Flying with Spices: What You Need to Know for India Flights

Traveling with Spices in India: Airline Guidelines and Tips 

India Spices

Indian cuisine is celebrated globally for its rich and complex flavors, derived from an exquisite blend of spices. Whether you're a home cook aiming to master Indian recipes or a traveler wanting to bring a taste of India back home, understanding the regulations around carrying spices on flights within India is essential. This guide will help you navigate the rules and tips for transporting your beloved spices, ensuring a smooth journey through airport security and customs.

Indian Airlines' Guidelines for Carrying Spices on Board

When flying within India, each airline has its own set of rules and guidelines regarding the transportation of spices. Understanding these regulations can help you avoid complications and ensure your spices make it to your destination without any issues. Here's a detailed look at the policies of some of India's major airlines:

Air India

Air India allows passengers to carry spices in both checked and cabin baggage. However, it is recommended to pack spices securely to prevent spills and to avoid strong odors that might affect other passengers. Ensure that all containers are tightly sealed and, if possible, double-bagged.

  • Checked Baggage: Spices can be packed in larger quantities, but they should be securely sealed and preferably placed in airtight containers.
  • Cabin Baggage: Small quantities of spices can be carried, but they should be placed in containers that fit within the airline’s liquid and gel restrictions (100 ml per container).


IndiGo’s guidelines for carrying spices are quite similar to Air India's. The airline advises passengers to ensure spices are well-packed to avoid any leakage or strong smells.

  • Checked Baggage: Spices can be carried in larger amounts, but they must be well-sealed in airtight containers to avoid contamination and spills.
  • Cabin Baggage: Passengers are allowed to carry small quantities, and the containers should adhere to the liquid restrictions in place.


Vistara permits the transportation of spices in both checked and cabin baggage, with a strong emphasis on secure packaging to prevent any disruption during the flight.

  • Checked Baggage: Larger quantities of spices are allowed, provided they are packed securely in airtight containers.
  • Cabin Baggage: Small amounts can be carried in containers that meet the airline’s liquid restrictions.


SpiceJet also allows spices in both checked and cabin baggage, stressing the importance of proper packaging to prevent spills and odors.

  • Checked Baggage: Spices can be transported in larger quantities, with an emphasis on secure, airtight packaging.
  • Cabin Baggage: Small quantities are permissible, provided they are in containers that comply with the liquid restrictions.

Practical Advice for Carrying Spices

  1. Secure Packaging: Use airtight containers to pack your spices. Consider double-bagging them in zip-lock bags to provide an extra layer of security against spills and odors.
  2. Labeling: Clearly label your spices to avoid any confusion during security checks. This can help expedite the process and prevent unnecessary delays.
  3. Check Airline Policies: Always check the specific airline’s website or contact their customer service for the most up-to-date information on carrying spices.
  4. Quantity Restrictions: Be mindful of quantity restrictions for cabin baggage, especially regarding the 100 ml liquid rule, which applies to gels, liquids, and certain food items.
  5. Customs Regulations: If you’re flying internationally, be aware of the customs regulations of your destination country regarding the import of spices.

If you’re keen on creating authentic Indian dishes, having a comprehensive list of essential spices is a must. Here are some key spices you might want to carry:

  • Cumin (Jeera)
  • Coriander (Dhania)
  • Turmeric (Haldi)
  • Cardamom (Elaichi)
  • Cinnamon (Dalchini)
  • Mustard seeds (Rai)
  • Fenugreek (Methi)
  • Garam Masala
  • Bay Leaves
  • Asafoetida (Hing)
  • Red Chili Powder

By adhering to the guidelines of airlines such as Air India, IndiGo, Vistara, and SpiceJet, you can ensure that your spices are transported safely and without incident. Proper packaging and awareness of airline policies are key to a hassle-free experience. Whether you are a culinary enthusiast or simply looking to bring a taste of India to your kitchen abroad, following these tips will help you enjoy your spices wherever you go.

Pet-Friendly Airlines in India

Pet-Friendly Travel: The Best Indian Airlines for Your Furry Friends

Pet-Friendly Travel

Traveling with pets can be a challenging experience, but knowing which airlines are pet-friendly can make the journey smoother for you and your furry companion. In India, several airlines offer pet-friendly services, ensuring that your pets can travel comfortably and safely. Whether you’re relocating, going on vacation, or simply need to take your pet on a trip, it’s essential to understand the policies and services provided by different airlines. This guide will help you navigate the options and find the best airline for your pet-friendly travels.

Most Indian domestic airlines allow service animals on board for passengers who require special assistance.

In this article, we'll cover which Indian airlines are the most pet-friendly, focusing on Air India, IndiGo, Vistara, and SpiceJet. We'll also explore which domestic airlines allow pets to fly in the cabin, and provide essential information on traveling with pets in India. Before you book your flight, it's crucial to know the specific rules and regulations each airline has in place for pet travel. Read on to discover everything you need to ensure a smooth and stress-free journey with your pet.

Know Which India Airline Is The Most Pet Friendly

When it comes to pet-friendly airlines in India, some stand out for their exceptional services and policies. Here’s a closer look at the top contenders:

Air India

Air India is well-known for its pet-friendly policies. They allow pets to travel in the cabin or as checked baggage, depending on the size and weight of the pet. However, it's important to make a reservation for your pet in advance, as there are limited spots available. Air India requires a health certificate from a veterinarian and ensures that pets are comfortable during the flight.


IndiGo is another popular choice for pet owners. While IndiGo generally allows pets to be transported as cargo, they do have specific guidelines and requirements that must be met. It’s essential to check with the airline directly for the latest information and to make necessary arrangements well in advance.

Guide dogs for blind passengers are exempt from this rule. Passengers traveling with a guide dog should contact the IndiGo call center. Note that guide dogs may not occupy a seat. Passengers must bring a moisture-absorbent mat for the guide dog to sit on. The guide dog should be properly trained, restrained, and muzzled.


Vistara offers a pet-friendly travel experience but with certain restrictions. They typically allow small pets to travel in the cabin, provided they are in an appropriate carrier. Vistara requires prior booking and approval for pets, so it’s advisable to contact their customer service to confirm all details before your flight.

Travelling with a Service Dog


SpiceJet is known for its accommodating pet travel policies. SpiceJet's pet policy does not allow pets in the cabin, except for trained service animals. Pets can travel as air cargo on their flights, depending on the size and breed. Like other airlines, SpiceJet requires advance booking for pets and specific documentation, including a health certificate.

Which Indian Domestic Airlines Allow Pets to Fly in the Cabin?

Among the major Indian airlines, Air India, and Vistara generally allow pets to fly in the cabin under specific conditions. These conditions often include size and weight limits for the pet and its carrier, as well as prior approval from the airline. It's crucial to review each airline's pet policy and contact their customer service for precise information.

Pet Travel


Can I Travel with My Pet in India?

Yes, you can travel with your pet in India, but it’s important to be well-prepared. Different airlines have varying rules regarding pet travel, including documentation requirements, carrier specifications, and booking procedures. Make sure to have all necessary paperwork, such as health certificates and vaccination records, and understand the airline’s policies to ensure a smooth trip.


Importing Pets: India 

Travelling with Pets? Know These Airline Rules Before You Go!

