Travel agencies, Delhi
If some tout approaches you in Connaught avoid. We were approached by a tout who promised a car & driver for 600 Inr's a day & switched to a closer from EXOTIC ADVENTURE TRAVELS who promised more than he could deliver and for an price that was totally unfair. Avoid this travel agency.
Unique Suggestions: Write down everything that he states will occur and research price before acceptance.
My wife and I just got back from a 6 day golden triangle tour.Contact: "rajat bindal" . we had a car and driver for 6 days. Driver was Pandey and Guide was shabir. Do yourself a big favor get them. We are back only two days.You will have hotel choices which determines your tour price. We stayed at the Sheraton in New Delhi -2nights, Trident in Jaipur- 2 nights and JP Palace in Agra -1 night. We also stopped by a New Delhi hotel to shower before boarding our plane after seeing Agra and driving back. Ask, they will arrange. Their airport pickup and drop off is flawless. Our Tour cost was $1440 plus airfare and incidentals. You need to pay for entrance to a couple of the sites and tips. We gave pandey $100 and shabir $200. We travel the world and these guys and this company are special. pandey is a magician in traffic and shabir is a real gentleman and professional Breakfast came with our hotel choices and the food and hotels were very good. Again, do yourself a big favor and e-mail rajat. He responds quickly.
They told us the same thing, that the ticket counter for tourists was under renovation, we wanted to go to Agra, actually half of the station is under renovation and it sounded good to us. They sent us to the N block at Conaught Place, we took a rickshaw and told him to go to the N block and he brought us to a tourist office, now we think it wasn't the official one although on the windows was written with capital letters "Incredible !ndia" and "approved by the government"
I was very reluctant to believe that we were in the right place, then he started to speak about a spanish film star who did a 2 month trip with them, and we started to belive him...
Then the guy at the office told us that the tickets for the next day were sold out, that we should not travel at the lowest class where there were tickets left because it was very dangerous.
Also told us not to use the bus.
Then he gave us the last alternative that was taking a cab for 7500 (135 €) rupees from Delhi to Agra!!!! When we said that was too expensive he claimed that it was the official tourist office and bla, bla... TAKE CARE!!!!
Just for info:
We paid for cab with driver for 4 days 150 euros, we did Delhi, Agra, Fatehpur Sikri, Jaipur, Pushkar, Jodhpur, very nice guy!! His nime is Rinku, and his email is email@example.com, we got his contact from this we www.sushil.net.ms.
some guys in main bazaar new delhi persuaded me to get my train ticket to amritsar through them. however when i arrived at the station early morning i found it was 'waiting list only' and i was no. 29 on the list. not able to get on the train. i could get a ticket on the next train 4 hours later, but at additonal cost becos only sleeper available. so ended up paying a lot more than i needed to.
Unique Suggestions: i think it might be better to use the buses rather than the trains because its hard to get a definite train booking and you have to do it on a prior day
Fun Alternatives: maybe you should go to the station yourself and book the ticket.
at least dont go to the kashmiri guys in the alley off main bazaar.
Once you would need the service of an agency, for example to book a train ticket or whatever, before to agree for somehting, ask them which is the % or value of their services.
So, before to confirm something, bergain also about the provvision!!!!
If you go to the New Delhi train station, and are heading to the Tourist Office to buy a ticket or ask questions, someone may approach you offering to help, and may tell you the office is closed, and that you need to purchase advance tickets at another location. This is just a lie. The office is nice and big and is UPSTAIRS and is very helpful.
To use the Tourist Office to purchase tickets, the train must leave 4 hours later, otherwise you have to buy the tickets downstairs. BUT, you don't need to go to a private agency.
Delhi, unfortunately, has a dark side of touts and wolfs looking for tourists. I preferred to walk most of the time there just to avoid having to deal with the rickshaw drivers (I did this in much of India); it's just can ruin your trip to have to spend so much time arguing with jerks.
If you're trying to buy a train ticket to get the hell out of this place...good luck! Lots of people are overly keen help you buy a ticket (at their friends travel agent shop...which is 'the booking office') DON'T fall for it. Also DON'T let the 'travel agents' tell you the trains are full for the next week (like they did to us!). In desperation we got a flight out of here 'cause just couldn't put up with all the stories.
Apparently the REAL booking office (for tourists) IS on the 1st floor in the New Delhi train station... don't let anyone tell you otherwise!