Travelling to India for the first time. What duration?

#1 Mar 10th, 2015, 19:47
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#1
Hello,
I'm really nervous as I'm traveling to India for the first time. The situation is:
I have these great family friends from India whom I've known for more than 10 years and they are willing to offer me room, food etc. in their house in Delhi for as long as I stay.
They insist me to stay there for several months. I dont work so that's not an issue. They are also planning their countrywide travel in the summers and insist on me accompanying them.

My questions are:
How long should I really stay in India? I would love to travel all around India with this family and its really not an uncomfortable thought of me living in India for months as I rarely have anything to do here at home (arizona). The main thing that scares me is that if i stay there for months, wouldn't it jeaprodize my chances of coming to India again as they may be start suspecting whether why did I live there for such a long time? So is there an "appropriate" maximum time?

My second question is regarding money. I really would not have to spend much there even in long times as this family is supporting me. So what are the modes through which you carry your money? Bringing dollars would do? Also, how would I access my bank account if I have to.

Before anybody starts to judge, I would like to add that I know this family very well and there are no security or betrayal issues. They were our neighbors here a decade ago and we have helped each other a lot from time to time.

I'm 57 years old living in Arizona.
#2 Mar 10th, 2015, 20:14
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#2
Well, I guess your visa will be limited for a certain duration?! As long as you do not overstay there is nothing supicious about being in India for a while... the apprioriate maximum time is in your visa...

Money: so many threads about this. Bring some cash and a banking-card that allows you to withdraw without having to pay any fees (or at least low fees).

It seems unusual that an Indian family is travelling "countrywide" in one summer or summers (not possible really)... by the way: what or which summer?
#3 Mar 10th, 2015, 20:22
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#3
Thanks for your answer. The couple (family) are also retired so we all planned that we could use some summer time travelling
#4 Mar 10th, 2015, 21:23
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Many Indians that can, "head for the hills" in summer, as the British learned to do. The plains in summer will slowly poach you
Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate; our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure - Marianne Williamson
#5 Mar 11th, 2015, 14:28
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#5
US citizens are eligible for a 10yr visa. Get one of those and a couple bank cards and you are all set. You only have to exit the country briefly every 6 months.

Nice to have a ready made Indian family to show you around. Make sure you're not spending too much time in Delhi. Interesting city, but it can get oppressive.
#6 Mar 12th, 2015, 21:21
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#6
How long to stay?

I began with ten days. My current "visit" is ten years and counting.
#7 Mar 12th, 2015, 22:29
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#7
As six months is the most you'll get anyway, plan for six months . . . in short, plan for the max, adjust as you see fit.
#8 Mar 12th, 2015, 23:01
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Originally Posted by Darmabum View Post As six months is the most you'll get anyway, plan for six months . . . in short, plan for the max, adjust as you see fit.
Not true for U.S. citizens -- which s/he is (Arizona) -- who according to Modi will now routinely get a 10 year visa.

To answer the questions: (1) apply for a 10 year tourist visa and stay as long as you can. If you feel comfortable staying with your friends for months at a time, go for it! On a tourist visa, you're allowed to stay six months maximum at a time. You're then required to leave the country, but you can return right away for another six months. Some people do that for years without any problems from the authorities.

(2) I take a minimum amount of cash with me (like US$20) and use my ATM card to withdraw cash in rupees once I'm there. I pay for as much as I can with credit cards so I don't run short on cash. Internet is widely available, so you can also access your bank account online the same as you do at home.

Have a wonderful time!
#9 Mar 12th, 2015, 23:02
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#9
But Gypsy Moth, while it is ten years . . . is it not still six months at time? . . .

P.S. I too am a US citizen . . . with a ten year visa
#10 Mar 12th, 2015, 23:13
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#10
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Originally Posted by Darmabum View Post But Gypsy Moth, while it is ten years . . . is it not still six months at time? . . .

P.S. I too am a US citizen . . . with a ten year visa
Yes, that's correct. I confirmed that in post #8. I had interpreted your previous comment to mean that a six month visa was all the OP was going to get.
Last edited by Gypsy Moth; Mar 13th, 2015 at 04:47..
#11 Mar 13th, 2015, 02:53
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Medical issues??

Thanks everyone for replying! It is really helpful to know all this. I'll plan for maximum duration and we're already planning to visit places in Himalayas

One important thing I missed to ask, I take certain medicines regularly (anxiety pills, pain medication etc which I cannot afford to quit even for a few days). So what is the procedure to get the medicines in the medicines? Would I have to get some sort of referral from my doctor or bills from older proscriptions??
#12 Mar 13th, 2015, 02:59
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#12

How to obtain medicines?

In continuation my queries regarding my plan of traveling to India:
http://www.indiamike.com/india/money...ation-t234378/


One important thing I missed to ask, I take certain medicines regularly (anxiety pills, pain medication etc which I cannot afford to quit even for a few days). So what is the procedure to get the medicines in India being from another country? Would I have to get some sort of referral from my doctor or bills from older proscriptions while visiting a doctor there??
#13 Mar 13th, 2015, 03:27
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#13
Take your medicines and copies of prescriptions with you. Double up on the anxiety drugs if you plan to travel anywhere.
#14 Mar 13th, 2015, 04:29
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Originally Posted by Zonda View Post So what is the procedure to get the medicines in India being from another country? Would I have to get some sort of referral from my doctor or bills from older proscriptions while visiting a doctor there??
Except for potentially lethal medications and some very new drugs, almost everything is easily and cheaply available without prescription from any drugstore in India (and they are on every street corner).

You do need to know the Indian brand name; do not expect to give them the western brand name or the ingredient name and insist that they understand it. (In some cases they will figure it out, but in most cases not. Even if you have a prescription, if it only specifies a brand name from your own country, it is useless.) You can look up the brand name based on ingredient at http://medlineindia.com/generic%20index.html for many but not all common medications.
#15 Mar 13th, 2015, 04:45
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I've never had to get a prescription filled in India that was prescribed from the U.S., but things are much less strict and much less regulated there. If you show them your prescription bottles, I would imagine you'd have no trouble getting them refilled.

However, even if you have to visit a local doctor in India just for the purpose of having him write you a prescription, it won't cost much. Three years ago I visited a doctor at a clinic in Delhi, and he prescribed me three medications. My total out-of-pocket cost for the doctor's visit and the three meds was roughly $30.

I also had a prescription for antibiotics from an Udaipur doctor which said "no refills" refilled at the Delhi airport pharmacy with no questions asked.

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