When traveling with pets, familiarize yourself with the airline’s specific rules and regulations:

  1. Health Certificates: Ensure your pet has a valid health certificate from a veterinarian.
  2. Carrier Requirements: Use an airline-approved carrier that meets size and safety standards.
  3. Advance Booking: Book your pet’s travel well in advance as airlines have limited spots for pets.
  4. Check Airline Policies: Each airline has unique policies; always confirm the latest details with customer service.

By understanding these rules and choosing a pet-friendly airline, you can make your journey with your furry friend a pleasant and hassle-free experience. Safe travels!

Pros & Cons of Using a Hand Baggage vs. Checked Bag on India Flights

Cabin Baggage vs. Checked Bag on India Flights

Hand Baggage vs. Checked Bag

When flying within India, choosing between hand baggage and a checked bag is an important decision that can impact your travel experience. Each option has its own set of advantages and disadvantages, depending on your travel needs and preferences. Hand baggage, also known as carry-on luggage, allows you to keep your belongings with you in the cabin, while checked baggage is stored in the aircraft's cargo hold. This article explores the pros and cons of using hand baggage versus checked baggage on India flights, helping you make an informed decision for your next trip.

Pros of Using Hand Baggage

  1. Convenience: Hand baggage allows for quick and easy access to your belongings during the flight.
  2. Speed: Avoid waiting at baggage claim upon arrival, saving time.
  3. Cost Savings: Most airlines include a hand baggage allowance in the ticket price, avoiding extra fees.
  4. Reduced Risk of Loss: Keeping your luggage with you reduces the risk of it being lost or mishandled.

Cons of Using Hand Baggage

  1. Size and Weight Limitations: Hand baggage must comply with strict size and weight limits, typically 7-10 kg.
  2. Security Restrictions: Liquids, gels, and sharp objects are restricted, complicating packing.
  3. Limited Space: You may not be able to carry everything you need, especially for longer trips.

Pros of Using Checked Baggage

  1. More Space: Checked bags can accommodate larger and heavier items, ideal for long trips or carrying gifts and souvenirs.
  2. Less Hassle: You don’t need to worry about finding overhead bin space or carrying heavy bags through the airport.
  3. Fewer Restrictions: Liquids and other restricted items can be packed more freely in checked baggage.

Cons of Using Checked Baggage

  1. Additional Fees: Many airlines charge for checked baggage, adding to travel costs.
  2. Waiting Time: You’ll need to wait at baggage claim to retrieve your bag, which can be time-consuming.
  3. Risk of Loss or Damage: There’s a higher risk of your luggage being lost, delayed, or damaged.

Choosing between hand baggage and checked baggage depends on the nature of your trip and personal preferences. Hand baggage offers convenience and cost savings for short trips or light packers, while checked baggage provides more space and flexibility for longer journeys. Weighing these pros and cons will help you decide the best option for your next flight within India.

Traveling to India with Precious Stones

Flying with Precious Stones to India

Precious Stones

Are you planning a trip to India with your precious stones? Whether it's diamonds, pearls, emeralds, opals, rubies, alexandrites, agates, beryls, or garnets, traveling with valuable jewelry requires careful planning and adherence to customs regulations.

Traveling to India is an exciting and enriching experience, especially for those interested in its vibrant culture and rich history. However, it's crucial to be aware of customs regulations, especially regarding jewelry. India has strict guidelines for declaring jewelry at customs to ensure proper documentation and taxation of these valuable items.

This guide will help you navigate the process, ensuring your precious stones remain safe and compliant with Indian customs laws.

Keep Your Jewelry Secure

When traveling with jewelry, always carry it in your carry-on luggage and keep it with you at all times. This minimizes the risk of loss or theft. Here are some tips to help you secure your valuables:

  • Use a sturdy, lockable bag for added security.
  • Wrap each piece of jewelry individually to prevent scratches and damage.
  • Consider purchasing travel insurance that covers high-value items like jewelry.

Do You Have to Declare Personal Jewelry at Customs in India?

Yes, declaring jewelry at customs is a legal requirement in India. This regulation aims to prevent smuggling and the illegal trade of precious metals and gemstones. By declaring your jewelry, you ensure transparency and compliance with the law. Failure to declare jewelry can result in penalties, confiscation, or even legal action.



What Constitutes as Jewelry?

In India, the term "jewelry" includes more than just gold, silver, or precious gemstones. It encompasses any items made of these materials, such as necklaces, bracelets, earrings, rings, and watches with precious metals or stones. Familiarize yourself with what constitutes jewelry to ensure you declare everything correctly.

Customs Limits and Regulations

Before packing your jewelry, it's essential to know the limits set by the Indian customs authority. These limits apply to both Indian residents and foreigners visiting the country. Note that these limits can change, so check the Indian customs website or consult with the Indian embassy or consulate in your country before your trip.

Can You Carry Stones in Hand Luggage?

Yes, you can carry stones in your hand luggage. Ensure your gemstones don't have sharp edges that could be considered a security threat. Wrap them securely to avoid any accidents. If you're packing them in checked bags, cushion your stones amidst your clothes or use bubble wrap to protect them from bumps and drops during transit.

Carrying Semi-Precious Gemstones and Artificial Jewelry

Traveling with semi-precious gemstones and artificial jewelry can sometimes cause issues at customs, especially internationally. Check the specific regulations and restrictions of the country you are traveling to, as well as any requirements for declaring these items. For example, if you're traveling from India to the USA, be aware of the regulations set by U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP). Failure to declare these items can result in penalties, so consult the CBP or their official website for accurate information.

Prepare the Required Documents

To declare your jewelry at customs, have the following documents ready:

  • Passport: Ensure it's valid and up to date for identification purposes.
  • Invoice or Receipt: Carry a copy of the invoice or receipt for each piece of jewelry. The invoice should detail the description, quantity, weight, and value of each item.
  • Self-Declaration Form: Fill out a self-declaration form, available at the customs office at the airport or downloadable from the Indian customs website. This form requires your personal details, the jewelry you're carrying, and its value.

Declare Your Jewelry at Customs

Upon arrival at an Indian airport, proceed to the customs area and follow these steps:

  1. Approach the customs officer and present your passport, self-declaration form, and invoices.
  2. Declare the jewelry you are carrying and provide necessary details as requested.
  3. The customs officer may inspect the jewelry physically or ask you to put it through an X-ray machine for verification.
  4. After verification, the customs officer will provide you with a signed and stamped copy of the self-declaration form.
  5. Keep this stamped copy safe, as you may need to present it to customs officials upon departure from India.

Tips for a Smooth Declaration Process

  • Declare All Jewelry: Even if an item is of sentimental value or you believe it won’t be noticed, declare all jewelry you are carrying. Non-declaration can lead to severe consequences.
  • Be Transparent: Answer all questions asked by the customs officer truthfully and provide accurate information. Honesty and transparency are key to a hassle-free declaration process.
  • Photograph Your Jewelry: Before your trip, take clear photographs of all the jewelry you are carrying. This serves as proof of ownership and helps in case of disputes or loss during the declaration process.

Declaring jewelry at customs in India is a necessary step to ensure compliance with the law and avoid legal complications. By following these guidelines, you can travel with your precious stones confidently and securely.

Can You Carry Coconut on India Flights?

Can I take coconuts on a plane?

