India has a very bad reputation of sexual assault and harassment. If you stay with a group and you stay vigilant, then you will be okay. If you must travel alone, take a taxi or travel in the women’s only car of the train. If you are traveling in a group and a man puts his hands on you, speak up. It is best to yell and draw attention to the situation so that it can be dealt with. Don’t worry about being polite or breaking cultural norms in a situation like that; also don’t give the man the benefit of the doubt. Even if you think it may have been an accident, you should still say something to the group that you are traveling with, especially if you have an Indian guide with you. While this may seen scary and hard to imagine, don’t let it make you paranoid of strangers. You will have a safe and enjoyable trip if you understand the potential risks and keep yourself out of dangerous situations.
Pro tip: When walking through a crowded market place with a group, walk single file, preferably with your guide leading the way and any men in the party bringing up the rear of the line.
India, with its rich cultural history, is an amazing vacation destination for any world traveler. You don’t have to be a seasoned traveler to enjoy everything that India has to offer, you just have to be informed and enthusiastic. Armed with this list of basic tips, you will be ready to make the most of your time there and soak up every bit of culture and beauty.