Things To Know Before Travelling In Indian Luxury Trains
The number of tourists choosing luxury trains to cover eminent parts of this peninsular is becoming more common today. For starters, Indian luxury trains are amenities and facilities filled trains, which run through a specific route covering all important activities at each destination.
These luxury trains are designed and dedicated to creating a lush blue-blood style vacation. You should not blindly pick an itinerary and choose to book tickets. There is a lot to understand about this vacation and choose it wisely.
Remember that these vacations come with a pretty cost and thus, it is important to make sure you get the best out of it. Here are certain things that you should know before travelling in Indian luxury trains.
Interesting Tips for Booking Luxury Trains in India
1. Is luxury train the right choice for travel?
If you are planning a pilgrimage vacation covering all the important temples of the country, the luxury trains might not be the best option. If you want to enjoy the culture, spirituality, wildlife, cuisine, natural beauty, architectural marvels, history and other elements that make up the beauty in the country, luxury trains are the right choice for you.
There is always a unique beauty in exploring these regions in the way, the ancient royals of India intended it to be. With the unparalleled Indian hospitality and the never-ending beauty of the land, these luxury trains are a fabulous way to travel.
Suggested Tour Itinerary : Maharajas’ Express: 7 days – The Indian Panorama
2. Learn your options
Yes, luxury train travel is a once-in-a-lifetime experience but, which one to choose? There are five different trains and each train runs one or more itineraries. Most of the luxury train itineraries cover important Rajasthan destinations along with surrounding regions. Some focus on Gujarat, Goa, Maharashtra, and others. Maharajas’ Express has special itineraries that cover the southern part of the country too. Read through every itinerary and choose the right option.
Read More : List of Luxury Trains in India
The worldwide famous luxury trains in India are
3. Know the limitation of the amenities
Most of the blogs and the official site would describe these luxury trains to be filled with amenities and facilities. It is true that these luxury trains are the best when it comes to luxury train travel. However, the amenities and facilities are not unlimited. The décor, hospitality and the facilities might add enormous perks to your vacation but, you are on a train and it has some limitations to it.
Know about Indian Luxury Train Facilities:
- Palace on Wheels Facilities
- Maharaja Express Facilities
- Deccan Odyssey Facilities
- Golden Chariot Facilities
4. Served 24/7 by a butler
If you wake up in the middle of the night and you want to get some water, you can ring your butler. Each car is assigned one butler who would be at your service throughout the day. The interesting part about these butlers are, they are dressed like the royal attenders. Every butler is well versed in English, thus you need not worry about problems in communicating your needs. There will be an intercom inside the room. Just call him and he would be at your doorsteps immediately.
Also Read : Feel like Royals with Luxury Trains of India
5. Living in a hotel-atmosphere
Your cabin is quite similar to a hotel room. There will be beds, a bathroom, a few furniture, wardrobe and so on. Thus, at each destination, you need not unpack and repack your things. You can treat it just like your hotel room. The door access card will be presented to you and thus, your things will be safe. Just like a hotel room, your cabin will be cleaned everyday by the housekeeping team. If you have any valuables, you can place them in the electronic safe inside your room.
Know about Indian Luxury Train Cabins:
- Palace on Wheels Cabins
- Maharaja Express Train Cabins
- Deccan Odyssey Train Cabins
- Golden Chariot Train Cabins
6. Booking and Cancellation Policy
Every train has its own list of booking conditions, cancellation criteria, and other terms and conditions. Read through the information on the webpage before booking the tickets.
Read here about Booking and Cancellation Policy of Indian Luxury Trains:
- Terms and Conditions of Palace on Wheels
- Terms and Conditions of Maharaja Express
- Terms and Conditions of Deccan Odyssey
- Terms and Conditions of Golden Chariot
7. Luxury Train itineraries do not start everyday
There is only one of each luxury train. For instance, there is only one Palace on Wheels. Thus, you cannot expect to have an itinerary that starts every day. The Palace on Wheels starts new itineraries every Wednesday. In the case of trains with numerous styles of itineraries, one itinerary might be served once or twice in a given month and not more than that.