In India, coconuts hold cultural and religious significance, often accompanying travelers. However, airport security in India may require passengers to leave coconuts behind to comply with safety regulations and mitigate potential risks associated with transporting them.

Traveling with food items, especially something as specific as a coconut, can raise questions about airline regulations, airport security and customs policies. Whether you’re flying domestically within India or internationally, it’s important to know the rules and guidelines for carrying such items to ensure a smooth travel experience.

Although coconuts are typically seen as harmless tropical fruits, their high oil content poses a fire hazard. Coconut oil has a low flash point, meaning it can ignite at relatively low temperatures. This makes coconut meat a potential fire risk, especially in confined spaces like airplanes.

This article explores the regulations for carrying coconuts on both domestic and international flights to and from India.

Domestic Flights Within India

To ensure the safety of passengers and crew, coconuts are prohibited in both hand luggage and checked luggage. This ban primarily targets copra, the dried coconut meat, which is highly combustible due to its dryness and high oil content. Consequently, the ban also applies to whole coconuts, given their potential risk as dangerous goods.

International Flights to and from India

When it comes to international flights, the regulations can be more complex due to different countries' customs and agricultural policies:

Export from India: For departing flights from India, carrying coconuts in checked baggage is less clear. Please confirm with your airline. However, it’s important to declare any food items at customs to avoid any penalties or confiscation.

Import Regulations: The regulations for bringing coconuts into another country vary significantly. Many countries have strict rules regarding the importation of agricultural products to prevent the spread of pests and diseases. It is crucial to check the customs regulations of your destination country.

  • United States: The US has stringent rules about bringing plant products, including coconuts. You must declare them upon arrival, and they may be inspected by the US Department of Agriculture. In US, civil penalties may be assessed for failure to declare prohibited agricultural products and may range up to $1,000 per first-time offense for non-commercial quantities.
  • European Union: EU countries also have strict regulations. It’s advisable to declare coconuts and be prepared for them to be inspected or even confiscated.
  • Australia and New Zealand: Both countries are very strict about biosecurity. Bringing coconuts requires thorough inspection, and in many cases, it’s better to avoid carrying them.

Airline Regulations: Different airlines may have varied rules regarding the transport of coconuts on international flights. Always check with the airline beforehand to ensure compliance with their policies.

Practical Tips for Traveling with Coconuts

  1. Check Airline Policies: Before traveling, review the airline’s policy on carrying coconuts. Contact customer service if you’re unsure.
  2. Declare at Customs: Always declare food items at customs, both when departing and arriving. This can prevent fines and ensure a smoother travel experience.
  3. Consider Alternatives: If carrying whole coconuts is too complicated, consider alternatives like desiccated coconut or coconut products that are less likely to raise issues with customs.

Coconuts are prohibited on flights due to their high oil content, posing a fire hazard. This ban also includes copra, the dried coconut meat, due to its increased flammability. However, sealed retail-packaged coconut products are generally permitted as they are considered safer. Whole coconuts are allowed without specific quantity limits, but opened or packaged coconuts may require additional screening. It is essential to comply with the final decisions of airport security officers at checkpoints to ensure the safety and security of all passengers.

How to Pay the Custom Duty at Indian Airports

Custom Duty Payments

Paying custom duty at Indian International airports can be a straightforward process if you understand the accepted forms of payment and the procedures involved. Whether you're bringing in goods that exceed the duty-free allowance or carrying items that require duty payment, this guide will help you navigate the customs payment process smoothly.

All customs duty payments for baggage items must be made at the State Bank of India counter in the Arrival Hall.

There are numerous occasions when passenger baggage gets lost or mishandled by airlines. In such cases, passengers must obtain a certificate from the airline and have it countersigned by Customs, specifying the unutilized portion of the free allowance. This allows passengers to use the unused duty-free allowance when their baggage is delivered.

A passenger may also request Customs to detain their baggage for re-export upon departure from India or for later clearance on payment of duty. The detained baggage will be examined, fully inventoried, and kept in Customs' custody. A Detention Receipt will be issued for the baggage.

Accepted Forms of Payment at India Airports

If you need to pay customs duty, you will be directed to the customs duty payment counter. There, you can pay using accepted methods such as cash or credit/debit cards. After making the payment, be sure to obtain a receipt for the transaction.

1. Cash

You can pay the custom duty in cash using Indian Rupees (INR). Cash payments are often the quickest method, but ensure you have enough local currency on hand to cover the duty amount.

2. Foreign Currency

Payment Counter accepts several foreign currencies, including:

  • United States Dollar (USD)
  • Euro (EUR)
  • Mexican Peso (MXN)
  • Pound Sterling (GBP)
  • Australian Dollar (AUD)
  • Japanese Yen (JPY)
  • Canadian Dollar (CAD)
  • Swiss Franc (CHF)
  • United Arab Emirates Dirham (AED)
  • Saudi Riyal (SAR)
  • Singapore Dollar (SGD)

Make sure to check the current exchange rates and convert your money beforehand if necessary, as the exchange rate at the airport may not be favorable.

3. Credit Card / Debit Card

Credit cards and Debit Cards are widely accepted for paying custom duties. Most major credit cards, such as Visa, MasterCard, and American Express, are accepted. Be aware that there might be additional charges for using a credit card, depending on your card issuer’s policies and any foreign transaction fees.

4. Indian Rupees (INR)

Payments can be made in Indian Rupees, the local currency. If you’re arriving from abroad, you can convert your money to INR at currency exchange counters within the airport.

5. Check

While less common, It’s advisable to confirm beforehand if this payment method is available.

What If You Don’t Have Money in Hand at the Airport?

If you find yourself without sufficient funds to pay the custom duty upon arrival, don’t panic. Here are a few steps you can take:

1. Currency Exchange Counters

Most international airports in India have currency exchange counters where you can convert foreign currency to INR.

2. ATMs

There are ATMs available at the airport where you can withdraw cash using your debit or credit card. Ensure your card is enabled for international transactions and check the withdrawal limit.

3. Credit Card Payment

As mentioned, using a credit card is a convenient option. If you don’t have cash, paying with a credit card is often the best alternative.

4. Seek Assistance

Approach the customs officials for assistance. They might offer solutions or direct you to facilities where you can access funds. In some cases, they may hold your goods temporarily until you can arrange payment.

How Long Do You Have to Pay Customs Duty?

Upon arrival, you are generally required to pay the custom duty immediately before you can proceed through customs and leave the airport. Customs officials will assess your goods and calculate the duty based on the applicable rates.

Temporary Holding

If you are unable to pay the custom duty immediately, customs may hold your goods temporarily. You will be given a certain period (usually a few days) to arrange for payment. Failing to pay within this period may result in penalties, additional fees, or confiscation of the goods.

Official Receipts

Always ensure you get an official receipt for the duty paid. This receipt will be necessary if you need to claim your goods back or if there are any disputes about the payment.

Paying custom duty at Indian airports is a straightforward process if you are prepared. Knowing the accepted forms of payment—cash, foreign currency, credit card, check, and Indian Rupees—can help you avoid any last-minute hassles. If you find yourself without sufficient funds at the airport, you can use ATMs, currency exchange counters, or credit cards to make the payment. Remember to handle the payment promptly to avoid penalties or confiscation of your goods. Safe travels!

 Delhi Airport Customs

Chennai Customs 

Can I Carry Sandalwood in Flight?

