India becoming more popular with expats due to its low cost of living

Published:  31 Aug at 6 PM
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India has always been popular with backpackers and alternative lifestyle travellers, but it’s now climbing the popularity charts as a more conventional expat destination.

The sub-continent's dismal rating in last year’s InterNations survey has improved this year by seven places, with the boost due to its low cost of living and improving economic status. Now ranked 49th out of 67 worldwide destinations, its only problem is the vast difference between Western culture and that of the ancient land.

As regards working overseas, almost half of expats surveyed were far more confident about the country’s economic prospects. A quarter of respondents were happy with their job security, against the survey’s global average of 17 per cent. In the personal finance sector, India is one of the world’s top ten destinations for the amount of disposable income available to expat workers. Over two thirds of expats living in India claim their income is more than adequate for all daily life needs, whereas under half of worldwide respondents to the survey are equally placed.

A majority of expats find Indians much more welcoming to foreigners than most other countries, but only around 33 per cent found the cultural transition between East and West easy to manage, with the rest stating they felt alienated at first. Another problem amongst expat residents was a feeling their personal safety was at risk, with around 50 per cent of respondents feeling safe and the rest somewhat insecure.

The global average for feelings of safety is 77 per cent, leaving this aspect of expat life in India far behind. In general, peacefulness and political stability gained few votes and led to the sub-continent’s low overall rating in the Quality of Life section of the survey.
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