When it comes to moving abroad and finding a suitable city in which to live, there are many factors that need to be taken into account.
The cost of living and your earning potential are among the most important. But balanced against that are cultural differences, environment, climate, language, and a dozen other aspects which can – and will – surface as you embed yourself in a new location.
Our initial focus is on the more and less expensive cities in which to live, and to give some comparative figures.
Let’s first of take a quick overview based on the latest figures provided by Expatistan:
- London is 10% more expensive than in New York
- New York is 21% more expensive than Tokyo
- Hong Kong is 9% more expensive than in Singapore
- Kuala Lumpur is 56% cheaper than in Singapore
- Paris is 23% cheaper than in London
- Toronto is 37% cheaper than in London
- Dubai is 28% cheaper than in London
- Sydney is 27% cheaper than in London
And some comparative monthly rentals on a 900 sq. ft. furnished apartment in a good area:
- Beijing, China: Yuan 9,149 = $1,440 (US$1/6.35 Yuan)
- Sacramento, California: $1,220
- San Diego, California: $1,963
- Winnipeg, Canada: C$864 = $665.00 (US$1/CN$1.30)
- Pune, India: ₨30,495 = $4462.00 (US$1/Rs64.88)
Consumer Price Index (CPI) includes consumer prices for groceries, restaurants, transportation and utilities, but not for accommodation such as rent or mortgage. These are treated separately.
The indices below are relative to New York City with the index set at 100(%). A city with a CPI of 120, is 20% more expensive than New York; an index of 77, is 23% less expensive than NYC.
Local Purchasing Power is rated against local average wage; an index of 40 means somebody with an average salary can afford to buy 60% less typical goods and services than New York residents earning an average salary.
The Top 10 Countries
|Rank||Country||CPI||Rent Index||Groceries Index||Restaurant Price Index||Local Purchasing Power Index|
Now that we’ve crunched the numbers, let’s dig a little deeper into six of the major international cities and get a better sense of exactly what you’ll have to pay to maintain a reasonable standard of living, according to Investopedia (all prices given in US$).
|Items||New York||London||Tokyo||Paris||Hong Kong||Sydney|
|A meal for two at a mid-range restaurant:||77.50||84.92||49.09||67.20||45.16||75.26|
|Quart of milk:||1.41||1.63||1.90||1.44||2.82||1.37|
|Gallon of gas:||4.24||9.44||5.92||8.80||8.56||5.68|
|Pair of jeans (Levi 501 or similar)||56.73||104.03||74.13||117.61||90.30||100.54|
|Basic utilities for small apartment (gas, electricity, water, trash):||151.92||247.80||194.15||239.17||162.66||217.99|
|1 Bedroom apartment in city center, monthly rent:||2838.13||2545.20||1259.55||1490.66||2175.12||2096.98|
|2 tickets to movie theater:||28.00||40.76||35.34||26.88||20.00||33.86|
|Average monthly salary after taxes:||4418.77||3569.97||3071.63||3340.45||2605.60||4454.29|
That is a lot to think about! But, taking all of this into consideration, where would you (or do you) choose live?