The Indian Rupee is the official currency and one rupee is worth
a little over 1p in sterling. As a closed currency, you can't take
in any rupees to the country, or leave with any either.
US Dollars are also widely accepted in the country, particularly
in the cities, so it's a good idea to take plenty of these to
exchange when you're there, or simply to use as currency.
Visa and Mastercard are both widely accepted in India and there
are also plenty of ATMs, including in many hotels. It's worth
noting, however, that using credit cards in shops can attract
transaction charges of between 2% and 4%.
Dollar traveller's cheques can also be cashed at all major
banks, exchange bureaus and airports. You may also be able to use
them at some shops providing that you also present your
When buying food or drink, tipping is expected, but not
compulsory. The standard amount is 10% of the total bill. For taxi
drivers 100 rupees is generally considered to be about the
appropriate amount per journey.
When shopping in markets and smaller shops, bargaining is very
much expected. So be prepared to haggle if you don't want to risk
offending the owner. But in more up-market outlets, it's very much
a case of paying the advertised prices.