India

India is the largest country in the South Asia Region and 7th largest country in the world. With a population exceeding 1 billion people, India is the second largest in population in the world. Everywhere you turn in this country, there is definitely something to do or to see, that you’ve never seen or done before. Everyone can be involved in camping at pristine lake in a remote region, hiking the Himalayas, visiting remote authentic Tibetan villages, drinking and tasting unordinary for European food or drinks and much more. Every tourist guaranteed to obtain a wide variety of memorable experiences.

SAFETY INDEX

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  Generally, the level of crimes is moderate and India is relatively safe for tourists. The most common types of crime are theft, armed robbery and rapes. Agree on all fares and payments in advance and being told that you can pay “as you like” is a bad sign. While travelling in the transport and in general never accept any food or drinks as they might be spiked.   In order to make your trip safe. SafeAround has compiled information from numerous sources make sure you have a safe trip to India and be aware of all potential dangers.   India is the 106th safest country in the world, based on the safest and most dangerous countries ranking.  

Is India a Safe or Dangerous country?

  India is a relatively safe country, though there are some hazards each newcomer should be aware of. Terrorism is a threat, the probability of attacks is high, constant vigilance is recommended. Demonstrations and strikes might cause inconveniences and unrest. It can be escalated rapidly and turn violent. Monitor local media in order to be aware of any strikes in advance.   Swimming in India: Seemingly to be safe, Indian water might hide dangerous strong undertows. During monsoon season, you should exercise extra caution while swimming in open water along the Indian coastline. Every year, several people in the Bay of Bengal, Mumbai, Goa, and Puru drown. There have been reports of crocodile attacks in salt water on the Andaman Islands.   Train travel: Travel by train in India is generally safe. Nevertheless, accidents and on-board fires are sometimes caused by aging infrastructure, poorly maintained equipment, overcrowding, and operator errors.   Instable areas   Jammu & Kashmir: Due to the high probability of terrorist attacks and frequent civil unrest, travelling to these areas with the exception of visits to Ladakh region and its capital Len is not recommended. Since the 90s, as many as 70.000 people have been killed in the Kashmir conflict. India-Pakistan border   Travelling is not recommended within 10th km zone of the border between Pakistan and India. Military presence is high, due to the disputed area: Karakoram mountain range.   North-eastern states Civil unrest and often bombings of public transport, make the area dangerous, thus travelling is strongly unadvised to these areas. States: Assam, Mizoram, Nagaland, Tripura, Manipur are especially under concern.     Restricted/Protected areas: Certain areas need special advance permission. Areas requiring a permit include: The state of Arunachal Pradesh Portions of the state of Sikkim Portions of the state of Himachal Pradesh near the Chinese border Portions of the state of Uttarakhand (Uttaranchal) near the Chinese border Portions of the state of Rajasthan near the Pakistani border Portions of the state of Jammu & Kashmir near the Line of Control with Pakistan and certain portions of Ladakh The Andaman & Nicobar Islands The Union Territory of the Laccadives Islands (Lakshadweep) Portions of the state of Manipur Portions  of the state of Mizoram Portions of the state of Nagaland     Crime: Petty crime is on the rise. It is common, particularly on public transport. Travelling by train, lock your sleeping compartments. Violent crime against foreigners is uncommon. Be cautious displaying valuables or cash in order to reduce chances of being robbed. ATM scams are on the rise. Use a credit card for payments only at reputable establishments, otherwise, there is a high chance, that your credit card credentials might be stolen.   Sexual assaults: India notoriously known for a high rate of sexual assaults, though many of them are committed against locals, foreigners must be cautious as well. Travelling alone for women is not recommended. Sexual harassment might occur anywhere: marketplaces, train stations, buses and public streets. Delhi has the highest rate of sexual harassment. Female tourists should be accompanied, avoid isolated areas at any time of day.   Scams
  1. Pretending not to know where is your hotel
During the journey from the airport, the driver will say that he doesn’t know where is your hotel (or doesn’t exist, or full) and offer to take you to another hotel. Make sure you insist on being taken to the hotel that you planned to stay in.  
  1. Importing Gemstones scam
  Particularly widespread in Jaipur, Agra, and Bali. The scam involves tourists being approached by a gem dealer, who convinces them to buy some gemstones for him, import them under their duty-free allowance, then sell them on to one of his willing partners in their home country for much more money than they originally paid. Of course, the details that you’ll be given about the ”partner” are fictitious.
  1. Fast meter
In some taxi, a meter is altered to turn faster, be aware of this scam. Sometimes taxis pretend to have a broken meter in order to charge you an inflated fee to your destination.
  1. Beg for milk or pen
Be aware of beggars asking milk or pen. What they do upon receiving is to return them to the store for cash.
  1. Fake train ticket
  2. Unofficial road fee asked by police officer
Your vehicle might be stopped by a police officer and you may be asked to pay a road fee. Note, that this is unofficial. Having this situation in reality, we advise refuse to pay and ask to pay only at the official station and ask the official receipt after payment.
  1. Unofficial SIM card
Getting a SIM card from the official operator is very difficult and can be a huge hassle, though buying from unofficial sources will most likely get you an inactive one. If you buy a card unofficially, check it first and then pay.

