a VirtualTourist member from Leeds
Hello there, this is my first ever post so here goes. Me and my girlfriend are thinking of travelling around India for 4 to 5 months. Just curious to know how bad it actually is for women, hassle wise. I've travelled a fair amount by myself but never with a female partner. I have just been put off a little from what i've read and seen in the news recently. Any first hand experiences and knowledge of where might be particularly bad would be great. Thank you
Hi - welcome to VT! Foreign women are frequently hassled (comments, stares, the odd grope or two) but rarely are violent crimes committed (especially what you've been reading/hearing). Please take a look at my warning tips - here's the link specifically for women travlers - [original VT link]. As long as you are prepared and follow common sense guidelines, you should be okay. Enjoy India!
I agree with Donna. Ladies are stared at a lot so you have to ignore it. Some get an odd grope but not that often. Women should dress conservatively and stay away from dark streets/alleys at night.
Thanks for getting back to my guys, surprised how quickly you have responded. Yes i have looked into it quite a bit. Hopefully travelling with a male might be more of a deterrent aswel. Just know how things can escalate quite quickly, found myself in some potentially threatening situations in Morocco and throughout Indonesia!
My last 3 visits to India have been alone.......and as Donna has said, a lot of staring is done. I have never experienced any physical or other fear at all.
It IS important to observe the dress (especially your girlfriend) no bare thighs or midriffs.
She should keep a scarf in her bag to cover up shoulders when entering temples or holy places.
So........you will both be fine- observe usual safety precautions as you would in any busy city ot town.
On my profile page there are many links for India which might help.
Aside from leading a number of tours around India, I have also travelled there with my then wife, and I will admit that the stares and curiosiity was often overwhelming, to a point of almost causing a riot in Mumbai, because they thought she was a Bollywood star. (Look at my Home Page, you will see why.....).
However, except for that one time in Mumbai in front of the Taj Mahal Hotel, where it was more wanting to just touch, - we never experienced any rude behavior, and certainly no one groped my wife. A lot of stares, but no rudeness. And smiles from us, were always met with more smiles from the people.
Don't worry, both of you will be just fine........d:o)
Just to clarify I HAVE been groped on more than one occasion and all you have to do is google and you'll find plenty of others who have experienced the same. Doesn't matter what you wear, how old you are, etc., etc. it DOES happen. Crowded places seem to afford anonymity to the cowards that treat women in such a disrespectful manner.
Hi As you have had personal experience of seemingly being the center of attention in other countries you have traveled through, at least you know what to expect. True India might be even more of a culture shock to you than even in some parts of Indonesia but if it is of any consolation males too are stared at in India as is any other nationality who appears to look different. As there is nothing you can possibly do to ever change this fact, always dress sensibly when out and about and never acknowledge those stares as frowning or pulling a face will not give you any sympathy.
Donna is right, and so is the above "jonsintown" about men being stared at as well. I had my share of that but mostly because I am very blond. Also regarding what Donna said, my wife was not groped while I was with her, but she had such events happen when she ventured on her own. Not a lot, but it did happen.
check if there is advisory warning from your government and heed the advice... personally I would stay away from India.. what we see on Tv and read above could be isolated cases of incidents, but there could be much more unreported incidences... we do not want to be a statistic of being at the wrong place at the wrong time... not only crimes but bus n road accidents are common too...
I am sorry Walkietalkie, - I know you mean well. Have you visitied India or is "what you see on TV' your source for staying way from India? First, government advisories are always to be taken with a grain of salt. They are often equally as political as they are necessary. They should be taken as guidelines only, along with other information
Do not forget that India is a country with a billion people, and as a comparison, I have had more trouble in the U.S. than I have ever had in India, and I have been going there since the 70s.
No offense meant, but giving such advise based on what you are basing it on is not what is expected from experienced travellers.
that was my 'personal' opinion- nothing more, nothing less.. i think what we are giving here are all opinions... btw,i don't analyse other ppl opinions, that is beyond me...
It's unfortunate that such bad behavior has been in the news lately. Several sexually assaults of this type should be reported as such and be warn to tourist beware. Even with men escorts these rapes did occur in the countryside. That is not good new for female solo travelers, and puts the burden on the government to do a better job before I tour India .
Cheers tommy x
Again please know that I mean no offense, but this is an important destinction. WT, you did not just offer your opinion which you are certainly entitled to. What you did, was offer advise, - based on that opinion formed by what you saw on TV.
That does not qualify one to give advise regarding an entire nation and its billion people, based on what one saw on TV.
Again no offense meant, but watching a VW commercial, does not qualify me to comment on German engineering.........d:o)
1. Anyone not brown WILL get stared at in India. Even if brown, if they have Mongoloid features, like people from my North-Eastern states, they are subjected to intense scrutiny.
2. We Indian men are YET to accept women stirring out from their so-called 'traditional sphere', that is, the home. It may take another generation before we Indian men learn to accept women in the streets, in the workplace and other places, other than in the kitchen.
