I have been exploring Incredible India now for close to 2 months and have had to make considerable choices in terms of lodging, transport, and dietary needs. I have been coerced into staying at 5 star hotels with names that contain palace due to my day trading profession. The free western breakfasts and reliable hot water are just too much to bare.
I am able to travel around the world because I day trade for a living. I also teach a day trading education program that allows people to have the freedoms of time, financial, and location. I am very passionate about day trading because it allows me to live my dream, total Freedom.
Anytime that I relocate to another country to continue living overseas I am always concerned about internet access. I need high speed reliable internet in order to host live trading classes for everyone in my training program with The Day Trading Academy.
When I first moved to Toronto on this current and never ending trip around the world I ended up using a 3.5G internet modem stick from Rogers wireless. I was lucky they offered an unlimited data package promotion and after that I assumed everything would work itself out.
Anytime that I live overseas I prefer to rent an apartment instead of living in a hotel in order to immerse myself with the local culture.
India presented a predicament as there are two extremes when visiting India. A traveler has a choice whether to travel first class or as a backpacker. The old adage is quite true, you get what you pay for.
India is a 4th world country. It is truly 3rd world in our modern classification of countries.
The problems are compounded in India with a massive population, more government bureaucracy, and rampant corruption throughout the system.
The Hindu religion, the largest in India, seems to bring a greater acceptance of the status quo. As I continued exploring the country I found myself with more and more people promising things they didn’t have.
When I initially arrived in Mumbai I stayed at a Mumbai hotel near the airport in order survey Mumbai & see the opportunity of living there.
I quickly left and reserved a room at the iconic Taj Palace & Hotel in Mumbai in order to have reliable interne and decent food to eat. And even at the Taj, a 5 star former palace converted into a hotel, I still became ill because of the food.
With the prices being charged at a 5 star hotel it’s expected that a visitor is to receive anything that he requests. The only thing I couldn’t get from the premium brand of Taj hotels is to be left alone. They called continuously, visited the room at least 2 or 3 times a day, and loved to visit the room at 9pm when the do not disturb light was on. Shame on you Taj.
I am the type of person that always eats street food. I can stop at any street vendor in the middle of nowhere and have a great meal. India is quite different since there is so much bacteria in the food and water. A western tourist has to be very careful what he eats.
When I visited Goa I confided in Expedia in order to ensure I was going to get what I asked for. I booked a room at a Best Western that declared to having high speed internet.
Sadly, this is the second time Best Western let me down as the internet never reached 1 MB download speed. If I just ran this travel blog and could wait 2 hours to upload a picture that would be okay.
But when internet is my livelihood I don’t take lack of high speed internet lightly.
I immediately booked a room at a Vivanta Hotel by Taj since it was the only 5 star hotel available in Goa. Things took an immediate turn for the worse as I found expired food containers, the breakfast buffet was comparable to a poorly managed one star restaurant, and again, I could find anything but be left alone. I had officially given up on the Taj brand.
As I moved through the state of Rajasthan and tried to stay in 3 star hotels it was quickly understood that you have an option for hot water or internet. To ask for hot water, internet, electricity, and a good breakfast would be a godsend.
What do you think this is the Ritz?
There was a funny situation when a man stated that the internet was working and refused to admit that it was not working. Sadly he didn’t understand internet requires electricity to work.
I’m still dumbfounded why the west hasn’t started selling this amazing invention, internet without electricity.
I ate at another famous 5 star brand of hotels named Trident in both Udaipur & Jaipur. With mostly westerners approaching the restaurant I was amazed to see people avoiding the main buffet.
The waiters would try to convince everyone that entered to eat the buffet. If I had pictures in order to show you faces of disgust I would. The restaurant made it worse by lying to us and saying there wasn’t food that could be ordered off a menu, only the buffet was available.
After tracking down the manager a hefty menu was given to us. Bad food and this behavior at the premium brand of Trident hotels is unacceptable.
Trident’s only salvation was an executive chef that personally cooked a glorious buffalo beef steak. He personally came to the table to take our order and topped it with an array of vegetables & caramelized onions. If you are ever in Jaipur, make sure that the Executive Chef Anuraag is working.
His food will absolutely astound you. Otherwise, I wouldn’t recommend eating or staying at the Trident brand of hotels based on the activity at the restaurant. A hotel’s service, expertise, and hospitality, can be judged by how they serve their dining room.
After crossing both the Taj & Trident brands off the list I returned to Delhi and decided to stay at the 5 star Hyatt Regency hotel. Sadly, they didn’t disappoint either.
Anytime I tried to order water or basic tasks were completed such as restocking shampoo & conditioner there was a problem. To have to ask for it after a room is serviced isn’t up to a 5 star standard. It took over 5 hours to get bottles of water delivered and 3 phone calls to just have laundry service picked up.
If I was backpacking through India I would laugh at all of the problems I have had. Simply accept the fact that you do indeed get what you paid for. But after a conscious effort is made to try and conduct business by staying at premium hotels and this still happens?
One of the most egregious of situations is when you have waiters & room staff assist you when there they smell as if they haven’t had a shower in days.
I don’t have an advanced sense of smell and I been able to smell it repeatedly.
I only share these stories so you know what you are getting into when traveling to India. In a normal situation, it’s only a matter a time for one or two things to go wrong. In India, its standard practice.
The rule of thumb in India is to take a star away from the star ratings; a five star is a really a four star, a four star is really a three star, and you may have the unfortunate situation of staying in a five star that is really a 3 star.
Even when expecting 5 star service you will surely be disappointed. There are incredible things to see in India but what you will have to go through in order to see them will be incredible as well.