The World’s Most Expensive Cities

When I was doing research about the cost of living in Stockholm, I found a neat article from Business Week about the world’s most expensive cities. It’s not unusual that all the Nordic cities appeared on the list but rather amusing how much we pay for some basic items.

Norway, was as usual, epic in pricing with Oslo ranking in at number two and Stavanger, the oil capital, at number 6.

Number 2: Oslo, Norway
FOOD: Lunch at a restaurant: $43
Can of beer from grocer: $4.71
One kg of rice: $5.66
One dozen eggs: $6.72
ENTERTAINMENT: Movie ticket: $16

They forgot to mention a BEER at a restaurant is $12 and a pizza for one costs $20 (at least in Narvik). Goddamn Norway.

No. 6: Stavanger, Norway
FOOD: Lunch at a restaurant: $33
Can of beer from grocer: $4.76
One kg of rice: $5.71
One dozen eggs: $6.34
ENTERTAINMENT: Movie ticket: $15.50

No. 8: Copenhagen, Denmark
FOOD: Lunch at a restaurant: $36
Can of beer from grocer: $2.10
One kg of rice: $4.85
One dozen eggs: $6.99
DVD rental per night: $8 <--WTF?! (Perhaps rent a dvd online for cheaper?)
ENTERTAINMENT: Movie ticket: $15
APPLIANCES: Washing machine: $1,196 <-- seriously, WTF! I hope happiness is free there.

No. 14: Helsinki, Finland
FOOD: Lunch at a restaurant: $25
Can of beer from grocer: $3.02
One kg of rice: $3.42
One dozen eggs: $3.54
English magazine: $8
ENTERTAINMENT: Movie ticket: $15
APPLIANCES: Washing machine: $780

No. 21: Stockholm, Sweden
Rank in 2009: 80 <-- due to the strengthening kronor, wow FOOD: Lunch at a restaurant: $15 Can of beer from grocer: $2.07 One kg rice: $3.77 One dozen eggs: $4.36 Beer bar: $9 ENTERTAINMENT: Movie ticket: $14 APPLIANCES: Washing machine: $865 Sucky rental market – Priceless

Some things to note: ECA International based their rankings on a basket of 128 goods that includes food, daily goods, clothing, electronics, and entertainment, but not rent, utilities, and school fees. Their guide is geared towards expatriate employees so some cities like Kinshasa or Luanda are technically not expensive cities to live rent-wise.

12 thoughts on “The World’s Most Expensive Cities”

  1. Mr. Bernanke is seriously cutting into my travel budget.. As long as your salary is paid in NOTdollars, I think you’re fine.

  2. Ha, I remember buying a banana on the street in Norway and almost crying when one banana from a street vendor cost over 2 dollars.

    And hey, where can I buy a can of beer from a grocer, please? Do they mean folkol or the real stuff from Systemet? :)

  3. Jeezz… You can buy a beer at a bar in Portugal for 1€ (in the 2nd biggest city)… :-)

  4. Very expensive for tourists, but Norwegians earn tons of money and the living standard is very high. They joke about how the economic crisis is affecting Norway: Should we by a new car OR a new cabin this year? We can´t afford both…

  5. @Deidre – And that is why piracy levels are so high in some countries. For me to buy a new movie on BluRay, it’s around $50-$60USD. Video games start around $90USD.

  6. Haha, yea it is true that Norwegians earn more than other countries. For a while they had so much money in the country that they couldn’t invest it in their schools (partly why they suck) because of deflation issues.

    Still a damn expensive country!

  7. Haha, even Göteborg made it on to the list of the 30 most expensive cities in 2011 :)

  8. Re: dvds – play.com and cdwow sell european compatible discs from Singapore. Some blue rays are $20.

    As for movies/satellite tv being expensive; most anglophone countries have online plaxbacks eg bbc iplayer. If you’re after non-anglophone TV, go to your nearest Pakistani and ask for a TV card for your computer. You can watch all your TV shows amd not need to pay a license fee.

  9. @genie – Good to know. Though in Sweden, as long as you own a TV, you must pay the license fee, regardless of whether you use the tv or not. Stupid.

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