Are There Restrictions on Carrying Sandalwood on India Flights?

While it is generally permissible to carry small quantities of sandalwood, sandalwood handicraft products, or essential oils in your carry-on baggage for personal use, large quantities are prohibited.

What sets Indian sandalwood apart from other varieties is its exceptionally high concentration of alpha and beta santalols, comprising 70-90% of these compounds.


Is Sandalwood Banned from Export in India?

Yes, the export of sandalwood is highly regulated in India. Due to the declining population of sandalwood trees and their high value, the Indian government has placed strict controls on the trade of this precious wood. The export of sandalwood and its products is generally prohibited, except under certain conditions and with the necessary permits.

If you attempt to export sandalwood without proper authorization, customs officials are likely to confiscate it. The regulations are in place to prevent illegal trade and ensure the sustainable management of sandalwood resources.

If you are considering exporting sandalwood, it is essential to consult with the relevant authorities and obtain the necessary permits and documentation to comply with Indian laws and international regulations.

Will Customs Confiscate Sandalwood?

Carrying sandalwood in passenger flights is a violation of the provisions of India's Customs Rule. If you are caught with sandalwood without proper authorization, customs officials are likely to confiscate it. These regulations are in place to prevent illegal trade and to protect the diminishing sandalwood resources.

Guidelines for Carrying Sandalwood in Flight

If you need to carry sandalwood, it is always recommended to check with the airline beforehand to ensure there are no specific restrictions or regulations in place. While sandalwood is generally allowed in carry-on bags, there are some guidelines you should follow to ensure a smooth travel experience:

  1. Pack Separately: When packing your carry-on bag, it is suggested to pack religious or cultural items, such as sandalwood, in a container that can be separated from other belongings and placed by itself in a bin for X-ray screening.

  2. Use Clear Containers: It is recommended to use a clear plastic bag or other clear plastic container that can be easily opened for screening. This will help expedite the security process and minimize the risk of your items being mishandled.

  3. Avoid Checked Baggage: It is recommended not to place delicate religious items in checked baggage, as there is a chance they may need to be inspected during the screening process. Keeping these items in your carry-on ensures they remain under your control and reduces the risk of damage or loss.

While it is generally permissible to carry sandalwood in your carry-on baggage for personal use, exporting sandalwood without proper authorization is a violation of Indian laws. To avoid complications, always check with your airline and ensure you have the necessary permits and documentation if you plan to carry or export sandalwood. By following these guidelines, you can ensure that your travel experience remains hassle-free and compliant with all regulations.

Sandalwood is sold in retail markets in India through the Khadi and Gramodyog Bhavan network. Wholesale buyers can access sandalwood from licensed wholesalers who obtain their stock through Forest Department auctions. Private individuals growing sandalwood trees must register them with the Tree Officer and obtain permission for cutting and transporting the wood and branches for extracting sandalwood oil.

Forest Department AP

Is Pooja Items Allowed in India Flights?

Can we take Pooja items in flight
Pooja Items

Traveling with religious items, particularly for spiritual practices like pooja, can raise questions regarding airline policies, especially when flying within or from India. Here’s a comprehensive guide to what pooja items you can carry on flights, based on common airline policies and security regulations.

General Guidelines for Carrying Pooja Items on Flights

Metal God Idols

You are allowed to carry metal god idols in your checked luggage when traveling internationally. However, if the idol is made of precious metals like gold or silver and is substantial in weight, you must declare it to customs at the departure point. This applies to popular idols such as those of Ganesh.

Diyas and Ghee

While diyas are permissible in hand luggage, ghee must be packed in your checked baggage. The flammability of ghee makes it unsuitable for carry-on luggage, but there are no such restrictions on diyas, provided they do not contain oil or ghee at the time of travel.

God Idols in Cabin Baggage

When it comes to cabin baggage, packing religious or pooja items requires careful consideration. It is advisable to pack these items in a clear plastic bag or container. This allows for easier inspection at security checks without the need to handle the items directly, preserving their sanctity.

TSA Rules for Religious Items

The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) has specific guidelines for carrying religious items. These items should be placed in a clear container and laid out in a separate bin during X-ray screening. Avoid using metal containers as they complicate the screening process. Delicate items should ideally not be placed in checked baggage to avoid damage during routine inspections.

Screening Process

Inform the TSA officer if any religious item requires special handling or if you prefer it not be touched due to religious reasons. Items like religious knives, kirpans or swords must be stowed in checked baggage, as they are not permitted through security checkpoints.

Specific Airline Policies

Different Indian airlines might have specific policies regarding the transport of pooja items:

  • Air India
  • IndiGo
  • Vistara
  • SpiceJet

Each airline adheres to international and domestic regulations but may have additional provisions or assistance for transporting religious items. It is recommended to contact the airline directly or visit their website for the most accurate guidance.

Is Agarbatti Allowed in International Flights?

Solid incense sticks (agarbatti) are typically allowed in checked luggage. They should be securely packed to prevent damage and, while not usually required, declaring them to the airline as potentially flammable items is prudent.

Carrying pooja items on flights does not have to be complicated. By understanding and adhering to airline policies and TSA guidelines, you can ensure that your religious items are transported safely and respectfully. Always check the latest regulations and airline policies before your journey to avoid any inconveniences at the airport.

India Domestic Airline ticket taxes and fees

Taxes and Fees on Indian Airline Tickets
India Domestic Airline

When booking a domestic flight in India, the final price you pay often includes various taxes and fees, which can significantly inflate the base fare. Understanding these additional charges can help you better appreciate the costs involved and possibly influence your travel planning and budgeting. Here's a breakdown of what typically constitutes the taxes and fees on an Indian domestic airline ticket.

Base Fare and Airline Charges

The base fare is the fundamental cost of the airline ticket, determined by the airline based on demand, route competition, and other commercial factors. On top of this, airlines may add charges for fuel, which although significantly lower than in the past due to deregulation, might still be listed separately on some tickets as a fuel surcharge.

Government Taxes and Fees

The Indian government levies several taxes and fees on air travel, which are automatically included in your ticket price:

GST on flight tickets in India

1. Goods and Services Tax (GST)

GST is applied to the base fare and substantially impacts the overall ticket price. The rate depends on the class of travel:

  • Economy class is charged at 5%.
  • Business class is charged at 12%.

2. Passenger Service Fee (PSF)

The PSF is charged by the airport to cover the security and passenger facilities provided. As of now, this fee generally stands at INR 150 per passenger for each sector.

3. User Development Fee (UDF)

UDF is levied by airports and varies widely depending on the airport you are flying from. This fee goes towards the development and maintenance of airport facilities. For example, passengers flying out of major metro airports like Delhi and Mumbai might pay more compared to those flying from smaller regional airports.

4. Regional Connectivity Scheme (RCS) Fee

To promote air connectivity to smaller cities, the government has initiated the RCS, under which a nominal fee is levied on each ticket. This fee is usually around INR 5,000 per flight and is aimed at subsidizing the cost of operations on less profitable routes.

Airline-Specific Charges

1. Meal and Seat Selection Fees

These are optional charges that passengers may incur if they choose added comforts or conveniences, such as meal preferences or specific seat selections. Airlines like IndiGo, SpiceJet, and others typically offer these services at an additional cost which varies depending on the service and the duration of the flight.

