Traveling to India is a bucket-list item for most travelers, and so we can understand your excitement about your upcoming trip to India. As far as budget is concerned, India can be a backpacker’s paradise or a luxurious holiday destination. So, it is not a big deal to tour India within budget if you pay a little more attention to your choices.
Did it often happen that you designed a budget template for every trip but realized in the end that you spent more than was planned or required? If yes, then you might be wondering how to change this during your trip to India. Do not worry because we have some of the best travel hacks to share with you. These tips will assist you in traveling within budget without also compromising on the quintessential travel experiences of India. Read on!
Book Flights in Advance:
Saving on flight bookings is the first step to saving on your travel. The best trick you could follow to save big on the airfare is to book your flights to India well in advance. You are most likely to find the best deal 45-90 days before your travel date. The nearer the travel date, the more expensive the airfare is; and this is the reason why last-minute flights are comparatively costly. Booking your flights in advance has another indirect advantage. Once you confirm your tickets and pay for them, you tend to cut down your expenses while thinking of your upcoming trip to India.
Avoid weekend flights:
Avoid booking weekend flights as they are usually expensive. Another trick to save a great deal on airfare is to book with Indian Eagle as this OTA offers incredible deals and discounts on airline tickets to India. Coming to the flight time, flights that depart early in the morning or late at night are cheaper. Yes, we understand that it is a little hassle to make it to the airport before dawn or late after dusk, but there’s a positive side to this. As most of your daytime doesn’t go in flying long haul, you’ll have a larger part of the day, so you could rest and set out on your sightseeing tour on the very first day of your India trip.
Plan a trip to India during the off-season:
If you can avoid traveling during the peak tourist season, you must do it because this can save you a lot of money. Right from the flight tickets to hotel stays, everything is cheaper in the low season. Moreover, you can also escape the crowds when you travel in the off-season and fully enjoy your vacation. In India, the peak season for travel is between October and March. As the perfect time for your vacation largely depends on the places you are traveling to and the activities you want to take part in, we only suggest that you plan your trip to India in the low season after careful consideration.
Suggested Read: Most Important Travel Essential To Travel India from the USA
Look for cost-effective accommodation options:
Flights, lodgings, and transportation expenses account for a large portion of your total expenditure. So, it is very important to see that you are not overspending on accommodation. Stay away from hotels unless you have opted for a flight plus hotel combo deal which offers more savings as compared to separate bookings. Choose to stay in backpacker hostels, guesthouses, dharamshalas, or homestays otherwise. Let extra comfort take a back seat as you make yourself comfortable with the decent space and facilities offered by these budget-stay options.
Use Public transport:
Save on transportation costs during your trip to India by using public transport to get around. Simple travel hacks like traveling by train instead of taking a domestic flight and utilizing state-owned public bus services or metro services for traveling in and around the city can help you cut down the transportation costs. These modes of transportation are economical, and you also get to understand a thing or two about the local lifestyle when you choose to travel like a local. But beware of the common tourist scams when you take a taxi or an auto. If you have your international driving license, then give vehicle rentals a shot. Rent a bike or car and explore India on your own.
Eat like a local:
The gastronomic expedition is very much a part of traveling and experiencing new places. And when you visit a country like India whose culinary delights have never failed to impress, it becomes even harder to resist the urge to eat. We don’t even want you to do that, for that matter. But, dining at popular restaurants every time can be burdensome on your pocket, so we suggest that you go to small food establishments, dhabas, and street food joints, where you can relish the real flavors of India. This way, you can fill your tummies without emptying your pockets! Great, isn’t it? But do not compromise on the cleanliness of the place where you are eating.
Learn how to bargain:
The local shopping bazaars (markets) in India are an explosion of colors and the astonishing range of merchandise available here entices shopaholics to indulge in their favorite activity of shopping. Although local shopping is not expensive, you must be careful when you are out shopping as most vendors try to sell things for higher rates. So, you know what to do – improve your bargaining skills and start negotiating the price before you buy anything in order to avoid being overcharged. Haggling plays a major role in defining your shopping experience. Never hesitate to haggle, be it for clothes and other shopping items or auto fare or room rent.
In addition to the above money-saving tips, some other ways you can save your money on your trip to India include i) avoid excess tipping, ii) avail holiday packages or deals on family packages if traveling with family, iii) never forget to weigh your luggage before you leave home just to make sure it doesn’t cross the baggage limit of the airline you are flying with, and iv) consider low-cost group tours offered by small tour operators.