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IFS vs IAS: Which one to better and Why?

It is difficult to select a particular choice of civil service before knowing details about it. Indian Administrative Service and Indian Foreign...

Akshay Palande Written by Akshay Palande · 1 min read >

It is difficult to select a particular choice of civil service before knowing details about it. Indian Administrative Service and Indian Foreign Service are the glamour of all types of civil service posts. Both services are well established and renowned in society. But it is confusing when one is asked to choose one only as a career. Here one can get a guide about the truth behind two services and acceptability.

Life as an IAS

The IAS officers get luxurious bungalows with staff for accommodation.  There are lots of facilities they enjoy like cars, drivers, and fuel subsidy and so on. Their family members also get benefitted from other facilities like medical, school and education of children and so on.

Life as an IFS

An IFS officer is also very much busy like an IAS. This officer is also benefitted with these things like an IAS. But an IFS officer must be travel-friendly. IFS travels much frequently rather than that of IAS officers.

Salary structure

IAS has a good amount of pay scale which is almost the same with an IFS. But the salary of IFS is higher than that of IAS because an IFS gets more allowances than an IAS. IAS is All India Administrative Service and IFS is All India Foreign Service. IFS gets much more attention when it comes to paying scale.

Flexibility

IFS needs more mental flexibility for moving around the world for service to the government. IAS does not need to move around that much like an IFS. So, being an IFS one should be mentally prepared about service, family and other concerned things of life. Diplomatic presence in consulates, embassies, and war-ridden countries is common in IFS’s life.

IAS or IFS: who is powerful

Candidates who love to influence people and travel-oriented would love to an IFS. IFS has other options to influence people and the country. IFS has power in international deals and trade. But they cannot control government rules and factors which as IAS can do. So, power lies in two divisions for IFS and IAS.

Who is serving the nation more?

Both IAS and IFS are serving the nation. But IFS serves the nation beyond its boundaries and territories. IAS can serve only within the nation. It depends upon the candidate which one to select.

Why IAS over IFS?

Vacancy of IAS is broader than That of IFS. To be an IFS one needs to have more skills particularly in managing foreign deals, the economy of the country concerning foreign trades, war-related issues, and much more communication-oriented professionalism. Most of the candidates are unable to have that much versatility. So, IAS is preferable for most of the candidates to IFS.

Are IAS holders of diplomatic passports?

No, IAS cannot have a diplomatic passport. IFS officers have to travel to many countries for service and international relations. They are given diplomatic passports for such reason. IFS can get foreign postings too.

To conclude

It can be said that IFS and IAS both are powerful, respected and diligent. But there are some differences between these two posts. If one feels it suitable then one can select it. Educational qualification of both officers is the same. But they differ skill-wise. Being an IAS can be an achievement, but being an IFS can be like a dream comes true

Written by Akshay Palande
Akshay Palande is a passionate teacher helping hundreds of students in their UPSC preparation. With a degree in Mechanical Engineering and double masters in Public Administration and Economics, he has experience of teaching UPSC aspirants for 5 years. His subject of expertise are Geography, Polity, Economics and Environment and Ecology. Profile

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