The Economist Intelligence Unit’s (EIU) latest Worldwide Cost of Living survey has revealed that Singapore and Zurich are once again the most expensive cities in the world. This marks the ninth time in the last eleven years that Singapore has held the top spot, while Zurich makes a triumphant return after three years.
However, the global cost-of-living crisis is far from over, with average price increases remaining significantly higher than pre-pandemic levels.
Top 10 Most Expensive Cities in the World in 2023
Singapore, once again, takes the lead for the ninth time in the last eleven years, sharing the top spot with Zurich, Switzerland. Here’s a closer look at the top ten most expensive cities in the world:
The Lion City retains its crown of the most expensive city in the world for the ninth time, thanks to its consistently high prices across various categories, including transportation, housing, and groceries.
The Swiss city’s strong franc and expensive groceries, household goods, and recreational activities propel it to the top spot alongside Singapore. Think skiing in the Alps and fine dining with breathtaking views.
Another Swiss city, Geneva, comes in third, boasting high prices for transportation, utilities, and housing. Its position as a global hub for international organizations and diplomatic missions contributes to its cost of living.
4. New York
Previously tied with Singapore for first place, New York slips to fourth due to a slight decrease in price growth. However, the Big Apple remains a cultural and financial powerhouse, attracting millions of visitors and residents alike, with its iconic landmarks like Times Square and Broadway shows.
5. Hong Kong
The vibrant Asian hub maintains its position in the top five, known for its high housing and transportation costs, luxurious shopping experiences, and delicious dim sum restaurants.
6. Los Angeles
California’s largest city continues its climb up the ranking, due in part to the expensive housing market and rising transportation costs, especially for car owners. Add to that the allure of Hollywood and the entertainment industry, and you have a recipe for a high cost of living.
The City of Lights makes its way into the top ten thanks to its high cost of living across various categories, including food, clothing, and entertainment. But who can resist the charm of strolling along the Champs-Élysées, picnicking in the Jardin du Luxembourg, or visiting the Louvre Museum?
Denmark’s capital joins the ranks of the most expensive cities, driven by its strong currency and high prices for basic necessities. However, its commitment to sustainability and livability, along with its charming canals and colourful houses, make it a desirable place to live.
9. Tel Aviv
Israel’s largest city enters the top ten for the first time, with its currency fluctuation and price increases contributing to this change. Despite the challenges, Tel Aviv offers a vibrant nightlife scene, delicious Middle Eastern cuisine, and beautiful beaches along the Mediterranean Sea.
10. San Francisco
The Bay Area tech hub rounds out the top ten, known for its expensive housing market, particularly in sought-after neighbourhoods like Silicon Valley, and its overall high cost of living. However, the city’s innovative spirit, diverse culture, and stunning natural beauty continue to attract people from all over the world.
North American cities slip down the ranking: While three US cities remain in the top ten, overall, North American cities have seen a decrease in price growth compared to other regions.
Europe sees higher prices: European cities, on the other hand, have moved up the ranking due to a combination of persistent inflation and currency appreciation.
Asia remains relatively affordable: Asian cities experience lower price increases on average, with four Chinese and two Japanese cities falling down the ranking this year.