From trains to riskshaws, private cars to public buses, India is one of the world’s largest countries and a pleasure to travel around. Whether you’re searching for a quick, convenient way to travel around the country or a scenic, relaxing option, it is far from difficult to get around this giant, beautiful country in South Asia.
Due to India’s extreme size, there are three popular options for traveling on long haul journeys around the country. These include traveling by air between major cities, which is surprisingly inexpensive, traveling by rail, which ranges from an inexpensive experience to a slow-paced headache, and traveling by private car.
India is home to a variety of airlines that make traveling around the country very simple. Air India, the country’s state airline, is ubiquitous and inexpensive, but is often lacking in terms of service. IndiGo and Go Air are two inexpensive options for traveling around India, offering low-cost fares with minimal optional extras.
Domestic flights in India typically connect major cities, with hundreds of flights departing daily from major destinations such as Bangalore and Mumbai. Flights in India are typically affordable and comfortable, although the country’s sheer size can make even a ‘short-haul’ domestic flight a three-hour journey.
It’s worth noting that many second and third-tier cities in India do not have their own airports, making it difficult to fly directly to them. As such, air travel is often followed by bus and rail trips, connecting smaller cities and rural towns to major destinations that have their own airports.
If flying isn’t your favorite way to travel, India’s efficient rail network may be of interest. India is home to one of the world’s oldest railway networks, with trains operating in the country since the mid-19th century. In fact, India’s rail network is the largest in the world in terms of sheer mileage and the number of tracks.
Trains in India range from inexpensive, aging trains designed for short-distance trips and slow-paced travel, to high-end trains boasting luxurious sleeper cabins and all the usual amenities. As expected, the price of tickets ranges greatly based on the type of train and class of travel that you’re interested in.
India is also home to a wide variety of suburban and urban rail networks, such as the ultra-modern and efficient Delhi Metro. Mumbai is home to a suburban train network that’s ideal for traveling around the city, with a high-speed subway also currently in construction.
After air travel, trains are the second most popular way to travel long distances in India. The country’s extensive rail network serves all major cities, as well as a wide variety of smaller cities and rural towns that are located close to the major regional rail routes.
As well as its extensive train network, India is home to a great highway system that connects all of the country’s major cities and destinations. While the sheer size of India makes driving across the country an incredible effort, many locals choose to travel by road – either by private car or motorcycle – within India.
Foreign expatriates and retirees unaccustomed to driving in South Asia may be overwhelmed by the extreme traffic and fast driving speeds in India. However, for those that do not wish to drive themselves around in India, a wide variety of driver services – as well as public and private buses – make road travel simple.
Whether you’re traveling by road or by rail, by commercial plane or public bus, getting around India as a retiree of expatriate is typically inexpensive, stress-free, and simple. Despite this incredible country’s huge size, traveling in India can be highly efficient and straightforward.