Frequently Asked Questions
Do you have a question about travel to India? You’re likely to find relevant answers to the most common questions about visiting India here. If not, please feel free to ask us a question yourself, either by emailing us or using our online enquiry form.
How is India as a Family Destination?
With a host of fun activities, attractions and experiences appropriate for travelers of all ages, India is an excellent destination to consider when travelling with family. In addition to this, the royal hospitality and rich traditions of this country make it an excellent learning environment for your little ones. Children are more than warmly welcomed everywhere they go and families have a host of vacation types to choose from whether it is natural beauty, history or insights into bustling cities that you are looking for.
How Safe is it to Travel to India?
With regards to personal security and the safety of your travel group, India is probably one of the safest destinations you can consider. With English speaking public easily accessible, getting around is almost never a problem. However, visitors may want to take basic safety precautions that one takes when travelling to any other part of the world. It is best to have a tour guide along with you that will help you identify the safest areas to move around in and the most hygienic eateries to explore. International tourists must avoid drinking tap water while in India and it is recommended that you buy only bottled water during your stay here.
What is the Weather Like in India?
While the climate here is generically classified to be as hot and tropical, conditions may vary from one region to another. Essentially, the winter months are considered to be between November and March when the mornings as well as the evenings are rather cool and fresh. The hot temperatures between April and June can be dry is most parts with dust storms and humid along the coastal regions. If you plan on visiting the Himalayas, the best time to visit is during the monsoon months when the rest of the country is fighting torrential rains.
Where to Stay During our Holiday to India?
There are accommodation options available in India for all budgets and requirements. Whether you are looking for opulent palace hotels, to western style chains or budget accommodations such as government bungalows and hostels, there nothing you cannot find here. Note than wildlife sanctuaries and national parts do not permit guests to stay overnight. You can easily find private accommodation options on the outskirts of such regions. Hotel rates vary as per season and location.
We at LDV India are extremely conscientious when selecting the perfect accommodation for our customers. Depending on the provided budget, we make sure that every accommodation option we provide is highly hygienic, comfortable and adheres to quality standards. With an aim to deliver boutique experiences for our international visitors our priority is to focus on the quality of service, management and accessibility. We are also able to find deals in luxury hotels and resorts allowing our customers to have wholesome experiences while in India.
Are there any Essentials I should be Packing for my trip?
Since the winter months too aren’t extremely harsh in most parts of India, it is ideal to pack light cotton clothing in white, beige and khaki. Make sure you carry long sleeved tops or kaftans if you are heading for wildlife safaris or planning to visit temples. Carry a scarf to cover your head and bring woolen clothing if you are going to explore the mountains or northern parts of the country during the winters.
I have specific dietary requirements. Will TripToIndia.com be able to cater to my needs?
India’s diverse cuisine and food culture along with the easy availability of international foods and ingredients, makes it extremely easy for us cater to all kinds of diet requirements. Whether you are vegetarian, vegan or allergic to specific meats, simply let us know while making your reservations and we will be able to communicate the same to all the tour operators and hotels.
Does “LDV India” help Customize Holidays?
We at LDV India recognize the diverse nature of our magnificent country and its capability to cater to a host of interests and preferences. That said, it is our goal to make sure that each and every one of our customers go back with unique travel experiences that they would enjoy. As specialists in customized holidays in India, our tailor made itineraries are our USP. One can go through our website to choose from a selection of customization permutations and combinations.
What Activities and Sightseeing attractions should I Consider?
The diverse nature of our vast country makes it possible for travelers with all kinds of tastes and preferences to go back with enriching memories. During the planning process we will be able to make a host of recommendations with regards to destinations, sightseeing opportunities and a variety of activities. Your final offer will have all the details listed for your reference. In addition to this, our chauffeurs, guides and other staff will be more than happy to help you explore various other sides of the country while you are on your holiday. We understand the need to be spontaneous to encounter memorable experiences during your travels..
What do your Package Fees Generally Include?
