Are you excited to embark on your trip to India? Then it is crucial to know that the Indian subcontinent is going to be anything but your regular vacation destination.
Traveling across the country will bring you a far more diversified experience than you can imagine. From the hot deserts of Rajasthan to the chilly mountains of the Himalayas and the pleasant coastal region, India has it all. Be prepared to get astonished at every step, as surprises await you.
This is the foremost reason why your packing list demands to be different from any usual trip. It makes sense to feel overwhelmed while deciding on what to pack for India, especially if you are a first-timer. While scheming the packing list for the India tour, you must keep cultural and geographical diversity in mind.
This article is going to provide you with an extensive guide on how and what to pack for the tour. We will skip on pointing out the most obvious things and focus more on the specific stuff you should have on your packing list.
• A sturdy backpack
It is quite obvious, to start the list with the fundamentals of any trip - the luggage. When it comes to packing for India, the suitcase vs backpack debate will continue to remain.
We suggest you go for a backpack rather than a trolley or a suitcase. The biggest advantage of having a backpack is that you can travel hands-free. Furthermore, for more adventurous journeys like hiking or a safari, a backpack will be a far more convenient option.
Invest in a sturdy one so that it can survive all the wear and tear throughout the journey. And trust us when we say it is going to be a rough one.
• Pack your clothes wisely
The most important packing list for travel should have the right choice of clothes. Your packing list must include clothes fit for each climate of the places you will be visiting.
On average India has hot and humid climates. Loose-fitting lightweight clothes preferably in cotton are ideal to travel through most parts of the continent. Buying some kurtas for both women from the local market is an ideal way of blending into the culture while being comfortable. They are also not heavy on the pockets. You will notice so many people in these pieces of clothing on the street.
But if your tour involves a trip to the northern parts and the mountains as well packing some warm clothing is a must. It is better to start packing according to the itinerary.
Another consideration you must make packing for the tour is the cultural significance. It is advisable to always dress modestly in most parts of the country. Unless you are in some metropolitan city, you can skip those revealing dresses. Carry scarves and long skirts all the time. Most temples in India will require you to cover your shoulders and knees while visiting.
• Pack up on those electronic gadgets and power banks
Drop the idea of visiting India assuming that it is going to be a quick one. It is quite big to explore in one go. Even on your first trip, your packing list for the India tour must include gadgets. From headphones to power banks and camera batteries, bring them all.
A power bank is a must while taking a long road trip. It will save your phone battery from dying in the middle of nowhere. From the booking and accommodation details to the tickets, everything is yours. You will find yourself in big trouble if your phone becomes dead. This is why carrying a good quality power bank is of utmost importance.
It may also come in handy while charging your laptop or camera battery on the go.
• Ditch anything fancy and slip into comfy shoes
When it comes to roads and streets in India, you will come across several bumpy ones on your journey. Fancy expensive shoes are not your jam if you are to explore the places by taking a walk. Rather pack those flip-flops and sandals for roaming around the streets while getting a glimpse of the city.
For colder climates or months sneakers are going to be your best choice. They are both comfortable and will keep your feet warm. Make sure they are of darker colors to save them from getting covered with dust or mud.
• Keep oral rehydration, probiotics, and charcoal tablets handy
Let's be honest, getting stomach issues or diarrhea is a common phenomenon for foreign travelers. Getting the famous Delhi belly you say. Even if you are an Indian traveling from one place to another it is easy to become vulnerable in a new place. No matter how much you try you cannot resist trying some of that roadside food. Although the flavors and aroma are indeed tempting they are not always hygienic.
You can prevent falling sick by keeping enough probiotics and activated charcoal tablets. In case you get a stomach infection, keeping yourself hydrated becomes extremely important. Having some pouches of oral rehydration salts will save your situation from getting worse.
• Have all the essential medications
This is not very specific to the Indian packing lists. You must carry all your necessary medications along with you on all your trips.
Make sure you have all the vaccination papers within reach of your hands. Carrying other documents in case you have any medical conditions is also essential.
