1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.

Some Safety Tips For A Foreign Traveler In India

Discussion in 'General Discussions' started by travelguide, Sep 12, 2015.

  1. travelguide

    travelguide Active Member

    Tourism is one the fastest growing sectors in India and India is becoming a hot location for many foreign tourists across the globe. Even though India is a safer place, a few tips can go a long way in ensuring your safety in India.

    1. Avoid night walking - Walking alone in public places is safe, but you should not be there in dark isolated places at night. I think this is true anywhere in the world.
    2.Dressing sense - Try to avoid dresses that expose too much of your skin. Why should we invite problems during the trip.
    3.Reject anything from strangers during train travel - Indians have a habit of offering food to fellow passengers. There can be people with bad intention too. So just say "No, thanks". Do not take any chance.
    4.Avoid over friendliness with strangers, especially if you are a solo female traveler

    If the above things are taken care of, you can travel anywhere in India with great peace of mind and enjoy your visit.

  2. btalivny

    btalivny Member

    The most important point is the friendly behavior as stated above. A majority of Indians are extremely friendly because it is a value that is taught. People can start a conversation with anyone, you will see a businessman talking with a rikshaw driver etc. The issue is that there is bound to be individuals who want to cause detriment. They take advantage of the "kind" image and may cause you harm. Although you may feel impolite, try to refrain from individuals who are being too friendly.
    Chahal likes this.

  3. Gabydi

    Gabydi Member

    Wow, this is a very interesting post. My sister lived in India for a year and she didn’t want to come back. She made so many friends with whom she’s still in contact with and she never mentioned one of these things. She always talks about the food that is amazing and that she had like a hundred marriage proposals when she was over there. I don’t know, I think I’m idealizing India and never thought of the possibility that there are people who could intend to harm you. But, well guess this is all over the world. Great post and thanks for the heads up!
    Chahal likes this.
  4. amelia88

    amelia88 Active Member

    Thanks for posting this. I think that these days it's timely advice for where ever you travel in the world. As a solo female traveler I have to be extra aware of things like being out after dark or people that come across overly friendly - and that would occur anywhere, not just in India!
  5. ilivetofly

    ilivetofly New Member

    I will admit I am quite rude and it takes a lot of effort to not offend people that I interact with on a daily basis let alone when I am traveling. Its hard to balance both not offending people but also not being too complacent with those with bad intentions.
  6. Steve Dawson

    Steve Dawson Member

    This is a very interesting post. Could you go into more detail about what is too friendly, such as how would these individuals wish to take advantage of a tourist, Would it be robbery or violence ? During all my travels to India I have experienced nothing but kindness and made many great friends, but in the past I have always had my Indian-born wife with me. I am due to return to India in early January 2016 and my wife will not be able to come with me this time. I am somewhat apprehensive about how I am going to manage without her.
  7. Ashwin Mahesh

    Ashwin Mahesh Member

    Taking food from any stranger in India is risky whether it was done with a good or bad intention. Even if the intention was good you couldn't possibly know what level of hygiene was practised while preparing and carrying it. Also for a foreigner's taste Indian food is very spicy and can impact their bowel movements.

    Sent from my ASUS_T00P using Tapatalk
  8. travelguide

    travelguide Active Member

    Yes, very true. You need to avoid any food offers especially during train journeys. There were instances of robbing people after offering food with ingredients which can keep them unconscious for long time. It is always safe to deny it politely. Even during halts do not let others buy food items/beverages for you. That can be quite risky. Remember they can even inject anything in a sealed plastic bottle. In short, it would be a pleasant trip for you if you mind your own business.
    SusieQ and Ashwin Mahesh like this.
  9. pwarbi

    pwarbi Active Member

    Being safe when travelling to any country is just about being common sense usually.

    All the points made and explained in the OP are good advice, and certainly things to keep in mind, but for example, would you do any of them things in your own country? Probably not, so why would you do them when on holiday somwhere?

