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Avoid Cultural shock....Know more

People ...people and more people is what you are going to experience the moment you step into the Country called                                                                                             India, Bharat, or Hindustan.                                                                                                                                                      They're everywhere, and you can't help but wonder where they all came from and where they're going it's an overwhelming experience.

1.  Taxi pretending not to Know the Way to Your Hotel

This scam is most often tried on visitors arriving at Delhi airport who attempt to take a pre-paid axi to their hotel. During the journey, the driver will say that he doesn’t know where your hotel is (or that it’s full, or doesn’t exist) and offer to take you to another hotel, or a travel Agent ( Government of India written on each of them) who can find you a hotel.

Many people end up falling for this scam as they’re tired from their flight and overwhelmed by the onslaught of India for the first time. Make sure you insist on being taken to the hotel that you planned to stay in. In addition, in Delhi don’t give the pre-paid taxi voucher to the driver until he does so. The driver requires this voucher in order to receive his payment from the taxi office for the trip.

2.  Saying that the Place you’re Looking for has Moved or is Closed

This is a common scam that you are likely to experience all over India, but most often around tourist destinations in major cities. In Delhi, travelers looking for the foreign tourist reservation office at the New Delhi railway station are often told that it's closed or has moved. They are then taken to a travel agent to make their booking.

Other variations of this scam will be encountered when you attempt to visit shops and tourist attractions that are apparently “closed”. In each case, an offer will be forthcoming to take you to an alternative and sometimes even “better” place. You should ignore these people and continue to proceed to wherever you wanted to go.

 3Making the Meter Run Fast

Many taxi drivers and auto rickshaw drivers are honest, but some have meters that they’ve altered to run fast so that they can claim a higher fare. It pays to watch the meter to ensure that it’s ticking over at a consistent pace, and not too quickly. Another variation to this scam is the taxi driver saying that the meter is broken, and then quoting an inflated fee to your destination. Always insist on going by the meter. If you do notice that the meter is running fast, tell the driver that it appears to be broken and give him an opportunity to "rectify" it. If you know the correct fare to your destination, only pay that amount to the driver -- not the inflated amount. If he refuses to accept it, suggest going to the police station to sort the matter out.

4.  Offering a Reduced Taxi Fare in Return for Visiting Emporiums

While this isn’t a scam as such, it can still be quite a bother. Taxi drivers will often offer a reduced fare if visitors agree to stop off at a few expensive handicraft emporiums on the way, so that they can get commissions. No purchases are necessary, only looking. The catch is when the number of emporiums to be visited increases from “a few” to at least 5 or 6, so that the driver can maximize his commissions. The sales people in the emporiums don’t let potential customers get away easily, so such an exercise can end up taking hours. If you want to reach your destination promptly or don’t want to be caught up in what will feel like endless browsing, it’s best to give this offer a miss and pay the full taxi fare. 

 5. Roads in India                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Chaos is the word that best describes Indian roads! A trip in a taxi can be a hair-raising experience, let alone trying to cross a road as a pedestrian. There's a system in place whereby smaller vehicles usually give way to larger vehicles, and the largest vehicles rule the road. Drivers weave all over the road, and overtake from both sides. To actually cross a road, you'll have to brace yourself to walk out in front of oncoming traffic. However, don't be too concerned as drivers are used to this and will stop. The best thing to do is go with the flow and follow everyone else who's crossing the road at the same time. The roads themselves are in various states of repair. Unsealed roads, roads full of holes, and partially dug up roads are common.                          6. 6. Cows in India                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         Similar to how some people wonder if kangaroos can be found in cities in Australia, they also wonder if cows really roam the streets in India.

Actually, it's true about the cows. You'll find these fearless creatures meandering along all over the place, even on the beach. They're huge too, but quite harmless. Depending on where you travel in India it's likely that cows won't be the only animals you'll see on the roads. Donkeys and Bullock Carts are also common. If you go to the desert state of Rajasthan, you're almost guaranteed to see camels pulling carts through the cities.

7. Sounds in India

India is not a quiet country. Indians love to use their horns when driving. They'll honk when turning corners, when overtaking, and incessantly when there are vehicles in the way. The constant noise is one of the most draining things about being in India. The Mumbai government once tried to implement a "No Honking Day" but it met with shock and disbelief from many drivers. But that is the only way to work things in India!!                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           8. Smells in India

The smells of India can be the best and worst things about the country. The stench of garbage and urine is common, but so are the heady rich aromas of spices and incense. Evenings are a wonderful time to explore India's streets as the smell of fresh spices wafts up from the roadside snack stalls, and people light incense to attract Gods & the Goddess of wealth and prosperity, into their houses.

9. People in India

Indian society is very close-knit, and personal space and privacy are foreign concepts to most people. However, Indians are warm hearted and curious people. The down side of this though is that they tend to stare and ask lots of questions, many of them personal in nature. It can be confronting if you don't expect it, but don't be afraid to ask the same questions in return. You won't cause offense. In fact, people will be happy that you've taken an interest in them.

10. Dirt in India

It's likely that you'll be shocked by the lack of sanitation  and the amount of dirt and garbage lying around in India. As far as Indians are concerned, the most important thing is to keep their houses clean. So as long as the garbage isn't in their house, they're not bothered. They're content knowing that someone else will usually come and clean it up. Most things get recycled in India, and picking through trash is one way that the poor people make money.

11. Poverty in India

The glaring poverty and begging in India are the most confronting and hardest things to accept. The contrast between rich and poor is so obvious and you never really get used to it. On one side of the street you may see palatial apartments, while on the other side people live their lives in makeshift houses on the sidewalk.

12. Scenery in India

The great thing about India is that there's a photo opportunity around every corner, so keep your camera handy! The scenery is so stunning and foreign, and full of history, that every photo you take will be interesting.

13. Development in India

The booming economy and flourishing development has made India a lot more traveler friendly in recent years. The influence of the west is being felt across most cities with supermarkets and shopping Malls coming up everywhere. India's middle class is growing and has more money to spend. Most people now have cell phones. Many have computers and the Internet. Cities such as Mumbai and Delhi have become quite cosmopolitan, with an increasing number of modern restaurants bars and clubs.

14. Day to Day Activities in India

Expect that it will take a lot more time to get things done than what it would back at home. There are inefficient processes to deal with, conflicting information that's given, and closures due to lunch breaks to contend with. Oh, and of course, the crowds of people! It can be a challenge to figure out how and where to get things done. Things that make sense back home don't make sense in India and vice-versa. India's a great country for building (and testing) patience, however if you're persistent it will pay off. There's a saying that anything is possible in India, it just takes time (and a bit of money on the side!).

All in all, it does take a while to adjust to being in India but rest assured, most people start feeling more comfortable after a week or so. Before long you'll find yourself falling into a love-hate relationship with the country, its frustrations and its strange appeal.

 

 

 

 

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