3. We in India are a big bunch of hypocrites. So we act pious in the temple yet feel free to 'grope' around, act innocent and coy but have a population second to China, stare at, ogle, harrass a girl but act very holy if caught.
4. Dress appropriately, don't draw undue attention, observe what Donna and Lynne and a host of 'foreign' ladies have written on the precautions to be taken and you should be alright.
5. Welcome to the North-East. We treat our ladies like Queens!!!!
Anil, always a pleasure........d:o)
....and WT, - please know, I meant no harm, but felt the distinction needed to be made. Perhaps we can agree to disagree......OK?.......d:o)
Unless you have been to India- don't give advice.
Hearsay is not reality. I am not saying that bad stuff does not happen in India, but it does not, and never will, stop me ( a lone woman traveller) from visiting the country. I have just had my 7th visit to the country, with not one moment of physical fear or anxiety experienced.
The 'examples' that you give apply to many many countries- India happens to be the only one that is reported about. These bad incidents can happen anywhere on earth.
okie dokie... i will zip my mouth next time when veterans already chimed in with their holier than thou opinions... btw, I did not give any advice... my opinion is to heed your government advice if any... perhaps my singaporean english or singlish as we called here is not good enuf.. yes and we can all agree to agree Odinthor...
"...agree to agree.."
oops typo... agree to disagree...
Holier than thou opinions? No........just informed opinions.
Sorry you feel that way. I apologize for any disparagement I may have caused. Your English is fine. Most of us speak it in a similar way. and we do typos as well.......d:o)
Just put my two cents in! Governments are too over-cautious (particularly the US gov)with their advice and sometimes wrong. Obviously if there is a war or natural disaster it is common sense to avoid certain countries but having lived in Philippines for 20yrs+ there are many G warnings to avoid the country. while there is rhe occasional kidnapping and murder this can happen anywhere.
I lived in London when the IRA were setting off explosions but did it affect me---not really, and did it stop tourists from visiting--prob a few¬
I Agree with Iynnehamman always. Its depend on people to people and also choosen the location by tourist. We respects , we give share and we welcomes always as it is part of a world. Dont make scary to all people. However , it required to take precautions. For an example if you move mid night in Mumbai still safe but as a foriegner and move in some interior place then a chance to give un devoleped minds to do some thing.
Take precaustions, Move as per locations and the choosen best timings. Its safe and enjoyble.
Yes, women safety has been an issue recently but India is not the only country which is fighting against such odds. India is a country with over a billion people. Just as a precaution, you must be prepared to mingle and interact with Indian culture and people. For safety measures, always keep your family and friends aware of your whereabouts. Recently, women have started mobile apps like SOS Sty safe and others for personal safety.
hey hello GM everyone! I am Akshay Durugkar read the above comments and being an Indian it hurts me to read about the amount of disrespect to women in India and issue's related to their safety hence me and my company have developed an android / iPhone app for women's safety called "FareWell" as the app is yet to be launched on android and app store as our launching date is yet to come i would like to tell about the app as it for women safety so there is no cost associated with the app it is totally for everyone in world. It would solve problems of women safety while traveling alone at night and it even has a SOS feature which would be keeping the track of your wife/ girlfriend/ female friend wherever she is traveling and you can just get to help her in no time as you would be updated with her current location , info of vehicle she is traveling in even you can get the speed of vehicle with the direction in which the vehicle is heading on Google maps right in your smart device. i would want you to have a look at the features of the app listed below and as it concerns women safety there is NO HIDDEN COST in it for your lifetime.
• FARE CALCULATION: - It is never easy to estimate travelling fares FareWell only kind of app which gives you the fare of your travel considering your travel time , waiting time and your mode of transport.
• CALL CAB- You are just one touch away from the cab numbers of major cab service providers in your city. It also provides you details such as the cab rates which makes decision making much more simpler.
• SOS - Features and characteristics are definitely important but our priority is something else - Women safety! It is our major concern. The app provides a unique feature of “ SHAKE” wherein in case of any emergency or unfavourable situation you just need to shake your phone Sideways and a call would be generated to the person you have saved as your SOS.
• EMERGENCY – Emergency services of police and ambulance are just a click away in case of any emergency situation in your travel. The pre-stored phone numbers of police and ambulance can be called directly from the app itself.
• SHARE JOURNEY- Now you can keep a track of our loved one’s while they travel this feature enables you to get timely update on your smart device about the whereabouts of the person who is in journey. You will be updated with essential information about the current location , speed , route of the person in transit.
• REPORT TRAFFIC –This feature will report traffic from your current location which in turn will help other users to optimize their travel by cutting down their travelling time / waiting time by choosing the fastest travelling route which would save your time and money.
• PLANNED TRIP – You can pre-plan your trip sitting at your place and get the total Cost , Time and Route of your entire journey and you can plan when to start it will give you the optimised route considering traffic , cost and travel time.
• RECENTS- This feature helps you review your past made journey and you can even share this journey with your friends, relatives so they can just go on the same route and need not indulge in the hassles of the journey.