Below are some practical tips, and social protocols in India. This might help guide you to connect with some local people.
- The rich culture has left India with wonderful choice of resorts and hotels. We strive to provide you better accommodations to enhance your experience.
- Languages: English language is often used for official or commercial purposes. However, official language is Hindi. In addition, there are 17 regional languages. Tamil, and Telugu languages are common in South India.
- Food and Drinks: There is a huge variety of dishes across India, with combinations of spices giving each region its own distinctive flavor. Seafood is a speciality in the coastal areas. A variety of European and Chinese dishes can usually be found at star hotels and resorts. Local brands of drinks are widely available and international brands in larger hotels although these can be expensive. Alcohol is not available in certain holy towns.
- Tipping: Tipping for good service is expected in India and should preferably be paid in local currency. Hotel porters are usually given around 20-50 Rs per bag (more in luxury hotels). A 10% tip is appreciated in restaurants and for room service, when no service charge is added to the bill. Obviously this is very much a rough guide and you are completely free to give whatever you feel is appropriate. You can also tip in your currency if you need to, please check the exchange rate at time of travel.
- Money & Currency: Rupee (Rs). Notes are in denominations of Rs1000, 500, 100, 50, 20, 10 and 5. The 500 and 100 notes are similar in color. Larger notes can be difficult to change outside of big cities. Coins are in denominations of Rs5, 2 and 1, and also 50 and 20 paise (100paise = 1 rupee). Currency can only be changed at banks or authorized money changers in India, including hotel cashiers. Try and obtain some low denominations for small purchases and tips.
- Social Conventions & Etiquette:
- Smoking in public places is prohibited in all public areas of hotels including restaurants and bars. Anyone found violating the rule faces a punishable offence and is likely to meet with a monetary penalty.
- Scant, tight clothing will draw unwanted attention and offend local sensibilities. Displays of intimacy are not considered acceptable in public. Visitors to all religious places should be dressed in clean, modest clothes; shorts and vests are inappropriate.
- Always remove shoes before entering a temple. It is a good idea to carry a pair of socks to wear on hot stone floors.
- Do not take pictures of people without asking permission. Photography within airports and temples, military installations, bridges and at "sensitive" border areas are not permitted.
- Hotels and Resorts Information: