I have been asked to explain rickshaw rides in more detail. Please let me know if you don't understand something or have questions!
An auto-rickshaw is perhaps the most dangerous (but exciting) method of transportation in the large cities. It is like a large tricycle, with handlebars that steer a small wheel in front, and 2 small wheels on an axle in the back. It is powered by a loud 2-stroke engine that spits out nasty diesel fumes. Very polluting. There is a bench behind the driver, with a metal floor, ceiling and roof, a windshield in front, and open sides. The drivers weave through unbelievable congestion, trying to go as fast as possible and cut in front of everyone and anything, including large busses and trucks. Horns blast continuously, each a variation of "Get out of my way, I'm coming through." Probably the most dangerous thing I have done. You can't imagine how bad the congestion, traffic and fumes are on the streets. Even walking can be hazardous. I would hate to see one of these tin boxes get hit by a truck.
Cycle-rickshaws are a 3-wheel bicycle with a bench and luggage rack on the back. They are slow, and generally don't get involved in the really bad congestion. A good bet for short distances when you've got a lot to carry.
Even in a taxi or bus, the streets are scary.