Since each and every tour that we offer is customized, we are able to create an all inclusive itinerary based on your requirements. Quintessentially, our trips include all land arrangement services such as accommodation, private cars, alternative transportation, airport transfers, entrance fees and local guides. The meal plan usually includes a bed and breakfast or may also include dinner depending on your needs. However, remember that personal expenses, fees for cameras, tips, insurance and domestic flights will not be included in our packages. You will be given all the details with regards to costing in your personalized proposal.
What if I wish to change my travel plans?
Our customized tour offerings allow us to understand how travelers sometimes like to make changes before or during a trip. We at LDV India are highly flexible with your changing requirements and do our best to make arrangements within the given time frame. However, it is important to know that some hotels, tour operators and attraction tickets may come with a cancellation fee or no-refund policy. In such times we maintain complete transparency with each one of our customers and keep you interests in mind. You can reach us 24X7 by phone, SMS or email.
What is the Cancellation Policy at LDV India ?
In the event that you need to cancel a part or all of your travel arrangements due to any reasons, you will be expected to notify us of the same in writing. Depending on the time and date of when we receive your intimation of cancellation, relevant charges will be applicable –
– 10% of the Cost of the Tour + Cost of Non-Refundable Services if intimated 60-30 days before arrival
– 25% of the Cost of the Tour + Cost of Non Refundable Services if intimated 30-15 days prior to arrival.
– 50% of the Cost of the Tour + Cost of Non Refundable Services if intimated 15-03 days prior to arrival.
Beyond this, you will be charged 100% of the cost in case of any cancellation.
In addition to this, note that special train journeys such as –
– Palace on Wheels
– Deccan Odyssey
– Golden Chariot
And during peak seasons (Between December 20th and 15th Jan) the cancellation policy changes and is advised to customers when applicable. Furthermore, hotels such as the Taj and the Oberoi apply different cancellation policies where 1 night retention fees are charged if a cancellation or amendment is made 30 days before.
Some hotels and service providers may ask for a non-refundable deposit that the time of booking. In case you need to cancel this booking, your refund will be restricted to the limited amount depending on that hotel’s or service providers’ policy. We at LDV India Tours do not bear any responsibility for refunds on unused accommodations, missed meals and chartered transportation.
How do I Go about Booking and Paying for my trip?
If you wish to confirm a booking with us, we would expect a percentage of your total billing to be paid in advance in order to hold your booking. The balanced amount can be paid based on the agreed upon payment plan for your final itinerary. Trip To India, Leisure Dream Vacations India | LDV India holds the right to decide on the amount that needs to be paid as an advance payment. This depends on the nature of the service and the duration between your booking and the start of your trip. In certain cases such as hotel and flight bookings during peak seasons or holiday seasons, full payment may be required to confirm a reservation.
We at Leisure Dream Vacations India | LDV India accept payments made by Visa, Master and American Express cards. If you intend to pay via a credit card, note that you will also be a charged a small amount of the bank processing fee.
Another option is to make a direct payment via wire transfer into our bank account. In this method of payment no additional fee is charged and you pay exactly as per the billing amount on your proposal. At the time of invoicing, we will share our billing and bank details for your reference. This will be sent to you after you confirm the bookings at your end.
Is there any Etiquette we should be Aware of when Sightseeing in India?
India’s rich culture and heritage is backed by a foundation of traditions that help retain its uniqueness. If you plan on visiting any temples or religious places, you will be required to take off your shoes, wear clothes that are less revealing and cover your head upon entering. Considering the secular religious practices that are found here, it is best to ask your tour guide in advance about the correct dressing etiquette before visiting any landmark. Some temples may not let you enter if you are wearing leather articles, others may admit only Hindus. As a token of respect, it is customary that you remove your footwear before entering a place of worship. Remember that smoking is not permitted in any public spaces in India including in trains and railways stations.
Will we be able to hire an English speaking guide while in India?
Over the years as tour operators, we have been able to develop an extensive network of extremely experienced multilingual tour guides that are not only familiar with the local Indian languages and English but also a host of other foreign languages. A majority of our tour guides are handpicked by us and trained under our wings so that they adhere to our quality standards. If you have any special requests with regards to language specifications, simply ask your tour manager and your needs will be catered to.