2. Baggage Fees

Most airlines provide a standard baggage allowance, but charges for extra baggage can significantly increase the cost of travel. These fees are set by the airlines and can vary.

Understanding the components that make up the total cost of your flight ticket is key to becoming a savvy traveler. While the base fare often draws in customers with seemingly low prices, the additional taxes and fees can lead to a much higher total cost. Being aware of these charges not only helps in comparing prices more effectively but also in planning your travel budget more accurately. Always check the fare breakdown before booking to ensure there are no surprises, and consider these costs when planning your trips within India.

Transporting Refrigerated Medication on India Flights

How To Travel With Medicine That Needs To Stay Cold
Refrigerated Medication

Traveling with medication that requires refrigeration adds an extra layer of complexity to your journey, especially when navigating India's diverse landscapes and bustling airports. Whether you're exploring the majestic Himalayas or soaking up the sun in Goa, here are essential tips for safely packing and transporting cold-chain medications for air travel, whether in your handbag or checked bags.

Affordable Eye and Ear Drops in India Attracting NRIs
Eye and ear drops are notably more affordable in India, prompting many Non-Resident Indians (NRIs) to bring them back home. Among these medications are Latanoprost, Azasite, and Chloramphenicol, which require refrigeration for proper storage.

Understanding Your Medication

Before embarking on your journey, it's crucial to understand the specific requirements of your medication. Some drugs, such as insulin, certain vaccines, eye drops, and biologics, need to be stored within a narrow temperature range to maintain their effectiveness. Consult your healthcare provider or pharmacist for guidance on proper storage and transportation.

Choose the Right Packaging

Invest in insulated containers or travel coolers designed to maintain cold temperatures for an extended period. These containers are typically equipped with gel packs or ice packs that help regulate the temperature inside, providing a safe environment for your medication during transit.

Refrigerated Meds

Can you take ice packs on a plane for medication?

Yes, you can take ice packs on a plane for medication. They are allowed in carry-on or checked bags to keep medication cool. Make sure to inform security and pack them properly to prevent leaks or spills.

How do you pack cold medicine for travel?

When traveling, pack cold medicine in your carry-on bag for safety. Keep medications in original containers and place them in a labeled plastic bag within a cooling container. This ensures security and ease of access during your journey.

Plan Ahead for Air Travel

When flying within India, plan your travel itinerary with your medication in mind. Opt for direct flights whenever possible to minimize the time your medication spends outside of refrigeration. Additionally, inform airline staff about your medical condition and the need to carry refrigerated medication to ensure smooth security checks and boarding procedures.

Handbag or Checked Bags: Know Your Options

Deciding whether to carry your medication in your handbag or checked bags depends on several factors, including the duration of your flight, the availability of in-flight refrigeration, and the size of your medication supply. As a general rule, it's recommended to keep your medication close at hand in your carry-on bag to maintain control over its temperature and accessibility.

Tips for Handbag Storage

If storing your medication in your handbag, use a compact insulated pouch or mini cooler to keep it secure and protected from temperature fluctuations. Place gel packs or frozen water bottles alongside your medication to maintain cold temperatures throughout your journey. Remember to inform security personnel about your refrigerated medication during screening processes.

Considerations for Checked Bags

If you must stow your medication in checked luggage, take extra precautions to ensure its safety. Pack your medication in a sturdy insulated container and place it in the center of your suitcase surrounded by clothing or towels for additional insulation. Label the container clearly with a "Medical Supplies" sticker to alert baggage handlers to its importance.

Monitor Temperature Throughout Your Journey

Stay vigilant about monitoring the temperature of your medication throughout your journey. Carry a portable thermometer to periodically check the temperature inside your insulated container and adjust as needed by adding or removing gel packs.

Emergency Preparedness

In case of unexpected delays or emergencies, carry extra medication doses and a backup cooling method, such as instant cold packs or a portable refrigerator. Familiarize yourself with local pharmacies and medical facilities at your destination in case you need assistance replenishing your medication supply.

Which drugs require cold storage?

Injections Requiring Pharmaceutical Cold Storage: Some pharmaceuticals are safe to store at room temperature for a limited time, typically around a month. However, beyond this period, refrigeration becomes essential to preserve their integrity. Here are some examples:

  • Insulin
  • Victoza
  • Botox
  • Humira
  • Byetta
  • All vaccines
  • Caverject

Tablets Requiring Refrigeration: While tablets are often associated with room temperature storage, certain medications necessitate refrigeration to maintain their potency. These include:

  • Alkeran
  • VePesid
  • Leukeran

Ear and Eye Drops Requiring Refrigeration: Even liquids for topical use like ear and eye drops require refrigeration in some cases to prevent degradation. Notable examples are:

  • Azasite
  • Chloramphenicol
  • Latanoprost

Refrigeration Isn’t Just for Medicine: It's not only medications that require refrigeration; biological materials like blood, tissue, and organs also depend on it for preservation. For instance, clinical trials and biological samples must be stored at extremely low temperatures, such as -150 degrees Celsius, for a minimum of 10 days to maintain their viability.

Ensuring proper storage conditions for pharmaceuticals and biological materials is essential to uphold their efficacy and safety standards. Whether it's vaccines, tablets, or biological samples, maintaining the cold chain is crucial in the healthcare industry.

Final Thoughts

Traveling with medication that requires refrigeration requires careful planning and preparation, but with the right strategies in place, you can ensure the safety and efficacy of your treatment while exploring the wonders of India. By following these essential travel tips and taking proactive measures to protect your medication, you can embark on your journey with confidence and peace of mind. Safe travels!

Can we claim GST on flight tickets in India?

Navigating GST on Flight Tickets in India: What You Need to Know
India Domestic Flight

As travelers, we're often on the lookout for ways to make our journeys more cost-effective. One question that frequently arises is whether we can claim Goods and Services Tax (GST) on flight tickets in India.

What Does Your Airline Ticket Really Cost: The Breakdown
The total price of a flight ticket comprises the base fare, fees, and taxes. Beyond the base fare, additional fees and taxes are included in the total amount, ensuring transparency and providing travelers with a comprehensive understanding of the cost associated with their journey.

Let's delve into this topic to understand the ins and outs of GST and its applicability to air travel.

Understanding GST:

Goods and Services Tax, commonly known as GST, is an indirect tax levied on the supply of goods and services. Introduced in India in 2017, GST replaced multiple indirect taxes to streamline the taxation system and promote ease of doing business.

GST on Flight Tickets:

When it comes to air travel, GST is applicable to the sale of flight tickets. The applicable GST rate on domestic and international flight tickets varies, with different rates for economy class, business class, and first class.

Can You Claim GST on Flight Tickets?

While GST is levied on the purchase of flight tickets, travelers typically cannot claim input tax credit (ITC) for the GST paid on these tickets. Input tax credit allows businesses to claim a credit for the GST they pay on their purchases, reducing their overall tax liability. However, since flight tickets are generally purchased for personal or non-business purposes, claiming ITC on them is not permissible.

What are the GST rates for international flights in India?

 Understanding the GST Rates for International Flight Tickets and Input Tax Credit: For travelers flying Economy class, a 5% GST rate applies to international travel. Meanwhile, Business and Premium Economy class passengers are subject to a 12% GST rate." 

