Some precautions to take to ensure that your dream trip to the subcontinent lives us to your hopes are listed below. Firstly avoid unnecessary attention by wearing modest attire. Keep in mind that Indians are a traditional people who dictate conservative clothing be worn even by visitors. Secondly make sure you have confirmed train tickets and flights and that you arrive at train stations and airports in daylight.
Thirdly if traveling by public transportation, whether by taxi, rickshaw, train, bus, or metro, travel with someone else. If that can’t be done, try to make friends with other women so you’ve got someone to look out for you. Fourthly when traveling by bus or train in a large city, board last so that you can position yourself close to the exit. Keep your back to the door, facing the other passengers on board. Keep your belongings close, and secure them by wrapping your bags’ handles around your wrists.
Fifthly when taking an overnight train or bus, secure your luggage with a cable lock to ensure against theft while you are asleep. To prevent thieves from grabbing contents from your bag, always lock the zippers together. Consider investing in bags with security features such as slash proof handles. Sixthly do not open your hotel door to strangers. If you expect a hotel employee to come to your room for something, let him in but keep the door open or step out of the room while he is in there.
Seventhly if traveling by train, expect porters to swarm you upon arrival at the station. Be generous in tipping, as he can be helpful in getting you to your seat amidst all the chaos and avoid being over-friendly with Indian men as this may give them the wrong signal. When traveling by public transportation, sit with women and children if possible. Finally always appear confident and as if you know where you are going. Thieves target those whom they perceive as vulnerable and who will not put up a fight and learn a little Hindi. Whenever you notice someone is violating your personal space, do not be afraid to wave them away with a loud, “jao jao” (go away).
Upasana Taku a successful woman entrepreneur of Mobikwik Kashmiri by blood and having Gujarat as alma mater, Upasana has relentlessly fought her way to the top. She worked on her marriage day, she shared home-cooked meals with the team of 5, gave up the luxurious lifestyle, patiently ignored to the gender bias and faced multiple challenges only to give back to her homeland. Of course, she had the entrepreneur calling from within her but also wanted it to be in the best interest of others too.
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