5 Essential Tips for Surviving India – Top Things to Know

India is an amazing country, but in order to survive in India you need to plan this trip thoroughly – therefore in this travel blog I am sharing with you 5 essential tips for surviving in India.

Because, let’s be honest here – this will NOT be your standard destination and it will require a LOT of planning in advance, but even then things will probably NOT be as you thought. And that’s fine, you don’t need to plan this trip perfectly, but these 5 essential tips will make your life easier. 😊

I spent 2 weeks in India in February 2023 and have visited cities from MumbaiUdaipur and finished with the Golden Triangle – the most famous and first-time visitors route that everyone who is travelling to India for the very first time visits. I even spent 3 days attending the Indian wedding of my two dear friends. 

Preparing for India Travel was not an easy job and I have to admit, it was the most challenging destination to plan because I was travelling on my own (with my husband as always ofc.) and haven’t used any travel agency or tours. While I was able to prepare for a lot of things, some things that I am sharing with you right now, I got to learn only after I have experienced them first hand, so learn from my experiences and save yourself some troubles and unpleasantries! Therefore, here are 5 essential tips for surviving India: 

5 essential tips for surviving India

5 essential tips for surviving India

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Currency

Local currency is in Indian rupees and while you can pay with cards, this will still be a cash-heavy destination. First thing you have to do before even going to India is to make sure you have at least £100 already exchanged before you arrive in India. Later, you will be able to find ATMs in any major cities.

I use Wise whenever I’m travelling abroad.

Plugs

Let’s talk plugs! Most blogs that I read mentioned that you’d be easily able to use your UK, US and/or EU plug in India. Some of them only recommended buying the Indian plug. Because we live in the UK and have previously travelled to both the EU and the US, we decided to bring all three kinds of plugs. But we also bought the Indian plug.

Can you guess what happened? None of the other 3 plugs worked, but the Indian plug. It was a good idea to bring all of them. We didn’t try other plugs in other hotels, so maybe it would have worked there. However, my advice is to really buy the Indian plug, so you don’t end up wasting your time on finding a good store that sells them!

Visa

Most likely you will need a visa, but most of the countries can apply for e-visa. Check the official site of the Indian government for more info!

Hawa Mahal, Jaipur, India

Hawa Mahal, Jaipur, India

Language

India is an English-friendly country and you will be able to use English almost without an issue. Even if some people don’t speak English, they will still know and understand a few words you’re saying. But if you’re still struggling to communicate with local people, you can just use Google Translate. The internet works well there, so you won’t be struggling with the network. Just make sure you have an Indian e-sim or local sim card. I am almost exclusively using Airalo for e-sim because it’s convenient to use and often they have better deals than buying a physical sim card. You just need to install it on your phone before you take off for India.

Medicines

No matter how well I thought I was prepared for India (I went to Egypt before that and survived all the horror stories you read online about food poisoning, stomachaches!), I was still able to pick up some bacterias there! Perhaps I even got an infamous Delhi Belly (lighter version though).

Even though I was drinking probiotics 2 weeks before and during my trip, my stomach was still shocked with all the spices they use in India. Probably also with the way food was prepared. 😅 We didn’t eat the street food AT ALL, but we also didn’t eat only the vegetarian food only like some people would. We weren’t scared to eat the chicken there, but only in reputable restaurants that served Indian food for Western tourists. 

While I was not having some serious diarrhoea, I was still going to the toilet more often than I usually do. Mainly in the morning and in the evening, usually it was happening after a meal, so I knew when I can expect it and therefore when to be in a hotel room 💩.

My husband was affected a little bit more than I was, but it was still manageable for both of us to explore everything that was on our itinerary while having this minor discomfort. I can bet if we didn’t drink probiotics before, it would have been much more serious! What we didn’t have was antibiotics, so we had to find a pharmacy in Jaipur to get some. Luckily, we managed to do it, but make sure you have it with you as well! And to finish this anecdote, unfortunately I got sick on my second to last day in India and instead of exploring Delhi, I spent this time in a hotel room recovering and drinking Lemsip with some tea! 🥲

That’s why the most important thing is to have Travel Insurance. Fortunately I didn’t need to see a doctor in India, but better to be safe than sorry!

 

sick in Delhi, India

Sick in Delhi, India

Medicines you need for India

– probiotics

– Lemsip

– Imodium

Disclaimer: The information provided is for informational purposes only and should not replace professional medical advice. Consult your doctor before making any medical or travel decisions. The author assumes no responsibility for consequences resulting from using this information without consulting a medical professional.

The most important thing, DO NOT drink tap water in any case! Not even for brushing teeth! Most hotels will have complimentary bottled water, so make sure you’re using it all the time. From my experience, they are happy to provide you with additional water bottles if needed.

Read my Ultimate 2 week India Travel Guide 🇮🇳

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5 tips for surviving India

5 tips for surviving India