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Travel By Road

India has 3.32 million kilometers of road network, which is the second largest in the world. Roads occupy an eminent position in transportation as they, as per the present estimate, carry nearly 65% of freight and 85% of passenger traffic. Traffic on roads is growing at a rate of 7 to 10% per annum, while the vehicle population growth, for the past few years, is of the order of 12% per annum.

If you are new to India, it is important to familiarise yourselves with rules and regulations of the roads if you wish to drive. We drive on the left-hand side of the road, and the cars, including the rental cars are right-hand drive vehicles. All distances, speed limits (and speedometers) are in kilometers. While driving on the road, wearing of seat belts is compulsory and usage of hand-held phones is banned.

Petrol (Gas) stations are situated on both main and country roads. It is advised to fill up the tank before it starts giving warning signals, as sometimes there is a considerable distance between the towns. Indian petrol stations are not self-help. A helper will check tire pressure, oil and water, and fill the car, and if necessary, clean the windscreen.

After the railways, surface transport is the chief means of travel in India. It is a viable option to rent a car in cities, and fares are charged on a kilometer basis. In Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata, Chennai and other major cities, metered taxis, as well as luxury cars are easily available on hire. There are many rent-a-car services, with prominent international companies tying up with Indian firms to provide these services. You can hire a car for a full day or for a destination.

The states and union territories of India operate their own road transport corporations and transport undertakings, which run under the care of the respective state governments. Usually, the tickets to travel on the state road transport buses have to be acquired at the ticket counters in the respective bus depots. However, many of the state road transport corporations have their own websites, which provide information to citizens about bus schedules, bus fares, bus routes, etc. and some of them even offer the facility to book tickets online. For more information about state road transport corporations and transport undertakings, and the services provided by them, click on the respective states and union territories.

Source: National Portal Content Management Team, Reviewed on: 24-05-2011