Exceptions and Special Circumstances:

There are certain exceptions and special circumstances where GST on flight tickets may be eligible for input tax credit. For instance, if the flight tickets are purchased for business-related travel or by a company for its employees, input tax credit may be claimable, subject to compliance with GST regulations and documentation requirements.

In summary, while GST is applicable to the purchase of flight tickets in India, claiming input tax credit on these tickets is generally not permissible for individual travelers. However, businesses may be eligible to claim input tax credit in certain circumstances, such as for business-related travel expenses. It's essential to consult with a tax advisor or financial expert for personalized guidance regarding GST implications and compliance.

As you plan your travels and manage your finances, understanding the nuances of GST on flight tickets can help you make informed decisions and navigate the taxation landscape with confidence.

Indigo Refund 

In case of a missed flights/ no show, all statutory taxes and User Development Fee (UDF)/Airport Development Fee (ADF)/ Passenger Service Fee (PSF) will be refunded.

To claim No-Show taxes, please click on 'Edit Booking' and enter your booking reference number and email id.

Air India Ticket Refund 

Restrictions on Mercury-Filled Thermometers on Indian Flights

Ban on Mercury-Filled Thermometers on Indian Flights
Mercury-Filled Thermometer

Travelers heading to or from India with certain items need to be aware of specific restrictions that impact what can be brought aboard flights. A key restriction that often goes unnoticed until the last moment involves mercury-filled items like thermometers and barometers.

However, most modern liquid-filled thermometers now use alcohol instead of mercury, and thus are not subject to the restrictions.

Why the Restriction?

Mercury-filled thermometers and similar devices are prohibited on flights in India due to the inherent risks associated with mercury, a substance that can be highly dangerous. These instruments contain mercury that could potentially leak when subjected to the changes in pressure and temperature typical of air travel. Such a leak could pose serious safety hazards, including contamination and the risk of fire.

The Science Behind the Rule

The concern primarily lies with mercury’s properties and behavior under flight conditions. As an aircraft ascends or descends, significant changes in temperature and pressure occur. Mercury, being highly sensitive to such changes, can expand or contract, potentially leading to a breach in the containment of the thermometer or barometer. This could release mercury vapor into the cabin, a toxiac substance harmful to both passengers and the environment.

Mercury has a corrosive effect on aluminum, which is a primary material used in aircraft construction. Should a mercury thermometer break aboard an aircraft, the released mercury could start to corrode the aluminum components. This corrosion can be severe and, if not addressed promptly, could potentially compromise the structural integrity of the aircraft, leading to catastrophic outcomes. Therefore, the presence of mercury on aircraft is not only hazardous but could also be destructive if containment fails.

Alternative Solutions

Travelers needing to measure temperature or atmospheric pressure can opt for digital devices, which are safe and permissible on flights. These alternatives do not contain mercury and thus pose no risk in terms of leakage or toxicity.

Practical Tips for Compliance

  • Check your devices: Before packing, ensure that none of your items contain mercury.
  • Seek alternatives: Opt for digital or alcohol-filled thermometers.
  • Stay informed: Regulations may update or change, so checking the latest travel guidelines from your airline or the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) is prudent.

Thermometers requiring mercury have largely been phased out. None of the medical or culinary items in our home contain mercury anymore.

While the restrictions on mercury-filled thermometers and other such items might complicate preparations for some travelers, they are in place to ensure the safety of all passengers aboard. By opting for safer alternatives and staying informed about travel regulations, you can ensure a smooth and safe journey on Indian flights.

Can we carry silver utensils in a hand baggage?

Silver Utensils in Hand Baggage
silver utensils 

Traveling with silver utensils—whether spoons, forks, or even a silver teapot —can raise questions about what is permissible to bring aboard a commercial airplane in your carry-on luggage. Here's what you need to know:

1. General Guidelines for Silver Utensils: Generally, you can carry silver utensils in your hand baggage. These items typically include silver spoons, forks, and small bowls. However, it's crucial to check with the specific airline you're flying with since airline policies can vary, and some might have restrictions or guidelines concerning metal utensils due to their potential use as weapons.

2. Sharp and Pointed Silverware: While non-pointed silver utensils might be allowed, sharp objects such as silver knives or items that could potentially be used as a weapon are not permitted in carry-on luggage. If you must travel with such items, they should be securely packed in your checked baggage.

3. Metal Teapots and Larger Items: For larger silver items like metal teapots, the main consideration is whether the item fits within the airline's size specifications for carry-on luggage. It must fit in the overhead bin or under the seat in front of you. Checking with the airline before traveling will clarify if such an item can be included in your carry-on baggage.

4. Precious Silverware: When it comes to valuable or precious silverware, such as a silver plate or ornamental pieces, it's advisable to keep them in your carry-on luggage to avoid loss or damage. Always ensure these items are allowed by the airline and can be adequately secured in your carry-on.

5. Silver Bars: Traveling with silver bars, often considered as valuable goods, requires careful consideration. Typically, it is allowed to carry silver bars in your luggage; however, for security reasons and to avoid potential theft, keeping them in carry-on luggage is recommended. Again, verifying this with the airline is crucial, as they may have specific guidelines or require declaration of valuable items.

6. Airport and Local Regulations: It's essential to be aware of the local regulations at the airport from which you are departing. Airports may have their own security measures, especially regarding metal objects. Checking the airport's security policies can help ensure that you comply with their requirements and avoid any inconvenience during the security screening process.

While most non-sharp silver utensils can be transported in hand luggage, always check the specific regulations of both the airline and the departure airport to ensure compliance. For valuable silver items, keeping them in your carry-on is safer, but again, check with your airline for any particular security advice or requirements.

Which Indian Flights Have TV Screens?

In Flight Entertainment in India Flights

Flight TV screens 

When flying, in-flight entertainment can be a major factor in the overall travel experience, especially on longer routes. Many passengers prefer airlines that provide individual TV screens, allowing them to enjoy movies, TV shows, and other multimedia content. Let's explore the availability of TV screens on some of India's major airlines: Air India, Vistara, and IndiGo.

Air India

Air India, the flag carrier airline of India, offers a relatively consistent in-flight entertainment experience across its long-haul fleet. Most of its international aircraft are equipped with personal TV screens in both Economy and Business class. Passengers can enjoy a variety of movies, TV shows, and music options. 

For domestic flights, the availability of personal screens varies, and passengers might find this feature primarily on newer or recently refurbished aircraft.


Vistara, known for its premium service, provides personal TV screens on many of its aircraft. This feature is commonly available on its international flights, particularly those operated by Boeing 787 Dreamliners and Airbus A321neo aircraft. On these flights, passengers can access a wide range of entertainment options on their personal screens. 

However, for domestic routes, especially on short-haul flights, the availability of personal screens is limited to certain aircraft types.


IndiGo, India’s largest airline by passenger numbers, operates primarily on a low-cost carrier model. This means that while it offers competitive fares, it generally does not provide personal TV screens across its fleet. Instead, IndiGo focuses on maintaining a lean cost structure and quick turnaround times, which typically preclude such amenities. 

However, IndiGo does offer a streaming service where passengers can access entertainment on their own devices via an onboard Wi-Fi network.


SpiceJet, another prominent low-cost carrier in India, does not generally offer personal TV screens. Similar to IndiGo, SpiceJet provides a content streaming service where passengers can access entertainment through their own devices via an onboard Wi-Fi connection.

