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Hiring A Guide In India: Pros & Cons

Ajitsa A.

by GoWithGuide travel specialist:Ajitsa A.

Last updated : May 30, 202412 min read

Travel Tips

India Tour Guide


If you're reading this, you've probably got questions. You'd love to discover India, but there's a roadblock ahead. From ChennaiAgra and Mumbai to Jaipur and Hyderabad, India is HUGE. So touring such a beautiful, diverse land can get overwhelming, especially if it's your first time. 


Can you do it alone? Will you need a guide? And if so, why is it so hard to find a reliable one? We've got you covered. By breaking it all down, the good, the bad, and the complicated in-between, you'll finally be able to decide if touring the Land of Colors will be a solo event, or if the expertise of a knowledgeable India tour guide sounds better.


Hiring a Guide in India


The Good 

What are the benefits of hiring a tour guide in India? Drumroll, please…


1. You’ll Gain A Deeper Understanding Of Everyday Life. Sometimes the best part of travel is seeing life from another's perspective. With a local private guide, you'll be immersed in the day-to-day life and cultures of citizens across India. You'll learn the small social cues, mannerisms, and customs without the culture shock of stepping on anybody's toes and gain insight into what life is like there, giving a face and story to what most tourist ads and brochures can't explain.


2. You’ll Have A Top-Notch Translator. Though nearly 10% of Indians speak English, with urban areas taking up most of that number, India has over 300 languages and countless dialects. Even in the city, the fast-paced exchanges of local English might fly by your ears. When it comes to touring remote, quiet corners of India, English is rare. With a guide, whether you're touring the city or the countryside, having a go-between will make for a smooth trip and help you avoid awkward encounters.


3. You’ll Avoid The Scams & Stay Safe. While India is breathtaking in its beauty and rich in experiences, there's one thing no traveler should have to endure. Scams. Unfortunately, there are quite a few here, but with a guide, you'll be protected from the occasional "taxi meter tampering", "traveling guru", or "train ticket" scams. Safety-wise, there is nothing as valuable as a local that knows where to go and where to avoid. GWG guides keep you as far from these dangerous areas as possible.


4. You’ll Save A Lot Of Time. Time is of the essence on any trip. Here's how guides can save yours. 

    1. Lost In Translation - India is a constant feast for the eyes and ears, but it can also overload the senses. Add that to the fact that India has over 1.4 billion people, so its streets and alleys are bound to get crowded. It's easy to get lost in Mumbai, Chennai, or New Delhi. That can throw your trip off course. With a guide, you'll know exactly where you are, what you're doing, and the time it'll take.
    2. Booked and Busy - Booking tickets for events, venues, and transport can dampen your excitement. With a guide, all you have to do is decide where you want to go when you want to be there, and let the expert make the necessary arrangements.

5. You’ll Save Some Money. Contrary to popular belief, guides aren't always an expensive luxury. In the long run, going solo can not only cost you money via scams and safety issues, but the label "tourist" can sometimes come with exaggerated prices and unnecessary costs added to any service. To get a feel of what it'll cost to tour India with a private guide, check out our India private tours page.



The Not So Good 

Guided tours are great, but they aren’t perfect. These cons are worth considering.


1. You might miss out on being spontaneous. Tours are a great way to structure your trip and minimize confusion, but being spontaneous can also lead to some stunning encounters. If you're scared of missing out on the thrill of random adventures, guides might not be for you.


2. Cancellation can suck. Though some guides offer cancellation options before the tour starts, canceling when you're in the middle of a day out and something demands your attention will result in money lost. Solo travelers who need to change course due to an emergency don't lose much.


3. It’s an added cost. Private guided tours might save you money in the long run, but if you’re traveling with a specific budget in mind, you’ll have to consider the cost no matter what.


Hiring a Guide in India - Get a Guide If...


Still undecided? Some quick points should help you make your decision.

Get Yourself A Guide If…

  • You’re not a fan of making elaborate plans. The level of comfort that comes from knowing the tough side of your trip will be taken care of. Collaborating with GWG private guide means you create a custom itinerary without the stress of research and booking.
  • You want to have daily interaction with locals you trust. Being in a new country can be both exciting and scary. That's why having someone you can rely on as you travel is comforting. Whether you're exploring the Taj Mahal in Agra, or sailing in Alappuzha, a companion looking out for you will put you at ease.
  • You want to learn as much as you can. For you, a trip to India isn't just for relaxation. It's for trying something new, living life through a different lens, and picking up as much as possible. Interacting with a local who knows their stuff can be enlightening and eye-opening.


