5 Facts About Mumbai – Things Every Expat Should Consider Before Relocating

5 Facts About Mumbai – Things Every Expat Should Consider Before Relocating

Mumbai is the capital of the Western Indian state of Maharashtra, formally Bombay, and is the most populous city in India (with an estimated 20 million people!). Mumbai is home to Bollywood – one of the largest centres of film production in the world – and is the main commercial and economic hub in the country.

Mumbai Cityscape

Living in Mumbai can be a shock to expatriates. There are many poor areas but also a number of more upmarket and expensive areas, providing nice amenities such as great restaurants and bars, but the house prices in these areas can be closely compared to cities such as New York!

The¬†cultural¬†differences can be a shock too, especially for many Western expats moving over. Many experienced Mumbai expatriates suggest doing your homework on the city, the people and the culture before moving over – it’s very¬†crowded and noisy, often polluted and at peak times of the year it is incredibly hot!

Mumbai Hindu Festival

5 Facts About Living In Mumbai

  1. Mumbai is home to almost 18.5 million people. Scientists project that this will increase to 28 million by the year 2020.
  2. Trains in Mumbai carry over 6 million each and every day – at peak times trains are known to carry up to three times their intended ‘hold load’. They call it the¬†Super Dense Crush Load.
  3. Bombay was renamed ‘Mumbai’ (after an ancient Godess) in the twentieth¬†century¬†after it was given independence from Britain.
  4. Walking is often quicker than driving as traffic in the city is so congested. To ease this congestion, a new eight lane bridge is being built that will take traffic four kilometers over the sea!
  5. Every year, sometime between mid August and mid September, there is a 10 day Hindu festival called the Ganesh Chathurti, which brings millions of people to the streets of Mumbai.
Mumbai Traffic
For a number of other incredible facts about Mumbai, visit this blog post on the CNN Travel website.
Have you lived in Mumbai as an expatriate? Are you living there now and would like to share your thoughts about life in this incredible city? Be sure to comment below or contact us direct!

If you found this post helpful we would appreciate it if you shared it with your connections, so please Tweet about it by clicking the button below!

Click to Tweet

Also, be sure to follow us on Twitter and our LinkedIn page by clicking on the buttons below!

Follow us on Twitter Follow us on LinkedIn
← How to Balance Your New Life Abroad - There's More to Life Than Work Interesting Facts About Hong Kong →

About the author


Emma is the Senior Relationship Manager at Career Intelligence. She is also the Agony Aunt for the Career Intelligence blog, helping with any questions or issues that expatriates moving abroad may have.


  1. Ashutosh Mishra (@asumisra)
    July 20, 2013 at 6:13 am

    Mumbai is called the maximum city.And couple of things are worth repeating ….This is out of my stay of over five years in this great metropolis….

    1.It’s infrastructure is really crumbling.The local trains (main mode of commuting)are incredibly jam packed, the roads in the city are almost always clogged with traffic,and the air port struggles to keep up with growing air traffic. And all the proposed infrastructure projects are greatly delayed or even put on hold.
    2. The filth & squalor of the place is seen to be believed, especially for a western expatriate.And all reports say, most of the water is also contaminated !
    3.However, its a lively city, with a spirit – which is to be seen to be believed,also to be savored. People say Bombay makes sure that everyone’s stomach is filled before the night fall!
    4.The transport services, local trains and municipal buses are fairly efficient by Indian standards and provide the back bone of human transport logistics for the city.
    5. The best part is that its a fairly safe city , even for single women,people are generally left alone & the police is definitely the most competent among all Indian police forces, commands respect among people and riff raff, generally helpful & also the reportedly the most corrupt in a non-lethal sense !

  2. P Parti
    July 25, 2013 at 12:37 pm

    It is incorrect to quote that Bombay became Mumbai soon after India’s Independence. This change I fairly recent, and was driven as a result of Marathi (native of the state) regional politics.

    Also, Mumbai never really had hot climate; it has tropical humidity and temperature never goes beyond 33-34 degrees Celsius, so it is on the likes of Thailand or Indonesian sea facing cities.

    A sea link is already operational since past 2 years or so, people seldom use it as it is managed via toll gates.

    Western expats are abundant in areas like Bandra and south Bombay. It is also considered safer even in nights(in comparison to other metropolitan cities), single women travel with confidence in local trains and taxis even in late hours of the night.

    Drink and Drive is a strict No- No; what I have heard is that Mumbai police do not take bribe for this offence for sure!!!