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Transport (India, Nepal & Bhutan)

We use a variety of transportation including planes, coaches, trains, boat cruises and rickshaw rides to operate your itinerary at the best pace and to give you an authentic travel experience so you are not always ‘removed’ from the locals.

Domestic flights

Wendy Wu Tours utilises a number of different domestic carriers within India, Nepal and Bhutan. Planes are very similar to those you would travel on domestically at home, with allocated seats. Depending on flight duration meals may/may not be provided. Group members may not necessarily be seated together. The flight schedule of domestic airlines changes frequently, hence all domestic flights that appear in your itinerary are very subject to change. Please ensure that all valuables and any medications you may need for the rest of the day are taken onboard with you.

The baggage limit is 15kg suitcase + 5kg hand luggage per passenger and bags must be locked. All seats are economy class. Airlines currently do not allow liquids (alcohol, spirits, wine, water, perfume etc.) or sharp objects to be carried on-board the aircraft and these will be confiscated. Wendy Wu Tours issues all domestic flight tickets in India, Nepal and Bhutan, and tickets will be handled by your National Escort/Local Guide and given to each passenger just prior to their flight.

Bhutan - There is only one airport in Bhutan located in Paro. Druk Air, the National Carrier, is the only airline permitted to fly into Bhutan. Paro Airport can be subjected to adverse weather conditions and flight delays can be expected, so it is recommended that you do not book connecting flights after disembarking from your Druk Air flight, it is advisable to leave a day between flights. All Druk Air flights travel via a secondary city to and from Paro.

Coaches & Cars

Our coaches are comfortable, air-conditioned vehicles. Please note that seatbelts are not compulsory by law and therefore the local people largely choose not to wear them. For this reason local operators may or may not have seatbelts hidden underneath protective seat covers. It is recommended that where seatbelts are available, customers should use them and remain seated at all times whilst the vehicle is moving. Wendy Wu Tours cannot guarantee that vehicles will be fitted with operable seatbelts.

For Private Tours and Short Stays/Extensions, we use private, air-conditioned vehicles. The vehicle type and model will vary depending on where you are, but we generally use a Toyota Innova with plenty of space for your luggage.

Day trains

All group train travel will be in AC2 meaning “air conditioned, second class”. Each passenger has an individual seat, which is similar in style to an airline seat, with plenty of space. Luggage is stored in overhead racks above your seats. Large bags are stored in separate carriages by porters.

Your National Escort/Local Guide will try to organise the whole group to be seated in the same carriage but in busy periods of travel, this may not be possible. Snacks and drinks can be purchased in the train’s restaurant carriage or from trolley carts. There is usually a western style toilet at one end and a squat toilet at the other end of the carriage. A passenger should remain with your belongings at all times. Keep a lock on your main luggage.

Narrow gauge ‘toy trains’

The term ‘toy train’ refers to several trains originally built by the British to travel up to their hill station resorts. They had very narrow track gauges to ascend the steep hillsides; hence the engines were also smaller and sometimes required the engineer to sit on top of his engine. A few of the toy trains still operate today; the most famous, in Darjeeling, has a gauge of only two feet. The carriages have ample room for the average sized westerner, but are in original condition with wooden bench seats. Riding a toy train offers a rare insight to life in these colonial era resorts.

Overnight trains

Usually we use first class ‘soft sleeper’ trains (AC 1st Class). Occasionally due to lack of availability, air-conditioned second class sleepers may be booked (AC 2nd Class). Each compartment is shared by four or six people and is airconditioned, with lockable doors and four beds which are fixed in place. There is room for passengers to sit on the lower berths and a folding table.

Your National Escort/Local Guides will try to organise the whole group to be sleeping in the same carriage but in busy periods of travel, this may not be possible. Each group will receive tickets with sequential berth numbers; these may be sharing with people from another tour group/company, or with some of the locals.

There is usually a western style toilet at one end and a squat toilet at the other end of the carriage. We recommend you bring a small overnight bag to carry whatever you need until the following morning as you will not have access to your main luggage which will be stored on a separate carriage of the train. Consider including a face towel, all toiletries, medication you require until midday next day, a tracksuit or similar outfit to sleep in and toilet paper, as the train supply tends to run out. There is no dining car, so please carry snacks with you.

Keeping valuables safe on trains

Carry all valuables with you at all times. A money belt is recommended. All belongings should remain under your supervision at all times. Keep a lock on your main luggage.


Your tour could include taking a ride in a motor boat on Lake Pichola in Udaipur, a narrow wooden boat along the Ganges in Varanasi or an overnight stay on-board a kettuvallam houseboat in Kerala. To take part in any boat ride, you need to be of average mobility and able to climb on and off all these boats unaided; able to disembark onto makeshift docks without handrails, or onto muddy riverbanks.


These are large, open van-like vehicles with wooden bench seats in the back and used on safaris in the national parks. Please note that if you are taking a private tour, you will be sharing a canter on safari with other passengers.

Bicycles, motorbikes, jeeps and rickshaws

Occasionally your National Escort/Local Guide may organise an alternative mode of transport if your group coach is unable to negotiate the road (i.e. a mode of transport not mentioned in your itinerary) because of road damage after heavy rain, or to access remote areas. If you use these modes of transport in your free time, then passengers must bear full responsibility. Please also be aware that safety helmets are generally not provided or available for hire.

Road conditions and construction

Road conditions are improving but still affected by monsoonal rains. Your National Escort/Local Guide will do their utmost to avoid possible delays but cannot guarantee against delays, changes or – in rare cases – cancellations of sections of your itinerary. Road construction usually encompasses an enormous section of road, not a couple of kilometers like you may be used to. Please keep in mind that traffic is increasing in the cities and towns and may affect the timing of your tour and meal times. In remote areas, there are rough, unsealed roads covering a vast section of the rural and mountainous regions and existing road surfaces can be affected by heavy and constant monsoonal rains.

Bhutan - Time taken in getting from A to B in Bhutan is usually dependent on the size of your group. Roads in Bhutan are like our remote country roads, tarred but a single lane. Though marked as dual lanes, they are invariably the width of one and a half lanes; however there are continual road works to make the main highway a full dual carriage road. Most of the roads are also very windy and are cut into a cliff face, giving you a magnificent view of the scenery and mountains as you drive past. This means space to pass is scarce and although distances are not large, the time to travel these distances is a lot longer than it would take in Australia. This means that some days may be full of driving. Continual road works are also taking place in Bhutan, with rocks being extracted to be used in the Hydro Electric Power Stations that are under construction in Bhutan. 

Taxi's/Independent Travel

Before taking either mode of transport independently, agree on the price of the fare and check that you have enough small change as the drivers are unlikely to have much cash on them. Haggling on the fare can be fun, but it’s a good idea to find out, from your National Escort or Local Guide how much the fare should be for the journey you propose. You will have to accept paying more than locals.