Mumbai maintains top spot as India’s most expensive city

Mumbai is India’s costliest city for expatriates in Mercer’s 2024 Cost of Living survey and is globally ranked 136th out of 226 cities surveyed. Mumbai and Pune are noted for having the highest energy and utility costs, while Mumbai leads in transportation costs followed by Bengaluru.

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According to the Mercer’s 2024 Cost Of Living Survey, Mumbai remains the most expensive city in India for expatriates, maintaining this position since 2013. Globally, Mumbai has risen by 11 places to rank 136th out of 226 cities surveyed.

Among other cities, New Delhi has climbed four spots to 164th place, Chennai has dropped five spots to 189th, Bengaluru has fallen six spots to 195th, Hyderabad remains stable at 202nd, Pune has moved up eight spots to 205th, and Kolkata has risen four spots to 207th.

Mercer reports a moderate increase in rental prices in expatriate neighborhoods across Indian cities, with Delhi seeing the steepest rise at 12-15%. Mumbai and Pune are noted for having the highest energy and utility costs, while Mumbai leads in transportation costs followed by Bengaluru. Chennai stands out for its expensive alcohol and tobacco products, with prices increasing by 20% over the year, whereas Delhi has the lowest prices.

Interestingly, despite the high cost of living, Mumbai seems to be highly cherished by its residents as compared to their counterparts in other Indian cities. Time Out Index, which invites urban residents worldwide to share their current experiences, ranks Mumbai 12th among the 20 best cities in the world. In fact, Mumbai stands out as the only Indian city listed in this ranking. Also, it was one of two cities to receive 100% approval rating on its food scene!

Despite the higher rankings of Mumbai and other cities, the stability of the Indian rupee against the US dollar and the country’s economic growth driven by domestic demand and the services sector have helped maintain the overall affordability of living in Indian cities. This stability is advantageous for multinational organizations and Indian companies seeking to attract global talent.

Mumbai’s rise as Asia’s billionaire capital, with 92 billionaires amassing a collective wealth of $445 billion, underscores its pivotal role in India’s economic landscape. This significant growth, reflecting a 47% increase in billionaire wealth amidst global economic fluctuations, highlights Mumbai’s resilience and attractiveness for business and investment. Factors such as robust stock markets, strong investor confidence, and abundant opportunities across sectors like pharmaceuticals, automobiles, and emerging technologies.

As a financial hub with global connectivity and a supportive business ecosystem, Mumbai offers a conducive environment for wealth creation and entrepreneurial ventures, making it a premier choice for both domestic enterprises and international investors seeking to leverage India’s dynamic market potential and economic growth trajectory.

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