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India

Capital
New Delhi
Time Zone
GMT + 5.30
Telephone Services
Country Code: 91
Outgoing Code: 00
Emergency Telephone Numbers
Contact the hotel reception.
Tourist Information
Government of India Tourist Office, 7 Cork Street, London W1X 2LN Tel: (020) 7437 3677 or (01233) 211 999 (brochure request line). Fax: (020) 7494 1048.
Passport Information
Valid passport required by all. Requirements may be subject to short-term change. Contact the relevant authority before departure.
Visa Information
Visa required.
Health Information
Polio, Typhoid: Vaccination recommended
Malaria: Exists in the vivax variety throughout the year in the whole country excluding parts of Himachal Pradesh, Jammu and Kashmir and Sikkim. High resistance to chloroquine has been reported in the falciparum variety.
Yellow Fever: A vaccination certificate is required from everyone coming or who have transited through infected areas
Other Health Risks: Bubonic plague, meningitis, tick-borne relapsing fever, dengue fever, visceral leishmaniasis, filariasis and Hepatitis B.
Food & Drink
Water is untreated and not safe to drink. Avoid dairy products as they are not pasteurised. Fruit and vegetables should be peeled before consumption.
Currency
Rupee = 100 paise
Exchange: At banks or authorised exchangers.. NOTE: Import and export of local currency is prohibited.
All major credit cards are accepted. Travellers cheques can be widely exchanged. Pound sterling and US dollars are the preferred currencies.
ATM availability: Over 150 locations.
Cost of Living
Caters for all visitors and budgets. Accommodation ranges from international standard to youth hostels. All commodities are inexpensive, in comparison with other countries.
Languages
The universal national language is English. There are 14 official languages in India. About 50% of the population are Hindi speakers. The Muslim population generally speak Urdu.
Weather
Hot tropical weather with variations from region to region. Coolest weather lasts from November to mid March, with cool fresh mornings and evenings and dry sunny days. Really hot weather occurs between April and June. Monsoon rains occur in most regions during the summer
Electricity
Usually 220 volts AC, 50 Hz. Plugs are of the round 2 and 3 pin type.
Post
Airmail to Western Europe takes up to 1 week. Stamps are sold in hotels.
Transport
AIR: The domestic airline connects over 70 cities. Special fares are available throughout the year. SEA/RIVER: Services are often seasonal and suspended during the monsoon period. One particularly attractive route is the 'backwaters' excursion in the vicinity of Cochin. RAIL: The network covers much of the country and is relatively inexpensive.
Special Information
NOTE: The Travel Advice Unit of the Foreign and Commonwealth Office advises against travelling to the Kashmir Valley and Jammu because of civil unrest. SPECIAL PRECAUTIONS: Following the Earth Quake in January visitors should stay away from the GUJARAT STATE and other affected areas until normal services are restored. Major tourist destinations are quiet. However there is a serious risk of kidnapping in the state of Jammu and Kashmir. Foreigners have been held at gun-point and therefore visitors are advised against travelling to this area. Possesion of even the smallest quantity of drugs of any kind results in very long jail sentences with long detention before trial. Footwear should be removed when entering houses or places of worship. Many Hindus are vegetarian. Religion plays a large role in everyday life and visitors are expected to respect the customs followed by the Indian people. Beware of confidence tricksters; particularly in Jaipur and Agra. Special care is required on beaches as no local warnings are given of trecherous undercurrents.
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