Are Monuments Open for Visitors all year round?
It is important to note that most museums in India will be closed on Mondays and many sites located near archaeological monuments are closed on Fridays. It is ideal to plan your itinerary in a way that you maximize your time in India. With the help of our services at ldvindia.com you can make sure that our planners accommodate for such schedules.
Can I Take Pictures While Sightseeing?
In many different landmarks and monuments, photography may not be permitted. In some places, this is allowed at an extra fee. The charges for video cameras tend to be higher. Our expert tour guides will inform you about these additional fees at the entrance of various monuments at the time of arrival.
What Kind of Food Will I Find in India?
Indian cuisine in itself is rather varied and diverse depending on the region you intend to visit. Even though India has more vegetarians than the rest of the world combined, it is not uncommon to find eateries that serve goat, lamb and chicken. Ask your tour guide to help you identify restaurants that are safe to explore during your trip here. If you are craving American meals or other international cuisines such as English, Italian, Chinese, Thai or Mexican, you can easily find these in restaurants scattered across major cities.
Are there any Items in India that I should Avoid Buying?
While it is natural for tourists to want take back a piece of India with them from their journey, it is important to note the trading in ivory, animal skins, fur, antiquities and the likes are illegal. If you must purchase it, it is important that you obtain a certificate of legitimate sale and permission for export before leaving the country. At LDV India we discourage such transactions with an aim to preserve our wildlife and heritage for the generations to come.
What is the Tipping Culture in India?
Most tour guides and chauffeurs will expect you to tip them depending on the length of the assignment and its nature. One needn’t tip taxi drivers that you may hire at the airport or railway stations. Furthermore, if you end up booking a transfer from your hotel, they include service charges into your bill. In such cases, you needn’t tip the chauffeur or the attended. In cases where you aren’t billed any service charges, you can consider adding a 5 to 10% tip.
If you feel that the tip expectations by any one that is offering you services on behalf of LDV India is unreasonable, feel free to get in touch with you trip manager immediately or notify us as early as possible. While we like to make sure that our support staff is well looked after, we have strict policies against staff members choosing to exploit our clients
Should I beware of beggars in India?
In spite of the economic progress being made by India, there are still some sections of the society where education and development are yet to penetrate. The Indian government is taking all possible measures to enable its citizens to live in dignity. That said, in many parts of bigger cities in India, chances are that you will encounter beggars. We request you not to give money to beggars. However needy they may appear to look, if you wish to show some kindness, give away some food items if at all.
What is the Best Way to get Around Different Cities in India?
Depending on the travel itinerary and the distances that you are expected to cover, choosing to drive by road proves to be a rather enriching experience. With a chance to make pit stops along the way at interesting sights and attractions and getting around at your own pace, we at LDV India are able to make the right arrangements of air conditions MUVs, buses or luxury vehicles. The nature of the vehicle depends on the size of your travel group. For some offbeat tours, you will be taken around jeeps and other special vehicles that adhere to the terrain requirements.
We at LDV India are highly conscious about the quality of drivers we hire. They will be well experienced, trained and supportive. Furthermore, all our drivers are well connected on mobile phones and our managers at the head office are constantly in touch with them.
India also offers an extremely strong domestic airline network within cities. If you are covering a larger area within India it is recommended that we book for you flights to major cities that can then be explored by road. Local trains in India are also well connected, very often a faster option and convenient. If you wish to experience India in its true sense, we can book you on an A/C chair car or 2ND AC coach on some of the most popular train routes. We also provide pick up and drop off services at all major railway stations.
Will I Need a Visa to Travel to India?
