary greatly. It depends on your travel style and from which country you are coming from (ticket prices). If you are a backpacker, would prefer street food or regular Indian food and use public transportation, the cost will be very little…sometimes as little as $5 a day. On the other hand if you like to stay at comfortable hotels, eat western meals and use domestic flights and taxis to travel, the cost could be quite high. Either way it will be a lot cheaper than a trip to Europe. Where you are coming from and the destinations you visit will add to the cost as well. When it comes to traveling inside India, the train system is very economical, and most travelers recommend it. If you can be spotted easily as a tourist outside from India, the cost to enter popular tourist attractions are higher. By charging higher for overseas tourists they are not trying to cheat you but just following rules. Also the seasonal prices could be higher than off peak prices.

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4 Responses to “Things To Know When Planning A Trip To India”

  1. Adeline says:

    Great information! I’m actually planning a trip soon to India and what you mentioned here sure helps me to plan my trip.

    I would, however, like to point out that India part of South Asia, not Southeast Asia. The countries that are included in Southeast Asia are Cambodia, Laos, Burma (Myanmar), Thailand, Vietnam, Malaysia, Brunei, East Malaysia, East Timor, Indonesia, the Philippines, and Singapore.
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  2. travellyn says:

    Very good information on those planning to travel to India. Definitely a good idea to allow more time to travel around India. It is a huge country, so diverse and so much to see. I visited on a 28 day tour and was so pleased when we had half day or a full day to take a breather and relax. It was pretty full on, but an absolutely wonderful trip. On the whole it is a much cheaper country to travel through than Europe or USA. Informative blog. Thnx.