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Travel Dilemna -India in Sept/Oct or Jan

Travel Dilemna -India in Sept/Oct or Jan

Old Dec 28th, 2010, 06:57 AM
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Travel Dilemna -India in Sept/Oct or Jan

We were thrilled to procure travel tickets to India in October/November, only to realize that we had to give up our frequent flyer tickets due to baby-sitting responsibilities. We decided to move the trip to November/December, only to find out last night that son #3 intends to get married in December. The dilemna now is whether to travel in Sept/Oct - arriving back around Oct 12, or wait until January. Suggestions??? I know that it is monsoon season. We intend to stay in the northern region - standard first time tour and Varanasi. DH believes that the rains are not bad in that region, but I am skeptical. Has anyone had experience with the rains and heat that time of year?
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Old Dec 28th, 2010, 07:36 AM
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first... instruct children that their plans need to be cleared with parents at least 2 years in advance so as not to interfer with parental travel...
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Old Dec 28th, 2010, 08:26 AM
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Definitely opt for January -- much better weather. Why take a chance on Sept/October?
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Old Dec 28th, 2010, 08:34 AM
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Temperature in Delhi & the Golden triangle in Sept/Oct will be in the 90's compared to temps in the 70's in January, PLUS you are likely to get substantial rain if not monsoon in Sept, compared to almost no rain in January. We went to that area & Varanasi in early February two years ago and had perfect weather, which we find really makes a difference in our enjoyment of travel when you have limited time and don't want to be walking around in the rain & ultra-heat.
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Old Dec 28th, 2010, 08:34 AM
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I think I replied on another thread that January is better. Having been there on the only rainy day in February, I don't think Varanasi would be much fun during the monsoon.
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Old Dec 28th, 2010, 11:02 AM
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So the forced change in plans was a blessing in disguise. January.
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Old Dec 28th, 2010, 01:23 PM
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Thank you all for your reply. Looks like January it will be, subject to procuring the frequent flyer tickets. Hate to be putting off travel for so long. Perhaps I can convince husband to squeeze in another trip in between! Bob - doesn't look like our paths will overlap after all.
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Old Dec 28th, 2010, 07:19 PM
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Ughh...we are vacillating on the dates. Checked Delta Frequent Flyer and there are good tickets available on Air France mid Sept through mid October. Not sure what will be available in January as it is peak season. The pros for Sept/Oct will be that it is on the cusp of high season and prices will be cheaper. Also, fog should be less of an issue than in January. But the temperatures will be greater.

Has anyone here traveled to Northern India in Sept/October? Opinions?
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Old Dec 28th, 2010, 07:45 PM
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Sorry...know I'm rambling.
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Old Dec 28th, 2010, 10:39 PM
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October onwards shall be fine weather. The tempratures have disipated to a great extent & so has the humidity. The early morning visit to the Taj is possible for the mists have not begun to rise from the Jamuna, flowing at the rear. The Ranthambhore Park has re-opened & the wildlife is at it's best after an undisturbed stretch. The migratory birds have started to fly in filling up the Keoladeo Bird sanctuary at Bharatpur (I have always loved my stay at the Laxmi Vilas Palace, next door). The lakes on the banks of which locate some of the finest fort palaces shall be full, after the monsoons.
The Pushkar fair falls on 2 Nov'11 & the Marwar festival falls on 10/11th October.
The demon of fog arrives in late December to about 15 January disrupting rail & air traffic. This period also coincides with school/college holidays in India, with local tourists on the move, crowding destinations. Hotels in popular destinations like Jodhpur & Jaisalmer will be charging astronomically high rates from 23 December to 4 January.
Happy travels!
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Old Dec 29th, 2010, 08:10 PM
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Tried convincing the DH to go in January, but he won't budge. We got our tickets tonight leaving Sept 14 and returning Oct 10th. I survived Turkey in May, Thailand and Cambodia in February and Vietnam in May...guess I will survive the heat in India! Can't wait to go.
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Old Dec 29th, 2010, 09:25 PM
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I havent been at that time of year, Dgunbug, but have been twice in summer, lived to tell the tale, and had a great time too. It's odd how much i recall of the wonders of the trip, and how little of extreme heat. Isn't it the best feeling once those tickets are booked?
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Old Dec 29th, 2010, 11:16 PM
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We were there from the 8th of October until the end of October and the weather couldn't have been better, we met 2 Australians on the train from Varanasi who arrived on the
20th September and told us the weather had been pretty much the same throughout their trip, always sunny
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Old Dec 29th, 2010, 11:21 PM
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See? That crazy husband of yours has a use, after all.

I concur with Clark55. The only thing to fear is fear itself.
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Old Dec 30th, 2010, 09:26 AM
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Clark - that sounds encouraging. I guess I will be able to report back and let everyone know afterward how we fare. We are very excited. Now we must work out the details of the trip.
Dogster - My crazy husband wants to rent a car and drive in India. Is it time to fear?
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Old Dec 30th, 2010, 12:05 PM
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Oh, yes - be afraid, be very, very afraid.

First, canvass the masses. I think a new thread is called for. You call it 'Death by Holy Cow' - or 'Holy Cow! Death.' Better still: 'Death by Very Large Truck' or 'How to Use a Horn before Dying'

Start speech lessons immediately. Get him to repeat these phrases each night before you go:

'Why is that lorry hurtling towards us along the wrong side of the road?' 'Did we just kill that small child?' 'Is that horse and cart really going to do that aaargHHHH.' 'Where did the road go?'

Remind him that a car and driver will cost only 12 cents a day more than a car on its own. Tell him that since the terrorist attacks, tourists are not allowed to drive without an armed escort. Tell him, that in the case of accident in rural areas, you WILL be sold into slavery.

Maybe it would be simpler to break some of his fingers, just prior to the trip.
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Old Dec 30th, 2010, 01:01 PM
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As preparation make him watch this:

http://www.metacafe.com/watch/721737...fic_jam_india/
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Old Dec 30th, 2010, 01:28 PM
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Great that the tickets are booked...let the planning begin.

The weather in late Sept, early oct is changing from hot/humid to cooler. You will be fine. Some days will be better than others....be sure to get an AC car with driver.

As dogster points out, it is quite reasonable to get a car with driver. Plus you or your husband are not used to driving in mixed traffic. Try to get a good driver....it will mean the difference between a great trip or a good one.

Enjoy the planning and get ready for the trip of your lifetime.
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Old Dec 30th, 2010, 05:50 PM
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I can always count on Dogster for a good laugh. This is one battle my husband will not win. Marija - thanks for the video. The planning is underway.
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Old Jan 1st, 2011, 09:37 AM
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Great that you have the tickets - have fun with the planning.

Dogster is guilty of understatement. You have to have some extra senses to drive in India, along with understanding the language of horns. And then there's the little matter of navigating. Maybe the sign you need will be in English, and maybe not. That's assuming there's a sign at all. I will say that I've noticed on my current trip that traffic lights are obeyed, but then there are very few traffic lights. I can't think of another traffic law that anyone obeys.

You don't have to drive everywhere in any case. There are budget airlines in India now, and the train system in north India is comprehensive. (See seat61.com for useful info on Indian train travel.) Riding an Indian train is an interesting experience as well as good transport. And all Indian towns have an ample supply of rickshaws for local trips.
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