If you want to have a decent high-end lifestyle without burning a hole in your pocket, these cities should not be on your bucket list. Things like the cost of real estate, eating joints, cars, taxi fares, fancy goods, boarding schools, cost of groceries, internet, clothing, local purchasing power and even hiring a personal trainer are determinant factors in ranking a city’s cost of living.
Ceoworld magazine compiled the data of the world’s costliest countries to live in based on numerous studies. They based their finding on five major determinants – cost of living, average rent, cost of groceries, eating out cost and the purchasing power of residents.
According to this study, out of the top 20 countries, nine are from Europe. So, give it a second thought, if you are planning to relocate or going for a short trip to Switzerland, Norway, Iceland or Denmark as they occupy the place in the top five in this chart. Here are the top five costliest countries in the world but that said, they have things to do and explore which offer an unprecedented experience.
The picturesque landlocked mountainous Central European country grabs the top position with a cost of living index of 122.4. Other metrics like rent index of 50.25, restaurant price index of 123.01 and local purchasing power index of 119.53 shoots it to the top spot. The country is acclaimed for its ski resorts, hiking trails and of course the sweeping landscape views.
There are a plethora of adventurous activities for travelers like boating at Rhine Falls, jumping on-board Bernina Express Ride to experience the breath-taking panorama, sky dining in Lucerne, cable car ride or paragliding at one of the many locations around the country. The travelers can also opt for local wine tasting or enjoy local cuisines in and around cities like Zermatt or Berne.
Another European country that claims the second-best honors with the cost of living index at 101.43, rent index at 36.15, eating out index at 109.28 and local purchasing power of 88.38. Clearly the quaint Nordic country in North-Western Europe enchants with its mountain glaciers and coastal fjords. Although it’s an expensive country to live in, it’s worth it all.
One can visit the Viking Ship Museum in the city of green spaces, Oslo to see the preserved 9th century Viking ships. If you are of the adventurous kind, go fishing, hiking or skiing at the Lillehammer’s Olympic resort.
Iceland is a Nordic island nation that is renowned for nature’s wonders like volcanos, geysers, lava fields, and hot springs. The cost of living in the country touches 100.48, rent index is quite high at 46.95 and the restaurant price index of 113.74 is higher than that of Norway.
Opt for whale watching tour in a small powerboat if you happen to be in or around Reykjavík, Akureyri or Husavík. Else you can go for horse-riding experience on Icelandic Horse which is a famous activity for travelers visiting the country. Visiting the Blue Lagoon geothermal spa is another cool activity to embark on in South-Western Iceland. For party animals, having a good time in Downtown Reykjavík’s bars and cafes is also a good option.
The island country of Japan located in the East Asian region misses the top podium and is at the fourth position in the list. Here the cost of living index is 83.35, local purchasing power is 87.28 and the restaurant price index is a bit low at 48.95 as compared to other top contenders. If you are fascinated by traditional arts, ancient heritage sites, and sushi, this is where you need to relocate.
For first time travelers to Japan, visit to Mount Fuji, a UNESCO World Heritage site and experiencing the Shinkansen bullet train is advised. When in the main cities of the country, go for a karaoke session and also try out the local cuisines.
The Scandinavian country famous for its islands and medieval architecture sweeps the list of five most expensive countries. The cost of living index here is 83, local purchasing power well over Japan at 100.88 and restaurant price index at 100.75.
You can visit the Copenhagen Zoo which is the oldest Europe or go for a wildlife escapade at the National Park. In Helsingør, one can experience the uniqueness of the Maritime Museum which is underground. Another must-do activity is to drive on the 5 mile-long Oresund Bridge in Denmark.