What is the local currency?
The Indian monetary unit is the Rupee (Rs. or INR), which can be divided into 100 Paise.
What denominations does it come in?
Coins come in denominations of 50, 10, 20, 5, 2 and 1 paise. The 5, 2 and 1 are almost collector's items. Notes come in 10, 20, 50, 100, 500 and 1,000. Older notes of 1, 2, 5 and 20 are also in circulation. However, 1, 2, 5 and 10 rupee coins have replaced paper notes of that denomination.
What is the best way to exchange currency?
The best way is to go through a licensed money changer. Most banks and larger hotels offer this facility.
What are commonly-used forms of payment for everyday purchases (such as groceries)?
Cash is the most commonly-used form of payment, and often smaller establishments will only accept cash.
Will I be able to use my credit card around town? If not, list when I’ll need cash.
Most businesses accept major credit cards, debit cards and cash but some will add the bank charge to the bill. Smaller shops, markets and some other business types only accept cash so it is recommended to carry a small sum of cash at all times.
By what method are bills (such as rent and utilities) paid?
Bills can be paid by cheque, but many household utilities can also be paid online. Additionally, you can set up an electronic collection system which allows the billing company to directly debit your bank account for the said amount.
What are the requirements for opening a bank account? At what stage of the settling-in process should I open it?
Crown Ahmedabad recommends the QA22 account for expatriates. Currently, the QA22 account allows the account holder to bank in funds in local (INR) and in foreign currency, but withdrawals are only possible in local currency. Repatriation of funds out of India (in foreign currency) at the time of closure may be limited (varies by bank), but withdrawal of all account funds in local currency (INR) can be done at any time.
The following is a list of documents required for a QA22 bank account application:
- Completed QA22 form.
- Personally meet with the bank official for an interview.
- Declaration of (overseas) sources of credit into account.
- Two recent passport-size photos.
- Letter of employment from the local office of your company.
- Copy of valid passport and Employment visa (E-type.)
Most banks insist on an average quarterly balance of INR 10,000.
Will foreign residents be able to find banking services in their native languages?
You will be able to find banking material in English or Hindi only.
Are there any restrictions on services for those who are new to your country?
The only exception would be regarding an overseas money transfer. Transfers up to 80% of your annual salary abroad are allowed. However, only with an Employment visa can you open a bank account that would make international transfers possible.
What are typical banking hours?
Typically, banks are open from 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. on weekdays, and 8:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m. on Saturday. Sunday is the weekly holiday and most banks are closed. However, many banks have one or more of their branches open on Sundays for the convenience of working people. Bank working hours may be different for different banks and for different branches.
Are automatic teller machines (ATMs) available around the clock?
Yes, ATMs are available 24-hours a day, seven days a week and can be found all around the city.
Is there any other money information that might help me?
The Indian numeric system is similar to the Western decimal system, although Indians use the terms Lakhs and Crores to describe certain large numbers. A Lakh is equal to 100 thousand and a Crore is equal to 10 million. Even when writing numbers this uniquely Indian system is used. 100,000 is 1 Lakh and 10,000,000 is one Crore.
Please note: If you are handed a grubby note, insist on having it exchanged for a newer one, since others might refuse accepting it from you, as counterfeit bills are common. Have a big supply of small bills as most stores don't carry sufficient change.
Crown Relocations has made every effort to present accurate information. However, regulations, rates and other variables are subject to change and Crown Relocations cannot accept responsibility for the errors that might result. Should you have any questions or need additional information, please contact your local Crown representative.