One thing is common to every place which gets a lot of tourists are touts. Experiencing touts while travelling in India is something you are likely to come across, especially while visiting the major tourist areas, at train stations, or at airports ... basically, any place that is frequented by tourists, both local and foreign. This article provides some tips on how India Mikers deal with the situation. ... read more »
- Join Date:
- Jan 2010
- London (UK) (Current) & Pali Hill, Bombay (IN)
The number I use is a Bombay number: +91 22 2888 8888
I just called the Bombay number above and they said that the 088888 88888 number (10 x 8) is the national number. Using my registered mobile number I can call this number from anywhere in India and not incur roaming charges as the call would be diverted to the nearest call-centre.
I highly recommend the service.
You can ignore them, but what fun is that? Actually, ignoring people is quite rude, I think. Everyone I meet on the street deserves a nod or an 'hello'. The trick is to quickly take control of the interaction to head off any dreary pestering. I like to do psychology experiments on them. If they are going to follow me down the street, they are going to have to deal with my goofy head along the way. Typical interactions:
"I am not from this planet. Can you direct me to the spaceship port?"
"Time and space are an illusion, my friend. Don't be fooled, all roads lead to the same place. You and I are quickly going nowhere."
or my ready answer to this ubiquitous question:
"This way." and point the direction I am currently walking.
"Taxi, tuktuck, rickshaw, boat"
"I need to get to California. I have 50 rupees"
"Silk shop, only looking."
"Do they have silk made out of rubber? I need some rubber silk."
"Very cheap price"
"Money is imaginary. It doesn't exist."
"Peace, love and understanding. Empathy, compassion, amazement, wonder. Do you have some? Can you show me?"
"OK, how much do you want? I sell it to you. The best. Very cheap price. How much you pay?"
So, at this point they either bugger off, or you get a nice, funny conversation.
When I'm carrying the Nikon, touts are also often a good source of closeup portraits. Stop walking, turn and point the camera at them from two feet away. "OK, wait. Don't move. Do that face again. No, no, the half-smile. Like this. OK, now turn toward me, and look very surprised." Etc.
The beauty of India is that all of this seems quite normal. Anything goes. Touts aren't so bad. Indian streets are life's rich pageant.. enjoy. Have fun with it.
I am Indian
- Join Date:
- Sep 2005
- White Plains, New York
A MUST SEE for new travelers to India! Especially for those looking for the Delhi tourism office.
My own experience was in Fatehpur Sikhri, where this "college student" was going to show me the sights "for free". My initial attempts to send him on his way politely failed, and in the end we were literally shouting at each other.
- Join Date:
- Mar 2005
- The Land of Enchantment. Soon.
"When you are truly genuine there will invariably be people who do not accept you. And in that case, you must be your own badass self, without apology." -- Katie Goodman
|Title, Username, & Date||Last Post||Replies||Views||Forum|
|Discussion: What is the best way to handle touts in India?||Jun 14th, 2018 13:42||364||113573||Scams and Annoyances in India|