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India is a safe place to stay for a foreigner if some common sense safety measures are taken. Displaying stacks of cash or valuables will get you in trouble just like it would in any part of the world. Care should be taken while dealing with the locals, hiring a local help or purchasing a local product by following the “Indian rules of dealing and living” in India.
Staying In India – Always stay safe by picking the most happening places or local stays within the large cities. Down town areas are more prone to petty crimes like theft and scams. Considering a residential area within the major cities like Delhi or Bombay will benefit you in more than one way. For starters the people living in main cities are more educated and liberal making it very easy to socialize and intermingle.
Dealing In India – Mind your own business and do not answer uncalled for questions or inquiries. Many expats working in India eventually adjust to receiving interested stares, comments and understanding “hinglish” conversation. As a rule of thumb if something does not seem right or sounds too good to be true – do not step into it. Avoid conversations with strangers by simply avoiding them. If someone follows you, tries to speak to you or touch you simply ignore them and look aloof.
Making Agreements – Whether it is a rickshaw ride or a saree purchase, it is always best to come clear with the terms of the service or purchase. Do not be fooled by statements like “give whatever you like” as it will in all probability exploit your ignorance. While riding a local transport always know where you are going and how much far away it is from your current location. Taxi and rickshaw drivers often overcharge stating a nearby place as a one far away.
Entertainment – It is best to dress appropriately while visiting public places like cinema, local streets, and shopping centers especially in the down town areas of India. The more you blend in the local crowd, the less attention you will attract and the more safe you will be.
Avoid not to crowded places especially at night. Ignore donation seekers and beggars by simply walking away from them. They might follow you or try to convince you. Do not be intimidated by appearing disinterested. Amongst all the safety measures do keep in mind that majority of the Indians are just inquisitive and friendly people by nature. Follow you instinct and befriend the locals wherever possible.