Delhi Vs. Mumbai: Which City Is Better?

There are few debates that are as old as time itself: Men vs Women, Marvel vs DC, Batman vs Superman(they even made a movie about it!), etc. However, nothing is older or more intensive than the old, Delhi vs Mumbai. These cities are always arguing and trying to get a one-up against one another. While Mumbaikars complain that Delhi has no civic sense and embodies everything that is wrong with the country, Delhiites complain how posh and pretentious Mumbaikars are. We decided to go past the BC-MC and SoBo quips and do better analysis, settling this debate for once and for all. We decided to argue on certain points that no one else seems to argue on- you know, the important ones.

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Delhi Vs. Mumbai Comparison – Which city is better to live in?

1. Crime Rate

One of the most important factors about judging a city is undoubtedly its safety. Whether you are a tourist or a resident of a city, it is extremely important to know how safe the city you are traveling in is.

  • Delhi ranks 1st out of 19 major Metropolitan cities in the country for crimes (reported) while Mumbai ranked 15th.
  • In terms of most number of murders reported, Delhi ranks 5th, while Mumbai comes in at 16th.
  • Delhi also ranks 1st, when it comes to kidnapping and abduction. Mumbai ranks 7th on this.
  • When it comes to crimes committed against women, Delhi is 1st again. Mumbai ranks 12th.

Graph Crime Rate 2014 2016 Delhi Mumbai

Crime Rate Categories Graph

Source: National Crime Records Bureau, 2014-2016

Based on these rankings, it is absolutely clear the Capital of the country is not exactly the safest place to be. Guess Mumbai is the more civilized one after all..*cough cough*

Verdict: Mumbai wins this round, hands down. And by a huge margin!

Mumbai – 1
Delhi – 0

2. Air Pollution

Fancy some long-breathing and pranayama every morning? Oops! The top 9 of the top 10 polluted cities in the world are in *collective gasp*…India.

  • Delhi ranked as the most polluted city in 2016. It still ranks as one of the most polluted cities in the world.
  • Mumbai, ranked comparatively much lower at 94 (2016).
  • In the national rankings, Delhi (PM2.5 reading- 143)features in the top 10 list of India’s most polluted city.
  • Mumbai does not feature in this top 10 list as well!
Air Pollution Mumbai vs Delhi

Source: World Health Organisation, Central Pollution Control Board

So, if you are looking for a city that is better to breathe in, Mumbai(PM2.5 reading-64) is your choice. If you are looking to be a scuba diver wherever you go, Delhi.

Verdict: Mumbai wins this round as well!

Mumbai – 1
Delhi – 0

3. Ease Of Doing Business

The Ease of Doing Business Index was originally created by the World Bank. If the ranking is high, it indicates that the resources available in that state are better. It also indicates stronger property rights within the state or country.

  • Maharashtra ranks higher in terms of ease of doing business (92.88 out of 100).
  • Delhi ranks pretty low with a score of (31.69).
Ease of doing business graph

Source: Ministry of Commerce and Industry

P.S: Although this is a state-wide comparison, it can be inferred that Mumbai, the finance capital of the country, ranks better when it comes to ease of doing business. Delhi loses this one again! Argh! Buckle up, Delhi!

Mumbai – 1
Delhi – 0

4. Cost of Living

Cost of living is defined as the “cost of maintaining a certain standard of living.” The cost of living can also be defined as the cost required to maintain a living standard in different geographical locations. According to Mercer, the world’s largest human resource consulting firm:

  • Mumbai is the most expensive city to live in India. In fact, it is the world’s 55th most expensive city to live in, beating the likes of Paris and Seattle!
  • Delhi ranks 2nd in India and 103rd in world rankings.

Cost of living Mumbai

Delhi wins this one, hands down! Let’s not forget how expensive rents can be in Mumbai. According to old folklore, you have better chances of finding Atlantis than a house in Mumbai. Even a simple 1bhk can go up to 25K/month in Mumbai. Delhi, although quite expensive, is much better than Mumbai.

Mumbai – 0
Delhi – 1

5. Gross Domestic Product (GDP)

Gross Domestic Product or GDP is defined as “the monetary measure of the market value of all the final goods and services produced in a period of time.”

  • Mumbai leads the GDP ranking in India with an estimated $310 billion.
  • Delhi occupies the 2nd spot with $293.6 billion. However, Delhi is growing as one of the fastest cities in Asia.
Gross Domestic Product GDP

Source: Brookings Institution

P.S: Here, the GDP is measured based on GDP at PPP (Purchasing Power Parity). It basically means the purchasing power across different cities in regards to an equal denomination. In this case, it is Rupees.

