Backpacking India: Travel Upgrades

In our four months of backpacking through India, we made more than a few sacrifices to save money – choosing crowded, local buses over private taxis; eating at local hangouts instead of fancy western restaurants; and staying in some sketchy hotels. It was part of the experience and we don’t regret our choices, but it was also important to splurge occassionaly. We found a luxury hotel for our wedding anniversary and fancy restaurants for our birthdays. That might have been the extent of our of our splurging, if it wasn’t for a thoughtful gift from our good friends, the Holdings. Before we left, they gave us three upgrade coupons (with an awesome board game theme) and some money to ensure we weren’t always choosing the cheapest option, especially when we were feeling down. Here’s what we upgraded.

India - Darjeeling
If Player 1 or Player 2
Is Feeling Too Crowded
Shaken About,
Or Smog Shrouded
They May Play This Card
To Upgrade Their Train/Bus

In Darjeeling, we upgraded to first class tickets on the toy train to Kurseong instead of another squished shared jeep.

Upgraded Meal
If Player 1 or Player 2
Thinks They’ve Been
Fed Too Much Fibre
They Don’t Have
To Be A Briber
To Get Some Grub
They May Play This Card
To Upgrade Their Restaurant

In Kolkata, we ate a luxury meal at one of the top-reviewed vegetarian restaurants in town.

India Hotel Upgrade
If Player 1 or Player 2
Needs To Cool Off,
Dry Off,
Tune Out,
Or Just Conk Out
They May Play This Card
To Upgrade Their Hotel

In Udaipur, we spent three blissful days in the country at Krishna Ranch.


  1. The fact that the upgrades were associated with comfort really, comfort in a variety of forms, indicates how much it takes to maintain a middle-class, that is to say, comfortable life style. And you two are far to the left outliers on the scale of middle-class “entitlement.” And I completely understand the importance of your “splurges” while on such a long, bare bones trip. On the other hand, the way you travelled the rest of the time is the only way to go, in my opinion, if you can physically and, from my own experience, mentally handle it. Thanks for posting about your adventures/life, Chris, you have friends around the world now, if not before.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s