India has grown significantly in the last 2 decades. The Unity in Diversity Country is at its bursting seams and as per government data the population is predicted to reach 1.4 billion in 2030, surpassing that of China. The sheer mass of people is a shock to most western expats as they have not experienced such population density back home.

Relocating to India: Know What You are Getting Into!

Housing in India

India is predominantly a landlord-driven market where demand exceeds supply. As a result, IOS consultants always advice that once an assignee finds a property they like, they act as quickly as possible, and have at least 2 back up options should the preferred property fall through during the negotiation phase. The lease negotiation and verification process is long and littered with many bends, a professional relocation company is your best bet to traverse this path.


India is home to a number of well-acclaimed international schools, but it is essential to apply early, as places are limited and long waiting lists are common. Schools in India will only co-ordinate with parents and do not liaise with any third party, even if it’s a relative of the family.So your relocation partner can source information, and arrange tours. However, the application process is largely managed by the assignee.


India is a developing nation; hence it is not uncommon to see disruptions to one’s routine due to a construction of a metro rail or a flyover. Traffic in most major cities in India moves slowly. Road traffic congestion is common due to the increasing number of vehicles on the road. In addition, lane discipline and pedestrians walking between vehicles add to recurring traffic jams and accidents. It is recommended that expatriates do not drive in India, as the traffic conditions may be highly unfamiliar to many. Most companies typically provide their assignees with a car and driver for the duration of the assignment.

Conducting Business in India

There are 18 official languages in India and more than 1,500 dialects, so approaching India as a single culture is a mistake that needs to be avoided to ensure your success in this important emerging market. India is more like the European Union, governed by a single central government. The number-one rule for working effectively in India is the importance of building relationships. Another key cultural factor when doing business is the importance of ‘high context’ communication. It is important to pay close attention to what is being said and also what is not being said;  reading between the lines and listening for hidden messages. Relationships drive business in India, so taking the time to invest in long-term business relationships is a win-win for everyone.

Moving to India anytime soon? Drop us a note on and we will be glad to answer any questions and provide with the correct assistance.