Traveling through India has always been a journey that can take anywhere from mere hours to multiple days, depending on your starting point and ultimate destination. For those who are out there to explore, there is so much to see and do in the country that travel transportation is a bustling industry for both residents and tourists from all over the world.
As much as I love travel, of late, I seem to have been doing nothing but managing flight cancellations, running after refunds, juggling alternate dates for travel and alternate modes of transportation for date commitments already made.
Of course, usually it only takes a bit of research–whether you are looking for Mumbai to Delhi flights or just cheap flight tickets or transportation for a getaway, you can find them if you invest a little time and effort. From planes to trains to buses to cabs you can comfortably get around India easily and inexpensively.
Sometimes, it is a better idea to mix and match modes of travel to get to your destination. After all, we all want to travel worry-free, right?
Based on my recent experience, here are five ways to make your commute even better. Because we need plan B and plan C if plan A does not work out, right? Also, there are things we think we know, but forget in the excitement of travel.
5 easy ways to make your travel worry-free and happy
1. Search for cheap flight tickets.
This seems obvious and yes, I do browse for the lowest airfare before taking a trip. The truth is, India is a vast country with hundreds of airports. I have often found that depending on where your destination is, you may be better off flying from or into a different airport just a little farther away. The extra driving time with a rental cab often pays for itself. Do your research so you find the best cheap flight tickets possible.
2. Don’t ignore train and bus transportation.
Fortunately, in India we have an extensive system of travel in place to get from one part of the country to another. If you are on a budget (who isn’t!) and not strapped for time—and you don’t mind a little extra traveling to get to your destination—consider traveling by train and bus to see if they are more affordable, leave from your area, and suit your itinerary. If that seems like a good plan, just go to your intended stop and you are all set to take off on your trip!
3. Be sure to register your phone number with the airline when you book your ticket.
Airlines in India are great about keeping you up-to-date on your flight. When you register your phone number, they will send you your PNR number and all of your flight details. You can even know about delays or cancellations on any flights and all of your trips well ahead of time. In fact these days, they WhatsApp you instantly on any change or update, including what you should and shouldn’t pack into your hand baggage and check in baggage. Which brings me to the next tip!
4. Make sure you know what items are restricted and don’t pack them!
Whether you are flying on one of the Mumbai to Delhi flights or on some other route, there are certain restricted items that are not allowed and it is our duty to stick to these rules. This information is available with the airline or agency where you book your ticket. Also, as I mentioned earlier, they keep reminding you until the day of your travel and there’s no reason to ignore the warning. There’s nothing worse than being held back from the security area and being asked to open your baggage and explain–all with people watching curiously. Embarrassing and stressful for you and most annoying for the officials. The delay can even end up in missing your flight! There’s no excuse to flout this rule. Also, check for the volume of liquids and types of liquids you are allowed to carry in your hand baggage or you’ll get a rude shock when the security officials simply throw it out of your bag. Not a nice feeling. Same with check in baggage (no power banks, explosives, etc.).
5. Be mindful of your allowed baggage quota
I say mindful for a reason. Ever notice how we tend to over-pack and never even touch some of the things until we’re back and put them away? Yep. I used to do that. Now, with many many trips behind me, I am a bit smarter. Make a list of only what you absolutely can’t do without. Smart packing is an idea for a separate post, but I’ll say this: airlines have a quota for hand baggage and check in baggage. Try to stay within it. It is also easier to manage. If you exceed your allowance, you pay hefty charges for every excess kilogram. If you really have to take something across, you’ll probably be better off parceling it from the post office—costs way less than the excess you’ll pay at the airport counter.
Make your next trip not only comfortable but also affordable
No matter where your journey takes you, traveling, especially through India can be the most enjoyable experience. India is a vista of beauty and culture, and if you plan your trip ahead, you can enjoy your trip without stressing about missing your connection.
Travel worry-free, safely, confidently, and comfortably the next time you have to commute to any destination in India.