Month: March 2011

Month: March 2011

It will cost around $5,000-$7,000 for a shipping container from the U.S. to India. This includes loading, unloading, insurance and around $1,000 for customs duty.

What I concluded is that unless you can make up that cost in saving, it is not worth it to ship a container. We have purchased a lot of new furniture, two big HDTVs (including a 55″ 3D HDTV), a music systems (including 7.1 speakers), and many other items. We thought a lot about not  shipping a container, but once we decided that it would be worth it, we made a list of what we would need to take versus what we would buy once back in India. By doing this, we were able to save $3,000-$4,000 in electronics alone when compared to the cost of buying them in India.

We had been in the U.S. for 12 years so instead of taking our old furniture from U.S.,  we bought almost all new furniture including 4 Italian leather sofas, queen and king size bed, mattresses, dresser, night stands, center tables, computer table, entertainment center etc.  We are going to live in Indore, and it would have been possible to have gotten the furniture we wanted in the big cities, but it would have been a lot of hassle. We would have had to see in which big city we could buy our furniture, then where in that city to buy our furniture, and then we probably would not have been able to find what we wanted. I am pretty sure that the deal we got from Macy’s in the U.S. was better than any deal we could have found in India. In addition, already having the furniture would save us a lot of time and hassle, not to mention that we had gotten what we wanted and had grown accustomed to it too.

Here are the main item we shipped in our container:



1. 55″ Samsung 3D HDTV

2. 40″ Samsung HDTV

3. Onkyo TX-NR808 Home Theater Receiver

4. 7.1 Speakers ( 2 Polk II Monitor70, 1 Polk CS 2, 1 BIC 12″ subwoofer and 4 BOSE 161 speakers)

5. 1 New Lenovo laptop and 2 Dell netbooks

6. 4 2000 watts transformers and 1 3000 watts step up/down transformer

7. Toys and cloths for our 2 year-old son

8. PS3 and Xbox 360 with lots of games

9. Dinnerware (for formal and daily use)

10. Wireless security systems

11. HP wireless printer

12. 4-5 beds in a bag

13. Picture frames from michaels

14. Sony hi-fi shelf system

15. Exercise/boot camp DVDS

16. Speaker cables, ethernet cables, bannana plugs, etc from

17 Shark steam pocket mop

18. Rice Cooker, Cusinart griddle, KitchenAid oven

19. 2-3 digital picture frames

20. Bathroom and cleaning supplies for a few months

21. Professional fabric steamer from costco

22. 2 Area rugs from Costco

23.  Above-mentioned furniture

24. 2 wireless N routers, one to be used as a wireless bridge

25. 2 Spike protectors

26. PAL HDMI-NTSC converter ( depends on if you need it)

I hope this post and list of items will help you in deciding whether it is worth shipping a container.

Previous Post:

1. Step One in the Process of Returning to India


Month: March 2011

PLAN, PLAN, PLAN!!!!!!!!!!!

The first step I found to be useful was to make a list of reasons why I wanted to go back. For me this list included items that I did not have in US and I could not live without. They were ones I continued to need even after spending  a large amount of my life  in U.S.

Here are some tips I found useful once I had made the decision to go back:

1. Set a date for when you want come back, because without it you cannot be sure that are ever coming back. I had a family problem, but I still came close to meeting my deadline date.

2. Do you want to bring the shipping container? If the answer is yes, then start making a list of what you want. Also make a list items which you want to buy new.  I will share my list with you in a later post.

3. Regarding money, set a target as to how much you need in the bank regardless of whether in India or abroad. This is a must.  Along with this, you should ask whether you want to take a job or if you have enough to retire. I will write more in detail in a later post about what I will be doing with my retirement fund and how much of a percentage I will convert to Indian Rupees.

4. Take a job or take few months off and look for job in India.

5. Regarding school, this I have found to be the hardest part. Shortlist the schools you like and try to find the admission procedures. Also it will very helpful if you know someone in the school.  While we did get our son admitted to a decent school, we could not get him into the school we had wanted, even though we followed all the rules of the school admission.

6. Regarding a house/home, decide where you want to live. If you will rent you are in good shape, because buying is really very expensive here. My home is 2,000 sq.ft. and in a decent area of the city.  If I were to sell my home here, I could easily buy a very good single family home in Miami.  However, I cannot imagine buying a property in India now. One small bedroom condo/flat costs around $40,000-$50,000 in Indore.  Also if our home were newly constructed, it would take lot of time and even more money to renovate.

Again make a list of why you want to come back and plan, plan, plan!

Month: March 2011

I first started talking about going back to India to my friends and family many years ago. I had never entertained the thought of settling in the U.S. since I came here, but I also found that the more time I spent in the U.S., the harder it became to go back to my homeland (Bhumi). It’s true regardless wherever we live because we are well settled. It became more difficult because we were in US and were accustomed to quality life style compare to India.  I have also heard stories of people  being discouraged by their friends and extended families, reason being simple — more money, quality lift style and craze of US.  But  my wife  was with me, and we were determined to go back. We had always put our families first and had never once imagined  living without them. We are U.S. citizens, but our parents who are in India do not want to come live with us. Even if our parents were in agreed to come live with us, there is long wait time for siblings who are also in India to get green cards. Another good decision we took was not to buy home in the U.S. This helped us avoid the hassle of having to sell a home.

Now we are back in Indore, India. I have not quit my job yet, but my wife has. My wife and child are here for good.  We will see how it goes for them here over the next few months, and, if all goes well, I will quit my job then too and also return for good. If for any reason it does not work out, then at least we will have the option with my job to go back. We have come back many times to India, but we can already see that coming back for good is not going to be so easy. Even though we were mentally prepared, it has been much more difficult than we expected –the hot weather, pollution, service problem everywhere etc. However,  we are determined and will do whatever it takes to settle here.

I will write my blog especially for people who are thinking of coming back to India for good. However, because I live in Indore, some of the situations I have encountered may not true in your city.

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