Apart from that, always carry common medicines for colds, headaches, and indigestion with you on all trips.
• Use a separate wallet for passport
Passports are easy to lose in your luggage. Even if you keep that in your handbag it can easily get lost amidst the several different items inside the bag.
Using a separate compact wallet can save you from this trouble. Such wallets will have room for all your credit or debit cards, SIM cards, and spare cash along with the passport. Whether you like to travel with minimal stuff or carry a little too much, a separate passport wallet will come in handy.
• Having a first aid kit is a must along with toiletries
You can never truly know what awaits you in the journey. What you can do is keep yourself prepared for every situation that may come along. A first aid kit is something that will help you combat several inconvenient situations.
It may sound obvious. But believe it or not, you will be surprised to see the number of people who skip including a basic travel first aid kit in their packing list.
No need to occupy a lot of space by bringing a bulky kit along with you. Just a compact and basic kit would do the job. Having the basic bandages, plasters, sterile gauze pads and disinfectant wipes in your kit is enough. Keep some basic medication like antibiotics and diarrhea prevention in your kit all the time.
An offbeat suggestion would be to carry a sewing kit along with the first aid kit. This will help you fix any tears on your clothes or bags in the middle of a trip.
Carry some basic toiletries like dry shampoo, soap, toothbrush, perfume, razors, aftershave, nail clippers, and likewise.
• Invest in a water-purifying bottle
This particular thing is going to be an absolute savior for any traveler. It will eliminate the need for buying packaged drinking water. Buying packaged drinking water is not only expensive but also extremely bad for the environment.
A press filter bottle will help you have purified water to drink at any time. Such purifying bottles efficiently filter out all the waterborne pathogens from even tap water. Save yourself from spending money and spreading plastic pollution by investing in this trustee press filter water bottle.
• Carry toilet papers
Yes, carry toilet paper while traveling to India. It is not common to find toilet rolls in Indian toilets. It is not like you will not have one at a hotel or a hostel but carrying some will never hurt. You will have a hard time looking for them in public or roadside toilets.
This is why you should carry a compact toilet roll with you all the time.
• Always carry bug spray/ mosquito repellent
The mosquito problem in India can be a big issue. However, it may vary across the country. Some places are more prone to mosquito-borne diseases like dengue or malaria than others. The problem peaks during the monsoon.
If you are visiting India, especially in the monsoon, carrying mosquito repellent along with some antimalarial drugs is a must.
Apart from this, keep bug spray with you all the time. From your jungle safari to visiting some rural areas, bug sprays are going to keep you safe from any unwanted insect bite.
You can easily purchase anti-bug sprays or creams anywhere in India. Although buying one in advance will save you from the hassle of finding one in an unknown place.
• Carry books or kindle
While contemplating what to pack for the India tour, please consider packing some books. The trip to India is indeed going to be a long one. It means you have to take long train or bus journeys to travel from one beautiful place to another. The best company you can have this time is some books.
In case you do not want to overburden your luggage, carry a kindle. Then you don't have to worry about which book to pick. Although it's a matter of personal preferences as some like reading from the hard copy itself.
• Secure your luggage with a combination lock
We cannot emphasize enough the importance of securing your luggage. Everyone must carry a reliable but basic combination or key padlock. Protecting your bag from theft should be your ultimate priority. A combination lock is usually a better and more safe choice but you can also use a regular key padlock to secure your belongings.
• Travel size International power adapter
Lastly, do not forget to pack a travel-size International power adapter. In India, you will find three-pin plug points everywhere. Carrying a power adapter will make sure you can charge your phone or camera anywhere you want.
This is something everyone should consider but many don't. Not just in India, a compact International power adapter should make it to your packing list wherever you go in the world.
Now that you're all sorted, start packing for the journey. You are probably going to have the most exotic and diverse travel experience of your life. Make sure you pack for the trip mindfully and accordingly. It is the best way you can enjoy the trip to the fullest.