Mumbai Climbs in Global Cost of Living Rankings, Surpassing Delhi

Mumbai, 17th June 2024: Mumbai, often hailed as the ‘city of dreams,’ remains a challenge for many due to its high cost of living, not just in real estate but across goods and services. It is a hub for Bollywood stars and has climbed in rankings for costliness, as per Mercer’s 2024 Cost of Living survey, alongside Delhi.

Globally, Mumbai rose 11 spots to 136th place, while Delhi climbed 4 spots to 164th. Chennai fell five places to 189th, Bengaluru dropped six places to 195th, Hyderabad remained steady at 202nd, Pune rose eight places to 205th, and Kolkata moved up four places to 207th.

In 2023, Mumbai had dropped to 147th place but has rebounded since. Economic dynamics have contributed to Mumbai’s rise in living costs, reflecting the responsiveness of India’s urban economies to global and local economic conditions.

Mumbai ranks 21st in Asia for expatriate cost of living, with Delhi at 30th place regionally. Despite the higher rankings, Indian cities maintain overall affordability, advantageous for global organizations and local companies aiming to attract international talent.

Rahul Sharma, India Mobility Leader at Mercer, highlighted India’s resilience amid global economic challenges, citing the country’s strong economy driven by domestic demand and a robust services sector. This stability positions India as an appealing destination for global assignments.

In terms of specific costs, Mumbai tops the list in India for personal care products and energy/utility expenses, followed closely by Pune and Chennai, respectively. Transportation costs, including vehicles and maintenance, are also highest in Mumbai, trailed by Bengaluru.

Delhi saw the steepest rise in expatriate housing costs, followed by Mumbai, Bengaluru, Pune, Hyderabad, and Chennai, reflecting a critical factor in talent retention and attraction.

Overall, Kolkata offers the most economical prices for daily staples like milk, dairy, bread, beverages, oils, fruits, and vegetables, while Delhi boasts the least expensive alcohol and tobacco products.

The Mercer report underscores the impact of housing costs on organizational budgets and employee well-being, crucial amidst global economic uncertainties and inflationary pressures.

Despite challenges, India’s economy stands resilient compared to major global counterparts, driven by employment growth, a burgeoning middle class, and overall economic expansion, factors contributing positively to the cost-of-living landscape.

Globally, the top five cities for cost of living remain unchanged, with Hong Kong leading, followed by Singapore, Zurich, Geneva, Basel, New York City, London, Nassau, and Los Angeles.