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Holiday Inn Express New Delhi International Airport Terminal 3
Ranked #19 of 909 Specialty Lodging in New Delhi
Oslo, Norway
Level Contributor
209 reviews
67 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 99 helpful votes
“Looks like a good idea, but..”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed December 12, 2012

Having been on transit in Delhi many times where I have used time and money to get Indian visa, arriving at night, waiting for immigration, luggage taxi to hotel etc. it seemed like a good deal when I discovered that the new airport actually has a transit hotel It has in fact both an international side that can be used when on transit on international flights and a domestic side where you have to clear customs and immigration before entering.
However I soon discovered that this was not so easy. My flight arrived slightly after midnight and my connecting flight was around 1pm same day. The hotel is fairly expensive with a single room going for close to 180 usd breakfast included. As I would not need a visa for India, no taxi to hotel etc. I thought it might still be ok. I had followed the instructions from the hotel that luggage has to be checked through to the next destination in order to get access to the hotel. The only thing I had not managed was to get a boarding card for the flight out of India when I checked inn in Europe. On arrival at the airport I was positively surprised by the fact that hotel staff met me at the gate and took me to the transfer desk, I was happy and thought “this is going well”. However I ended up waiting at the transfer desk until 2:30am before I could go to the hotel. The system at the airport is that before getting into the hotel you need a boarding card. Before issuing boarding card the airline (Jet) needed to identify my luggage. It turned out that this took a long time even though my luggage was tagged to next destination. The reason was given that by mistake my luggage was put on the conveyor belt and had to be retrieved from there by airline staff. The staff of the hotel was friendly and helpful all the time but my patience was really stretched. When finally getting into the hotel check in went smooth and room was ok. In the morning I wanted to watch the news on tv but was not able to get the tv working. After contacting reception I was told that an “IT” man had to be sent to my room to activate it !! I found this strange but somebody came and did this. Breakfast was very limited with coffee that was terrible. This really has to be improved. I know Tea is the thing in India but still..
So the consept is good and if you have only hand luggage and boarding card for your next flight it should be ok. If you have luggage or no boarding card be prepared that it might take a long time to get into the hotel.

  • Stayed November 2012, traveled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Safari1957
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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459 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    3 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 bubbles
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Amritsar,
Level Contributor
20 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed December 7, 2012

During one of my transits, I had to stay at the airport for roughly 7 hours. I decided to check into Eaton smart hotel at the airport itself. But what a mistake man. First I had to wait at a place where a few other cribbing hotel customers were waiting. we were told that the hotel person would climb down and escort us to the hotel one by one as this was a high security zone. It took him quite some time to come and then we were told to leave our big bags there as it was a high security zone. Shocked and surprised we had no place to go. Our bags were scanned and then almost an hour after we arrived

  • Stayed February 2012, traveled with friends
    • Value
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Helpful?
1 Thank traveldoc009
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Travelers are raving about these New Delhi hotels

Sydney, Australia
Level Contributor
7 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed November 26, 2012

This is an excellent hotel for an overnight international layover in Delhi. We had flown from Sydney to Delhi, and were connecting through to Kathmandu the next morning. The hotel is modern and the rooms are clean with all the necessary amenities. The hotel also has a decent restaurant where you can eat while watching the planes take off.

As most people have noted already, you don’t need a visa because the hotel is in the transit area but you DO need to have your connecting boarding card before landing in Delhi Airport and have your luggage checked through to your connecting destination. We hadn’t done this... (as our connecting flight was with a different carrier) which caused some difficulties - however the staff were extremely helpful getting us all sorted. A staff member met us at the gate and lead us to the transit gate. He left us there to wait while he went through to the baggage collection area (with our passports and e-ticket for Jet Airways), collected our bags and then checked us and our bags onto our next flight. He then returned with our boarding passes and lead us through the transit area to our hotel. The whole process took nearly two hours (which I believe is actually pretty good for Delhi Airport). All we had to do was wait while the hotel staff did all the hard work, which we were very appreciative of at midnight after flying 13hrs from Sydney.

Overall it was a good night’s sleep and very convenient for our connecting flight. It was the staff who made this hotel - they really saved the day when we discovered we couldn’t get our bags without going through immigration (which would have required a visa). Great transit hotel and outstanding service.

