What was the biggest culture shock we encountered in India? The Streets!
Here’re five things you need to know before you travel to India
- Two Wheels, fours wheels, two legs or four, all welcomed. Be prepared to share the road with trucks, buses, cars, motorbikes, bicycles, tuk-tuks and rickshaws – which is pretty normal. But wait for it… You also must share the road with cows, dogs, camels, donkeys, elephants and horses 🙂
- Honking is expected and must be used – A LOT. That is how you communicate and let others know you are about to pass them or if you want them out of your way. Don’t expect that to work on the cows. You must get out of THEIR way.
- Lines are just a suggestion – You know that line in the middle of the road that tells you there is oncoming traffic on the other side? Well, that doesn’t really mean anything here. Drive wherever you like 😉 Watch out for the bikes as they almost always drive the wrong way.
- Doing a U-Turn in the middle of the street (we even had a car do a u-turn and head towards us on a major highway) is perfectly acceptable and normal! This happened a few times while we were in the car and I just held my breath and hoped we wouldn’t get crushed by the oncoming traffic.
- Walk Across the street, DO NOT RUN – Crossing streets is definitely a challenge and took us a while to master. Don’t run, that just confuses everyone and causes an accident. Walk as if you own the road. Maybe even put out your hand to the oncoming traffic. Apparently, it generates an invisible force field. True story! We’ve seen it happen.