Travel Tips (travel tips, packaging tips, travel checklist, packing list, do's and don'ts)

Specific Travel Tips and Information

Airports

  • During your tour, you may be using several airports. A few of them are relatively basic and awaiting or under-going development and we will ask you to be prepared for any such inconvenience.
  • Should your itinerary include international flights to Nepal, you will have to complete Customs and Immigration formalities on departure and, again should you re-enter India. The reporting time for international flights is 03hrs prior to flight departure time.
  • Airport departure tax only applies at Varanasi while your departure for Kathmandu. This has now been included in your airfare.
  • For Domestic flights there are only check-in and security formalities. At certain airports you may be asked to identify your baggage before boarding the aircraft - this is a security requirement. The reporting time at the airport for domestic flights is 01hr prior to flight departure time.
  • Some airports have electronic scanners but these are not film safe. Please request the security officer to have your camera and film carried around the X-ray machine.
  • You're checked baggage would also be x-rayed on all domestic and outgoing international flights. Smoking is no longer permitted on any of Indian Airlines flights.

Photography/VCR

  • Such equipment may now be used at most monuments provid-ed you are not filming for commercial purposes. Howev-er, specific areas of some monuments may be off limits for photography. Restriction may also apply on the use of tripods and flashguns.
  • Please note that photography is strictly prohibited inside and outside all airports, railway stations and certain government buildings. Please do not photograph defense and police personnel in uniform. Our staff, representatives and guides will be on hand to direct you in case of any doubts.
  • Travellers to India find ample themes with varied subjects for photography from faces to monuments, wildlife, festivities, scenic beauty, etc. However they require to fulfill some formalities in respect to protected monuments and the wildlife sanctuaries.
  • Special permission of the Archaeological Survey of India, New Delhi, is required for use of tripod and artificial light.
  • Photography in the wildlife sanctuaries is allowed on payment of a prescribed fee. Photography is prohibited in tribal areas.

Currency

  • Virtually all hotels we use exchange foreign currency and may be the best place for you to exchange money. Rates here are quite similar to those prevalent at banks. For your information, a better rate may be available on traveller's cheque. Hotels obtain up-to-date exchange rates from banks on a daily basis. Please exchange money through authorized channels only. When exchanging money into Indian Rupees, an encash-ment certificate is provided. Please ensure that you keep this document in order to reconvert unused Indian Rupees at the end of your holiday.
  • Any payments for the extra services at the hotels will have to be paid for in foreign exchange. Pay in foreign currency or by credit card or traveller's cheques. Where hotels do not have exchange facilities, please pay in Indian Rupees with a copy of an encashment certificate.
  • While exchanging money or collecting change, take care to ensure that local currency notes you obtain are not partly torn, soiled or damaged. It may be virtually impossible to make any transaction with such currency notes or even re-exchange them.
  • The import and export of Indian Rupees is strictly prohibited.

Hotels

  • Whenever you go out of the hotel, its always good to leave information like where are you going and when you will be back with the hotel staff.
  • If you are carrying some jewellery or other precious things which are not required by you when you are going out of the hotel its always better to keep it in safe locker of hotel after declaring the things.

Food habits

  • Most hotels ensure and maintain the strictest norms of hygiene. The flask water in your room is treated and filtered. However, if you are not adaptable to a change of water, we suggest you use sealed, bottled mineral water. Many of the hotels you will be using offer a choice of cuisine within their restaurants. We suggest you do not eat any uncooked vegetables or fruit that cannot be peeled.
  • All beverage bills will be on your own account unless specified otherwise. Imported wines, sprits and liquor can be very expensive and we will ask you to ascertain such costs from the hotel wine list before confirming your order.

Travel Documents

  • Please ensure safe custody of your internal flight and train tickets. No refunds are possible against lost tickets.

Shopping

  • While India offers a stupendous variety of items for the shopper, shopkeepers do not assume any responsibility for defective or substandard merchandise, or delay or damages when your purchases are shipped; so check the items throughly and be satisfied before purchasing anything. Please also keep in mind any import regulations that may apply in your home country. Export of most wildlife and their products is either banned or strictly regulated. Export of the few permissible items even as passengers' personal luggage is allowed only under an export permit. It is thus advised to be cautious when buying animal products. Insists on getting a certificate for the legitimate sale of a particular animal product and permission for its export to avoid inconvenience on departure.

Local Travel

  • Taxis and auto-rickshaws in cities do not all have meters, but where they do insist on the meter being flagged in your presence. If the driver refuses to co-operate, seek the assistance of a policeman. Always use a pre-paid taxi while travelling from airport to city. In addition, the above fares change from time to time and so will not always conform to readings on the meters. To avoid confusion, insist on seeing the latest fare chart and pay accordingly.

Electricity

  • Voltage in most places is 220 volts AC, 50 cycles, although some areas also have DC supplies.
  • Electric and/or electronics items and gudgets Made in India and most of the time sold in India are for 220 volts AC power.

Time Zone

  • GMT + 5:30 hours.
  • No day light saving time.

Money

  • India's currency is the Rupee, abbreviated as RS. One Rupee is equal to 100 Paise. Coins are in denominations of 50 paise, l, 2 , 5 & 10 Rupees. Notes are in denominations of RS 1, 2, 5, 10, 20, 50, 100, 500 and 1000.(Coins of 25 paisa, 5,10 and 20 paisa are also available at places but most people do not accept them now and some may resist even for coins of 50 paisa)

Custom Regulations

  • All personal objects, which are required in India, are free from duty. Under this heading fall personal jewellery, presents up to a value of RS. 600, 200 cigarettes, 50 cigars and 0.95 l alcoholic beverages. Professional material and articles that have a high value can only be imported duty free if the traveller gives a written undertaking that these articles will be re-exported.
  • For further details, please see the official government of India site at www.indiagov.org

Travel Tax

  • Passengers embarking on journey to any place outside India from a customs airport / seaport will have to pay an Foreign Travel Tax of Rs.500/- and on journeys to Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Burma, Nepal, Pakistan, Sri Lanka and the Maldives of Rs.150/-. (Please again check these rates at the time of your travel)
  • An Inland Air Travel Tax is leviable at 10 per cent of the basic fare, on all passengers embarking on an inland air journey. However, those passengers paying their airfares in foreign exchange will be exempted from payment of this tax. In addition, infants, cancer patients, blind persons and invalids (those on stretchers) are also exempted from payment of this tax after fulfilling certain conditions, stipulated in the relevant notifications.

List of travel tips

If you have any travel tips, which you like to share with other travellers, please do send us. We'll be pleased to include your travel tips and experiences in our travel tips and checklists.





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