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There are several options in land, water, and air transportation in India. Residents of India are more likely to use public rather than private transport so the transportation infrastructure is significant. Fewer than 5% of Indian households have automobiles, while just over 20% have motorcycles or similar vehicles, although India's automobile industry is growing with its economy.

Tourists or other visitors to India generally arrive by air, unless they are coming from a surrounding country. Entry is fairly straightforward, as its immigration and customs procedures are relatively standard. Foreigners will need to have a passport, valid for at least six months beyond their intended stay in India, with at least two blank pages. A return ticket and a visa are also required.

There are seven main international airports in India, as well as several other cities with airports that serve international carriers. The national carrier of India is Air India, which operates domestic and international flights. India's international airports include Bengaluru, Chennai, Delhi, Hyderabad, Kolkata, Mumbai, and Kerala. Additionally, there are more than forty heliports in India.

India has a coastline that is more than 4,500 miles. It is served by twelve major ports and about two hundred minor ports. Its ports are largely cargo ports, although several cruise lines do make stops in India. India also has a large network of inland waterways and, while these are mostly used to haul cargo, river cruises are offered. Additionally, passenger ships offer weekly trips from Chennai, on the Indian mainland, to Port Blair in the Andaman Islands.

Although most people travel to India by air, it is possible to travel overland to India from Bangladesh, Bhutan, Nepal, Pakistan, or Myanmar. When entering India by bus or train, passengers will be asked to disembark at the border for an immigration and customs check. Visas must be applied for in advance, as they are not available at the border. Drivers of cars or motorcycles will need to have registration, liability insurance, and an international driver permit as well as their domestic driver license.

Within India, there are several options for travel. Trains, buses, and shared jeeps run nearly everywhere, and at all times of the day or night, although they may be prone to overcrowding and delays. Buses are the only way to get around in some of India's more mountainous areas, and they tend to be among the least expensive means of travel. Shared jeeps supplement bus services in some of the mountain areas. State-owned and private bus companies offers a variety of types of buses, some of which are far more reliable than others. Deluxe buses can be booked in advance, but reservations are not available on ordinary buses.

India has a competitive domestic airline industry, whose flights can be booked from airline websites or through booking portals. Generally, air passengers are expected to have a ticket and passport when they enter the airport rather than waiting until you arrive to buy a ticket at an airline kiosk. Every item of cabin baggage will require a label.

Traveling by train offers a smoother ride than a bus, and there are about seven thousand train stations throughout India. Train tickets may be booked through a travel agency or hotel, or they may be purchased in person at the train station or through an online portal. Larger cities and tourist centers may have an international tourist bureau, which sells tourist quota seats on some classes of trains. Trains are nearly always busy, so it's best to book a trip in advance.

Most Indian towns have taxis. Most of them are metered, but there are several reports of overcharging. Prepaid taxis are safer options, and apps such as Uber or Ola are efficient options in larger cities. Prepaid taxis will charge a fixed price, by which travelers can avoid commission scams.

Auto rickshaws are three-wheeler vehicles for hire that have a small cabin for the driver in the front and a seat for passengers in the rear, but no doors. Designs vary from model to model. Auto rickshaws are prohibited from entering certain part of some cities, and it is not uncommon for auto rickshaw drivers to demand more than the specified fare or to refuse to use a fare meter. Electric rickshaws are similar, only they are operated electrically, and are similar to golf carts.

Rental cars or motorcycles are available, but a valid international driver permit is required by law. Although some rental outlets may rent a vehicle without asking for the permit, the driver would not be covered in the case of an accident and may face fines. That said, long-distance motorcycle touring has become popular in India. Joining an organized tour might simplify things.

Topics related to travel and transportation or within India are appropriate subjects for this category.

 

 

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