GoAir (now Go First) (insolvency)

GoAir, which has rebranded itself as Go First, operates under a low-cost model and does not include personal TV screens in its in-flight amenities. The airline focuses on economical fares and efficient operations, thus, personal screens are not part of their service offerings.

 The provision of personal TV screens on Indian flights varies by airline and often by the type of aircraft and the route being flown. Air India and Vistara offer a more traditional in-flight entertainment experience with personal screens on many of their longer and international routes. In contrast, IndiGo opts for a more modern approach by providing content streaming to personal devices, reflecting its low-cost business model. For travelers for whom in-flight entertainment is important, it is advisable to check the specific aircraft and services while booking their tickets.

Carrying pressure cooker in Flight

Guidelines for Carrying Cookers and Steel Utensils on Flights
Carrying cooker in Flight

Traveling with kitchen appliances like pressure cookers and utensils is not uncommon, especially for those relocating or wanting the comforts of home while abroad. However, there are strict regulations on what you can and cannot bring aboard an aircraft, both in carry-on and checked luggage. 

Here’s a detailed look at the rules regarding carrying pressure cookers and steel utensils on flights.

Can Pressure Cookers Be Carried in Checked Baggage?

Yes, you can generally carry cookers in your checked baggage. This includes rice cookers, slow cookers, and electric stoves. However, it's crucial to ensure that the appliance is clean and free from any food residue to avoid any issues during security checks. It's also a good idea to securely pack the cooker to prevent any damage during transit.

Can I Take a Pressure Cooker in My Carry-On?

Typically, portable cookers are not allowed in carry-on luggage. The restrictions are mainly due to safety concerns associated with the heating elements and installation requirements of these appliances. Airlines and security agencies worry about the potential fire hazard posed by the internal components and electrical circuits of cookers.

Pressure Cookers


Can I Bring a Slow Cooker as a Carry-On?

Slow cookers, due to their size and functionality, fall into the same category as other cookers and are generally not permitted in carry-on luggage. It is advisable to check them in and ensure they are well-packed to handle the rigors of checked baggage handling.

Can I Bring an Electric Stove on a Plane?

Electric stoves are not allowed in carry-on luggage for safety reasons. However, they can be transported in checked luggage. As with other cookers, make sure the stove is clean and free of grease or food particles. Securely packing your electric stove can help prevent any damage.

Are Steel Utensils Allowed in Flight?

Steel utensils are typically allowed in checked baggage without any restrictions. However, carrying them in your carry-on luggage can be problematic. Items like knives, forks, and large spoons can be considered potential weapons and are usually not permitted in carry-on bags. Smaller or plastic utensils are often acceptable.

Tips for Packing Cookers and Utensils for Air Travel:

  1. Clean Your Appliances: Ensure all kitchen items are clean and free from oil, grease, or food.
  2. Pack Securely: Use bubble wrap or towels to protect your appliances and utensils from damage.
  3. Check Airline Policies: Before packing, always check the specific airline’s policies regarding what is permissible.
  4. Prepare for Inspection: Be ready to unpack your appliances for security checks if requested.

Traveling with cookers and kitchen utensils requires careful preparation and understanding of the rules that govern air travel. By following these guidelines, you can ensure a smooth journey while keeping your essential cooking tools with you.

Denied boarding? Airline must pay 20k

Denied boarding due to overbooked flight? Flight
As the bustling travel season picks up, it's essential to be prepared for the unexpected—like being denied boarding on your flight. Whether due to overbooking, weather disruptions, or other reasons, knowing your rights can make all the difference. 

Flight cancellations and delays due to poor weather and low visibility are troubling passengers in India again. What can you do in these situations, and what are your rights as a passenger?

Let's dive into what you can do if you find yourself in this frustrating situation.

Compensation for Denied Boarding

First things first: compensation. In India, if you're denied boarding against your will, the airline is obligated to compensate you, as per the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) guidelines. The amount varies based on the flight duration:

  • Flights under 1 hour: Rs 5,000 or the booked one-way basic fare plus airline fuel charge, whichever is lower.
  • Flights between 1 to 2 hours: Rs 10,000 or the booked one-way basic fare plus airline fuel charge, whichever is lower.
  • Flights over 2 hours: Rs 20,000 or the booked one-way basic fare plus airline fuel charge, whichever is lower.

These compensations are designed to mitigate the inconvenience caused to passengers due to denied boarding.

What to Do If Denied Boarding

When you're denied boarding, the airline should offer you an alternative flight or a full refund of your ticket, including taxes. You should:

  • Ask for written documentation stating the reason for denied boarding.
  • Request immediate compensation as applicable.
  • Choose between a refund or an alternative flight. If you opt for an alternative, the airline should also provide assistance like food, refreshments, and accommodation if necessary.

Can I Get a Refund?

Absolutely! If you decide not to travel at all, you are entitled to a full refund of your ticket, not just compensation. Make sure to process this request at the airport if possible or through the airline’s customer service.

Tips for Managing Denied Boarding

  • Arrive early: Being early at check-in can sometimes help avoid being bumped in case of an overbooked flight.
  • Know the policy: Familiarize yourself with the airline's policy on denied boarding before you travel.
  • Keep documentation handy: Save all your travel documents and any communication with the airline regarding the denied boarding.

Denied boarding can disrupt your travel plans, but knowing your rights ensures you’re not left at a disadvantage. Stay informed, ask for your entitled benefits, and most importantly, keep a cool head to manage the situation effectively. Safe travels, and remember to check back for more travel tips and updates! 

Duty Free Liquor Allowance India

 Liquor Limit in International Flight to India
Duty Free Liquor Allowance India

As we gear up for our international adventures, a common query that pops up is about the duty-free liquor allowance for India. Whether you're returning home or visiting, it's exciting to bring back some fine spirits from around the world. Today, I'm here to clarify how much liquor you can legally carry on your international flight to India without any hitches at customs.

Understanding the Basics

India has specific rules regarding the amount of alcohol one can bring into the country duty-free. These rules are designed to balance the enjoyment of travelers with regulatory requirements. Let's break down these allowances:

The Allowance

As of the latest guidelines, passengers flying into India are permitted to bring up to 2 liters of alcoholic beverages as part of their duty-free luggage. This is a combined limit meaning you could opt for two 1-liter bottles of your favorite spirits or perhaps one luxurious 2-liter edition if you find something truly special!

The total allowance is 2 liters duty-free, or up to 5 liters with customs duty applied. Additional purchases can be made at the duty-free shops upon arrival at your destination airport.

The total quantity must not exceed 2 liters, regardless of the number of bottles. 

What Counts as Duty-Free?

Duty-free alcohol refers to the liquor purchased at duty-free shops located in international airports or aboard international flights. These purchases are exempt from local taxes and duties at the point of sale, provided they are within the allowed limits.

Navigating Through Customs

When you arrive in India, your duty-free alcohol needs to be declared at the customs if you exceed the set limit. It’s always a good idea to keep your receipts handy for any duty-free purchases as customs officers may request to see proof of purchase and verify the amount of alcohol you are carrying.

If you carry more than the allowed 2 liters of liquor, you must declare the total amount by passing through the red channel, not the green channel.

Customs will charge a duty of 150% of the purchase value on any liquor exceeding the duty-free limit.

