Accommodation in Delhi
New Delhi (about 350, 000 residents) is the Indian capital and a territory of Delhi (about 22.2 million people).
I have evaluated different options for overnight stays in New Delhi and Delhi, and each time I ended up staying in hostels for foreign tourists. The reason was that they were the best option in terms of value, convenience and fun.
International hotel chains, which are supposed to be priced conveniently due to the heavy competition in the market, are overpriced in the Delhi area. National chains and small hotels do not provide any trust.
You can find decent-looking rooms and apartments on the Airbnb website.
|Airbnb in India|
A decent accommodation will be priced per the Western standard; that would be OK if the host could provide travel guidelines for reaching the destination by public transportation; however, instead, an Indian host will offer a relatively expensive car ride from and to the airport, which makes the total cost two-and-a-half to three times higher than the initial price of the room. In addition, they do not provide information about attractions or activities close to their properties, which, again, creates a sense of dependency on their transportation and their price list for driving services.
Couchsurfing is a good place for getting missing information about your travel plans, but perhaps not for accommodation.
For example, I got information about Vipassana meditation from this site; many thanks for that to Couchsurfing’s founders and to the girl who was spreading the word!
Talking about Indian Couchsurfers … announcing your trip on the bulletin board will attract hundreds of Indian Couchsurfers. Most of them do not a verified profile, proper photos or references. Quite a few people hang out there to advertise their services, and some can give you great advice about getting the best from your travels (experience based on the year 2016).
|Typical verification profile of Indian CS|
So, where should you sleep in Delhi to get the best value for your money?
My choice was – Madpackers hostel.
|Drawing on the hostel's door|
Run by enthusiastic young entrepreneurs, the hostel offers a great deal for national and especially international travelers. It’s a great place to kick off your travels in India. The hostel can provide you with great instructions for finding it and for using the taxi, subway or tuk-tuk. It can also book a non-expensive Uber for you, as well as help with luggage, booking tickets, etc.
|Madpackers reception area|
There are a few private rooms and several dorm rooms available in Madpackers on two floors. An Indian veggie breakfast is included in the price. You can perform your morning exercise or yoga on the roof of the building.
Most important, you’ll meet a lot of travelers from all over the world who are eager to share their experiences in India; you can find a lot of inspiration for your journey as well great company for your travels.
One of my favorite “features” of this hostel is its sightseeing tours. The hostel organizes various economically priced excursions every day; the Indian guide will show you the best places in the city to buy souvenirs, enjoy the Indian fairytales show, eat, participate in events, etc.
|Drawing on Madpackers' wall|
Madpackers will also help you with advice for traveling, booking a train/bus/air ticket, getting an inexpensive taxi (Uber), etc.