What to Avoid When in Delhi
Like most travelers, there is a sure sense of eagerness to explore their new found territory and will sometimes attempt to veer away from the everyday tourist attractions. However, if not cautious the traveler may find themselves in a troubling situation and quite possibly with a faire dent in their pocket book as well. Despite its breathtaking views, incredible history, and delicious food, there are places and things you need to avoid when in Delhi. I have put together a list of the top 5 places not to visit while traveling through Delhi, India as a guideline to help the traveler get the most out of their trip.
1. Street Food Vendors
Often times it is a lot easier to grab something quick and easy and carry on your way rather than trying to decide on a restaurant. Street vendors, although they may seem appealing may not always be the best choice. The quality of the food may be significantly lower than that of a restaurant and more importantly, not cooked as well as the traveler may be used to. Their goal is to target the busy, disoriented hungry traveler as they set up their stall in the high traffic areas of the city while ignoring the health regulations that may or may not be enforced. It is always a good idea to make sure that the traveler is aware of what they are eating. If not, their vacation may just end on a porcelain note.
2. Taxi Stands
As there are many different forms of transportation in Delhi, taxis may seem like the most efficient way to get from point A to point B. Traveling through an unfamiliar city can at times be stressful so the traveler will often choose what feels most familiar. However, the traveler must remain wary, when hailing a taxi. In some areas where money is tight, it has been reported that travelers have had experienced unnecessarily long trips where they were forced to pay more than they should have. Some have also reported local bystanders “giving them a hand” with their luggage and then demanding payment despite having no affiliation with the taxi company, nor being asked to help. It is better to take a paid taxi from registered auto-stand office or book your own car through Uber.
3. Local Tourist Offices
Surely a tourist office would be able to provide all the information you could ever possibly need right? Well, not always especially when you’re in Delhi. As tourists arrive, there are many people who like to take advantage of their vulnerability. Offering services such as hotel bookings, tours, travel arrangement, all of course with tons of great deals and unbelievable hospitality. The unsuspecting traveler will certainly be getting a deal, but not necessarily, the one they are hoping for. It is always best to make and finalize all of your arrangements before arriving to an unfamiliar city. Unless of course, they don’t mind showing up at the airport with no reservation booked.
4. The Underpass At The Connaught Place
From Public Domain, via Wikimedia Commons
Tourists, often eager to try new things may find themselves entrapped in the many intriguing services offered by the locals. Along with the street vendors, local tour guides and rickshaws, shoe shining is a popular way to make a buck while working the streets of Delhi. There have been reports of shoe shining boys intentionally soiling one’s shoes with nothing more than what one would normally flush down a toilet, as a way to force them into using their services.
5. Jewelry Stores through Broker
Every traveler wants to return home with some sort of memorabilia from their trip and in a city like Delhi, it is all too easy. Despite the many small shops and bazaars, travelers may find themselves attracted to the more than reasonable price of a nice fine piece of jewelry. Sure, said piece may look to be 100% 14 karat gold and those gems may appear to be completely genuine. But are they really? The traveler must make sure that they get what they pay for. If not, they could be walking away with nothing but 14 karat fool’s gold and a big disappointment.
Delhi has many wonderful places to see and explore, it offers many opportunities to step away from the more mainstream tourism and allows the traveler the ability to take on more of the city on their own terms. As long as the traveler remains cautious and follows these 5 tips, their trip should go off without a hitch.
Any other things to avoid When in Delhi? Can you share?