India is quite different from the Western world, so brush up with these tips before you go:
Do you agree with them? Have you been to India? What got you through the culture shock?
India is a hot country for the most part, except during the time from November to January when some parts of the country, particularly the North, experience chilly winters. Women should avoid long, flowing dresses that can drag on the ground Ė the roads leave a lot to be desired Ė and too skimpy attire. Indian women are modest in their clothing, and your Daisy Dukes and a Tee combo will elicit more stares than you need.
Bring most of your personal products, and other essentials. Most international brands are now available in India, but you might find your neighborhood supermarket doesnít store the brand you use. Ditto for medication and first aid supplies. Pack plenty of incest repellent and sun block Ė most of the touristy areas are unbearably hot.
Food and Drink
Always drink only bottled water, and stock your bag with a few extra bottles when youíre out for the day sightseeing, or heading to a remote village. If youíre in a large group or intend to stay in a place for a while, buy larger 10,15, or 20 liter canisters, and refill your bottles as you go along.
Avoid fresh fruit juices from roadside eateries. In fact, avoid roadside stalls altogether. The taste may be divine, and the flavors mouthwatering, but unfortunately, the hygiene and sanitary conditions take a hit. Stick to high quality restaurants. I donít mean you should eat only in five star joints, but reasonably high quality places that arenít teeming with flies and have a clean look about the surroundings, should do fine.
Avoid salads, and fresh fruit thatís been pre cut. Avoid Western food in a restaurant that serves mainly Indian food Ė chances are the food might not be as fresh, because itís not as popular with the locals. If you want a taste of home, head to a five star hotel or any one of the pizza and fast food joints cropping up all over the country.
If thereís one thing that will jump out at you the moment you land in one of the metro cities, itís the beggars. Most beggars here are professionals, and belong to a beggar mafia. Those horrible disfigurements and amputated limbs? Chances are high that those were actually done on purpose, so the beggar could garner more loose change. Ignore them, or handover a single rupee if you have to; not more. Be generous, and you risk having an entire gaggle of beggars surrounding you, clamoring for more!