Is It Easy to Travel Around India?
Tourism is a big industry in India generating billions of U.S. dollars each year for the country’s GDP as well as providing millions of jobs for the Indian population. It is actually on track to competing globally for having the largest travel and tourism industry.
India is a fascinating place with 36 UNESCO World Heritage Sites, including the Taj Mahal and 103 National Parks. The country has mountains, deserts, jungles, beaches, safaris, and wildlife parks that add to its charm.
India has been looking to improve all aspects of tourism for wandering visitors who are interested in exploring the country. International travelers can now apply for the evisa to India, which is electronic travel authorization allowing travelers to visit the country for short periods of time.
What Makes India a Great Place to Travel to?
India is one of the cheapest places to travel to in the world. There are quite a few things that make it easy to navigate the country when traveling.
For instance, English is one of two national languages in India so almost everyone you meet will be able to converse in it. Most of the advertisements, directions, etc. that you come across will be in Hindi and English which will make going around the country much easier.
Indians are also known for their warm hospitality, particularly towards foreigners in the country with people willing to be helpful in every way. Indians are also a diverse population with many languages, religions, and customs but no matter where you travel to, you’ll find Indian hospitality to be universal.
You can easily travel around India for $20 a day which includes the cost of your meals, transportation, and accommodations for each day.
Travelers can easily choose more comfortable stays for a slightly higher daily cost and this can include dining at fancy restaurants, and western fast-food chains, shopping in trendy malls, staying in a luxury resort, and, hiring a private car with a driver without depleting your bank balance.
While traveling in India, staying in a guest house may be a better option than staying in hostels for some. On the inexpensive side, travelers can expect to spend between INR 500-1000 or between $6.76 -$13.57 a night. Travelers can even choose to stay in hotels or Airbnbs as well if they feel comfortable and if they have the budget for it.
When traveling on a budget, travelers should consider booking after inspecting the location as some of the budget places may not have the best safety or cleanliness standards. However, travelers can easily choose to stay in more comfortable settings for a higher daily cost.
Eating local Indian food is cheaper than western food so if you’re willing to try out local Indian cuisine, it might save you some money on your trip. Plus, it’s bound to be better-tasting because the locals know how best to make it! And most menus are also written in English, so it makes it easier to choose a local Indian dish to relish.
There are also plenty of local snack options that you can include for your inter-city travel and even with that, your food costs are likely to stay low for your trip.
The cost of food in big cities can sometimes run slightly higher for your budget but generally, you can expect to spend around INR 80-150 per person/meal if you’re traveling on a budget.
The cost of meals in nice restaurants can range from INR 250-400 or $3-$6 and in fancy restaurants you can expect to spend around INR 1000-2500 ($12- $35).
India has a lot of transportation options at a relatively cheaper price than in other parts of the world. Travelers can choose to take taxis, busses, rickshaws, or trains to different places they plan on visiting.
All of these options offer great value to travelers even in the cheapest classes but may require the traveler to use their bargaining skills. Traveling long distances can get costly really easily, therefore, it’s probably best to choose a slower option when possible so as to save on the cost of travel and sometimes even on the cost of accommodation as well.
The busses are not a recommended option if traveling on a budget for longer journeys. Instead, travelers should consider taking a train. The Indian rail network is one of the largest and busiest in the world and travelers can get pretty much everywhere in India by train.
Travelers should, however, try to reserve their train tickets well in advance of their journeys as they are normally pre-booked months ahead of time since most people in India use trains to get around.
One of the interesting things about transportation in India is that they each provide a culturally immersive experience in their own right so travelers can plan out their trip in such a way that they get to experience each of these at some point during their journey across India.
Despite the extensive rail system in India, trains might not be an ideal means of transportation at times due to weather or because of a lack of reservations. In such cases, travelers can easily take a rickshaw or hire a private car with a driver, all without stretching their budget thin.
Also, regardless of what your budget or comfort level is when it comes to local transportation, you’ll be able to find an option that’s right for you without breaking your bank.
Not all the sightseeing options in India will cost you money. In fact, most of them are free so you can enjoy spending time there while using your money to enhance your experience and memory of the place. The places that do charge are still quite affordable.
Travelers can usually expect to spend INR 250-500 on sightseeing during their trip bearing in mind that at some tourist attractions foreigners may be charged a higher price than locals because they operate on a differential price structure.
The cost of lodgings, food, transportation included, travelers can expect to spend $20-$35 a day for their trip to India or $600 – $1050 a month. Add to that the cost of sightseeing, travelers can expect to spend around $1300 to $1550 a month.
Travelers can also expect to add the cost of shopping, miscellaneous items, activities, and gratuity to their budget for sightseeing as well which is not estimated here since it will vary for each traveler.
Travelers should also bear in mind that the above cost structure for their journey through India is an estimation and can differ from the real cost of their trip given the volatility of the Indian Rupee.
Traveling to India may not be for everyone looking for an adventure on a budget because the country is bustling with activity everywhere and the small nuances particular to each place can sometimes overwhelm some travelers. However, once travelers overcome the initial culture shock, they grow to love the hustling-bustling country and its people.