  • Stayed November 2012, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank David D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Montreal, Canada
Level Contributor
26 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed November 20, 2012

Thats the place to go if you want a quiet room and sleep . You need to know you dont need a visa because the hotel is in the transit area. Make sure that if u are arriving from an international destination and connecting to another international destination you have your connecting boarding card before landing in Delhi Airport, that way you wont be stopped and wait two hours to get it. Also make sure your luggage is checked thru to your connecting destination.You may ask the hotel to send a representant at your gate when you arrive. He will assist you and bring you to the reception desk. Thats what i did and i was amazed by their service. Within 15-20 minutes i got to the hotel because of having to go thru security and wait in line. The hotel is one year old just like the airport. The decoration is modern, and my room was clean. They have a restaurant where you can eat and rest. You can only block 5 or 7 hours. I blocked 5 hours and waited for a couple in the restaurant where i had dinner. Definitely this is the best choice if u dont want any hassle with visas and run around the airport.

  • Stayed November 2012, traveled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank helene o
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Minneapolis, Minnesota
Level Contributor
37 reviews
20 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed November 18, 2012

We decided to stay at the Eaton Smart hotel during our recent trip. We arrived in Delhi at 11 p.m. and did not depart until 9 a.m. the following day. While it is on the surface more spendy than a hotel outside the airport, remember you don't need to purchase an Indian visa. For the two of us, the savings more than made up the difference in room cost.

A representative met us at our gate and escorted us to the transit area and eventually to the hotel. I won't lie, there was more of a delay in the process of getting our continuation boarding passes than I would have liked but honestly, that's the way things work in India. Luckily we only had carry-on luggage and weren't also dealing with luggage that needed to be checked to the next destination.

The front desk staff were quick and efficient. The room clean, modern and most importantly -- dark and quiet.The beds were comfy and we were both asleep within minutes. The wake-up call was placed on time and the shower had lots of hot water. Getting to our departure gate was so easy, just simply took the elevator downstairs and walked a quick 5 minutes right to the gate.

I would do this again in a heartbeat and have already recommended it to several individuals.

  • Stayed November 2012, traveled with friends
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank LJWT
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Kansas City, Missouri
Level Contributor
159 reviews
56 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 58 helpful votes
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed November 18, 2012

You can stay in the terminal which is really nice. However I stayed on Friday night Nov 7th and they said they would give me a wake-up call and didn't. Luckily a slamming door woke me at 12:30 a.m., an hour and a half past when I asked to get my wake up call. So a quick 5 minute shower and a huge rush to the gate got me on my plane. However I missed my chance at souvenir shopping and this really hurt since I was waiting for the airport to buy things for the wife and grandson.

  • Stayed November 2012, traveled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Joe_S_Caja
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Fort Collins, Colorado
Level Contributor
137 reviews
127 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 233 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed November 12, 2012

When one travels to Kathmandu, Delhi is a common stopover place. Often the layover is 8+ hours – in our case it was 12 hours. Those wishing to freshen up now have a great opportunity with the Eaton Smart Transit Hotel. The hotel is modern and convenient. Travelers can save at least 3 hours over the alternative of going into Delhi, spend less than half of the cost of traveling into Delhi, and do not need to endure the hassle of an India Transit Visa.

Hotel staff met us at the gate about 100 yards from where we deplaned which was both helpful and re-assuring. They spoke good English. Our room was adequately sized for 1 or 2 persons. The room was quiet; there was none of the noise reported by others. The room was very clean and functional. The bed and linens were excellent.

There were a few minor glitches. The sink was poorly plumbed and water spilled out the back. They said we had complimentary water, but there was none in our room. The wireless internet was not working when we arrived [it was fixed 8 hours later].

When using Eaton Smart Transit Hotel, the big question I and other travelers seem to have is how to handle baggage and visas and airline tickets when on separate airline tickets for the US to Delhi and then Delhi to Kathmandu. We probably spent 6 hours researching this topic and never got a conclusive answer. When we left the US we were only 90% sure that even without our luggage being interlined it would be transferred successfully in Delhi. Trip Advisor was one place we researched. In the hopes of helping others, the rest of this review will share our research and experience.

RESEARCH
1] We purchased our US to Delhi tickets on our domestic airline’s website. They did not show any flights to Kathmandu so we went to Jet Airways to purchase the flights for the Delhi to Kathmandu. As a result we had two different reservations in two different systems.

2] Our domestic airline – United – has a baggage relationship with Jet Airways. However in repeated phone calls United said they would not interline luggage if the connecting flight involved a layover of more than 8 hours. This meant having to go to the baggage carousel to collect our luggage, which meant getting a transit visa to enter India, and which also meant sitting in public area of the departure terminal waiting for check-in counters to open.

3] Calls to the Delhi Airport information desk and to the Eaton Smart Hotel led us to believe that Eaton Smart Hotel personnel would actually go to the baggage area, get our bags, take them to Jet Airways baggage, and then bring us new bag tags. We could not find this service documented anywhere, but were 90% confident this is how it would work.