Palace on Wheels Itinerary :
Maharaja Express Itineraries :
- 4 Days – Treasures of India (Delhi to Delhi)
- 7 Days – The Indian Splendour (Delhi to Mumbai)
- 7 Days – The Indian Panorama (Delhi to Delhi)
- 7 Days – The Heritage of India (Mumbai to Delhi)
Deccan Odyssey Itineraries :
- 8 Days – Maharashtra Splendor (Mumbai to Mumbai)
- 8 Days – Indian Odyssey (Delhi to Mumbai)
- 8 Days – Indian Sojourn (Mumbai to Delhi)
- 8 Days – Hidden Treasures of Gujarat (Mumbai to Mumbai)
- 8 Days – Jewels of the Deccan (Mumbai to Mumbai)
- 8 Days – Maharashtra Wild Trail (Mumbai to Mumbai)
Golden Chariot Itinerary :
- 7 Days – Golden Chariot Itinerary (Bangaluru – Bangaluru)
8. Spa and gym inside the train
Most of the luxury trains of the country have a car dedicated to spa and gym. You can find all the important equipment in the fitness center. When it comes to spa, each train’s signature style is different. However, all the trains will have an authentic massage therapist and can provide a long list of treatments, massages, and others.
Also Read :
- How to Book Palace on Wheels Train
- How to Book Maharaja Express Train Tickets
- How To Book Tickets In Deccan Odyssey Luxury Train
9. Meals are cooked inside the train
Every dish is cooked fresh. The car next to the dining room is the kitchen, where the chef and his team create dishes for the passengers. Most of the luxury trains have a revolving menu, which changes at each destination to incorporate local delicacies and signature dishes.
10. Meals are included in the ticket cost
The ticket cost is not just for accommodation and travel. It included all the meals. Meals include soft drinks, water, and others too. Alcohol is not included in the tariff. This changes from train to train. Thus, read the inclusions and exclusions of tariff on the general information page of the luxury train website.
11. Can I make a choice in the meals?
Apart from choosing between cuisines, you can also opt for a specialty diet menu like vegetarian, gluten-free, lactose-free and others. However, you need to mention it during the time of booking.
12. Garnished dessert
Have you ever cooked on a moving train? It would take a lot of patience and concentration. However, these luxury trains take pride in their gastronomical delights, especially desserts. Desserts are garnished and presented in a five-star-hotel-style. Starting from a simple fruit bowl to complex local delicacies, each meal will have a list of desserts to choose from.
Read More : Top 10 Desserts of North India
13. What about meals during sightseeing?
Mostly, breakfast is served on the train. At certain destinations, lunches and dinners are served at any local hotel in the sightseeing regions. Do not worry; those meals will be presented in palace hotels, star hotels or signature restaurants. Sometimes, cultural performances are conducted by the hotels for the diners to enjoy the cuisine and the culture together.
14. Cultural performances at each station
The train halts at the railway station of each of its destinations. A cultural welcome is conducted in the station with musical instruments, garlands, traditional dancing and sometimes a red carpet too. This is a remarkable element of luxury trains. In the past, when a king gets back to his kingdom after a victorious war, this is the manner in which the locals would welcome the king. Such an honorable welcome is provided to the travelers of the luxury trains.
15. Sightseeing in luxury vehicle
Trains cannot take you to every attraction in the city. Thus, at each station, the tourists board into a luxury car, coaches or other styles of road transportation. These vehicles will take you to important attractions of the land.
Each vehicle has a designated guide. Some trains allow you to request a special guide with knowledge in any specific language (should be mentioned during the time of ticket booking). These guides will walk you through important information about each destination, monument and much more. India is a lot more interesting when you know in detail about the monuments and culture.
17. Day time exploration
Usually, day time is spent on city exploration and other activities. The train travels to the next destination at night so that precious time is not spent on moving from one destination to another.
In some itineraries, certain day trips would be shorter and the train would be heading towards a faraway destination. Thus, tourists have to be inside the train for a considerable amount of time during the day. The passengers can use this time to explore the train, take spa treatments, hit the gym and so on.
Also Read : Why to Travel India?
18. How to sleep in the moving train?
The trains are specially designed for a smoother ride. Also, the train is deliberately driven at a slower speed. Thus, you would not have a lot of trouble with sleeping. If you are a light sleeper, bring earplugs and face masks.
You can be connected with your social circle with free internet inside the train. There are two important things to note here. While the train is traveling through rural regions or commercially-untouched areas, the network strength would be weak. This free internet is just within the train and it does not cover during sightseeing and road trips.
Some itineraries have a specific time for shopping. These shopping itineraries will always have an alternative option for those who are not into shopping. If shopping is not mentioned at a certain destination, there is very little chance that you would have time for shopping. However, many luxury trains have a souvenir shop inside the train for any last-minute shopping ideas.
21. Do not worry about missing your train
It is your job to board the train on-time at the departure station on day one. From there, your tour manager would make sure that you are not left behind at any destination.
22. Can I stay back on the train?
Sometimes, some tourists do not prefer to go on the designated sightseeing tour. They can always stay back on the train to enjoy the amenities. However, you need to mention this prior-hand to the tour manager or train manager.
