India

How to Book Local Flights in India

Written by Gia Kristel Algie

We worked with Cleartrip, one of the top booking sites in India, to bring you this post. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

When travelling in India you’ll be inundated with options on how to get between cities. The distances can be daunting (it’s a massive country) and not all forms of transport are comfortable or fast. Sometimes it’s worth paying that little bit extra to get to your destination quicker and in more comfort than on a train or bus — that’s when you’ll want to consider booking a local flight in India!

How to Book Local Flights in India

Head on over to the internet (I guess you’re probably there already) and search for a flight between your two cities of choice. It pays to book at least a month in advance but you can occasionally get a decent deal a few days out. Take into account any transfers — I recently flew from Indore to Lucknow and there was a stopover in Hyderabad. It wasn’t ideal, but it definitely beat a 20 hour bus ride!

You can also find some excellent deals on flights between India and other countries in the region, including Ahmedabad to Dubai flights and many destinations in Southeast Asia.

Most booking sites and airlines allow you to book with a foreign credit card and most flights include checked baggage as standard (Indigo does at least).

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Things to consider when flying in India

How much extra does it cost?

Even if you’re on a budget it can often make sense to book the occasional flight when travelling in India. It often saves you an entire day of travel and might only cost $30 or $40 more than a bus or train. India can be a very difficult place to travel so spending that little bit of extra money on an easy travel day can really help in avoiding “India travel burn out”.

Getting to and from the airport

Indian airports are often close to city centres, so getting to and from the airport isn’t generally a big deal. You can catch a taxi, Uber or auto rickshaw. Uber is a good option, so get a local sim card and set it up if you want to avoid taxi touts! If you’re on a budget it’s best to travel by auto rickshaw — walk out the front gate of almost any airport in India and you’ll find one (bargain hard though!).

Trains and Buses

You’re probably not going to travel solely by plane, so buses and trains will inevitably come into the picture. You can get overnight buses and trains between most cities and it’s not a bad way to go. Forget about getting a full 8 hours sleep though as they aren’t very comfortable. You’ll have to book trains in advance (often weeks or months) so a bus might end up as your only option if booking last minute (or you can try your luck with the tourist quota system). Of course you can always opt to hire a car / driver — there are so many transport options and it really depends on your budget.

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Booking local flights in India is simple and you can get some great deals if you book early. It can take the stress out of a long distance journey, and that’s always a good thing in India, which is one of the most difficult countries in the world to travel!

Are you planning a trip to India? Let us know in the comments below!

About the author

Gia Kristel Algie

Currently based in New Zealand, Gia grew up in Manila, lived in Singapore for three years and travelled the world for nearly two years. From watching sunsets to hiking mountains, she loves the outdoors. She enjoys living in big cities but takes pleasure staying in quaint, small towns. An aspiring photographer and budding writer, she is the voice behind Mismatched Passports, a travel blog dedicated to the journey around the world with her husband, Jon.

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