Frequently Asked Questions
How to book a tour?
To book a tour to India, we suggest you that you view the India Journeys Page on the website, which include many tours that are being taken by most of the tourists coming to India. If you intend to make any changes, or customize your travel itinerary, you can request a quote by filling our online query form or sending us an e mail at: [email protected]
How do I book a tour if I have special interests, like Yoga/Ayurveda or Golf etc.?
To book a special interest tour, we suggest you that you view the “Special Journeys” Page on the website, to view itineraries that we commonly offer. If you intend to make any changes, or customize your travel itinerary, you can request a quote by sending us an e mail at: [email protected]
I am visiting India for the first time how should I prepare myself?
For resources about India, Please visit our website page “Travel Information”. You may put up your questions to us regarding any matter if you do not find the answers on our website. Apart from that we suggest you to do some background reading before visiting India, so that your visit becomes a great experience, you may ask us to provide you a tourist Guide in the language of your choice who will accompany you during your tour to India and take care of everything related to your tour.
How many months in advance should be my travel booking ?
We recommend that your travel bookings should be made 6-8 months in advance, especially if you are travelling between October- March (high tourist season) and May – June, the Indian holiday season. As Travel infrastructure in India has its limitation in comparison to the high season demand therefore we highly recommend booking your tour in advance. However, in the case of late/last minute booking, we should be able to accommodate depending on hotel availability.
How to experience India at it’s best ?
We suggest you to consider rural India while planning your trip, ask us to combine your trip during an Indian Festival which will make your trip a great experience. At each city you visit our guides will tell you about the cultural activities taking place that might be interesting.
Can I buy an Air Ticket through you also ?
Yes, you can. Our services are comprehensive. We do both international and domestic ticketing.
How will I be picked up from the Airport ?
You will be picked up by our representative at the arrival hall of the particular International Airport of India. You should not leave Air Port without our representative if you are to be picked up. Pioneer Journeys representative would be holding a welcome board with your name on it. If you are part of a group, the name of the group will be mentioned on the welcome board.
Can I book the hotels only with you and not the complete tour ?
Yes, Pioneer Journeys has special rates with many hotels all over the Indian Subcontinent. We are sure that we will be able to offer you the hotels for your budget in the destination wanted by you. As for as hotels are concerned we have hotels of every standard in India. You will find some of the world class hotels in India. Do inform us what kind of hotels you are looking for. We also make arrangements for big conferences, Meetings and incentives. You can also book specialized holidays like yoga, spa and Ayurveda Packages.
How do I get medication in India in case of necessity ?
It is advised that you bring your own medicines. Most of the medications in India are available but you may not find it under the same brand name as in your own country. If consulting a doctor is necessary, be assured that we will assist you in this matter. Private hospitals with high standard and qualified doctors are available in India.
Do people understand English and other foreign languages ?
English is widely spoken and understood at almost all tourist centres. All our guides are qualified and government recognized. They assist you during your sightseeing in India. We arrange guides who speak German, French, Spanish, Japanese, Italian or Chinese. Tour guides will help you not only in your sightseeing, but also help you understand India better and give you useful tips for your Journey to India!
How can I come in contact with local people during our travel in India ?
Indians are hospitable and friendly people. Most of the people you talk to you will find friendly. Follow the golden rule in India (especially for Women, when travelling in India): Always speak to the people you feel like talking to. Avoid people who are too eager to help you or want you to buy you something. If you want to enrich your visit to India by visiting an Indian Family or want to stay in an Indian Family, ask us. We will be happy to make these arrangements for you.
What is advisable to eat and drink in India ?
We advice our guest to drink bottled water, bottled drinks. Coffee Tea should be taken hot. Avoid eating spicy at least at the start of your journey to India. If you are travelling without a guide in India you may ask the waiter not to put any chillies to the ordered dish. It is suggested to stick to only cooked foods and to eat fresh fruits after removing their skin. After taking the above precautions you will realize that India has a wonderful cuisine and rarely any other place meet the varieties of cuisines and flavours as in India.
Is there anything important to remember while visiting temples and mosques in India ?
