Mumbai - Post Report Question and Answers

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I found Mumbaikers to be welcoming, proud of their city, and friendly. Keep a good attitude and make some local friends. - Jul 2023

Mumbai is an amazing city and is the first place I could see myself living in forever (if it weren’t so expensive!). But your time here will be what you make it. Try to come with an open mind and an open heart and I am sure you will fall in love with it, just like I did. - May 2023

I once got yelled at by a shop vendor for giving a homeless lady some money. They scolded me by saying "Do you want India to be poor forever!?, You're not helping them! There are jobs, but they don't want to work". It's a real dilemma when you see poor starving people in the streets asking for money and when you do give to them, more would flock to you and seem to perpetuate the begging system. - Aug 2021

To really experience Mumbai, and India at large, you really need to let go of your western values and embrace the chaos of the city. Sometimes things just don't make sense, and you will identify a better way to do things, but the inefficiency and chaos is part of the Mumbai culture. If you struggle against it, you will get frustrated all the time. To have an easier time living in Mumbai, you need to embrace "going with the flow" to the fullest. - Nov 2020

India is unlike anywhere I’ve ever lived. It’s a full-on assault on your senses the minute you step out the door. It can take a long time to get used to the chaos – it exhausted me at first and it’s hard to find quiet places to take a break from it. That being said, there is always something fascinating to look at (or be a part of even) and so, so many interesting things to learn. It’s a place full of contrasts – but that’s exactly what makes it so fascinating. - Aug 2019

Mumbai tends to be very polarizing. Some people love it, and others can't wait to leave. Mumbai is an all-encompassing and overwhelming onslaught of a city. Merely walking around, you are flooded with a sensory overload of spices, smoke, drums and bells, screeching rickshaws, grime, glamorous people, piles of cow dung, and huge under-construction skyscrapers, with dozens of vendors sleeping on the sidewalks in front of them at night. There is everything here: Indian festivals. Bollywood movies. Amazing food. People from all over. Old beautiful architecture. Huge slums. Mumbai is a built city, with very little in the way of parks, natures, or green areas. India is inexpensive, and Mumbai is a terrific base from which to explore the country. - Mar 2019

Do your homework and manage your expectations. - May 2018

If you're single, find a circle of other single friends ASAP. Brunches with them were my therapy. The family community is tight knit since the American School is so popular, so there isn't much overlap between families and singles.

While it is an eye opening post, between the filth, poverty, classism, and chaos, I probably won't enter India again. - Jun 2017

Not a bad gig! - Aug 2015

Despite the difficulties living here, and the things I listed that aren't so nice (malaria, anyone?) this has been a great 18 months so far, and we're glad we have a few months to go. We'll always look back on India fondly, and there are days when I genuinely love it here & can't believe my good fortune to experience it. - Nov 2014

Mumbai is a fascinating place with nice people and amazing food. But it also has to be one of the most trying, difficult places to live if you are not from here. The traffic and honking horns alone can drive you mad and just when you become crazy, hundreds of other things will test you even more. Staying healthy is incredibly difficult. The lovely thing is that once you live here, ANY city in the world seems quiet and organized. And you'll never appreciate as much being able to open your mouth in the shower. - Mar 2014

Stay positive, and your Indian sojourn will be rewarding. Many expats have even given birth in India and tell incredible stories of the country's progress. It might take a gazillion years to understand India. - Feb 2014

This is said to be the best city in India, and it seems that way from what I've seen. Come here with a sense of adventure, but if you aren't willing to accept that life is much different here than in the West, then you will not like it here. It's all up to you. - Aug 2013

There are many nice things about Mumbai -- friendly people, good food, good schools, inexpensive household help and a great new facility for the U.S. Consulate. But there are plenty of hardships: some of the world's worst traffic (both in terms of density and chaos -- you will spend countless hours in traffic), pollution, horrible smells, and in-your-face poverty and human suffering. Be prepared - some people (especially those who have never been to a less-developed country) can't handle it. - Feb 2013

If you like cities you will do fine. If you can't stand NYC, then you will not like Mumbai. While very different from one another, the chaos is similiar, as is the congestion. - Jul 2008


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