Mumbai – 1 (And..another slam-dunk for Mumbai!)
Delhi – 0

6. Literacy Rate

Another important aspect to measure if the cities are going to make your stay comfortable are their literacy rates. Literacy rates also help you tell how much progress these cities have made.

  • Delhi has a literacy rate of 86.21% as per the 2011 Census.
  • The male and female literacy rates (Delhi) are 90.94 % and 80.76% respectively.
  • Mumbai, on the other hand, has a total literacy rate of 89.73%.
  • Male and female percentages (Mumbai) stand at 92.56% and 86.39% respectively.
Literacy Rate Graph

Source: 2011 Census data. The next Census of India will be released in 2021.

Mumbai fared far better than Delhi in terms of literacy rate, thus not breaking the stereotype Delhi has. Guess that settles it then…

Mumbai – 1
Delhi – 0

7. FDI Inflow

Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) Inflow is defined as “the value of the inward direct investment made by non-resident investors in the reporting economy”. Which means, how much investment is done in that geographical region by investors from other states/countries.

  • Mumbai ranked 1st when it came to Indian cities which received the highest FDI during 2014-2017 with a whopping $35.53 billion inflows.
  • New Delhi came 2nd with $25.50 billion in inflows, during the same period.
FDI Inflow Graph

Source: Reserve Bank Of India

Someone make the Mumbai juggernaut stop? Guess there is absolutely no winning with Mumbai.

Mumbai – 1
Delhi – 0

(Guess there is absolutely no winning with Mumbai.)

8. Food

The reason of existence. Food is that one thing we just cannot live without. And considering that these two cities have some of the best food in the country, this just gets tougher.

  • Delhi has Karim’s, momos,gol gappa, kebabs.
  • Mumbai has vada pav, missal pav, usal pav and dabeli.

Food Momo Delhi

When it comes to food, these two cities go neck-to-neck with choices and both can spoil you completely. So, when it comes to food, it is a close tie. We are gonna go with a tie because we love food and choosing one food over another is a cardinal sin (unless it is a Pineapple Pizza because that sucks).

Also, hot take: When it comes to food, these two cities got nothing on Kolkata.

Mumbai – 1
Delhi – 1

9. Weather

Weather is much more diverse in Delhi than Mumbai. While Delhi experiences the highs and the lows (and the in-betweens), Mumbai is kind of about the highs only…

  • Be it hot summers or cold winters, Delhi will let you experience both.
  • Mumbai, with its coastal-like climate, hardly has much variance.
  • Delhi has a pretty dry climate, which makes the summers better, with not much of sweat, despite the soaring temperatures.
  • Mumbai’s moisture-laden weather gives you sticky weather! Unless you don’t drown during the monsoon.
  • Delhi also gets pretty cold during December-January with temperatures as low as 1°C to 2°C.
  • In winters, Mumbai has no winters. If Mumbai ever gets a winter, you can kiss the earth goodbye.

Mumbai weather

Wohoo! Delhi is back into the game… I guess? Anyway, the weather is probably one of the most important factors you consider before you move to another city. Considering that Delhi won this bout, things are looking good!

Mumbai – 0
Delhi – 1

10. Transportation

How we wish we all had Aladdin’s magic carpet or the Jetsons’ time portal. But sadly, we don’t. Hence the over-relying on transportation.

  • According to Ola’s Ease of Moving Index 2018, Delhi ranked first when it came to the city with the most comfortable transportation system.
  • Delhi also has the best surface quality to ride on, which means it has better roads.
  • New Delhi also has a better transportation system, when it comes to affordability.

Transport Mumbai

That wasn’t hard to guess, considering what hanging out means in Mumbai. Not to forget, the autowallahs in Mumbai reject you more than your parents reject your Goa trip. Delhi wins another important metric as well!

Mumbai – 0
Delhi – 1

Review Overview

Mumbai: 6
Delhi: 3
Tie: 1

So, that’s our take on the Mumbai vs Delhi debate. Let us know if you agree. And if you want to unload your thoughts and abuses(if you are from Delhi), let us know in the comments!

Show all Most Helpful Highest Rating Lowest Rating Add your review
  1. Mumbai is safe

  2. I have lived in both cities for reasonably long periods and I so long to go back to Mumbai. Delhi depresses me.

  3. Delhi is best

  4. Coming from East a decade back, Delhi has become the place for us now. There is so much charm on the city, which is directly reflected in people’s life Style. My recent visit to Mumbai, turned me down as the city never charmed me. The slums, horrible looking old building, the local train, clumsy houses and so on. So my score is for the city of style.

