Hyderabad - Post Report Question and Answers

How much of the local language do you need for daily living? Are local language classes/tutors available and affordable?

There are several "local languages". Telugu is most prevalent, but it seems like nearly everyone also speaks Hindi. English is widely used, but if you have some Hindi, that will make some things easier. There's a post language program for Hindi. Pretty much none of the jobs here now are language designated, so nobody's getting sent to FSI anymore. - Apr 2024

English will work, but it may require patience (try different words for things, for instance, no one ever has a question, they “have a doubt”). A little bit of Hindi/Urdu will be helpful, but not essential. Usually, an English speaker is around or can be located. As India has so many different language groups, people are used to dealing with communication challenges. - Jan 2023

English is way more commonly spoken than we expected. Basically any interactions at restaurants, hotels, tourist sites, malls, or larger businesses (internet, cell phones, insurance) were fine in English. Local languages became necessary in taxis, markets, and on the street. We did the Urdu online courses through FSI and that helped, but ultimately I would not say local language is necessary IF you have a local driver. Without a local driver I would definitely want more Urdu or Telugu. - Dec 2020

English is allegedly spoken here, however I've found that only the elite have any real grasp of the language. Worse, frequently when attempting to communicate you will not have any indication whether somebody has understood you or not. Overall, you'll probably get around ok with just English, but it will be an exercise in frustration. - Jul 2020

English is usually sufficient. A little Telugu or Urdu will make you a friend with a taxi driver, but everyone has some level of understanding of English, while many people are fluent. The consulate offers periodic classes in Telugu, Urdu, and/or Hindi. - Jul 2019

English is fine. - Jan 2019

Technically none, but I find it difficult and frustrating to communicate. Talking about being lost in translation! Far too often we can't communicate with locals or we mis-communicate. Telugu or Hindi are not easy to pick up. - Sep 2016

Not really much of any - especially if your driver speaks English. Most things are in English and most places have English menus/speak English. - Mar 2015

I don't speak the local languages, Telugu or Hindi. I get along fine in English. - Jan 2015

None. Some Hindi and/or Telugu to be polite and amaze your audience but not necessary. - Nov 2014

None. Some telugu might help, but most people speak some level of English. - Jul 2014

None. Many expats get around fine with English. The only officers who speak local language were trained for their jobs. - Mar 2012

None. Many people speak English here and if they don't you can get buy with hand gestures. - Feb 2012

Little to none. Don't learn Hindi. They only speak Telugu in Hyderabad. - Jan 2011

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