Archive | Tips for Travel Planning RSS feed for this section

Spending a Night “Homeless” on the streets of Hungary

6 Feb

Any trip or a holiday creates numerous memories, memorable anecdotes and photographs. But travel stories are created when your best laid plans go haywire. All good stories start with an element of the “unexpected” – getting lost in a city, taking a wrong train and arriving somewhere else altogether, missed connections, getting deported are a few of such unexpected elements and I am sure you get my drift. My travels are self-planned budget trips and despite a lot of research there have been many occasions wherein all that could go wrong has gone wrong and in return many memorable stories created. But my favorite so far is being “Homeless in Hungary”.

At the start of our journey in Budapest

At the start of our journey in Budapest

Continue reading

Top 5 Things to Do in Shangri-La (Zhongdian), China

10 Dec

Shangri-La, a small town high up in the Himalayas that for some is the beginning of a journey into Tibet, for many the end of a foray into Yunnan and for others just a taste of Tibet (if they don’t plan on going on any further). For me personally it was a mix of end of Yunnan and a taste of Tibet, coz as Indians we need additional permissions to enter mainland Tibet. And my own first impressions of the town itself were quite disappointing as all I initially saw were numerous commercial buildings and a very sleepy touristy town. However I soon realized that the way to explore Shangri-La is to keep it as a base and explore the beautiful landscape all around it.

Mountains near Shangri-La,   Tibet, China

Mountains near Shangri-La, Tibet, China

And based on our own experiences and learnings, please find below the top 5 things that you should do in Shangri-La –

Continue reading

Planning Guide – for a trip to Kanha National Park

10 Aug

A friend once told to me that “jungles are an addiction” and I thought to myself, “that is just impossible”. Many material things can be an addiction, but jungles – no way. Little did I know then that one trip to Kanha would prove me completely wrong. And if you also think like I did, then its time you plan a trip to this amazing jungle. Below is a quick planning guide to help you find your way –

Introduction to Kanha National Park –

Kanha  is one of the biggest national parks and a tiger reserve in Madhya Pradesh, India. By definition, a national park is a  reserve of natural, semi-natural, or developed land that a sovereign state declares or owns and uses for conservation purposes. Although each country has their own ways of classifying parks as national parks, the common idea always is – conservation of wild nature for posterity and as a symbol of national pride. Per wikipedia, we have a total of 166 authorised national parks in India and there are quite a few more national parks that have been proposed by the state governments and awaiting approval.

Drive through trees

Drive through trees

Continue reading

Flights, Connections and what to do if you miss them…..

22 Jun

Air travels, especially long distance flights, are stressful, but they can be even more so if there are incidents such as unforeseen delays, cancellations, interruptions etc. I experienced one such delay during my recent trip and my blog post on it received numerous comments, suggestions, ideas which were not only useful but also something all of us should know and be aware of. I have compiled all these ideas, suggestions, feedback below to help you all plan for your next trip and be prepared in case you find yourself in a similar situation. Feel free to customize your plans basis your own requirement and comforts.

Terminal 2, Mumbai Airport

Based on my own experiences, comments received and feedback, I will keep on updating this post.

Continue reading

A Start.. – an apology from British Airways

5 Jun

Dear All,

I want to personally thank everyone who took the time to read and spread the word on my post “Indians comfort and loss of time is of no value to British Airways“.  I appreciate and I am glad that everyone shared their own experiences also. When I first decided to write this post, it was meant to be a letter to the CEO of British Airways highlighting my experience while flying BA. But your overwhelming support helped this feedback reach them and to get a response. I am glad to update you that BA has sent across their views on this case and an apology for their staff’s behavior at the Heathrow Airport. I am pasting this response for all of you below.

On my post I had also received numerous comments – some “good” some “bad” and some “ugly” but, in all, I think we received some good solutions, answers and suggestions from travelers across the world. This post was a feedback to BA, that they are in a service industry and their customer service should be equivalent for every passenger. They have assured us that they will take this matter seriously and I sincerely hope that they do. I have titled this post “A start..” as I hope that BA and all the other airlines (where people have had similar experiences) don’t wait for someone to complain, but proactively work on their customer service and improve.

Thanks and regards

Snigdha

Continue reading

Indians comfort and loss of time is of no value to British Airways

1 Jun

Update as on June 3, 2014 – IST 8.00 pm – Thanks everyone for reading and sharing this post. I received a call from a BA representative on my complaint and he acknowledged receipt of my email to their CEO, Mr. Williams. He apologized for the inconvenience we experienced with BA. He accepted that since we missed a registered connection we are entitled to duty of care and compensation under the EU regulations. He accepted that the behavior meted out to us was unacceptable and also explained our rights in case we miss such connections (for future reference). They shall also work on improving their customer care to avoid such future incidents. I have requested them for a written apology and shall share it on the blog once I get it. Additionally, Rick’s feedback and some of the comments on my post have been very constructive in spreading awareness on our rights and possible next steps, should we find ourselves in a similar situation again. I shall write a detailed post on this and share.

Update as on June 2, 2014 – IST 5.30pm – Thanks everyone for helping me spread the word on this. I have just received a standard email from British Airways Customer Care apologising for the inconvenience and confirming that they will look into this matter. I will keep you all updated on the progress.

This post is my letter to the CEO of British Airways recounting my recent experiences while flying British Airways from New York to Mumbai. Thanks to many of you who found the concerned email id for me and I have now sent this as an email out to him. I am also posting this as a blog post and hope that this makes a difference in the way British Airways treats its Indian customers.

Continue reading

At times you need to Disconnect to really Connect

24 Jan

 

Once in a while all of us need a holiday from the everyday mundane that surrounds us, be it work, home, city, etc. But of late I have started feeling that we also need a break from technology :). If you sit back and think you will realize that a major part of our everyday lives is now spent addicted to technology i.e. TV, 24*7 emails (work and personal), Twitter, Facebook, What’sapp, phone calls, etc etc. And this technology addiction follows us on our holidays too, where instead of enjoying the beautiful locale that we are in we continue to live our everyday online existence (of checking various accounts and taking calls). But on the flipside the issue that people like me (with a full time job in these tough markets) grapple with is that we don’t want to be so out of touch that supervisors think that if things can be managed in our short absences then maybe we are not required at all 😉

I recently found this cartoon clip on Phd Comics that perfectly portrays this situation.

Continue reading