Khammaaghani!! Welcome to Rajasthan! To make your visit more memorable we have tried to answer the most frequently asked questions. We are sure this would help in enhancing your experience of Rajasthan.
What to carry
Rajasthan is a traditionally and culturally rich state with a modern outlook. But some places here still have a conservative approach towards dressing. Hence it is advisable to carry full sleeved shirts and full pants for both men and women.
The temperature here varies from as high as 49 degrees celsius in summers to as low as -4 degrees celsius in winters in some places. Hence depending on the season that you are likely to visit in, Kindly carry the following clothing along:
1. For a dry and hot summer season : Soft breathable cotton clothes in lighter colours, sunscreen, shades, umbrellas, flip flops and breathable closed shoes, full sleeved cotton shirts and full pants in breathable fabric to avoid over exposure to the sun, hats and caps, sippers.
2. For dry and very cold winters : Thick woollen sweaters and jackets, woollen socks, thick shoes or boots, full woollen pants, monkey caps or beanies, mufflers, ear muffs, gloves and shades.
3. Some religious places have a certain set of code of conduct and may require you to cover your head, go barefoot inside the complex or leave any leather articles you might be carrying outside the premises (belts, bags, wallets). There might be a deposit box facility in such places or you might have to take turns to visit. We suggest that you read about the place before visiting and carry a small cloth wallet on that visit.
Food and Beverages
- People is Rajasthan prefer a little spicy food and relish their desserts with the same gusto. You need to keep in mind to ask about the use of red chillies in the local cuisine, as the food is quite spicy here. The use of oil and ghee also is very liberal. Among the non-vegetarian foods, you will find chicken and lamb very easily but fish and other seafood is available only at a few hotels and restaurants. Please ask for bottled water or check with the restaurant you eat in if they have a proper functioning water filter installed.
- Tipping at the restaurants is entirely your prerogative, as service charge is included in bills in most of the places. You may want to check your bill first before deciding on tipping.
Mementoes and souvenirs
- The Govt certified shops and emporia have a fixed price structure and you would not require to bargain there. Additionally, the goods purchased from these stores would be of good quality.
- Always insist on obtaining a proper invoice for your purchases and ensure your cards are swiped in your presence.
- Please have a proper itinerary made from your travel service provider as different monuments have different days as their weekly maintenance days and are shut on such days. To utilise your time optimally it always helps to check the “closed days” and “visiting hours” of the temples / monuments / museums you are interested in visiting.
- Smoking and drinking of alcohol is strictly prohibited in public places in India. In restaurants, you may ask for a smoking zone if it is provided as not all the restaurants have a smoking zone. Likewise, drinks will be served in the designated bar / restaurant only.
- Govt trained and authorised guides can be hired at most of the tourist places. English speaking guides are easy to find but you may also find guides speaking other international languages too. Do remember to check their Identity Card before engaging them for your sight seeing.
- Some monuments and tourist sites have facility of audio-guides as well.
- Some border area of Gujarat and Rajasthan require special Govt permissions to visit, please ask your travel service provider to advise and assist on obtaining these permissions.
- In cities you can easily change most foreign currencies and brands of traveller cheques. ATMs are available in all big cities and most of the towns and villages.
- Buy your tickets from authorized ticketing agents only. Always ask for an invoice.
- Most of the cities have prepaid auto rickshaw and taxi booths, hire a taxi from these booths only.
- Take a photo of the number plate of the taxi and share it with your near ones.
- Tipping of taxi drivers is totally your decision, it is not customary or obligatory.
- Do not accept food / drinks / lifts from strangers.
- Avoid isolated places and going out late at night.
- In case of emergency please dial 100 for the Police.
India is a tourists’ paradise and Indians are among the most hospitable people in the world but it is always good to be a bit cautious and careful while you travel.
-By Pooja Bhatnagar