    When people travel abroad it's like they lose all sense and are more inclined to do things they wouldn't do back at home, but when it comes to staying safe, you need to keep in mind certain do's and dont's.
  10. amit123

    amit123 New Member

    Proper security is required in india for foreigners. There should be make proper law for security and safety from this step india will more earning from visiter like a dubai
  11. pwarbi

    pwarbi Active Member

    When you say proper security, I'm not sure I know what you mean? As a tourist destination India as become a lot more popular in recent years and as far as I'm aware there aren't any risks or dangers related to foreigners travelling to India so the security in place at the moment seems to be sufficient.
  12. arthnel

    arthnel Member

    I totally agree with the need for common sense to prevail. On my trip I was fortunate to meet nice people who took us to safe hang outs to enjoy the nightlife. It was taking a chance, but we knew what we were doing. It's also true that Indians are very kind and will share food with a stranger and it's a nice custom. I took food offered but not from everyone. It really goes back to common sense and gut feeling to make your trip feels somewhat carefree, but safe at the same time.
  13. nemanjanp

    nemanjanp New Member

    1. How important is this rule? If I happen to actually stumble in the dark isolated place in the dark, what should I do?!
    2. I am not a big fan of this one, because I think that everyone should dress how they like to. But it is unfortunately necessary, since it's not very acceptable in India to show much of your skin.
    3.This is a classic thing, every kid knows. But, almost everyone can be tricked, so you should always be aware not to take anything from strangers!
    4. Solo female travelers are always in danger, wherever they go. If you are one, you should always have some type of self-defense tool. But it won't save you in every possible scenario, so you should tottaly be careful.
  14. vegito12

    vegito12 Member

    I reckon that people need to be careful of being charged too much for a product like at a market or business and need to check what you are paying for is worth it and especially where scales are used, some people and they can change it so they get more money, and the person may not realize it that they were duped into paying more for something. It is important to check the person if they claim to be a tour guide and check their business card and if in doubt you can check with local authorities so they can be safe and know the person is from a trusted business and reliable as well and check the rates and see it you think it is suitable for you. I think you need to be aware of people who may want money just for giving you the direction to a hotel or maybe even just to the restaurant, so be careful before asking someone for information and they may have bad intentions even though they may talk in a nice manner and try and be your friend.
  15. briannagodess

    briannagodess Well-Known Member

    Those are good tips. I guess with the clothing tip, it actually can be applied anywhere you go now. I don't think wearing skimpy clothing, for girls, is a good thing. Just because violence against women are rampant nowadays and we just have to be careful. It's not at all that we want to attract attention for wearing short clothes and such, but somehow it translates to that. So we just have to be cautious when it comes to clothing especially if we are in a foreign place. In India, conservative clothing is one of the traditions and culture. So if you are a traveller, it is better to adhere to the customs.

    It really is scary to go anywhere isolated and dark nowadays. Even in my own country, I don't have the guts to do that. Plus, you can get lost if you cannot clearly see the signs in where you're going. If you are not familiar with the place, it's much more likely that you will get lost when you travel in the dark.

    I have no problem with the third and fourth tips as I am extremely snobbish to strangers. I think this is one of my best and worst asset, lol. It's nice because you won't get fooled by other people. But it's also bad because you tend to miss out on meeting what could be amazing people.
  16. pwarbi

    pwarbi Active Member

    In regards to being wary of others, obviously from being a child we get told not to talk to strangers but I think while it's important to be on your guard, it's also important not to come across as ignorant, and there's no harm in meeting and talking to new people as long as you don't get over friendly and you maintain a sense of caution at the same time.
  17. misskrystal1982

    misskrystal1982 New Member

    Very interesting post. I had not thought of a few of those.
    I have to say, I am terribly friendly when people start talking to me, and I think it would take a bit of practice for me to be mindful of the fact that I am female should I ever have the chance to actually visit India.
  18. innaf93

    innaf93 Member

    Yes, and also the big part of travelling alone even as a woman is remembering cultural differences. The way we communicating is so different in every country and territory. Touching or not touching, eye contact, not all gender inclusive places. It's not just about safety but culture.

    Even in Greece there are cafés where woman are not really welcomed, but with all respect (?!).
  19. SirJoe

    SirJoe New Member

    If there are only four points that have to be taken into account when visiting India. Then India sure does sound like a really safe place to travel too. It's interesting the mention of people giving you food on the train.
  20. Honest Abe

    Honest Abe New Member

    It's always best to know the safety concerns before traveling abroad. As you said, the first item holds true in any part of the world. Walking alone, in unfamiliar neighborhoods can be a walk on the wild side. This is especially true for women. Still, it holds true for men as well. Many men may believe they can handle any danger that comes their way. And this may be true. But try explaining to the police that you were defending yourself. Better to be safe than sorry. Avoid any meaningless disputes.

