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The World's Most Expensive Cities


This article is published in collaboration with Statista 

by Anna Fleck


The Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) has recently published its Worldwide Cost of Living Index for 2023. In this edition, Singapore and Zurich jointly top the ranking as the most expensive cities in the world to live in.


Singapore was already number one in 2022, alongside New York, while Zurich has risen from the sixth position it held in last year's list. Its ascent is attributed to the strength of the Swiss franc and high prices for food, household items, and leisure. The publication also highlights the high cost of transportation and clothing in Singapore.


New York has dropped to the third place, where it ties with another Swiss city, Geneva. Two other U.S. cities (Los Angeles and San Francisco) also rank among the top ten, along with Hong Kong, Paris, Copenhagen, and Tel Aviv.


The annual index compares prices of over 200 everyday products and services such as food, clothing, rent, or transportation in 173 cities worldwide. The cities included in the study are compared to the base city of New York, with an index set at 100.


According to this year's index, prices increased on average by 7.4 percent year-on-year in the cities studied. This figure is slightly lower than the 8.1 percent increase recorded in the 2022 index but significantly higher than the trend observed between 2017 and 2021. The Economist Intelligence Unit researchers highlight how the global cost of living has continued throughout this year, despite easing energy prices and supply chain issues. "The cost of living crisis is far from over, and price levels continue to be well above historical trends," said Upasana Dutt, the study's lead. "We expect inflation to continue to slow down in 2024," the expert noted.


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