Europe, Some Of The Most Expensive Cities To Live In The World?

The most expensive cities in Europe for expatriates to live in: Zurich (Second most expensive in the world); Geneva; Monaco; London; Oslo.

  • The biggest mover down the rankings is Kaliningrad in Russia, which has dropped to become the 324th most expensive location in the world.
  • The biggest mover up the rankings is Gibraltar, which has risen to be the 171st most expensive location in the world.

Kaliningrad is unusual in that it is sandwiched between the Baltic Sea, Poland, and Lithuania (EU member states), making it impossible to travel between Kaliningrad and the rest of Russia over land without crossing at least one EU state. While the global financial crisis impacted Kaliningrad negatively, it has gained from increasing trade with the countries of the EU resulting in increasing economic growth and rising industrial output. Kaliningrad is particularly expensive for furniture & appliances. For example a Blu-ray player is $167 on average while a 46 inch LED HD TV will likely cost you around $1,653. Dry cleaning a men’s 2 pc suit will cost on average $21.53, while an international newspaper averages $6.62.
Gibraltars economy is booming compared to countries in the region, mainly due to its relatively low level of tax. The cost of living can generally be compared to that of the UK rather than Spain. Water and electricity charges are higher than costs elsewhere, and property prices are much higher than those in neighbouring Spain mainly due to the limited space. Despite duty free shopping the logistical cost of importing the majority of goods also makes Gibraltar expensive, particularly for groceries and meals out. For example a kg of potato’s averages $1.90, 1 kg boneless, skinless, chicken breast $11.06, 1 kg cheddar cheese $10.75, and 1 dozen large eggs $7.93. A meal out for two people in a mid-range restaurant costs around $84.82.
Xpatulator’s Cost of Living rankings are released every quarter and measure the comparative cost of living for expatriates in 780 cities, covering every country worldwide.  The cost of 13 basket groups with over 140 items are compared in each location, these include alcohol and tobacco, clothing, communication, education, furniture and appliances, groceries, healthcare, housing, personal care, recreation and culture, restaurants-meals-out and hotels, and transport.

The below ranking shows the Top 10 overall Cost of Living Rankings in Europe by city:

  1. Switzerland, Zurich
  2. Switzerland, Geneva
  3. Monaco, Monaco
  4. United Kingdom, London
  5. Norway, Oslo
  6. Liechtenstein, Vaduz
  7. Denmark, Copenhagen
  8. Russia, Moscow
  9. Jersey, Saint Helier
  10. France, Paris

The below ranking shows the Top 10 Cost of Living Rankings in Europe by city excluding housing, education, healthcare and transport basket groups:

  1. Switzerland, Zurich
  2. Switzerland, Geneva
  3. Norway, Oslo
  4. Russia, Moscow
  5. Liechtenstein, Vaduz
  6. Denmark, Copenhagen
  7. Monaco, Monaco
  8. Russia, Vladivostok
  9. France, Paris
  10. United Kingdom, London

New York City is used as the base for the cost of living index rankings and the US dollar is used as the base currency. The cost of living data collected is representative of an expatriate lifestyle, where the local prices for fixed quantities of the same good and services at or near each location, and US dollar exchange rates are used.  Prices in each location are affected by availability (i.e. supply and demand) as well as local pricing regulations and taxes on goods and services (e.g. premiums on luxury goods).  Local inflation is usually representative of local price increases, which in turn impacts an expatriates purchasing power in the host country.  The exchange rate impacts both the price of imports to the host country and the expatriate assignment salary calculation between the home and the host country.  The cost of living has a significant impact on the purchasing power of an expatriate’s salary package.

For the full rankings  for Europe go here.

About Xpatulator is a website that provides international cost of living information and calculators that can help you determine cost of living indexes, cost of living allowances, salary purchasing power and international assignment packages to compensate for cost of living, hardship, and exchange rate differences.
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