4] The alternative was to pack very light, only do carryon luggage and buy additional in Kathmandu. This too had risks as overhead bins tend to fill quickly.

Against this backdrop, we booked flights, made hotel reservations, called and emailed the hotel to confirm our reservations and the hotel staff member that would meet us, and skipped the transit visa step. Before we left home we made extra copies of our passport, our hotel reservation, our e-ticket. We even took and printed pictures of our bags.

RESULTS
1] When we checked in at United in Denver, we avoided the kiosk and went straight to the counter agent and asked if he would tag our bags all the way to Kathmandu. We showed him the e-ticket for Jet Airways and the hotel reservation in the transit zone of the Delhi Airport. The counter agent proceeded to check his on-line policies and after a few minutes asked us “is this the next available flight to Kathmandu?” We answered “yes”. He then did the opposite of what we had been told over the phone and checked our bags all the way through: DENDELKTM. Wow. Thanks. Presumably the problem was solved. Just in case however, we found a copy machine in the airport to make a Xerox of our luggage tags.

2] We had to change planes in Newark. As we were boarding an agent was checking passports. When she checked our passport she asked “where is your India Visa?” We explained we were transit. She then asked “Let me see that your luggage is checked through”. Fortunately we had luggage tags to show her. Had we not had checked through luggage, it is conceivable that we could have been denied boarding in Newark. Future travelers beware. It is unknown if this United agent would have accepted an explanation of “The Transit Hotel will take care of the bags” or even a story of “We have just carryon”.

3] Arrival in Delhi was straightforward and as reported by many others. An agent from the hotel met us at the arrival gate. He walked us to the transit desk. He confirmed that our luggage had transferred. He gave us new boarding passes. All this took about an hour. He had our passports and bag claim tags, which made us a little nervous, but he was in the same area as us the whole time so we could see him working on our behalf. All around us there were travelers frantic about missing planes and connecting with their luggage. Editorially it’s worth adding that Delhi needs to figure this out before they get any real traffic.

4] There was a boarding pass and x-ray security checkpoint between the transit desk and the rest of the airport. We were given tags for our carry-ons. And our papers were checked. So one has to get the new boarding pass at the transit desk before one can go any further.

5] After the security check, we walked about 5 minutes through a huge 24x7 shopping area to the hotel. We could see the departure gates just past the hotel. We took the elevator from 2nd floor to 5th floor and there we were at the hotel. They had our check-in all prepared.


RETURN
For anyone still interested, the return journey involved a similar delay. Jet Airways did a fine job of checking our bags thru to our US final destination. And using our Nepal hotel’s printer we preprinted our boarding passes. Then, the idiots in the Delhi airport failed to recognize our preprinted boarding passes and made us wait for over 100 minutes until a United representative delivered boarding passes with identical information. In the process we had to surrender our passports to someone who disappeared with them – very unnerving.


The bottom line of this experience is while the Eaton Smart hotel provides adequate accommodations; travelers should simply avoid transiting in Delhi. The airport transit process is totally dysfunctional.

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
18 Thank djonce
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Holiday Inn Express New Delhi International Airport Terminal 3

Property: Holiday Inn Express New Delhi International Airport Terminal 3
Address: Level 5 | Indira Gandhi International Airport, New Delhi 110037, India (Formerly Eaton Smart – New Delhi Airport Transit Hotel)
Location: India > National Capital Territory of Delhi > New Delhi
Amenities:
Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #19 of 909 Specialty Lodging in New Delhi
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3 star — Holiday Inn Express New Delhi International Airport Terminal 3 3*
Number of rooms: 93
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Conveniently located inside the new Terminal 3, the hotel is just a short walk to the departure gates for boarding. The hotel is accessible to travelers from the International Wing Terminal 3 as well as the Domestic Wing Terminal 3. Kindly note that the guest must have a departure flight from Terminal 3 to stay at the hotel. The maximum length of stay for any guest cannot exceed 24 hours and hence the hotel would be able to provide a room only 24 hours prior to the guest's flight. Please note that once the guest checks-in to the hotel, they are not allowed to leave the hotel premises. Guests are advised to mention their flight details while making the reservation for a smooth check-in and check-out. Please call the hotel for escorting assistant to the hotel post security checks at the airport. Passengers taking an onward Intl flight are requested to book their room in the Intl wing and those taking an onward Dom flight are requested to book their room in Dom wing. Guests Checking-in to the domestic wing are requested to approach our airport representative at our desk next to the Airtel phone booths behind Check-in gate number 1 before security. Please call our Duty Manager for more clarifications. ... more   less 
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