Delhi as a city can seem a little daunting. But trust us when we say the people are very hospitable & generous. There’s a saying for the Delhiites ‘Dillwallon ka sheher’ i.e. a city of large-hearted people. However, like any place, Delhi is unique with its own characteristics. Here are some tips that will help you be a smarter traveller & enjoy Delhi like a true Delhiite.
Stay. Delhi’s hotels are extremely expensive. If your budget doesn’t permit the luxuries of these lavish hotels, Delhi also offers several options for ‘Bed n Breakfast’, ‘Guest Houses’ & ‘Inns’. If you choose the right one – it saves the wallet heartache; they are clean, right in the midst of the town, they’re homely & most importantly safe.
The Delhi Way tip: Book yourself in a Bed n Breakfast located in one of the better residential complexes. You get a glimpse of how Delhiites live, with the comforts of a hotel & warmth of a house.
Transportation. Varied forms of public & private transportation is available to commute within the city. From radio cabs that you can call for, to black & yellow taxis that you can hail on the road. Autos (3-wheelers) to cycle rickshaws and from the recent metro service to the red & green bus service.
The Delhi Way tip: Get into an auto & ensure the auto driver uses the meter to avoid haggling. If you’re a woman travelling on the metro, get into the ladies section.
Weather. Delhi climate is extreme. During summers the temperatures rise as high as 45° celsius. The best time to visit Delhi is during the winter and the spring months when the weather is ideal for exploring the city.
The Delhi Way tip: Enjoy great weather along with the festivities in the months starting from September to February.
Language. Knowing the local tongue will take you a long way. While most people understand & converse in English; it will be easier if you make yourself familiar with a few key Hindi words/phrases in order to get your way around especially with the street vendors, rickshaw drivers etc.
The Delhi Way tip: Hello/ goodbye ‘namaste’ (fold your hands while saying this); Thank you ‘shukriya’; I’m sorry ‘maaf karna’; Ok ‘achha’; How much? ‘kitna hua’… if you’re keen to learn more words (including some harmless abuses) email us & we’ll get back to you.
Tipping. Taxi drivers normally expect a tip from a foreign tourist. Depending on the final fare a 10% tip should be fine. For restaurants and bars again 10% would suffice.
The Delhi Way tip: Tip to get a timely and efficient service. If there is a service charge included in the bill, no need to give a tip.
Places of worship. You will find a church, a hindu temple, a gurudwara, a mosque, a jain temple here in Delhi. Each different in their offerings, rituals & structures.
The Delhi Way tip: Respect all religions & their customs. Take off your shoes outside by the entrance, cover your head & donate some money towards the upkeep of the place.
Bargaining. Whether its a designer shop or a street vendor, most outlets in Delhi give a discount. Its called the art of bargaining. Understand how its done, observe others & play the game.
The Delhi Way tip: Never hesitate or be embarassed to ask for a discount. Bargaining is really an integral part of a Delhiites shopping experience.
Monument fee. Most monuments charge a fee for entry. Don’t be shocked to see a different fee for an Indian resident & a different one for the foreigners. This is not a scam, just a rule ordered by the Indian Government. Moreover, camera & video filming (if allowed) would be an additional charge.
The Delhi Way tip: We try not breaking the rules.
Personal belongings. Delhi is densely populated. You never know who you run or bump into – next thing your wallet is missing or your mobile has disappeared.
The Delhi Way tip: Be alert, be careful! Carry as little as possible when visiting shops or sightseeing. Keep your handbag in front, be aware of your surroundings and never leave your mobile on a table even for a second.
Beggars. Depending on what part of Delhi you go to, you might come across beggars – kids, women, the elderly, physically handicapped.
The Delhi Way tip: If you must, give in kind and not in cash.