23. Special Performances
Culture is an eminent part of the country. Thus, the train itineraries would make sure that you get as much dose of cultural performances as possible. Some trains with tight itineraries would arrange special performances inside the moving train. At certain destinations, the train manager would arrange private performances just for the luxury train passengers. These are exclusive performances, which can be enjoyed only when traveling with luxury trains.
24. Special visits to monuments
Every monument visit is pre-planned and booked by the train itinerary. Thus, mostly you would not be spending a lot of time in the queue for tickets. However, this cannot be guaranteed during peak tourism season. What if I get left behind at any monument? Well, some trains provide a pin or certain identification to wear to keep the tourists in track.
Many luxury trains have a doctor, who travels on the train. Some have a designated paramedic for the same and in case of emergency, doctors will be called at the next destination. These doctors and paramedics are provided with an inventory of medicines. However, not all medicines would be available. If you are prone to certain diseases or discomfort, it is best to bring your medicine in hand.
The best part about the luxury train is that you get to have a group vacation with similar people, who have the same taste as you do. The best place to socialize in the train is the bar and the lounge
27. Special Activities
Certain trains have special itineraries, activities, and others, which are not found in other luxury trains. For instance, the Golden Chariot train provides private henna parties to the women travelers of the train. Deccan Odyssey gifts traditional attire to the travelers as a final gift.
28. These do not come cheap
Luxury trains are designed to be luxurious and so is the price tag. However, remember that you are getting a holistic trip, which includes accommodation, travel to numerous destinations, sightseeing, meal, cultural activities and so on. Moreover, you don’t have to worry about plans, itineraries, traffic, and other things that would ruin your vacation mood. Remember that royal pampering is never cheap.
Also Read : 15 Most Expensive Trains in the World
29. Choose the one if you want to
Yes, all the luxury trains are costly but, not all are priced the same. Some trains have in-expensive itineraries, which would be shorter. For instance, Maharajas’ Express train has three days and four nights itinerary. You can also choose the style of accommodation to suit your budget. If you go for the Presidential Suite, your tariff would obviously be higher.
Indian Luxury Train Fares :
30. Private Rooms
The rooms have two beds or a single double cot (Presidential Suite have both) and a bathroom. The cabins can be locked from inside and you can carry the access card that locks the room with you. Thus, your privacy is maintained.
31. The trains do not run throughout the year
Mostly the trains operate during the late monsoon, winter and pre-summer months. September to April is the timetable for the luxury trains.
Departure Dates or Schedule of Indian Luxury Trains :
32. Pack light
There is only room for luggage beneath the bed in your cabin. Thus, do not pack large suitcases. Also, save some space in your bag to bring back souvenirs from the country.
33. Activities before and after the train
Every activity you perform before boarding the train on day one and after de-boarding the train on the last day is not inclusive of the tariff. Thus, you need to fly to Delhi, Mumbai or other departure destination and then take care of your return journey too.
34. Can I bring my kids?
The luxury train vacation would suit travelers of all age groups. Remember that certain activities would require long hours of walking and standing. Apart from this, there is no restriction in bringing a kid on-board. You can request for less spicy kid meals, additional cot closer to you and so on.
Read more : 20 Best Places to Visit in India with Kids
35. Dress code
There is no specific dress code for any luxury trains. However, remember that India is a cultural land and the itineraries might cover dinner at high-class luxury hotels. Wear walking shoes and always have a cap or umbrella with you.
36. What to Pack for the luxury train travel?
The most essential items are identity proof, registration document and your personal belongings for the tour. Do not pack up too many clothes. Most of the trains provide laundry and dry cleaning services too.
Also Read : What To Wear In India – Essential Packing List
37. Smoking and drinking
All the luxury trains are strictly non-smoking trains. If you wish to smoke, talk to your butler and he will guide you to a small cabin close to the engine room, designated for smokers. Smoking in public places is a crime and thus, it should be avoided. The legal limit for drinking in India is 21. In some cases, the bartender might request you to show your ID proof to check your age.
38. Air-conditioned cabins and vehicles
Every car of luxury trains and road transport vehicles are air-conditioned. Thus, you need not worry about the humidity and temperature of the country.
If you are not an Indian, you need a valid visa to enter India. The luxury trains do not check the passport and visa details. However, you cannot enter India without one.
Read more :
40. Well-equipped bathrooms
Do not worry about your bathroom requirements. Each cabin has a private bathroom with running hot and cold water, shower cabins, bathrobe, towels, hairdryer, toiletries, and many others.
There are numerous other things to know before you board or book a train ticket for a luxury train vacation. Read the itineraries in detail and learn all the terms and conditions. If you have any queries, call the travel executive and get it cleared.