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Relocating to Calcutta

About the City

As the capital city of the state of West Bengal, Calcutta plays an important role as the principal cultural, educational and financial center of eastern India. The city, which is situated on the eastern banks of the Hooghly River, is also the home of India’s oldest and primary trading port.

Spanning an area of 200 square kilometers with a population of 4.5 million residents, Calcutta is the third most densely populated city in India, despite the population taking a 1.8% decrease over the last decade.

The majority of the city’s inhabitants are Bengalis, however there are sizeable communities of Chinese, Anglo-Indian, Armenian, Greek and Persian expats. Bengali is the official state language, however English speakers will have no trouble communicating in Calcutta as English is also widely spoken, especially in customer serving industries.

With an 80% majority, Hinduism is the dominant religion of the city, followed by Islam and a very small number of Christians and Jains.

The Climate in Calcutta

Like many places in India, Calcutta experiences a typical tropical wet and dry climate. During the summer months, the climate in the city is extremely hot and humid with summer lows of 80˚F (27°C) and highs of 104˚F (40°C) and beyond. The heat and humidity during this time is intensified by the heavy crowds. Just before summer begins, the weather is very arid and dry, and the city experiences dusty spells. Once the wet season has kicked in, the weather changes drastically, with tropical thunderstorms taking place. Calcutta’s winter is very short lived, it lasts for two months between early December and late January and temperatures dip to between 48˚F (9°C) and 51˚F (11°C). The majority of the rainfall takes place between June and September, when the Bay of Bengal monsoon brings in extremely heavy rainfall. It is during this period that the city experiences most of its 1,582 mm annual rainfall.

Visas for India

Permanent residency is granted in two forms, the Overseas Citizen of India (or OCI) card and the Person of Indian Origin (PIO) card. These cards are for former Indian nationals who have given up their citizenship to live in another country since 1950 and wish to return permanently, or for anybody of Indian familial heritage who wishes to settle in the country.

People from Pakistan, Bangladesh, Afghanistan, Nepal, China and Sri Lanka are excluded from permanent residency. Alternatively, foreigners who are not of Indian origin may obtain a long term visa, this is valid for six months after which it may be renewed. In order to obtain a long term permit, expats must provide the relevant Indian embassy with four passport photographs, a passport, evidence of residence in the form of a rent agreement, bank statement or utilities bill and a registration fee of 100 INR. The application form along with more detailed advice can be found online.

Oct 13, 2023, 4:30 PM
19 attendees
Hello Community! We are hosting our next InterNations Event at Salt House on Friday 13th October. Looking forward in getting together before the Pujo season starts. Come and enjoy the wonderful food
Jul 2, 2023, 4:00 PM
17 attendees
Sip and enjoy the night from the city's most scenic and iconic lounge, The Roots. Join us to meet up with your fellow InterNations members, network, make new friends, grab a drink or a bite and above
Dec 16, 2022, 3:30 PM
16 attendees
We are excited to invite you to our InterNations Christmas Event on Friday, 16 December. Enjoy the vibes of Kolkata's one of the most popular night clubs - World Bar III. We start at 20:00 at an exc
Let's get togather to celebrate 15th anniversary bash of InterNations at the most rocking place in town - The Cheap Charlie. You'll have a chance to win a free 2-month Albatross Membership! Please fe

See all upcoming events for expats in Calcutta

Our Global Partners

  • David Snyder

    If you are looking for an international school, a good doctor, or even a used car in Calcutta - you will find it on InterNations.

  • Mia Lindberg

    Through InterNations and its expat network, I met my boyfriend here in Calcutta. Therefore I can only recommend it.

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