10 Most Expensive Cities to Work and Live

“Change is a great and horrible thing, and people love it or hate it at the same time. Without change, however, you just don’t move.” -Marc Jacobs.

We are all nomads deep inside and looking for opportunities to feed the hunter-gatherer in our basic instincts. Looking forward to moving to further destinations and meeting new people are all in our dreams. At the end of the day, we are not trees with bottomless roots. 

Everyone would desire to reside in one of the most famous cities in the world, such as Paris, London or Tokyo. These cities are recognised thanks to the many unique qualities they have. But living in the major cities of the world comes with an outlay. The expense of living… Rents, bills, transport, everything can make a dent in your pocket if you live and work in a pricey city. If you are considering resettling and comparing alternatives, we have gathered some essential information about the most expensive cities to work and live in, according to ECA International, to deliver a more realistic portrait. 

  1. Hong Kong, China

If you plan to live in Hong Kong, you better start saving now. Undoubtedly, according to myriad reports, Hong Kong has one of the highest costs of living in the world. Hong Kong has ranked first in Mercer’s Cost of Living Survey as well as ECA International’s for a number of years and will continue to be the most expensive city in the world for travellers, expats, and digital nomads in 2022. 

Without rent, the monthly expenses for a family of four are calculated at HK$ 29,777.95, and the average monthly payments for a single person without rent are HK$ 8,286.53, while the average monthly net wage is HK$ 23,258.01. 

  1. New York, USA

“The true New Yorker secretly believes that people living anywhere else have to be, in some sense, kidding.” – John Updike.

It is not unexpected that New York is the second most expensive city for expats. This stunning city is known to be quite expensive, especially rent-wise. The cost of rent can be so costly that small bedrooms with kitchens inside and shared bathrooms are rented as cosy apartments for thousands of dollars. Monthly living expenses in New York City without rent for one person are estimated at around 1,500$.

  1. Geneva, Switzerland

Geneva is famous worldwide as the city of extravagance and magnific lifestyle. It is an elegant city with many fine dining restaurants, luxury cafés and expensive stores. While Geneva is highly expensive to live in, over 40 per cent of all residents in Geneva do not have a Swiss passport. Which means it is a top choice for expats and digital nomads. A rent for a one-bedroom apartment in the city centre may charge around CHF 1,985.42. The average monthly salary after tax is CHF 5,480.04.

  1. London, United Kingdom

It is well known that London has one of the most elevated costs of living rates worldwide. Rent for an apartment in London will take up a significant portion of your monthly paycheck. The cost of housing in the UK capital is way higher than it is in the other cities in the United Kingdom. According to statistics, the rent for a one-bedroom apartment in the city centre is around £ 1,979.20, while the average monthly salary is around £ 3,227.62. There goes more than half of your paycheck. It looks like you are packing your lunch from home. 

  1. Tokyo, Japan

Since Tokyo is the country’s capital and Japan is notorious for having incredibly high living expenses, it is not surprising that prices are highest there. Rent is the most significant segment of costs, followed closely by owning a car and commuting. The average monthly salary is around ¥ 392,415.56, and rent for a one-bedroom apartment in the city centre is approximately ¥ 152,205.88 ¥. If you are considering tightening the budget and owning a car, public transport is not so cheap either. One way ticket for public transport is ¥ 200, and a monthly pass is ¥ 10,000.

  1. Tel Aviv, Israel

Indeed, the Middle East’s most expensive city to live in is Tel Aviv. This spectacular city has everything, from stunning seaside to vibrant nightlife and world-class dining. If you intend to live in Tel Aviv, get prepared to pay way much more for rent than in any other city in Israel. The price of a one-bedroom apartment in the city centre is around $1,625 in addition to the essential utilities, which are around $300. 

  1. Zurich, Switzerland

Another hit from Switzerland! It is not a secret Switzerland is a country for wealthy people, so having two cities on this list shouldn’t be unforeseen. While Zurich is extremely expensive to live in, it has one of the highest average salaries around the world, with CHF 6,347.97. A one-bedroom apartment in the city centre costs roughly CHF 1,939.74, and a single person’s evaluated monthly costs without rent are CHF 1,532.93. 

  1. Shanghai, China

Shanghai in China is not only among the most expensive cities in the world but also one of the most densely populated. There are two main explanations for why the living costs in Shanghai be so lofty. The first reason is the country’s raised inflation rates, whereas the second one is the Chinese Yuan’s enduring power against other major currencies. Monthly basic utilities cost approximately ¥ 463.61, and the monthly pass for public transport costs ¥ 200.

  1. Guangzhou, China

Even though Guangzhou is less famous amongst tourists, digital nomads, and expats than Shanghai, it has the exact reasons for being so expensive. The rent for a one-bedroom apartment in the city centre costs around 3,746.15 ¥. A monthly pass for public transport is 200.00 ¥, just like in Shanghai, and the basic utilities for a small apartment cost approximately 418.99 ¥ a month. 

  1. Seoul, Korea

As captivating as it is, Seoul’s magnificence comes with a price. The Republic of Korea is one of the world’s most considerable automobile producers and shipbuilders, and the South Korean currency performs well since the economy of the county is relatively stable. On a nationwide scale, a family of four might anticipate monthly living expenses without rent of ₩ 2,300,000. The monthly cost for a single expat without rent is ₩ 652,000. If you plan to move to Seoul, you should generally foresee paying around ₩ 1.5–2.5 million for a small apartment or a one-bedroom apartment. And the average monthly salary is approximately ₩ 3,501,713.73.

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