Skip The Guide If…

  • India Is Your Backyard. If you've traveled to India a few times, you understand enough local customs and practices to navigate your tours. The only thing standing in the way of your adventure would be a guide.
  • You Love Solo Travel. Touching down in a country without solid plans is your type of trip. You like to go it alone and discover things through a fresh, unfiltered lens without additional input. A guide would only restrict your freedom.
  • You’re Sticking To Heavily Western Areas. We're talking predominantly English-speaking, developed, expensive areas most first-time travelers would be at home in. There's much less to navigate, so a solo exploration would be enough.

The Guide To Hiring A Guide: Dos & Don'ts

Local guides are a great way to get your tour started right, and these tips will make your private guide experience positive.

India Tour Guide - Do



I'm Ready. Show Me Some Tours!

Okay, you've decided, and it's time to see what these guided tours are all about. Our India private tours are the best place to start. Ask your guide about incorporating these into your itinerary.  


India Private Tour Guide


  • The Taj & The Elephants Tour - We all love the Taj Mahal, but when you throw some adorable elephants in, you've got a match made in heaven. This tour combines the beauties of the world's grandest tomb with the lively but gentle nature of India's elephants. Elephant Conservation is a responsible way to enjoy these animals, and this tour features ethical animal interaction.
  • Hyderabad’s Satisfying Street Food Tour - This is what you've been waiting for most. Authentic Indian street food. This tour features delicacies from the city of street food. Kebabs, curries, and biryani are just the tip of this city's food iceberg, so dig in!
  • The Jaipur Gem Day Trip - Rajasthan's jewel, also known as the Pink City, has inspired films, novels, and buildings all over the world. It's time to tour the city known for its architectural marvel and experience the Water Palace, the Amber Fort, and much more. Staying in Delhi? Perfect! A private car will be ready to whisk you away to the fairy tale city for a day trip.
  • Enchanting Kerala Mega Tour - You can't go to Kerala for one day and say you've truly explored the gods' favorite land. That's why this 11-day tour immerses you in the Kerala experience, from the calm backwaters to the region's rolling tea hills.


Knowing you want a guide is one thing. Knowing how to get a reliable, safe, and professional guide is another. So where can you hire a private guide in India? Right here! Take your trip to the next level by getting in touch with one of our India tour guides and creating an itinerary that customizes your trip your way.


Need some more information on India? You might be interested in The Ultimate Guide: India Tourism Statistics 2023.

Agra Tour Guide - Yash P.

Yash P.


I have been working as a Tour Guide for last 15 years in English and Italian languages. This job is my passion since it gives me opportunities to meet people from all walks of life and also to present my country and culture to the guests who wants to understand it. I conduct tours in Agra, Delhi and Jaipur. These tours are of 01 days to Multi days. I also can do customized tours on the request of the guests for whole of India. The tours can be spiritual, cultural, architectural or photographic. So, please consider me for any such query. Io faccio come la guida anche in lingua Italiano. L’ho imparato dall’ambasciata a nuova Delhi quasi 15 anni fa. Mi piace la lingua anche gli italiani chi sono molto simpatici. Per conoscere l'india io sono una guida più bravo di tutti, non blatero                                                                                                                                  

Delhi Tour Guide - Sid S.

Sid S.

5.00 / 5
(1 reviews)

Hey there! I'm Sid, your go-to tour guide from Delhi. I'm all about heritage vibes and bringing some serious energy to your trip. Get ready for an awesome experience exploring the best of Delhi's culture and history with me! Let's make some unforgettable memories together!                                                                                                                                 

West Bengal Tour Guide - Somnath B.

Somnath B.

5.00 / 5
(1 reviews)

Completed long 35 years in Travel & Tourism . Met tourists from different countries along with tourists from other parts of India . I feel proud since the beginning of my carrier while meets with the guest because meeting with the people, irrespective of countries, region , state opens up the stage of learning and also exchange the views .                                                                                                                                  

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