India

Fast Facts

Already booked on one of our packages to India? See everything you need to know before you go.

Overview

Capital: Delhi
Population:  1.1 billion
Currency: Indian rupee (INR)
Languages:  Hindi, Urdu, Tamil, Bengali, Kashmiri, Kannada, Marathi, Gujarati, Telugu, English
Drives on the: Left
Time zone: GMT +5:30

Weather

When traveling to India, November thru March is the best time to visit. Temps in the north are between 40-60° F and temps in the south are between 65-85° F. March-June is dry and very, very hot. June-October is monsoon time. When traveling to the mountain region, the months of March, April, October and November are ideal.

Entry requirements

U.S. citizens must have a passport which is valid for at least six months after the arrival date, with at least two blank visa pages. U.S. passport holders must also have a visa to enter India. US passport holders visiting India with stays up to 30 days may obtain a single or double entry  eVisa through the Indian Government's eTVOA websiteYou should obtain your visa after your final payment due date (75 days prior to departure), but no later than 4 days before your departure from the US. However, we strongly recommend that you apply for your eVisa no less than 30 days before your departure date

Please note that when applying for your eVisa, you will be asked to upload clear photocopies of the following:
·         A recent front-facing photograph with white background
·         The signature, picture, and data pages of your passport

A non-refundable eVisa fee must be paid no later than 4 days before your expected arrival date in India.  Once your eVisa is approved, you will receive an email with the Electronic Travel Authority (ETA) status marked as “GRANTED.”  

You may also view the status of your visa through the Indian Government's eVisa website 

Please be sure to have a print out of the Electronic Travel Authority (ETA) with you at all times, during your stay in India. You will be asked to present your valid Indian visa at the airline check-in counter. You may not be allowed to board the plane without a valid India visa.

Non U.S. citizens must check with their respective consulates of the countries visited or transited thru on this tour as to the most current visa requirements.

More information about passports & visas.

Shopping

Shop for wood carvings, fabrics, brassware, copperware, bronzes, silver, fossils and crystals, sandalwood items, paper-mache, paintings and prints, dhurri rugs, dolls, tea, saffron, batiks, carpets, and gems (if you know what to look for).

Bargaining is the norm. Beware of copycat brand-name items and animal products such as skins and horns- they are illegal. And remember to shop at the local markets!

Health Precautions & Vaccinations

According to the Center for Disease Control, all areas lower than 2,000 meters (6,561 feet), including cities are considered high-risk areas for malaria. The cities of Delhi and Bombay are also risk areas. Consult your physician about inoculations and the use of antimalarial drugs.

Center for Disease Control
World Health Organization

Power & Adapters

230 volts. Plugs C & D. You will need a voltage converter and plug adapter in order to use U.S. appliances. We recommend getting a universal adapter and converter kit. View more information about electrical standards around the world.

Tipping
  • Upscale restaurants: 5% 
  • Hotel restaurants: 10% 
  • Porters: 10-15 rupees per bag or service
  • Hired drivers: provide meals and 50-100 rupees at the end of the day.

In India you'll be expected to pay small amounts in order to get things done, as well as to reward for jobs already accomplished.

Frequently Asked Questions

  1. Can I take my cell phone?

    See our blog post on using your cell phone abroad.

Videos

Video Video

Articles

Tours & Packages to India

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Dazzling Dubai & India Express
Exhilarating Dubai; plus explore the lost empires of India in Delhi, Agra, the Taj Mahal & the pink city of Jaipur; Optional Extension to Nepal
12 days  •  from $2599 $2299
per person, double occupancy*
dates small group tour + flights
Dazzling Dubai & India Express with Diwali, Festival of Lights
Exhilarating Dubai; plus explore the lost empires of India in Delhi, Agra, the Taj Mahal & celebrate Diwali in Jaipur; Optional Extension to Nepal
12 days  •  $3299 $2999
per person, double occupancy*
dates small group tour + flights
Dazzling Dubai & India Express with Holi, Festival of Colors
Exhilarating Dubai; plus explore the lost empires of India in Delhi, Agra, the Taj Mahal, then Jaipur to celebrate Holi; Optional Extension to Nepal
12 days  •  $3199 $2899
per person, double occupancy*
dates small group tour + flights
Taj Mahal Express
Savor India's Golden Triangle: Delhi, Agra & the Taj Mahal, then the pink city of Jaipur; plus Nepal optional extension
9 days  •  from $1999 $1699
per person, double occupancy*
dates small group tour + flights
Taj Mahal Express & Diwali, Festival of Lights
Savor India's Golden Triangle: Delhi, Agra & the Taj Mahal, then celebrate Diwali in Jaipur; plus Nepal extension
9 days  •  $2499 $2199
per person, double occupancy*
dates small group tour + flights
Taj Mahal Express & Holi, Festival of Colors
Savor India's Golden Triangle: Delhi, Agra & the Taj Mahal, then Jaipur to celebrate Holi, India's joyous festival of colors
9 days  •  $2599 $2299
per person, double occupancy*
dates small group tour + flights
Taj Mahal Express & Pushkar Camel Fair
Delhi, then Pushkar for the world's largest camel fair; plus the pink city of Jaipur, Agra & the Taj Mahal
11 days  •  $3049 $2749
per person, double occupancy*
dates small group tour + flights

Rave Reviews

My husband and I just returned from India. Our trip was excellent from the beginning of the tour through the end of the trip. The service of the tour guide, Vikas, was superb, very attentive, gentle, friendly, professional and over all very knowledgeable. THANKS VIKAS!!!! This was an extraordinary experience for us. We are now planning to take a tour to Patagonia and we will make our reservation through Friendly Planet of course. We highly recommend this travel agency. Once you use them, you can't let go. Thanks Friendly Planet Travel for making our trip a pleasant journey!

Michael & Lorena Bauzo, Miami, FL
India Express

India was not high on my list of places to travel to but I thought this was such a good deal that I just had to do it. The package itself was the cost of the airfare alone. It was great traveling with fans of Friendly Planet. They kept saying how happy they were with the expertise and professionalism that you guys had throughout the whole process. Everyone on the group was very well travelled and all the travelers resided in different parts of the country from Chicago to Salt Lake City to Los Angeles. My favorite parts of the tour include: the Taj Mahal (of course), the elephant ride up Amber Fort – so much fun, and the rickshaw taxis – a number of folks said this should be a part of the package as it was like a scary Disneyland ride. Thank you for putting such a great package together - what an amazing experience. I hope to book another Friendly Planet package soon!

Jeannie Shu