5 Entirely False and Stupid Misconceptions About India

5 Entirely False and Stupid Misconceptions About India

Before coming to India, I had heard a lot of misconceptions about it.  Even while backpacking I was hearing constant false accusations about this beautiful country, and I really wanted to express a few things which I thought were untrue or over exaggerated about this place.  Here’s 5 misconceptions about India…

 

Everyone is out to scam you

This was on my mind 24/7 after my stalking in Delhi.  As my trip progressed I learnt that everyone wasn’t out to scam me.  I met some awesome and helpful people along my journey.   I remember when I needed to get train tickets I ended up waiting in the Indian men’s line which is a big no-no.  A nice older gentleman kindly told me that I’m not allowed in this queue and that the women just push in front.  He gave me the slips to fill out, then suddenly a few other men came to help me figure out which trains I needed to catch, and which ones had tickets still available.  They then all came to the counter and talked to ticket man in Hindi for me.  I think we Westerners put a guard up against most strangers, which you should do to an extent, but not so much that no one can help you.  For all the touts trying to scam me there were 10x more people trying to genuinely help me from taxi drivers, randoms on the street, families to shop owners, everyone is just human after all .

 

5 Entirely False and Stupid Misconceptions About India

Public transport is shit

Actually I was very, very impressed with Indian public transport.  I caught trains for most of my journeys. I’m on one right now as I write this!  I love catching the trains rather than buses because you can lock your bag under the seat so you know it will always be there.  You can buy constant Chai’s off Chai Wallahs and food off the catering cart from the men walking down the aisles.  On buses your luggage will be thrown into the under compartment, which you will not be able to keep an eye on every time there is a stop.  Now, don’t expect Indian trains to be on time, I have heard trains being hours late and even a couple of hours early!  I was quite lucky as my trains came nearly always on time and were hardly ever late!  Keep in mind trains need to be booked months in advance, although there are very limited amount of tickets under the foreign tourist quota.  They put a limited amount of tickets aside especially for foreigners who are trying buy one last minute.  Sometimes there will only be one spare ticket so keep that in mind.  If you decide on trains then make sure you download the ‘Indian Rails’ app so you can get live updates of where your train is, what platform and if there are any seats available to buy.

 

5 Entirely False and Stupid Misconceptions About India

You should never travel here if you’re a lone female

Bullshit!  You should experience it.  Being a solo female backpacking shouldn’t hold you back. Just make sure you listen to your gut instinct and use common sense to keep yourself safe – and read this blog!  I have an article on tips for solo females traveller, that you might want to read.  Most of the horror stories came from people that had never even travelled here.  The people who had been to India told me to go for it and not be terrified like everyone else was telling me to be!

 

5 Entirely False and Stupid Misconceptions About India

2 weeks is enough in India

Absolutely not!  I think if I had 2 weeks I would have hated it.  India takes time to get used to.  Everything makes no sense compared to where I come from but you learn to love it.  Once you’ve travelled to India you will always have a piece of it in your heart.  I suggest you have at least a month here, and that you take your time.  Change your flight if you have to!  It took me 3 days to get used to Varanasi, and in the end I nearly cried leaving it!

 

5 Entirely False and Stupid Misconceptions About India

You will come back thinner

Ahhhh no!  Everyone told me I would be food deprived in India and probably come back skinner. That did NOT happened, not one kilo lost.  It has probably been the complete opposite and I feel like all I have done is put on weight.  Don’t expect to come back fitting all your clothes when you get back home, unless you’re on an intense yoga retreat then leave those expectations at home.

 

I really urge you to travel to this beautiful country!  What are some misconceptions you have heard about India?  Leave them below because I would love to hear them.  I also have lots of posts about India including Scams of India’ and ’Does India Really Change You?’, you should read them!

5 Entirely False and Stupid Misconceptions About India

Pin it for later!

Share

15 Comments

  1. January 7, 2016 / 1:14 am

    Anita – I love this post! I was actually gonna write one myself about misconceptions about India considering the strange questions I get asked ALL THE TIME when I travel overseas. I love how you love India. <3 India loves you back. Please visit again.

  2. January 7, 2016 / 9:55 am

    Aww thank you for your kind words Sonal! Great minds think alike 😉 I promise I will come back soon 🙂

  3. January 8, 2016 / 4:08 am

    Ever since I was 9 years old, and my dad came back from India with a box full of photographs, it’s been a dream that I would one day visit it. While I am prepared for it to be a completely new and weird experience, it’s one of those places I just have to visit at some point.

  4. January 9, 2016 / 7:35 am

    Love this! I’m always told not to travel India solo- always from people who have never been- but it’s definitely a trip I want to take one day. And eat allllll the food, and come back ten kilos heavier!

  5. January 9, 2016 / 10:34 am

    Thank you so much for posting this! We are heading to India for 6 months in October and have heard many negative things. So nice to read something positive.

  6. January 11, 2016 / 11:32 pm

    Isn’t it funny that wherever you look at going in the world, somebody has something negative to say! Usually the negative comments come from the people who have a lack of common sense and put themselves into silly situations – or worse, those people who’ve made their judgements from hearsay and TV!! I cant wait to explore India!

  7. January 15, 2016 / 6:14 am

    A lovely post. We’ve defended some of the points you’ve mentioned so many times, its not even funny but it feels more validated somehow when someone who’s not from India says this (and beautifully, if I may add). Hope you had a wonderful time here and keep coming back, it’s a beautiful country and we would want more people to experience it and know it as we do.

  8. January 15, 2016 / 8:28 am

    Thank you for changing the views about India. Definitely included in my list for my future travels. 🙂

  9. Anna
    February 22, 2016 / 7:12 pm

    I am considering relocating to India….first international trip…seeking employment there…thank you for your post.

  10. Anil Joshi
    April 10, 2016 / 6:33 pm

    Great piece of advice to fellow travelers who have some misconceptions about India, Thanks dear…

  11. April 20, 2016 / 5:01 pm

    Firmly agree with you! India is fully blessed with its diversified people & culture which one can’t see nowhere else. I figured up another rich in culture & their tradition which is Indian neighbor country called Bangladesh. http://bit.ly/1QdnTuq

  12. August 11, 2016 / 1:24 pm

    Completely agree about the friendliness of people. In 5 weeks in India I had people offer me free dinners in their homes 3 times and none of them asked for anything in return. They just wanted to chat about my experiences in their country.

    Great blog!

    Jack (www.teachingtraveller.com)

Say something...