Transport on this itinerary is generally by car, although there are a few train journeys. Domestic flights are avoided and the opportunity to offset carbon emissions with a reputable company is always offered.
Travelling responsibly can take many forms and need not comply solely with the expected norm and focus only on the preservation of wildlife. Simply by visiting an area the traveller can benefit the locality and this positive impact can be greatly enhanced by operating in a sustainable and considerate manner. On this suggested itinerary your qualified guide, local in each place, will ensure that you learn a great deal about the culture, history and wildlife of the region but they will also encourage you to buy in local shops, try local restaurants or pick up the odd souvenir in a market.
This spending will not only help support the local economy but will sustain local trades and crafts. All the guides used on this tour are locally qualified and they will offer you a first rate service. By employing only local Indian guides travellers are providing both a valuable source of employment as well as generating income for the local community.
On this trip all but two hotels are owned by local families who rely upon tourism for the upkeep of the ancient buildings and land that have been in their families for generations. Your money does stay within the community as all of the hotels hire their staff from local villages and towns, training them up to the high standard that tourists expect, including teaching them English. In general this itinerary does take you away for the usual tourist path and this really does mean that your money helps develop these regions at ground level.
A good example is Ramathra Fort, which just a couple of years ago was a ruin but is now slowly and carefully being rebuilt with local materials and methods and is staffed by young men and women from the tiny villages in the area. The owners of Khem Villas are actively involved in the local school, hospital and welfare centre as well as various environmental projects in and around Ranthambhore National Park. Most other hotels on this route work in a similar manner, and by staying in these smaller, family-run properties, you really are helping the local communities.
Staying in homestays such as Saubhag Bed & Breakfast in Delhi mean that you can get a feel for how Indian families live and the owner will take you out into Delhi, away from the main tourist sights, to her favourite local restaurants and shops, so again you're spending your money somewhere that most other tourists don't.
By using small family run local hotels you can not only be sure that your money is going straight to the people who need it most but have the chance to see a side of India that the majority of tourists miss.