Then there are those who try to rip me off; often they succeed. For example, to ride a tuk-tuk from my home to the metro is 100 rupees for a local. I have to pay 150 rupees or I will not get a ride. Now, 50 rupees is only about 75 cents. I would discount it; Nandeeta points out that the little difference adds up to $200/year. Add in all the other circumstances in which I am charged more, just because I am a foreigner, the difference will add up to thousands of dollars per year.

For example, I want to complain to Apple U.S. about my treatment at the Apple repair shop in Connaught Place. A neighbor who does IT for Adobe told me how I could have been scammed.

My Macbook Pro started behaving badly. I went to the main Apple repair place in Delhi; this is supposed to be Apple’s presence in India. They charged 2,500 rupees for a diagnosis (about $45). They said that the logic board was fried; I would need a new one for 40,000 rupees (about $600). I said I would think about it (don’t get my social security until the 4th week of each month). My neighbor took it to an Apple repair place nearby where I live (My apartment in Exotica Fresco in Noida is about 18 miles east of Delhi). He came back and said it was repaired for 1,500 rupees (about $23). He also said that if I had taken the laptop in myself, I probably would have been charged four times as much. And if I was simply standing beside my IT friend when he took it in, he probably wold have been charged double. He also said that a logic board doesn’t cost 40,000 rupees; the cost is double ($1,200 us). What the folks at Apple Delhi would have done is taken my 40,000 rupees, fixed the problem for probably 750 rupees and made over 39,000 rupees profit.

However, there are more upsides than down; excellent friends, great food, an apartment that would cost $2000 or more in the U.S. for about $200/mo here; a meal in a good restaurant for $4-$6; etc.