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INDIA CALLING GUIDE |

Calling To/From India Long Distance

Calling to India

Making Calls while in India

Other Information about Long Distance Calling To/From India

Calling India long distance? Find out how.

Information About India’s Telephone System

India’s telecommunications system is the fifth largest in the world and was privatized only in the 1990s. Thanks to high competition between several private companies and the government, calls across India are one of the cheapest in the world.

There are currently over 40 million land lines and 159 million cell phone lines in use in India.

Important Phone Numbers To Know if Traveling to India

The U.S. embassy in Delhi is at Shanti Path, Chanakyapuri (tel. 011-2419-8000), and is open Monday through Friday, 8:30am-1pm and 2-5:30pm. The U.S. Consulate General in Mumbai (Bombay) is located at Lincoln House, 78 Bhulabhai Desai Rd., 400 026 (tel. 022-2363-3611; fax 022-2363-0350; http://mumbai.usconsulate.gov). The U.S. Consulate General in Kolkata (Calcutta) is at 5/1 Ho Chi Minh Sarani, 700 071 (tel. 033-2282-3611; fax 033-2282-2335; http://calcutta.usconsulate.gov). The U.S. Consulate General in Chennai is at 220 Anna Salai, Gemini Circle, 600 006 (tel. 044-2811-2000; fax 044-2811-2027; http://chennai.usconsulate.gov).

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Calling India long distance

Other Important Information to Know About India

Time Zone:

GMT + 5.50 hours. Current time in Delhi.

Currency:

One U.S. dollar is worth approximately 42.65 Indian rupees. Current exchange rates for Indian rupee.

Population:

As of early 2007, 1,126,000,000 (80.5% Hindu, 13.4% Muslim, 2.3% Christian, 1.9% Sikh, 0.8% Buddhist, 0.4% Jain)

Holidays:

Due to the country’s great ethnic and religious diversity, many holidays are celebrated in India; however, regional governments determine the celebration of most holidays and how they affect public services. The only nationally celebrated holidays are secular, including Republic Day (January 26th), Independence Day (August 15th), and Mahatma Gandhi’s Birthday (October 2nd). On these three holidays, government offices are closed.

Language:

Hindi is India’s national language, but it is the native tongue of only 20% of the population. Other official languages include Urdu, Tamil, Bengali, Kashmiri, Kannada, Marathi, Gujarati, Telugu, and English. English is widely spoken and written in most Indian states.

Climate:

Climate in India varies greatly, given the great size of the country and its geographic diversity. In general, India has three seasons: the hot, the wet and the cool. In the north, heat may be unbearable between February and April. Monsoons begin to appear in June, first with high humidity, short rainstorms and violent electrical storms, followed by extreme rains. The main monsoon ends around October, and India's northern cities become cool at night in December. In the far south, the temperature never cools, but it is regularly warm rather than hot.

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Fun Facts About India

  • India is the world’s 2nd most populous country.
  • Regional cuisines can be quite distinct. However, spicy food and sweets are almost universally popular.
  • Cricket is India’s most popular sport, though field hockey is the official national sport.
  • Many Indian women continue to wear the traditional sari, a draped ensemble of often-colorful fabrics.
  • Vegetarian food is very easy to find in India given the large Hindu population.
  • “Bollywood,” India’s legendary film capital is based in Mumbai. The Indian film industry produces more films and sells more tickets than any other national film industry.
  • India is home to 17 major languages and 844 dialects.
  • Goa, India’s smallest state, is renowned for its beaches and is one of the most popular vacation destinations for European travelers.
  • Tea is a popular beverage throughout India. Some of the finest varieties in the world are grown in Darjeeling and Assam.
  • India’s best-known site is the Taj Mahal in Agra, built in the 1600s by Emperor Shah Jahan.
  • India has one of the world’s largest railway and roadway systems. Though the system is extensive, trains run slowly at only about 50-60 mph.
  • Indian literature is among the oldest in the world. The earliest works include the Vedas and the epics known as Ramayana and Mahabarata.
  • Several of India’s universities are ranked among the best in the world, particular in the fields of engineering and technology.
  • Indian classical dance is world famous and can be traced back to 400 BC. You can see it in a number of forms throughout the country.
  • India is ranked as the 3rd best adventure tourism destination in the world.
  • Indian food is most often consumed without cutlery. Use only the fingers of your right hand; the left hand is considered unclean.
  • India is home to more than 500 wildlife sanctuaries, 14 biosphere reserves, and 25 registered wetlands.
  • India has the world’s 4th largest economy in terms of purchasing power.
  • India’s north and south differ dramatically—in cuisine, architecture, and general atmosphere. If you are determined to visit both, limit yourself to just a few states so you don’t get overwhelmed.
  • Tipping is a way to expedite many services in India. Be prepared with small bills for this purpose.
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