Warnings & Dangers

Mid Priority-96 OVERALL RISK : HIGH

India is relatively safe country. Though, there is need to be vigilant all the time. India is ranked 106th out of 162 on the ranking of the safest and most dangerous countries.

Mid Priority-96 PICKPOCKETS RISK : HIGH

This is a real pain of India. Pickpocketing and bag snatching are very common, especially on public transport.

Mid Priority-96 MUGGING RISK : LOW

Kidnapping almost doesn’t exist. Mugging is not common.  

Mid Priority-96 SCAMS RISK : HIGH

Unfair individuals or group of them desire to take an advantage of distracted tourists. Scams in India are the worst in the world.  

Mid Priority-96 TRANSPORT & TAXIS RISK : MEDIUM

Taxi drivers know that you are a foreigner and do not acquaint with the local taxi fares used to refuse to switch on the taxi meters and call the price they deem relevant to call for their service. Be aware of pickpockets in the public transport, particularly while getting on the transport in the big transport hubs. Be especially vigilant in the overnight trains and buses. Do not accept any food or drinks as it may be spiked. Driving the rented motorcycle may be dangerous because the traffic is chaotic, driving standards is poor. If you decided to rent a motorcycle, be very cautious and use helmet.  

Mid Priority-96 NATURAL DISASTERS RISK : HIGH

India is very exposed to natural dangers. Earthquakes, flooding and severe storms are the main perils. If a natural disaster occurs, follow the advice of local authorities.

Mid Priority-96 TERRORISM RISK : HIGH

India continues to experience terrorist and insurgent activities which may affect tourists directly or indirectly. Anti-Western terrorist groups are active in India, including Islamist extremist groups such as Harkat-ul-Jihad-i-Islami, Harakat ul-Mujahidin, Indian Mujahideen, Jaish-e-Mohammed, and Lashkar-e Tayyiba.

Mid Priority-96 WOMEN TRAVELERS RISK : HIGH

Sexual assaults do occur very frequent both day and night. Try not travel alone at all. Be in a group, avoid poorly illuminated streets and bars with intoxicated individuals.

Carte

WHAT TO DO?

There are so many things to do and visit in India, that once received memorable experience from India, you will constantly feel the need to return over and over again. So, the list of top things to do and see is countless, though SafeAround gathered the top 7 the most attractive one.   Gali Paranthe Wali Chandni Chowk market famous food lane in the center of the Old Delhi. This is kind of place, where each newcomer may feel the authenticity of the local cuisine. Some of the places have been around for more than 150 years and they are always full of locals enjoying the delicious meal. Due to the big crowds in the area, there is need to be constantly cautious, and keep an eye on your belongings, as pick-pockets know that this is kind of place, which tourists visit.   Akshardham (Delhi) Famous cultural complex near the Yamunaa River. It has a massive temple and supposed to be one of the most impressive structures in the whole country.   Raj Mandir Cinema (Jaipur) Opended in 1976, this art-deco cimema is an ideal place for those who'd like to see a Bollywood film. It is the most famous cinima in the whole coutry.   Chand Baori Stepwell (Abhaneri) An ancient village, that impress even an experienced traveller. There is no entrance fee, though some of the locals can pretend that there is, and try to charge you for an enter. So, be aware of such a scam and do not let to be deceived.   Ranakpur Jain Temple (Ranakpur) Remarkably quite place with the most important Jain Temple in the world. It dates back to the 15th century. Spend a night or two in the nearest village in order to get the deeper feeling of this sacred place.   Bapu Bazzar area (Udaipur) Number 1 destination for each gourmand. A thali (a traditional Indian meal, that consists of a variety of food and served on a large round plate) is a dish every tourist must try and the Bapu Bazzar place is the ideal location to experience an Indian cuisine. The area is safe both day and night, though it’s worth to be constantly vigilant of suspicious activity and pick-pockets.    Varanasi Although Varanasi is a very intense and roughness, a trip to this 3800 year-old fascinating city must be done. Endless temples, narrow lanes winding through ancient markets, animals roaming the streets are a true authenticity of India. Locals are very nice and friendly, though a rape rate is high and female tourists should avoid to be alone in the poorly lit areas in the dusk. Palolem Beach (Goa) Vacation paradise in Indian ocean. Sand is whitish, water is calm and blue, sunsets are stunning and flora with fauna are very unique. Goa is an all year round destination for an incredible vacation. Being quite a safe area, there are some hazards for unvigilant tourists, main among them are bag-snatching, numerous renting scams and increased rate of rapes.

Useful Information

You’ll need to get a visa before travelling to India. You can find further information about how to apply on the Indian High Commission website. Make sure your passport has at least six months’ validity from your planned date of return.
500 and 1000 Rupee banknotes were withdrawn from the circulation. The official currency in Vietnam is Dong. In order to obtain the best currency exchange possible, try to exchange your money in banks, post offices or in some large hotels. The convenient currency exchange rate also can be found at the international airports. Be aware of swapping in the local currency exchange offices.
There are several climatic regions in India. The most pleasant weather is from November to March.
Kempegowda International Airport is the busiest airport in India. For more information visit its official website: http://www.bengaluruairport.com/
As in any country, we advise travellers to get a travel insurance that covers not only medical issues, but also theft and loss of personal items. Learn more on our travel insurance page.