Life in India.
Thanks for the kind comments from my previous blog, it does inspire me to write more. People have been asking how much does it cost to live in India.
First of all, we are in Gurgaon, 20 miles South West from Delhi. This is a call centre city and most of you know what my job involves. A serious amount of Blue Chip companies have a presence here, Fosters Menswear, C&A & Woolies 🙂
Let’s talk about the apartment first, you can get really nice serviced apartment (serviced really means linen change and a maid service) from £450 upwards, this was out of our budget so I opted for a furnished apartment.
We wanted to live in Gurgaon as it was near the office, I didn’t fancy the 45-minute trip to work on a daily basis and as I mentioned in my previous blog I saw some really bad apartments, in the end I chose one in Phase 3 of DLF, not too far from Cyber City. A tip for you, get a ground floor apartment because it will be cooler in the summer. Temperatures reach 46c at its peak (currently 42c as we speak)
This cost 20500 rupees a month not including electric, but includes water. The rupee is currently 95 rupees to the pound but for arguments sake we’ll say 100 rupees is £1, the apartment then cost £205 a month. It’s one bed. Kitchen with a gas cooker, fridge and that’s it. The bedroom has a wardrobe and a bed, the living room consists of what I would call another bed, no settee but it has a shoe rack haha.
LCD TV with no channels and that’s it. No bedding, no kitchen utensils, no wifi, no cable.
I got wifi installed and that costs £25 a month and Satellite TV £7 a month (That’s for a good package HD and about 5 English movie channels plus BBC World, and the History, Discovery Channels etc.)
Wifi, I ordered 5mb top speed, currently getting 20mb don’t ask me how, I’ve no idea, I was getting 55mb speed for a few days.
One downfall, we are prone to power cuts on a regular basis and when I mean regular I mean 3 or 4 times a day. Sometimes it’s off for a few hours, so I have a backup dongle.
That basically covers the apartment, it’s not half as good as the ones I’ve had in the Philippines or Thailand but it will do for amount of time we’ll be spending in India.
Electricity is cheap, cost me £14 for the month, AC was not on as much last month, now it’s on all the time so it will be interesting to see how much our bill is at the end of April. We have a shared meter as well for the UPS, when the power goes it keeps the lights and the fans on, nothing else though. That costs me 60p. So overall the cost of apartment is relatively cheap.
How much is food?
Depends on your budget, if you’re like me and you like a Western fix every now and then, prices will be higher. If you didn’t know India is a non-beef eating country as they see the cow as sacred
From the wiki page
To the Hindu, the cow represents all other creatures. Hindus believe that all living creatures are sacred—mammals, fishes, birds. The cow is more, a symbol of the Earth. It always gives and feeds, representing life and the support of life.
There are a good percentage that are vegetarian and very few will eat pork. So meat dishes contain either Chicken or Mutton. Burger King has the Mutton whopper which is not too bad either.
If you are looking for a good Rib-eye or a bacon sarnie with Back Bacon, forget it. You can buy bacon which is like the American style streaky and cost £5 for 500g (an added luxury) Next time I cook a full English I’ll post a picture.
I’m also a big Tea drinker and Indian tea is really tasty, it’s a small cup and contains herbs with a hint of Ginger and very sweet. Personally I’m a big mug man and tea bags cost £1.50 for 100. Majority of Indians drink Leaf Tea but tea bags are widely available including Tetleys but not Yorkshire tea L talking of being a big tea drinker, I’ll be back in a min, just making one.
Eating out can be quite cheap. I love Indian food but can’t eat the veggie version. Chicken Tika Masala here is a million times better than in the UK obviously and one of my favourites is Goan Fish Curry with a couple of Garlic Naans. Roughly £17 for 2 with a couple of beers thrown in.
Saturday we did a small shop at Spencer’s supermarket on MG Road in MGF Megacity.
It cost us 3140 Rupees for Tea Bags, Mushrooms, toiletries, a few sweets for work, Heinz Baked Beans (£1.30) Milk (75p a litre)
We also went to a shop in Cyber Hub (forgot what’s it’s called) but has loads of imported foods, Santi likes Coffee Mate £5 for 500g. They did sell PG Tips only £3 for 40 tea bags. Cheese £5 for 200g, so yes it is expensive if you want added luxuries.
A quick chat about transport.
Easiest way to get about is the Tuk Tuk (Auto Rickshaw) from our apartment to Ambience Mall is £1 Taxis are quite cheap, I use the App Ola if we need to go into Dehli, which will cost about £6. Short distance we use a Rickshaw and will cost about 40p
To sum up living here, it is cheap. Anyone can easily live here on a budget.
Until next time and don’t forget to keep smiling.