How it works:
- Scam 1: unofficial guides who claim initially to provide “free” services will ask for an inflated tip for a low quality tour at the end.
- Scam 2: sellers who claim to look after your shoes in exchange for buying their overpriced flower offerings, when there is usually a free shoe storage facility.
- Scam 3: tout charging you a fee for looking after your shoes when they did not.
- Scam 4: donation boxes and donation requests by “priests”.
- Scam 5: offering you a “skip the queue” VIP darshan ticket when there is none. They simply cut the queue or work in cahoots with a guard to get you ahead.
Places to beware:
- Agra: Jama Masjid (Agra)
- Chennai: Kapaleeshwarar Temple
- Jaipur: Jantar Mantar, Panna Meena ka Kund, Sheesh Mahal (Hall of Mirrors)
- Jaisalmer: Jaisalmer Fort, Kothari’s Patwaon-Ki-Haveli
- Kolkata: Marble Palace Kolkata, Dakshineswar Kali Temple
- New Delhi: Friday Mosque (Jama Masjid), Qutub Minar, Red Fort (Lal Quila)
- Udaipur: Jagdish Temple
- Varanasi: Nepali Temple (Kathwala Temple)
What to do:
- Generally, if you accept help from anyone, be prepared to be charged.
- If you do not wish to be hassled, engage an official/reputable guide or operator. GetYourGuide (leading day tour platform globally) has many such popular tours.