Just back from a wonderful week of holidays in the land of
thousand elephants – Thailand.
The immediate thought on return was that when are we going back again? My
family had given a dictum to cut down on my wild trips to wilderness in India and chalk
out plan for a trip to Koh Samui next year.
This second trip to South East Asia had also made me ponder-
is travelling in India
is really cheap. The answer is probably not. The kind of money we had spent on
inland travel annually in India
can give us a couple of international holidays every year. Two main reasons for
travel in India
becoming costlier are very high hotel tarrif and steep airfare. In recent
years, the airfares in India
have gone through the roof, yet most airlines are claiming losses. Let me
present a comparison of travelling to two of the exotic destinations of India – Andamans and Lakshadweep.
As I have been to both these places, I vouch for the unparallel natural beauty
of these places offers. Both can give a run for money to any of the island
destinations in terms of beauty. The ex-Delhi fare on date (Nov 1st
wk 2013) for travel in January 2014 end to Port Blair is Rs.16000/-. Ex-Delhi
return fair to Agatti, Lakshadweep for the
same dates are Rs.20000+. Compare these to ex-Delhi return fare to Bangkok – Rs.17600/-. To
add to the flair, all inclusive Thailand
packages are available for around 22-25K from many leading travel portals.
|Bhimtal near Nainital in Uttarakhand|
The second factor contributing to high cost of travel in India
is hotel tariff. Most hotels in India
are self styled star rated. As there is no independent agency validating these rating,
one is forced to consider experiences of fellow travelers on sites like trip
advisor. Yet I was in shock to see my hotel at Portblair. If someone is giving a
high rating for a hotel in trip advisor, then make sure to check his travel
credentials. The possibility is that the enthusiastic rater might not have seen
a better hotel or may be was on his maiden trip. Any decent hotel in India cost not
less than 2000 without breakfast or meals. As my travels are generally to
wilderness of various national parks of India, I am often forced to stay at
one of luxury resorts that have mushroomed around these parks. A 2N/3D family
trip to any of the national parks of India costs around 25K. The room
rates of these resorts are generally mind boggling. Yet the facilities many of
them offered are lower than the resort I had stayed at Phuket that cost me 3000
bucks for an ocean view room with breakfast. I had paid Rs.6500/- per night
(with meals) for Lakshadweep resort way back
in 2007. Most hotels in India
do not have net presence. Thus the ones available on net are always costlier. I
generally travel through our peer networks and use their contacts which have
allowed me to get best value for money in India. But not every traveler is
fortunate to have such networks.
Given the fact that you are willing to spend 30K per head,
which destination will you choose – Bangkok or
Andaman or Lakshadweep? I am sure you have
found the answer. Even travelling to Singapore was not that costlier
till rupee started its slide. The rupee had eroded by about 14 rupees against
SGD since my visit in 2011. Yet a trip to Singapore is affordable to many.
Only place that has become real costlier is Hong Kong beacuse of the ruppe slide.
You can have two trips of Thailand
at the price of one to Hong Kong or can do Singapore
at that price. So, are you packing your bags!
Labels: Agatti Island, thailand, Travel
posted by Rupankar Mahanta at 4:39 PM
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