Yes, most international residents are expected to apply for a visa before they travel to India. Make sure you contact your local Indian embassy for assistance in this regard. Most tourist visas are valid for a period of 6 months and at the time of application it is required that you have at least 2 blank pages in your passport. Also, your passport must have a validity of at least 6 months after your return from the trip. At the time of application, you will also require two passport photographs. The Government of India provides visa on arrivalfor holders of passport of following countries : Australia, Brazil, Cambodia, Cook Islands, Djibouti, Fiji, Finland, Germany, Indonesia, Israel, Japan, Jordan, Kenya, Kiribati, Laos, Luxembourg, Marshall Islands, Mauritius, Mexico, Micronesia, Myanmar, Nauru, New Zealand, Niue Island, Norway, Oman, Palau, Palestine, Papua New Guinea, Philippines, Republic of Korea, Russia, Samoa, Singapore, Solomon Islands,Thailand, Tonga, Tuvalu, UAE, Ukraine, USA, Vanuatu, Vietnam. However, these visas are granted only for a short period of up to 30 days.
International Travellers whose sole objective of visiting India is recreation , sight seeing , casual visit to meet friends or relatives, short duration medical treatment or casual business visit.
Passport should have at least six months validity.
International Travellers should have return ticket or onward journey ticket,with sufficient money to spend during his/her stay in India.
International Travellers having Pakistani Passport or Pakistani origin may please apply for regular Visa at Indian Mission.
Not available to Diplomatic/Official Passport Holders.
Should I Be Taking out Travel Insurance before Visiting India?
It is always a good habit to take out insurance before you travel outside your home country. Before visiting India, make sure your insurance covers loss of personal items, personal accidents, medical emergencies, emergency travel expenses and cancellation of your trip. The choice of the insurance company is at full discretion of the client.
What assistance can I expect from LDV India in case of an Emergency?
Even the smallest medical emergency or unfavorable incident can prove be to a daunting one when in a foreign country. We at LDV India like to keep your safety first and make sure that we are always accessible when you need us. Each one of our vehicles on the road maintains constant contact with the head office in Delhi and is also in touch with other regional offices depending on where you are the moment. The private doctors and medical facilities that we recommend are of excellent standard in case of emergency. All the emergency contacts will be provided to you in your tour documents. Most hotels also partner with doctors for 24 hour on call services.
It is Easy to Change Currency in India?
Most international airports across India have numerous money exchange counters for international visitors. In addition to this, most hotels will also be able to help you with this. However, note that some wildlife resorts across the country will not provide facilities for currency exchange. It is always a good idea to carry enough local currency for your basic expenses.
There are no particular restrictions on the amount of foreign currency or travelers checks a tourist may bring into India. However, you will be required to fill in a declaration form upon arrival. This helps facilitate the exchange of currency that is imported and the export of currency that is unspent at the end of your trip.
One needn’t declare cash, traveler checks or banknotes valued up to USD 10,000 or equivalent at the time of entry. It is strongly recommended that you use only authorized money changers when converting foreign currency and maintain records for easy conversions upon departure.
Do Credit Cards Work in India?
While most establishments in bigger cities accept a host of MasterCard and Visa credit cards, it may be challenging to find places that accept Diner’s Club and American Express cards. ATMS are easy to find in most big cities. Outside the bigger cities it is recommended that you carry enough Indian currency for your purchases and for tipping.
Are there Any Specific Health Requirements when Travelling to India?
Before making your trip here make sure you consult your doctor with regards to recommended vaccinations. A few areas in the country are prone to malaria and may require you taking the appropriate prophylactics. Furthermore, if you are visiting from countries in East Africa you may require bring along with you a certificate proving you have undergone the Yellow Fever vaccination. Check with your local health authorities for more information on such vaccinations.
How is Mobile and Internet Coverage in India?
India has especially good telecom coverage in general. Mobile phones work almost everywhere though not all mobile operators are available in all places or have the same quality of coverage. For instance, you may have trouble finding network in National Parks, some transit areas in the mountains or in border areas.
Most hotels provide internet facilities for free or at a minimal fee. Cities are abundant with internet cafés and your tour guide is the best person to ask in this regard. Getting a local private number can prove to be a lot more cost effective. Contact your trip manager for assistance on acquiring a prepaid connection.