Do remember to remove your shoes and sandals while visiting a place of worship or mausoleum. Also some temples do not allow leather articles in their premises.
Are there any restrictions for the Photography in India ?
Photography is a great fun in India as you will have enough sunlight most of the time. We suggest you to bring enough films with you though most of the films of international brands are also available in India. In some of the monuments one has to pay fee for the photography. Our guide will suggest you where it is worth to photograph and where not. At some of the locations photography is not allowed. Do not photograph these objects otherwise your film can be confiscated.
Should I give some money to the beggars who are sometimes on the streets of India ?
Unfortunately Indian government has not been successful to stop begging on the street from organized and professional beggars. Even though, in most cities NGOs and homes are run for poor people to protect them, begging is prevalent in major Indian cities. If you want to do something good there are many serious institutes in every city where you can help the people who need them actually.
Shopping in India?
India is a shoppers paradise. Shopping is recommended from Government Emporiums. We can forward you the details for that. Most of the large stores will ship your purchases for you, though, for convenience and to avoid postal delays, it is advisable to carry your shopping with you or to book it as baggage. If you have any specific items on your shopping list, you many contact us we will provide you the needed information.
How much should I give as tipping while travelling in India ?
Tipping is expected by most of the people involved in the tourism in India. In big hotels services charges are included in the bills so tipping is not necessary otherwise 10% of the amount of the billing is normal as tipping. If travelling with a group the tipping can be reduced to 5% of the total bill.
Which currency is used in India ?
The units of Indian currency are the Rupee and Paisa (100 Paisa equal 1 Rupee). Paper money is in denominations of Rupees 1, 2, 5, 10, 20, 50, 100, 500 and 1000. Coins are in denominations of Rupees 1, 2 and 5.
There are no restrictions on the amount of foreign currency or travellers checks that can be brought by a tourist to India. However a Declaration form is filled (only for the amount which is more than USD 10,000) on the arrival at the Indian airport. By filling up this form you can also get your money exchanged back in the original currency without any problem. Any kind of money exchange should be done only through authorized money- changers. You may ask our guides and they will tell you the right centre or place to get the money exchanged. Please note that no Indian currency can be imported or exported, except for Rupee travellers checks. There are 24- hour exchange facilities available at Delhi, Mumbai, Calcutta and Chennai international airports.
Can I pay in Euro , US $ or through credit cards in India ?
All the major currencies including Euro and US $ are accepted in India. Also all the major credit cards (Visa, Masters and American Express) are accepted in the Indian subcontinent.
Are there any restrictions on the export from India ?
The Government has put restrictions on the export of all wild animals indigenous to the country and articles made from such listed animals like skins, pelts, furs, ivory, rhino horns, trophies, etc. have been totally banned. These include all forms of wild animals including their parts and products, except peacock feathers and handicrafts made from them and those made from articles and shavings of Antler, Cheetals and Sambars which are subject to conditions specified. Export of exotic birds is also not allowed. This ban also includes wood , sand wood products including logs, timber, stumps, roots bark, chip, powder, flakes dust, pulp and charcoal. However, sawn timber made exclusively out of imported logs teak/ timber are exempted subject to conditions. Also, export of sandalwood in any form, excluding finished handicrafts and machine-finished products is prohibited. Export of furs of domestic animals, excluding lamb fur, hides and skins is prohibited.
Is there any restrictions on the export of the Antiques from India ?
Antiquities which include sculpture, painting or other works of arts or crafts, illustrative of science, art, craft, religion of bygone ages and of historical interest which are older than hundred years may not be exported from India. Manuscripts or other documents of scientific, historical, literary or aesthetic older than seventy five years also cannot be exported out of India.
How do we settle the payment? Is there an advance deposit required ?
We need 50% of the total tour cost at the time of the confirmation of the tour. This is to be sure that your booking a genuine one and we can go ahead with the reservations. The rest of the due amount should be deposited at least 7 days prior to your departure from your country. On special request you can also make the payment after your arrival in India, but before the commencement of services. This can be agreed upon as per the type of tour and the amount we have to pay in advance to the hotels and our other associate office for making the reservations.