Money

National currency - The national currency is the Indian rupee (INR). The smaller unit is the Paisa, where 100 paisa is equivalent to a Rupee.
The latest exchange rates are available on websites such as http://www.oanda.com/currency/converter/. Currently you can get Rs. 60 for one Euro.



Currency Exchange: It is not allowed to exchange Rupees abroad and bring them into India. Exchange opportunities are available on arrival at the airport (exchange bureaux), or else at banks and hotels. Beware of private dealers who promise you a better rate. Often such offers are fraudulent in nature.
Automated Teller Machines or ATMs are available in all major cities in India and they work without any problem. All Visa, Mastercard and American Express cards (including all EC cards with the “Maestro” symbol) are accepted. The cost of a withdrawal varies from one financial institution to another and can cost up to 10€.

  • Tip: The Cash cards of certain banks (such as Comdirect) allow free cash withdrawals from your account abroad. If you are going to be staying abroad for a long time, such a card comes in very handy.

Traveller’s checks are otherwise the safest way to travel in India with a lot of money. However, they are not accepted by all banks. In any case some large hotels exchange traveller’s checks of “Thomas Cook Bank” and the “State Bank of India”, which you can have made out in U.S. Dollars and Euros (to compensate for possible fluctuations in the exchange rates of the Euro and Dollar).
Transfer via Western Union:
A quick way to transfer money from abroad to India is via Western Union, of which there are a number of branches in Pune. Payment is easy against a transfer number, which the remitter will notify you of.
Opening an account: If you come to India on a long-term visa (e.g. Employment, Business or Student visa), you can and should open an account with an Indian bank (e.g. ICICI, HDFC) or with an International Bank operating in India (e.g. Citibank, Deutsche Bank). In this way you can easily transfer even larger amounts from abroad and pay by crossed check in India, which is very common here. However, as a tourist you are not allowed this option.

ATM

Western-Union

Cost of living: Everyday necessities are much cheaper in India than in Germany. However, for imported goods (such as Italian pasta, Spanish olives, German chocolate) one naturally has to pay a higher price than at home. Those, who cannot do without such items will then have to reckon with living costs, which roughly correspond to those in Germany. On the other hand, the average monthly income in India is about Rs. 3000, which is 50€. A qualified software engineer, lawyer, professor generally earns 10 to 20 times more. 500 Euros is a top salary here with which one can live well.
Some sample prices:
Monthly rent for a modern 3 bedroom apartment in prime locations in Pune: 330 €
Restaurant Visit: Upscale restaurant, food and beverages per person approx. 3-4 €
Bread: 300g approx. 0.25 €
Butter: 250g approx. 1 €
Vegetables/Fruits: 1 kg apples/oranges around 1-2 €, bananas 0.3 €
Petrol: 1 litre of premium petrol (unleaded) 1 €

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