In 2012, 11 million tourists visited Kerala and Kerala tourism generated revenues worth 21000 crores. While Kerala continues to develop as a hotbed for travel and tourism, accommodation in hotels and holiday apartments is becoming increasingly expensive for budget travelers and Kerala Homestay Tour Packages are becoming a popular accommodation option for budget travelers and backpackers who typically spend less than USD 20 per day.Here are some tips about homestays in Kerala for budget travelers who are planning to visit Kerala
Homestays in Kerala offer an opportunity for guests to enjoy an authentic experience: sights, smells, tastes and traditions up close, not through the usual lens of an everyday holidaymaker but with close interaction with families. Stay in a family home and you’ll see and feel the real Kerala which combines the comfort and distinction of a boutique hotel with the hospitality, informality and local knowledge you enjoy when staying with friends & family.
While the practice of Indian families renting rooms in their own homes out to travellers is a little-known one here in the West, the system has existed in towns and cities over there for many, many years right from the time of invasion of Alexander. With many houses equipped with spare rooms, and many families experiencing the same quandary with their sons and daughters being away from family, the practice spread quickly across the nation’s cities and towns.Room rates are often quoted by the month or for a week, because the nature of the way they’re let out is usually mid-long term. However, nightly arrangements can generally be negotiated with a family.
Young Western travelers and veteran India explorers alike have come to realize that many of the homes that offer spare rooms are fairly opulent, and this sort of accommodation can therefore offer the kind of unparalleled luxury, culture and life experience that other types of accommodations simply cannot.
The low rent reflects the fact that because you’ll be staying with an Indian family, you’re subject to their cultural and house rules, although Western lodgers will often be cut some slack, and you’ll be able to meet somewhere in the middle with them.You’ll also probably find that you’ll also be offered an in-your-face experience of Indian family life, which is almost always raucous and can be wonderfully dramatic.
However, that said, these aren’t negative points – they’re simply points that you as a Western traveller should be aware of so that you can make prior adjustments in your expectations for any cultural discrepancies you’re likely to encounter. Apart from the fact that this is an exceptionally cheap way to see a country, it’s also exceptionally authentic and culturally rich – often, much richer than the experience of your average backpacker.
One of the best places to find a family for an India homestay is India Mike travel forum or travel magazine – anything that’s posted there will be a recommendation from someone who has experienced the accommodation first-hand – nothing’s advertorial, and that’s absolutely the only way you should go about finding a nice family to stay with. Another good idea is for you to enter “paying guest [+ destination name]” into your search engine, or visiting homestay-specific.
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