Jobs in India: a guide for expats

Gabriela Peratello
29.09.21
4 minute read

If you’re keen to explore, with an adventurous spirit and a desire to experience something new, India will be a dream destination. From fascinating cultural opportunities, to amazing food, living and working in India is an experience like no other.

This guide outlines some good places to find jobs for Americans in India, so you can begin to map out your journey. To help you make your dreams a reality, we’ll also touch on practicalities — like getting a visa or work permit, and how to manage your money more effectively across borders with the Wise Multi-currency Account.

📑 Table of Contents

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What kind of jobs can Americans apply for in India?

There are many thriving industry sectors within different regions of India, where expats might find suitable positions. The jobs you can apply for do depend on the type of background you have, and your experiences to date. You’ll be competing for roles against highly qualified local candidates, as well as other expats — so looking in niche roles where your international experience may bring added value is a smart idea.

Some of the industries where expats commonly find employment include:

  • IT and web development
  • Management consultancy
  • Engineering and automotive
  • Banking and financial services
  • Pharmaceuticals

You may also find suitable jobs for Americans in India in places where familiarity with US systems and expectations is essential — think international schools, real estate services for new arrivals, relocation consultants and so on.

How can a foreigner find jobs in India?

You’ll be able to find details about open vacancies in India using online resources such as recruitment websites and social networking sites. In addition it’s also worth connecting with businesses you aspire to work with directly if you can — a speculative application can go a long way.

Here are some top national and global recruitments sites to start your search:

💡 Tips for applying for a job from overseas
  • One of the key advantages you bring is your international experience — reflect this in your resume and cover letter — you can create your resume with the best resume template now
  • Understand local preferences for resumes and application styles, and adapt accordingly
  • Use your network to connect with employers directly where you can

Leading employers in India

Looking for a role in India with a global brand can be a good move. Global employers with a big presence and roles up for grabs in india include:

  • eBay customer experience positions in Mumbai and global analytics roles in Bangalore
  • Consumer healthcare positions at GSK
  • Amazon tech and development vacancies

Visa requirements for employment in India

The most common visas used for working in India are business visas — called B class visas — and employment visas — E class visas¹. If you’ve been offered a job in India for the long term, you probably need an E class visa. B class visas are more likely used for shorter trips, or people headed to India to start a business themselves.

📝 Employment visa eligibility requirements include:
  • Candidates should be professionals coming to India to work in roles where suitable local applicants can not be found
  • Minimum salary requirements apply, which may vary by role type
  • Visa holders must comply with all Indian legal and tax requirements

E visas are usually issued for either 2 or 3 years, or the length of the employment contract if shorter. You’ll be able to enter and leave India freely during this time.

Application process

Applying for a work permit or employment visa for India is done through your local embassy or consulate — processes may vary so you’ll want to double check the details before you get started. The basic steps are likely to include the following:

  • Complete your visa application form online and submit²
  • Print out and sign the application form
  • Gather the required documents — more on this below
  • Visit your local Indian embassy or consulate to deliver the hard copy application and your required documents — you may need an advance appointment to do this
  • Collect your passport with your visa, once the application is approved

Necessary documentation

Check the exact documentation required before you submit your application. Your local embassy or consulate can help. Usually you’ll need:

  • Your passport, which must have free pages for your visa stamp
  • Proof of employment, like your contract
  • Proof of education, qualifications and necessary experience to complete the role
  • Proof the company is legitimate — this may be company registration information for example. Ask your HR department to support you with this step.
  • Passport photos

Quick facts about living in India

jaipur-india

Average salary
  • Broad regional and role variations
  • Numbeo users report an average of 33,343.84 INR/month net after tax³ — the equivalent of around 450 USD
Currency
  • Indian rupee — INR
Main religions
  • Hinduism
  • Islam
  • Christianity
  • Sikhism
  • Jainism⁴
Government type
  • Sovereign Socialist Secular Democratic Republic
  • Parliamentary government which is federal in structure with unitary features⁵
Usual work hours
  • Maximum of 48 hours/week — the distribution of hours through the week is under review at the time of writing⁶
Holidays
  • Employee minimum vacation days vary by state but are not usually lower than 15/year
  • Around 12 public holidays/year — may vary by state
Income tax
  • Progressive tax system up to maximum level of 30% — higher earners pay a higher overall tax rate than lower earners⁷

How to send money abroad to and from India

Before you get too far into planning your move to India, check out the Wise Multi-currency Account as a smart, online way to manage your money as you make the leap to a new country. Get your Wise account for free today to hold 54 currencies, and send and receive INR payments as well as using USD and a broad range of other currencies if you need to.

All currency exchanges with Wise use the real mid-market exchange rate with no markup which can mean you save 6x compared with your regular bank. Use your Wise account to get set up for your move with lower fees and more flexibility — and to help you hit the ground running once you arrive in India.

Save on payments to INR

Check out how Wise compares with other providers when sending money to India

The true cost of sending USD to INR

Working in India can be the adventure of a lifetime. Good luck and enjoy!


Sources:

  1. MHA - Work visa FAQ
  2. India Visa Online - Visa
  3. Numbeo - Cost of living in India
  4. Census India - Religion
  5. India.gov - Governance administration
  6. Times of India - Labour ministry proposes 12 working hours higher than 8 hours per day
  7. Economic Times - Latest income tax slabs

Sources checked on 09.28.2021


This publication is provided for general information purposes only and is not intended to cover every aspect of the topics with which it deals. It is not intended to amount to advice on which you should rely. You must obtain professional or specialist advice before taking, or refraining from, any action on the basis of the content in this publication. The information in this publication does not constitute legal, tax or other professional advice from TransferWise Limited or its affiliates. Prior results do not guarantee a similar outcome. We make no representations, warranties or guarantees, whether express or implied, that the content in the publication is accurate, complete or up to date.

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