Urban Transformation

The 10 most affordable cities in the world

Antonia Farzan
Writer, Business Insider
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Of all the cities in the world, your dollar will go the furthest in Mumbai, India.

It’s currently the cheapest city to live in, according to the Economist’s World Cost of Living Index.

The index, which is calculated every other year, compares countries based on the cost of things like food, drink, clothing, rent, transportation, and utility bills.

It’s designed to help companies figure out how much to compensate employees who are working overseas.

Some of the world’s cheapest cities, like fourth-ranked Damascus, Syria, are also among the most dangerous. This list shouldn’t be considered a guide for people who are looking to save money by moving overseas — try this list of places where expats can live for cheap instead — but rather as a look into the cost of living in places far away from home.

 

10. Riyadh, Saudi Arabia

 World Cost of Living Index: 57

1 kg loaf of bread:

Today: $1.78
Five years ago: $1.57

A bottle of wine:

Today: N/A
Five years ago: N/A

A pack of cigarettes:

Today: $2.40
Five years ago: $1.47

1 liter of unleaded gas:  

Today: $0.13
Five years ago: $0.15

 

9. Jeddah, Saudi Arabia

World Cost of Living Index: 56

1 kg loaf of bread:

Today: $1.61
Five years ago: $1.18

A bottle of wine:

Today: N/A
Five years ago: N/A

A pack of cigarettes:

Today: $2.31
Five years ago: $1.60

1 liter of unleaded gas:  

Today: $0.13
Five years ago: $0.15

 

8. Panama City, Panama

World Cost of Living Index: 55 (tied)

1 kg loaf of bread:

Today: $3.53
Five years ago: $2.72

A bottle of wine:

Today: $7.05
Five years ago: $10.00

A pack of cigarettes:

Today: $4.50
Five years ago: $1.80

1 liter of unleaded gas:  

Today: $1.17
Five years ago: $1.05

 

7. Bucharest, Romania

World Cost of Living Index: 55 (tied)

1 kg loaf of bread:

Today: $2.07
Five years ago: $2.77

A bottle of wine:

Today: $4.12
Five years ago: $4.73

A pack of cigarettes:

Today: $4.16
Five years ago: $2.53

1 liter of unleaded gas:  

Today: $1.75
Five years ago: $1.63

 

6. Algiers, Algeria

World Cost of Living Index: 53

1 kg loaf of bread:

Today: $2.44
Five years ago: $2.92

A bottle of wine:

Today: $11.40
Five years ago: $8.18

A pack of cigarettes:

Today: $4.89
Five years ago: $3.98

1 liter of unleaded gas:  

Today: $0.28
Five years ago: $0.37

 

5. Kathmandu, Nepal

World Cost of Living Index: 44 (tied)

1 kg loaf of bread:

Today: $1.26
Five years ago: $0.96

A bottle of wine:

Today: $18.98
Five years ago: $15.07

A pack of cigarettes:

Today: $1.53
Five years ago: $1.26

1 liter of unleaded gas:  

Today: $1.24
Five years ago: $1.33

4. Damascus, Syria

World Cost of Living Index: 44 (tied)

1 kg loaf of bread:

Today: $1.88
Five years ago: $2.03

A bottle of wine:

Today: $6.47
Five years ago: $3.04

A pack of cigarettes:

Today: $1.58
Five years ago: $2.35

1 liter of unleaded gas:  

Today: $0.78
Five years ago: $0.78

3. New Delhi, India

World Cost of Living Index: 43

1 kg loaf of bread:

Today: $1.05
Five years ago: $0.84

A bottle of wine:

Today: $16.33
Five years ago: $39.24

A pack of cigarettes:

Today: $2.20
Five years ago: $1.88

1 liter of unleaded gas:  

Today: $1.14
Five years ago: $1.17

2. Karachi, Pakistan

World Cost of Living Index: 40

1 kg loaf of bread:

Today: $1.59
Five years ago: $1.78

A bottle of wine:

Today: $13.73
Five years ago: $10.47

A pack of cigarettes:

Today: $1.56
Five years ago: $1.35

1 liter of unleaded gas:  

Today: $1.14
Five years ago: $1.18

1. Mumbai, India

World Cost of Living Index: 39

1 kg loaf of bread:

Today: $0.91
Five years ago: $0.93

A bottle of wine:

Today: $20.59
Five years ago: $25.22

A pack of cigarettes:

Today: $1.53
Five years ago: $1.87

1 liter of unleaded gas:  

Today: $1.21
Five years ago: $1.22

All prices listed are from the Economist’s World Cost of Living IndexMandi Woodruff contributed to an earlier version of this article.

 

This article is published in collaboration with Business Insider. Publication does not imply endorsement of views by the World Economic Forum.

 To keep up with the Agenda subscribe to our weekly newsletter.

Author: Antonia Farzan writes for the Your Money vertical at Business Insider.

 Image: Scattered clouds are seen over Mumbai’s skyline, India, June 2, 2015. REUTERS/Danish Siddiqui

 

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