When we first started opening our mouths about going to India, we heard all kinds of stories – that we’d need an escort, we shouldn’t go out alone, the streets are covered in shit, we’re going to get sick, it’s dangerous and everyone’s out to get you.
I’ll admit, when I first heard the stories, I believed them. It scared me a little bit. So, we wrote a blog post about the myths we heard about India and then wrote a post when we got back refuting some and agreeing with others.
It’s been said that Americans don’t travel because we’re scared about the dangers of foreign lands. We hear rumors and read travel advisories and think – no way, I’m not going there.
There is a general threat from terrorism in the United States. Attacks could be indiscriminate, including in places frequented by expatriates and foreign travellers.
Do not leave your door open at any time. Avoid wearing expensive jewellery and carrying valuable items in run down areas. Do not sleep in your car by the roadside or in rest areas.
The estimated number of violent crimes declined in 2011 for the fifth consecutive year. However, there were still over 1.1 million violent crimes reported nationwide in 2011. Tourists are often targeted for petty crimes such as pick-pocketing and theft, particularly on public transport.
Many people in the US don’t know a second language and if they do it’s Spanish. Unless you’re sticking to the heavily tourist areas it will be extremely difficult to make it without knowing English.
You’ll have to bring power outlet converters, use Skype when you have Internet access instead of a cell phone, and learn (or convert) what a mile, foot, and gallon is in metric.
Do not casually take off your shoes or bare feet in front of others, which give people the impression of barbaric debauchery, as only in the bedroom, or between lover to take off their shoes. So do not take off your shoes when visit an American house.
Do not forget to greet children. Americans treat children equal to adults.
Do avoid number ‘13’, ‘3’, ‘Friday’ and use the bat for the design of goods, and packaging materials, as they are associated with the bad luck.
So what I’m saying here is, all those travel advisories we read and get scared of, we have the same advisories, the same fears. It’s no scarier in Old Delhi India than it is walking down the streets of Chicago.
We’re all more alike than we are different.