    The remark about being overly friendly, it is so true. I think some people are just unaware of how easily their body language is judged. They feel they are tricking you, while in truth reveal how much of a creep they are.
  21. SusieQ

    SusieQ New Member

    All good things to consider. Thanks for the info. One can never be to sure while travelling.
  22. MichelleVL

    MichelleVL New Member

    Thank you very much for the tips TravelGuide. The 2 tips that caught my attention the most were the ones where you warned about accepting food from strangers and being weary of overly friendly people. Frankly I have been to India before (in groups) and the thought hadn't even crossed my mind. Thanks again, during my next trip to India, I will be a lot more careful and safer thanks to you.
  23. djordjem87

    djordjem87 Member

    This is very good to know. I was wandering though, i live in Serbia where crime rate is pretty high but as India is much larger than Serbia i would assume the crime is more prominent. However, i never thought that this kind of things are being done because they are organized. I never heard for such a thing here. You can get held up, of course. Simple and plain robberies are common but this is kind of cunning move to do. Can anyone tell me about statistics considering crime rates in India ? I am just curious because i thought US, Brazil and South African Republic were the ones with this type or organized crime.
  24. Rezonate

    Rezonate Member

    For a guy like me who has lived in East Los Angeles and LA nearly all My life and Southside Chicago where LA is the gang capital of the world and Al Capone notoriously ran the streets of windy city I think I can handle myself in India. However one can never be too prepared when it comes to new territory so this list is greatly appreciated thank you !
  25. arthnel

    arthnel Member

    I think crime happens everywhere and it's good to keep your guard up all the times. I'm usually just careful to avoid back roads and dark streets in general. I did let down my guard with some guys in India once and they took us to a nightclub and we had a great time. Initially we were on very high alert and ready for a showdown if necessary, but I think were lucky to just find some guys willing to make a few dollars by showing us around the city. We tipped them afterwards and it all went well. You have to use gut feeling sometimes too.
  26. HanaDyad

    HanaDyad New Member

    This is a great thread. It is a good base for travel anywhere, really.

    Everyone should do their research before traveling: find out what is considered respect in the area you are going, actions and dress wise. Learn the culture enough that you don't accidentally offend or cause drama. Learn enough of the language to say 'no, thanks' or 'thank you' or similar, so that you know you are able to cover the basics. Learning the way to contact the authorities and ask for someone who speaks your language are very important. Even if you never need to do so, you'll feel safe and in turn be more likely to handle things in a calmer manner.

    Biggest thing is to learn how to talk to authorities in any country in case you ever need to.
  27. Ritika Sharma

    Ritika Sharma Member

    Yes, one should follow these security measures while travelling any part of the world.
  28. samfad55

    samfad55 New Member

    Thanks for this tip, it will definitely be useful for me in the near future when i visit India. However, i hope i wouldn't see someone who would offer me a food/drinks because rejecting these things where i come from is an act of disrespect i hope indians don't see it that way too.
  29. pwarbi

    pwarbi Active Member

    I think that if it's obvious that you're a toirsist, then you may not get offered food, and even if you did and rejected it then I dint think it would be seen as being disrespectful.

    People have their own ways and customs depending on where they're from, and I think people will accept that. As long as you respect there's at the same time of course.
  30. GammaRay

    GammaRay Member

    Great advice! I always say to others to bring a family or friend on a trip just so you have safe company, a share-able experience and to be with someone you love. Bringing a guide book or reading travel blogs before going anywhere for your travel itinerary is also pretty great advice, financially and otherwise.
  31. CaptainOblivious

    CaptainOblivious New Member

    Might I add to the list by suggesting that you always keep the contact numbers of your embassy with you. In the case of an emergency your embassy will be able to best guide you the course of action to take. I recently came to know of an Australian citizen who had to go through a lot of stress as he lost his documents and didn't think to contact his embassy first. They will be able to give you a temporary loan and alternate travel documents.
    Hope I helped!
  32. OursIsTheFury

    OursIsTheFury Member

    Basic safety tips, starting with knowing where you and your significant others' are at all times while outside. Also research on the area that you will be visiting beforehand, and make sure you know where the nearest police station is. Research online on the most popular scams thieves like to do to tourists, their methods, targets, and how you can avoid them. A little lesson in self defense may also come in handy, but all in all the most important thing you can do is to stay alert at all times. Keep your wallet in check, while having an extra physical copy of your passport just in case. Make sure to keep an eye on your belongings, and just not have too much fun that you forget about your safety. Good luck, and have a pleasant trip!