One of the most annoying things in India is ‘commuting’.
In cities like New Delhi, metro trains have advanced, but if you go to cities without these, your commuting means become limited to bus, autorikshaw or taxi.
For people like businessmen coming from Japan, a personal driver is hired for commuting, but ordinary people cannot afford them.
While using a rikshaw or a taxi, negotiating fares can be irksome.
As for buses, only those Japanese can board them who have mastered living in India (though there seem to be quite clean buses in some parts of Bangalore).
This is where a ‘My Bike’ comes to your rescue.
You can either purchase a bike for yourself or rent one and commute on your own.
As far as I know, about 90 percent of international students in India use bikes. But for some reasons, there seem to be surprisingly fewer Japanese students among them.
It could be because Japanese people tend to be a fearful lot! But there is nothing that can be gained from being scared!
In fact, speaking as one who rides a bike, I would say bikes are safer for travelling.
The priority order on Indian roads goes like this:
Pedestrians <Bikes <Cars <Buses <Trucks <Sleeping dogs <Cows
So, you are promoted one step ahead of pedestrians!
Also, you can save yourselves from getting hogged by roadside sellers and beggars. After all, they cannot chase your bike!
Hence, INSTUDY recommends everyone to use bikes (but only at your own risk!).
Among people who do and do not use bikes in India, apart from easy mobility, the things you learn and experience vary up to ten times. No, I’m not kidding!
But ride dangerously and you can end up having an accident. Hence, here are some things you should heed to while riding a bike in India:
- Do not speed above 40 Kmph.
It is dangerous to ride at speeds above 40 Kmph because reacting to potholes on the roads or vehicles in front of you suddenly changing lanes can be impossible.
Especially foreigners in India like speeding.
Indians ride quite slowly since they are aware of the dangers of speeding.
By the way, I never ride at more than 30 Kmph. As a result, I am often the only one who gets strayed while following my friends. But as they say, only by beating the loneliness can you succeed!
- Indicator+ hand signal.
In India, only showing the indicator while turning or changing lanes can seem somewhat vague.
It might not reach the hearts of Indians unless you make the best of the opportunity and exhibit your intentions!
Therefore, always use hand signals while turning and changing lanes.
It makes a huge difference. You can change lane easily if you give hand signals.
- Do not go against the flow.
As you do in Japan, please avoid sudden take-offs and lane changing.
Imagine a flowing river while riding in India.
Go with the flow and even if you wander do not panic and just let yourself be carried by the flow.
And then, you can go back and change your route.
- Always be watchful
This is important.
- Ride in the middle of the roads where there are police.
Regardless of whether you meet with an accident or not, the xenophobic police can pull you in just to make money out of you.
So, it is better not to ride on the edges of roads.
Just so you know, always pay the proper fine if you break the rules.
- Do not let your eyes follow even a pretty girl.
This might sound like a joke, but it is quite important.
In India there are many beautiful girls. While riding, you can see many comely girls, but taking your eyes off the road can make you run into other vehicles.
So please restrain yourself.
- Be careful of sudden ‘Indian Valleys’ on roads.
Indian roads have quite a lot of potholes and open manholes.
They can vary from small ones that will make you go “Oh! That was close!” to big ones that will make you go “Awww!!!”
There are still more things I can write about, but my hands are getting weary, so I am going to stop here.
For now, you will be fine if you be careful about the above things.