India being a country constantly on the move, with its jaw-dropping tourist sites and delicious food, it can easily be on the top of most people’s bucket lists in the places to visit.

With all that being said the things to do can be pretty overwhelming, therefore we here in Mama’s Indian Takeaway researched the most essential things to know before making your trip to India as well as few of the best things to do when in the beautiful country.

Getting a VISA

Just like most places all tourists need to apply for a visa before making their travel. UK citizens can get their hands on a double-entry e-Tourist Visa which was introduced by the Indian High Commission.  It costs £57 and you’re allowed to apply for two e-visas per year.

For more information visit their official site: http://indianvisaonline.gov.in/

Tipping

Many places, especially tourist establishments, have a tip box for staff, reasonable tips for local guides and drivers are expected/appreciated, especially for a day’s work, because it makes up a big part of their annual salary.

Tipping restaurants
With great food being one of India’s strong points, you can go from street food stalls to the high-end restaurants, the tipping varies for each of them.  For things like street food no tipping is expected, If you eat a small meal, breakfast or a snack that cost less than 300 INR then usually a 10% tip is appreciated.

Restaurants now often charge a ‘service charge’ (not a government-levied tax). When a service charge is imposed, no tips are expected, and the service charge is usually capped at 10%.

Tipping hotels
In general, leaving a tip is recommended for the entire staff that caters your needs. On average you can tip INR 100 per person/ per room night at the hotel you’re staying at. Many times, in hotels you can find a Bellboy who carries your luggage’s to your room, and often they wait for a tip at the door, you can give them a small tip of 10-20 INR.

Some of the best places to visit 

Gateway of India is a historic landmark that was built in 1911 to welcome the King and Queen of England, you can get a 5-hour private Mumbai sightseeing tour from only £28.94.  It is ranked #1 out of 531 things to do in Mumbai.

Another must visit location is, of course, the historic site Taj Mahal. It draws visitors from all over the world, during busy times and days the waiting hour can take up to 3 hours, however, there is a skip-the-line Taj Mahal admission ticket, for about £15.65 you can save yourself some time from waiting in an overcrowded line. It is ranked #1 out 114 things to do in Agra.

Best things to eat

It is somewhat noticeable that life in India revolves around a few things such as food and religion.  Every town prides themselves in having an own signature dish, some Indians eat fish and chicken but most of them are lacto-vegetarians, red meat is rarely consumed.

Gulab Juman
The people of India love their sweets, with sweet shops being located in almost every corner of each city. The Gulab Juman tops the list for being one of the most popular sweets in India. 

 

Thali Dishes
Explode your taste buds with a spread of many different Indian dishes, ranging from as few as six, to as many as 15 (crazy right?). It often includes rice poppadum’s, chapati, dhal (lentils), pickle, vegetable curries and a lot of other deliciousness in between, sometimes you can find a whooping thali meal costing less than £1.00.

Average cost for flights

India being a place many miles away from the UK, the prices can be high. Average cost with a safe secure airline from the UK to India can range anywhere between £650 – £900 per person.

 

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