Travel and Local Information

You are welcome to contact the Local Arrangements Co-Chair, Santhosh Daivajna - santoshdaivajna AT for any additional information you may require.

About Bengaluru (Bangalore)

Known as the Garden City, the city of Bengaluru (Bangalore) is located on the Deccan Plateau in the south-eastern part of the state of Karnataka in India. Home to a demographically diverse population, Bengaluru is a major economic and cultural hub and the fastest growing major metropolis in India. Many well-recognized colleges and research institutions in India are based here. Numerous public sector heavy industries, software companies, aerospace, telecommunications, and defence organisations are also located in the city. Bangalore is known as the Silicon Valley of India because of its position as the nation's leading IT exporter. (Bengaluru was previously known by its anglicised name, Bangalore.)

Travel Checklist

All non-Indian-citizens are required to have an Indian visa to enter the country. Allow yourself sufficient time (say 4 weeks) to procure an appropriate visa from your nearest Indian consulate. There are several Indian consulates worldwide. Indian consulates in the continental US are located in Washington D.C., New York, Chicago, Houston, and San Francisco. All participants traveling from the United States must use this web site to obtain Indian visa. All other participants must contact Indian Embassy/ Consulate General of India in their respective countries for information on obtaining an Indian visa.

Important Note:Participants who require a Indian visa to travel to HiPC are to note that visa processes have changed since last year and are advised to check the exact set of requirements/documents that the Indian Embassy at their respective countries require, including requirements for security clearance that apply to some countries.

As of 30 November 2011 the conference has received government clearance to issue visa invitation letters to those who have already sent their request. If you have not filed the online request form and require a conference visa, you should do so immediately. Use the online visa letter request form to submit the relevant information. Note that this invitation letter may be issued only to attendees who have paid their registration fees in full and are eligible to travel to India.

Flight Reservations
Flights to India and Bengaluru (Bangalore) in particular tend to fill up well ahead of the December holiday season. We recommend that you make your flight as well as lodging reservations 3-4 months in advance, to be on the safe side. We strongly recommend that you avoid arriving in New Delhi or taking flights that stop in New Delhi en-route to Bengaluru (Bangalore) as winter fog often throws air-traffic off-gear in New Delhi. For more information, see the transportation section of this page.

Vaccinations (shots)
Many first-time travelers to India prefer to get preventive vaccinations(shots). The Ministry of Tourism, Govt. of India has some more health tips for tourists.

Foreign Exchange
While international credit cards are widely accepted in commercial establishments in India, several places rely on cash transactions in the local currency (Indian Rupee), especially if the purchase value is not very high. We suggest that you either carry some Indian currency when entering India or purchase Indian currency at the currency exchange agencies at the Indian airports, upon arrival. The current exchange rate is about Rs. 46/- per US dollar. The value of US Dollar has been fluctuating a lot recently. Please check the conversion rate before you travel. Once in India, you can purchase additional Indian currency from local branches of Citibank, Thomas Cook, etc. However, it is typically difficult to convert Indian currency back into foreign currency because of exchange regulations.

Hotel Reservations
Please make your hotel reservations ahead of time so that you get your choice of accommodation.

Time and Weather
The Indian Standard Time (IST) is 5 1/2 hours ahead of the Greenwich Mean Time(GMT) and is 13 1/2 hours ahead of the U. S. Pacific Standard Time(PST). In December/ January the weather is mildly tropical with temperatures averaging about 26° Celsius (approx. 79° Fahrenheit) during the day and about 16° Celsius (approx. 61° Fahrenheit) during the night.
Sunrise: 6:35 am (approx.)
Sunset: 6:00 pm (approx.)


Flights to India
Bengaluru (Bangalore) is well connected by airline services to most major cities in India and abroad. All flights, national and international, to and from Bengaluru, operate from the Bengaluru International Airport. Major national airline operators such as Indian Airlines, Jet Airways and Sahara Airlines have flights carrying passengers and cargo in and out of Bengaluru. Besides these, most international airlines have direct flights to Bengaluru from the US, Europe, Far East, and the Gulf countries.

More information about the flights from and to the Bengaluru airport can be found at air-transport.

We recommend that you avoid flights into/via New Delhi if you are on a tight schedule as winter fog in December often delays flights at New Delhi airport. Some Bengaluru-bound flights stopover in New Delhi -- please check with your travel agent.

If you are planning to travel around India after/before the conference, check with your travel agent for attractive local air travel offers that are usually available with your international travel ticket.

Airport to Venue Transportation

The Bangalore Airport is about 32 kms (approx 20 miles) from Hotel Lalit Ashok.

Airport Shuttle: The airport shuttle service connects various locations in the city with the airport at a frequency of approximately 20 mins. This service provided by the Bangalore Metropolitan Transport Corporation (BMTC) ensures a comfortable travel by an air-conditioned Volvo bus at reasonable rates. In the map, "ITC Windsor" drop-off point is the closest to the conference venue. Bus numbers are BIAS5, BIAS9, BIAS12. The estimated travel time from/to airport to/from venue is 1hr 30 mins and the estimated fare is Rs.135 (about USD 3.5). Please refer to the city map for more details and information on other routes and fares. The bus bay is located on the ground floor of the airport.

View Larger Map

Taxi: Meru Cabs and Easy Cabs are the two official taxi operators at the Bengaluru International Airport. The airport taxi service can be availed at the airport for travel to the Bengaluru city and vice versa. The taxi fare from the airport to the venue is about Rs.500 (USD 10). Payment can be made in cash. Please ask for a receipt if the driver does not offer you one. Proceed to the taxi counters on the ground floor, located on your left, after exiting the customs. please refer to the airport maps for exact location.