  5. I am sorry but Delhi’s food is incomparable with Mumbai’s food. Only Pav, Pav Pav 😛

    • There’s a lot more to eat in Mumbai other than pavs

    • sorry but now Mumbai has mixed culture so you can find equally tasty north Indian, South Indian, continental, Chinese and other varieties also and there is no such ranking factor decided in terms of food so you are biased…surely you might be from the north.

  6. Mumbai is always best becozz of its lifestyle,food and a person becomes skillfull in mumbai and learn a lot of things

    • Delhi is really good for business,I don’t know what this data showcasts,Mumbai has more working class people as opposed to Delhi

  7. Well, all the comments which says delhi scored 0 because Delhi is a capital of India and its in a centre. And believe me it’s like a good to live in capital but worse than anything. At last I can say pls make Mumbai capital, you will save Delhi…. Lol.


  9. I am a resident of MumbaI. I had been to Delhi recently. Only Lutyen’s part of Delhi is quite good. But some of the other neighbourhoods like Jama Masjid, Chandni Chowk, Sadar Bazaar, Panchkuiyan etc are worse than Mumbai’s Dharavi. Delhites’ civic sense are no better than the animals. With so many waste bins installed they love to litter the streets. Even though there are public conveninces at regular intervals yet they like to turn the sidewalks into a cesspool of nightsoil and puddle of urine. Fashionable neighbourhoods like Nehru Place and Nehru Enclaves are not spaired.

  10. I have lived in both cities but Overall Delhi is Best in Most of the sense. Standard of Living in Delhi is Far Better. Don’t compare the Food of Mumbai with Delhi. In Mumbai, Food means No Taste. Narrow Roads attracted me in Mumbai, with People Hanging in Trains like ……. Very Crowded. Maximum Slums are there……. Crime is Less in Mumbai. Delhi need to work on That….

    • You missed standard of living..delhi ncr is much much better if compared on same earning.

      Housing- In delhi ncr common folks houses are beautiful and spacious not like congested high rises of mumbai..

      Corruption is more in mumbai than in delhi..
      Delhi – 6
      Mumbai -6

      Mumbai has a capitalist state like structure and delhi has a socialist state touch …
      Means wealth is not distributed evenly in mumbai…

  11. Mumbai comes in 10 top most clean cities in India .mumbai is much better than delhi to live in any mumbai should be the capital of India.

  12. mumbaikar amhi mumbai is best in every factor the city of dreams every youth comes to struggle here in mumbai

  13. Delhi is best because
    1. Wide Roads.
    2. Better life style than Mumbai.
    3. Less slum than Mumbai.
    4. Bigger than Mumbai so more option for everything.
    5. Delhi is far ahead in historical place than Mumbai.
    6. GDP of 2018 and 2019 as per govt date was more of Delhi than Mumbai.

    After all what will continue in nation all decisions are taken from Delhi. So I can say Delhi is best!

    Or you come to Delhi and feel the difference!

    • Really? I lives in both city Delhi famous for thugs. Frauds and fakes no one have real face and all the material like raste ka maal saste me.
      No hygiene no proper township plan.
      Its never seem like capital.

      • Oh really you think that Mumbai is better than Delhi so also see this:-

        (I)Delhi is far better than Mumbai where the standard of living is concerned
        (ii) And also Delhi is the capital of India and the capital will be the capital.
        (iii) Its Delhi for sure when it comes to Food with lots of variety and flavour
        (iv) In Delhi all the type of religious people are living with love AAKHIR KAR HUM DILWALE JO HAI.
        (v) Delhi is also a metropolitan city NOT LIKE MUMBAI local trains
        (vi) The Quality of living in Delhi is cheaper than in Mumbai
        (vii) Delhi has more IIT industries as compared to Mumbai film Industries.
        (viii) In Delhi we can feel all the seasons – Summer, Winter, Rainy, Spring, Autumn Not like Mumbai only one climate (ix) In Delhi all the coaching, Universities are easily available
        (x) Delhi has the biggest Universities Jawaharlal University, Delhi university etc,

        I think these points are very much to know about the Delhi

    • No delhi was never ahead than Mumbai when it comes to gdp.. google it bro

  14. I like Delhi

  15. Though I live in Delhi still I think that Mumbai is a bit better than Delhi cause Mumbai is less involved in criminal activities as compared to Delhi. Also in Mumbai, there is a very little stereotype. Whereas in Delhi every time a new crime or a rape case flashes on the T.V.The only problem in Delhi is safety(not only for women but for everyone) which is not a minor issue.

    Besides these both the cities are good in their own way.

