What is the main method of traveling in India?

What is the main method of traveling in India?

There are so many ways to get around this country, but what is the main method of traveling in India? Check out this post to find out everything you need to know about utilising these key methods. You may encounter every conceivable method of transport here, from camels to jumbo jets. From the ubiquitous auto-rickshaw to your own two feet but most travelling is done in one of two ways.

The most common methods of getting around the country is either using the Indian Railways or the bus. Between the two methods of transport, they cover all but the furthest reaches of the country. They are both frequent and reliable. Both are also very cost-effective to even the most frugal of travellers. 

Since the answer to the question of the main method of traveling in India is so clear cut and can be summed up in a single paragraph, we will now focus on using them. You may be thinking, how hard is it to get the train? When you consider one network covers an entire subcontinent, the answer is very! So let’s take a little time to discover this very important topic.

Steam trains are one of the main ways of getting around India

For a lucky few, this could be your actual mode of transport! There are still functioning steam trains that ply select routes on the subcontinent. For more information on steam trains and just about every other possible way of riding the Indian rails, check out my in-depth post on the topic.

Travelling India by train.

There are many ways of getting around but travelling India by train has to be the most popular. With several classes to choose to travel in, it can be as expensive as you choose it to be. Travelling by train is my absolute favourite mode of transport as even getting one is a quintessentially Indian experience. So much so I think it would be a shame to go to India and not get one, quite frankly.

If you would like to book online, the government website is www.IRCTC.in. You will have to register for foreign tickets on this website to use it, and that takes some perseverance. If you use any sites like yatra.com or book in an Indian travel agency, they will happily sort it out for you. Of course, they will obviously take a commission for themselves and just how much it depends on the company.

Travel agencies also have no access to the tourist quota. Only government outlets have that. The tourist quota is seats that are reserved just for foreign tourists. They will cost a few more rupees than normal, but seats on an otherwise booked up train can come out of what seems like thin air. You can book these over the counter at some stations and in tourist offices.

Most large cities such as Dehli, Mumbai, Calcutta, Madras, Udaipur, Agra, Jaipur etc., all have one. I prefer to use the government tourist offices because you will be speaking to a knowledgeable person who can advise you on alternative routes to create your ideal itinerary. They have no interest in upselling you tickets that you don’t need. They are also a fantastic source of impartial advice that is hard to get elsewhere, and with over 3000 train stations, that will come in handy. Don’t forget to bring your passport as the staff will want to take a copy of it with your visa.

Buses are the other way of getting around India

There are busses to just about everywhere in India, and you will almost certainly need one, so it pays to understand how to use them. Don’t get me wrong, there are stacks of other options, and to find out what they are, check out my epic-sized post on getting around India.

Travelling India by bus.

Travelling India by bus is nothing short of essential, to be fair. They connect pretty much everywhere in the country. There are both government and private bus companies everywhere. I will state right from the start that private companies vary in quality. Try and see the bus before committing to anything, as sometimes the cost does not reflect the comfort.

Your chosen bus could range from hard seats that don’t even recline to a luxurious laydown situation. The latter can only be described as being in a big glass fish tank with a double bed in it. There are no seat belts, so just roll around in your tank all night. It is certainly entertaining, but unfortunately, it is not Something I can see taking off in the UK any time soon.  A lone woman could face issues with this particular setup as you will have no control over who you’re sharing a bed with. Obviously, this could lead to very compromising situations, indeed. Just something to bear in mind, ladies.

The downside to getting a private bus is the end destination is rarely marked on any maps and can lead you to pay extra to get into town. If you can find the street name and have internet, check how far it is. One very much premeditated scam is to stop far away from the city centre, and when you get off, low and behold, there are rickshaws aplenty ready to take you for an inflated fee. What a coincidence, right?

The local buses are reliable but often not overly comfortable as they get packed out. They are also a cost-effective option as there is no middle man involved and because they are government-run. You can simply get on and purchase your ticket on the bus. When you do, ask for a printed ticket to get charged the right price. If it is not an option, ask a fellow passenger if that sounds right.

When you travel to cities, busses that stay in the state tend to use a separate terminal to those that dont. The long haul government busses usually leave from an ISBT (interstate bus terminal.)  These two places can be very far from each other, but you can usually get a connecting bus to save the taxi journey. Check online or in your guidebook to see is the case, as they are not always separate. In massive cities like Dehli, Mumbai, Chennai or Kolkata, you will find many bus stations that fan out depending on the general direction they are heading.

Getting around India is a very relevent subject and it is a good idea to learn the best way.

India has an insane amount of attractions to keep a tourist busy, but the country is massive! Any travellers to this country must think very carefully about how they will get around it, so this post is very relevant. The building in the picture is the Halwa Mahal in Jaipur. If you like its look, simply follow the link to discover how to make your own adventure here.

In summary of my post on what is the main method of traveling in India?

When answering the question of what is the main method of traveling in India, there are only two clear cut winners. The train and the bus. It is as simple as that. With all of the options, there are you will do almost all of your travelling on these two. This is certainly a useful post for you to read, so I hope I didn’t bore you and enjoyed it. I always put thought into my work, and it is sincere.

I think that is enough on this subject, and I have put more links in this for further reading. In the event I didn’t cover something you wanted to know, then feel to ask me anything. If I know the answer to your question, I will gladly help. So with that said, that is enough out of me, and I shall see you in the next post.




Follow me on social media 🙂