If you choose to go through the green channel without declaring your extra liquor and are caught, you will face a penalty of double the excise duty.

Therefore, it's advisable to limit the amount of liquor you bring into the country to 2 liters unless you are willing to pay the additional customs duty. 

Tips for a Smooth Experience

Liquor Allowance
  1. Keep Receipts: Always retain your purchase receipts until you clear customs in India.
  2. Be Aware of Restrictions: Some states in India might have stricter rules on alcohol, so it's wise to check the regulations of your particular destination state.
  3. Pack Appropriately: Ensure that your alcohol is securely packed. Most duty-free shops provide robust packaging to handle the rigors of travel.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I carry additional liquor beyond the duty-free allowance? 

Yes, 5 liters is Maximun allowed but it will be subject to duty fees. The charges depend on the type and quantity of liquor beyond the exempted 2 liters.

Are there any restrictions on the type of alcohol I can bring? 

When bringing alcohol into India, there are generally no specific restrictions on the type of alcohol you can carry within your duty-free allowance. This means you can bring various types of spirits and beverages including whiskey, wine, bourbon, vodka, rum, and more. The key is to ensure that the total quantity does not exceed the allowed 2 liters per person.

It's important to note, however, that some states in India may have their own additional restrictions or rules regarding alcohol, including limits on certain types of alcoholic beverages due to local laws. Therefore, it's a good idea to check the specific regulations of the state you are visiting in India to avoid any issues upon arrival. 

What if I’m transferring through multiple international airports? 

The duty-free limit applies to your entry into India, regardless of how many airports you’ve passed through. However, purchasing duty-free from the last airport before arriving in India is usually the best approach to avoid complications.

Final Thoughts

Bringing back a bottle or two of your favorite spirits from travels can be a great way to extend the pleasure of your trip. Just remember to adhere to these guidelines, and you’ll breeze through customs without any problems. Keep an eye on this space for any updates on duty-free shopping and travel tips. Safe travels and happy shopping!

Custom Rules India 

Should You Put Cotton in Your Ears on Flights?

Is It Effective to Use Cotton in Your Ears While Flying?

Ah, the age-old question: to cotton or not to cotton during flights? Many travelers swear by this simple hack to alleviate discomfort during takeoff and landing, but does it really work? Let’s delve into the science behind it and explore whether placing cotton in your ears can prevent pressure changes or offer any other benefits.

Understanding Ear Pressure Changes

First things first, let’s talk about why our ears feel the squeeze during flights. As the aircraft ascends or descends, the cabin pressure changes rapidly, causing our ears to pop. This sensation occurs as the air pressure inside the middle ear tries to equalize with the pressure outside.

The Theory Behind Cotton in Ears

Proponents of using cotton in ears argue that it can help regulate pressure changes by creating a barrier between the eardrum and the external environment. The idea is that the cotton absorbs moisture and creates a slight buffer, allowing for a more gradual adjustment of pressure.

Examining the Evidence

While there’s no concrete scientific evidence to support the effectiveness of using cotton in ears during flights, many travelers report positive experiences. Some anecdotal accounts suggest that it can indeed reduce discomfort and alleviate ear popping.

Potential Benefits Beyond Pressure Regulation

Aside from pressure changes, some travelers use cotton in their ears for other reasons:

  • Noise Reduction: Cotton can help dampen loud cabin noises, making the flight more comfortable, especially for light sleepers or those sensitive to noise.
  • Ear Protection: For individuals prone to ear infections or swimmer’s ear, cotton can provide a protective barrier against airborne germs and bacteria.

Precautions and Considerations

Before you start stuffing cotton balls into your ears, here are a few things to keep in mind:

  • Hygiene: Ensure your hands and the cotton are clean before insertion to prevent introducing bacteria into the ear canal.
  • Comfort: Be mindful of how the cotton feels in your ears. If it causes discomfort or irritation, remove it immediately.
  • Alternatives: If cotton doesn’t work for you, consider other methods such as chewing gum, swallowing, or yawning to equalize ear pressure.

Conclusion: Cotton Comfort or Placebo Effect?

In the end, whether you choose to use cotton in your ears during flights boils down to personal preference. While there’s no scientific consensus on its effectiveness, many travelers find it to be a simple and harmless way to ease ear discomfort. Just remember to use caution, and if in doubt, consult with a healthcare professional before trying any new methods.

So, should you put cotton in your ears on flights? The answer is...maybe. Give it a try and see if it works for you. After all, a little extra comfort in the air never hurt anyone! Safe travels!

Which Airlines Allow 30kg Baggage in India?

Air Travel in India: Airlines That Allow 30kg Baggage
India Airlines

When planning a trip, whether it's for business or leisure, knowing your baggage allowance can save you from last-minute fees and unnecessary hassle. In India, where domestic and international travel has been booming, several airlines offer generous baggage allowances to accommodate travelers' needs. One common question among travelers is about the airlines that allow 30kg of checked baggage. Let's dive into the details of airlines in India that provide this benefit and what you need to know before you pack your bags.

Airlines Offering 30kg Baggage Allowance

  1. Air India Air India, the national carrier of India, is known for its generous baggage policies. For international flights, the airline typically allows economy class passengers to check in up to 30kg of baggage. This is particularly beneficial for long-haul travelers going to destinations like the USA, Europe, and Australia. It’s important to note that domestic flights usually have a lower allowance, around 15-25kg, but this can vary based on the ticket fare type and the specific route.

  2. Vistara Vistara, a joint venture between Tata Sons and Singapore Airlines, offers a differentiated approach based on the class of travel. While their Economy Class offers a standard 15kg, Premium Economy passengers can enjoy 20kg, and Business Class passengers are entitled to 30kg of checked baggage on domestic flights. For international routes, these limits are even higher, making Vistara an attractive option for travelers carrying more.

  3. SpiceJet SpiceJet provides a competitive baggage allowance that caters well to budget travelers who need more than just the basics. For its international flights, SpiceJet permits up to 30kg of checked baggage in Economy class, depending on the destination. However, for domestic flights, the standard allowance remains at 15kg. 


Things to Consider

  • Excess Baggage Fees: If you exceed your baggage allowance, be prepared to pay excess baggage fees. These fees can be quite high, especially for international flights, so it's a good idea to check the weight limits and pack accordingly.

  • Special Items: If you plan to travel with special items like sports equipment or musical instruments, it’s wise to check with the airline in advance. Some items might require additional handling fees or special arrangements.

  • Frequent Flyer Benefits: If you're a member of an airline's frequent flyer program, you might be eligible for increased baggage allowances. This can include an additional piece of baggage or increased weight limits, depending on your tier status.

  • Booking Class and Ticket Type: Always verify the baggage allowance for your specific ticket, as premium tickets or higher booking classes often come with enhanced allowances.

Traveling within India or from India to other countries doesn’t have to come with the stress of limited baggage. Airlines like Air India, Vistara, and SpiceJet recognize the needs of modern travelers and offer up to 30kg of checked baggage on international flights. Always double-check the specific baggage allowances with your airline before you travel to avoid any surprises at the airport. Safe travels, and happy packing!

Flying with Spices: What You Need to Know for India Flights

Traveling with Spices in India: Airline Guidelines and Tips  Indian cuisine is celebrated globally for its rich and complex flavors, der...