  16. Delhi is far better for education, accommodation, transportation and food culture quite better than mumbai.. I used to lived in mumbai.. But i feel delhi has different charm.. Delhi colleges… Delhi has most beautiful girls than mumbai…

    • No bro.. Bangalore ranks first and then Mumbai then Delhi..soo Mumbai is better even in education than delhi..if you don’t believe me then google it n you’ll find it

  17. Obviously delhi! No comparision with mumbai.

  18. Mumbai is safe and attractive, when Delhi have too cases of kidnapping and murders.
    So MAYANAGRI is best?

  19. You have not mentioned about the Health care facility. Delhi contains India’s best medical facility. Delhi has most advanced hospitals and experienced doctors. Mumbai is not even in top 5 when it comes to advanced hospitals and reputed doctors.

  20. Delhi is far better than Mumbai because I Delhi there is no region basis discrimination on the other hand in Mumbai mumbaikar has dicrinatory against north people they put maharashtra first then nation.but they know Delhi is the baap of every city India .because Delhi power house of India and whole nation run through Delhi.

    • No you can’t runs India even if it’s the capital..coz Mumbai is economical capital na.. Mumbai contributes 70% to the nation..aur paise se hi sab kuch chalta hai na

      • *mumbai contributes 70% to the nation. now i know that the people of mumbai are so illiterate . stop replying to everyone that mumbai is better instead, start studying . that is a better option .

  21. Ohh Chaman, Delhi’s Education and healthcare is the best in India.
    In terms of food, Delhi has Chole Bhature which is much much better than Momo aur actually, Vada Pav. Mumbai has no taste.

    Delhi is always the best!!!!

  22. I think both are best in their own way..coz both of them are the main most important cities of India so we should not fight which city is the best..Jai Hind ??

  23. Mumbai is the best Delhi is the worst so bad city does not even have eligibility to become capital

  24. Crime, Pickpocketing, Chain Snatching, eve teasing and Other Frauds are more in Delhi Compare to Other Cities.
    This is My Personal Experience.

  25. Both city are Good but if we compare then New Delhi is the best in education, transportation and healthcare. It has a wider road to ply a vehicle comfortably and plenty of Central Universities and government hospitals but in Mumbai, always feel hectic in this regard esp. In transportation. I always feel resplendent after 11 PM in South Mumbai.

  26. The author is definitely a Mumbaikar…. Food in Mumbai is nothing in comparison to Delhi.
    Further Delhi doesn’t have self-proclaimed thekedaar and hooligans like Shiv Sena.

    Higher accommodation rates and below-average food coupled with the Maratha superiority complex makes Mumbai unlikeable for people who are used to reside in cities….. That’s why Maharashtra is filled with villagers from Up and Bihar….

    Pune is bit better in that aspect.

  27. You spend a month in Mumbai and come back to Delhi, you will feel like a king if you travel in public transport or your own vehicle.
    Delhi is less expensive when a common man eats in an ordinary restaurant.
    I found Mumbai crowded, less clean than Delhi, auto taxis more expensive.
    There is struggle everywhere in local trains, A family waiting for entry in a pizza shop on weekends.
    Everybody is busy earning his livelihood in Mumbai. Delhi appears to have a more relaxed life.

  28. Delhi is the best Delhi’s people love their city

  29. as of now, mumbai is the financial capital but the gdp growth rate of delhi is much bigger than mumbai and in niti aayog webisite it is clearly written that dehi will surpass mumbais gdp near 2025

  30. For me two cities are some good and bad things. I am from Odisha and have recently move to Mumbai from Delhi. I found a typical Mumbaiker thinks this city belongs to them only, every other one who is not a Maharashtrian is a outsider, Which i does not feel even a single day there in Delhi in my entire 18 years stay. Even if Mumbaiker openly deny this but you can feel it in there day to day behavior with you.
    Pointing out this is not a complaint but to say Mumbaiker that we have a very good city like Mumbai where mostly people are very good & helpful only thing is that please don’t separate your self from rest of the country.

  31. Delhi might be better then mumbai . but not save, people won’t like to live in a city where so much crime is there . If delhi is better then why all famous celebrities live in mumbai? who would live in a city where girls won’t feel save , so much crime.
    they should reduce the crimes in delhi.

  32. Delhi is best

  33. no matter how good the transportation or food of delhi might be, I wouldn’t prefer living in a city where i dont feel safe.

  34. Some points of comparison is missing between Delhi and Mumbai
    1.No of parks-Delhi wins hands-down here as Delhi has large no of parks including Lodhi and Buddha Jayanti Park
    2.Cantonment-Delhi has one of the oldest and biggest British Cantonment which
    Mumbai is lacking.
    3.No of Schools-Delhi has more no of schools than Mumbai
    4.Archectural Monuments-Delhi has monuments dated Mughal era but Mumbai’S monuments date back to only 18th century.

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