In early April, the average temperature is 80 degrees F. It can go down to 71 at night. It can go up to 90+ in the afternoon. Please go online to check what the temperature will be when you are there.
As a result, we usually tour in the morning and until about 1:30 p.m. Then, we go have lunch (with adult beverages) at about 1:30 p.m. somewhere where it is air conditioned.
All of our hotels are air conditioned. All have fantastic pools for late afternoon swims.
We usually tour early in the morning until lunch. Some go on for further touring (especially if it is inside or in a museum) while others return to the hotel for the pool. We meet in the evening around 6:30 p.m. or 7 p.m. for Cocktails.
We usually go out to dinner at 8:30 p.m. Many dinners in India are on magnificent rooftops sitting out under the evening sky and in the coolness of the evening.
All Indian men wear long pants. I wear shorts in India if I feel like it. Westerners are the only ones who wear shorts. However, when it is hot (as it may be on some of our days), shorts feel wonderful.
Be sure to bring a hat and sunscreen. Many of the sites are out in open areas so you will want something covering your head.
Be sure to bring a swimsuit. All of our hotels have swimming pools. Nothing is more wonderful after a long morning of touring than to come back and jump into a cool pool. And, naturally, it's lots of fun having a cocktail by the pool as well.
We usually meet in the hotel bar (or outside on the patio) for cocktails at 6:30 of 7 p.m. Cocktails usually last about 1 hour or longer if everyone is having fun. Then, we head out to dinner. Many of the restaurants which we will enjoy have rooftop dining so you get to sit outside in the evening air, enjoy the stars, and see sights of India spread out before you.
You are not required to do anything
You only do what you want to do. We make multiple tours, experiences, meals, and gatherings available. You decide in which you want to participate.
We try to all come together as a group for cocktails each evening. That is the time when everyone shares what they have done for the day and plans for the next day.
How do we communicate
By master text message. We will exchange everyone's cell numbers so you can program them into your phone. Phil keeps a master text through which he communicates schedules, changes, and new developments. We also use texts to track people down if we cannot find them at a site.
I have Verizon. You can go online with Verizon and purchase an international plan for India which includes text, phone calls, and data transmission. I think it is about $10 per day.
Secrets of the flights over and back
I do 3 things on the flights over and back:
a. Bring a change of clothes so I can put on fresh clothes between flights.
b. Go to showers in the transit airport and take a shower between flights. The showers usually only take cash and will take US Dollars. Use of the showers is about $20 USD. Go on the internet and type in the name of the airport where you will be changing planes. There will be information on showers.
c. Find an airport lounge in which to hang out between flights. You can usually purchase a day pass to use an airport lounge. This can be fantastic because they are usually nice, have drinks and food included, and are peaceful and restful.
d. Sleep pods: Many international airports have sleep pods which you can rent in which to sleep for a few hours, if you wish.
YOU WILL NEED A TOURIST VISA FOR INDIA. GO ONLINE TO SECURE IT. IT USUALLY TAKES ABOUT 4 DAYS FOR PROCESSING. TOURIST VISAS ARE ONLY GIVEN ONLINE.
WIFI, Computers, and Cellphone
I always bring my computer with me to India. There is wifi everywhere. All hotels have it. I go on my computer every day to deal with emails so I do not have 2,000 of them waiting for me when I return to the US.
Uber in India
Yes, there is Uber everywhere in India. Uber will even charge to the credit card you use in the U.S.
Credit Cards and Cash. How much do you need?
All hotels will take all major credit cards. The upscale restaurants will all take credit cards. High end shops will take credit cards. Everyone else takes only cash.
When I go to India for 2 weeks, I usually bring about $800 USD in cash. I put most things on a credit card because you get the best exchange rate. I have the cash for times when a location does not take a credit card. I usually come back with cash left over and redeposit into my bank account.
Cash will also make it easier for you to contribute to the cost of the meals and drinks when we eat in a group.
One of the things that we do to make things easy is we split the bill equally at the end of the meal, in most cases. Everyone chips in their share. The group covers the cost of the travel host's meal.
I usually exchange USD to Rupees at the front desk of the hotel. Usually, the exchange rate at a hotel is a bit worse than at a bank; however, the hotel is quite convenient.
What vaccinations or medicines should I take before I go to India?
I take none. Check with your doctor. On our last trip, no one got any vaccinations or took any special meds like Quinine for malaria. Everyone did fine healthwise. I understand greater health precautions should be taken in the countryside. If additional health precautions are necessary, we will provide that to you based on the destination(s) you select.
Each of our hotels has a doctor available who can usually see you in an hour. Hotels will go out and pick up any prescriptions you need. On our tours of India, we have only had 2 people get gastrointestinal problems. They took medication and were well in 24 hours. We have had HIV positive people who have traveled with us with no problem.
Water and Air Conditioning
The water in our hotels is filtered so you can drink it. All of our hotels have air conditioning.
Tipping exists in the hotels and upscale restaurants. Go online and look up "Tipping in India." It will give you an idea of what to tip. There is no tipping in regular restaurants or bars.
a. Breakfast will usually be held in your hotel. The breakfasts are always buffets which include Western food and Indian food. They are usually outstanding. Breakfast usually costs $7 to $10. You can usually purchase breakfast when you make your hotel reservation.
b. Lunch usually ranges from $10 to $20
including beers/wine. Indian beer is quite good and tastes terrific when you are coming in from a morning of touring.
c. Dinner is usually about $30 including drinks. Last time I was in India, I went to Bukhara which is one of the most expensive restaurants in Delhi. It is in the hotel where Obama stayed in Delhi while president. Dinner for 2, including all drinks (champagne and wine) was $126 for two people, including tip. So, it came out to $63 per person, including drinks and tip, for the most expensive dinner in Delhi.
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You can also get scars removed in his office using a laser. It works.
If you are interested, let me know, and I will set you up with Dr. Gupta. I make no money from this. I do it to assist others because I was so pleased with the quality and the price from Dr. Gupta.