So you're arriving to India early for your placement! Great!
Here are some handy tips to help you navigate your way through your first few days in India before you join us on the Mental Health Placement.
Click the drop-downs below to find out more:
🇮🇳 Kempegowda International Airport
This is the airport you'll be arriving into. It is small, and can be tricky to navigate, but don't worry, if you're ever lost there are plenty of staff and security guards on hand to help you out.
Once you disembark from the plane you'll head to immigration first and then to collect your bag. For immigration purposes, please ensure you have all the documents you need packed in your hand luggage and a copy of your hotel address for the arrivals card. They don't have pens, so it's best to pack one.
Once you've passed through immigration and are in possession of all your luggage you can proceed through to the International Arrivals area. When you exit into International Arrivals you will see lots of people in front of you waiting with signs to pick up their loved ones and friends.
Before you fly please make sure you let your bank know about your travel plans as otherwsie they may block your account temporarily when you first withdraw money at an ATM.
We suggest travelling with about £30/$40 to change up just in case the above happens. This is completely normal and is usually solved with a quick phone call. £1 is equal to about 80 Indian rupees and $1 is equal to about 60 Indian rupees. If you want to take some money out, there is a cash machine just before you come out of the airport.
We recommend you book accommodation near to the airport in advance of your arrival in Bengaluru. We feel it is best to have somewhere to stay confirmed, in order to avoid any unnecessary stress or confusion after a long journey. You'll need to meet us back at the airport or the School of Ancient Wisdom on the day your placement begins, so location is key!
You can often book an airport transfer with your accomodation and they will send someone to pick you up, we would recommend contacting them to see if that is possible. Otherewise, inside the airport you can order a taxi to a specific place and they will tell you the amount it will cost before your journey. This is the cheapest and safest way to get to your accommodation. If you do not use this service you may be descended upon by taxi touts once you leave the airport and this can be uncomfortable and intense.
Once you've ordered your taxi, follow your driver outside and keep an eye on your bag. Do not let anyone but the driver touch it, as sometimes men pick up your bag for you and carry it, but you then need to pay them.
📞 Getting a SIM Card
You will need a local SIM for communication during your placement and we suggest you can get one with a data plan, so you can speak to home as often as you like. Please purchase this when you arrive at Banaglore airport, as there is no wifi or the opportunity to leave to get a SIM during your first week on placement, so please make sure you get one on arrival. To do this you will need to have a passport-style photograph (this can be normal rather than square) with you and a copy of your passport.
You'll be able to get a SIM after you have collected your bags. If you need help finding a SIM card kiosk, just ask someone for help and they will be able to point you in the right direction.
🤝 Meeting the SLV.Global Team
As you are arriving early you will need to meet the team back at the airport so we can take you to the accomodation. We will ask that you choose a time to return to the airport and be taken to your accommodation with some of your team. You will need to let us know in advance which pickup time suits you best and as long as there is room for you in the allocated transport, we will collect you with the others at the airport at the time.
On the day your program starts you'll need to meet us just opposite the International Arrivals gate at the airport, by the STREET FOOD, where we'll be waiting in our grey t-shirts with the SLV.India Logo. Flights are occasionally delayed, and often without advance notice, so please be patient if we need to wait a while before departing to the School of Ancient Wisdom. From here you'll all head out together with one of our team. Please make sure you have the contact number for our team so you can contact them if you need, we will send this to you in an email.
We hope this has been helpful and if you have any questions please don't hesitate to get in touch with us in the SLV.Global Head Office on [email protected].