How much would your life cost if you lived in these cities?

By Andrew Harbison, CA Today

22 April 2016

Last week the Office for National Statistics released its monthly inflation report, showing that airfares and clothing prices went up and food prices fell. But how does the cost of living in the city you live compare to other cities around the world?

Using crowdsourced cost of living data from Numbeo, we took a look at the cost of everyday items and outings from Sydney, Toronto, Paris, Hong Kong, New York City, Edinburgh and London.

As we take you through an average Friday, we outline the cheapest and most expensive city for each transaction.

The morning

Your alarm chirps into life, waking you from dreams of balance sheets and tax codes. You don't mind though, because it's Friday and you have plans tonight.

You pop into the kitchen and pour milk over your favourite cereal. At just 76p a litre in New York City, why not treat yourself with an extra splash? If you are starting your day in Hong Kong, you may be used to rationing the white stuff as it costs £1.94 a litre.

The commute

Running for your bus in Hong Kong, you may not be that bothered about your pricey breakfast as you hop on and pay just 91p for your ticket. But if you live in London, you might run past the bus stop and keep going until you get to the office instead of paying the £2.50 fare.

The coffee break

It's time for a mid-afternoon energy boost, and that means one thing - caffeine. Perhaps the cappuccinos in Hong Kong cost £3.08 because of the frothy milk? Still feeling drowsy? If you live in Toronto you can afford to buy another one, they're only £1.97.

Hunger pangs start to kick in. A banana is in order, and it better taste amazing at £1.66 per kg in Sydney.  A potassium packed snack will only set you back just £0.89 in Toronto.

The cost of living around the world

Product/ServiceSydneyTorontoParisHong KongNew YorkEdinburghLondon
Bus Ticket£2.15£1.65£1.43£0.91£1.93£1.60£2.50
Meal for two£43.05£38.40£39.69£31.69£56.19£45£50

Source: Numbeo

The gym

Time to get in a quick lunchtime work out. At around £30.09 a month that Toronto gym is great value for money. But a little bit of extra weight isn't that big a deal, especially when it costs £85.57 a month to get rid of it in Hong Kong.

The quick after work drink

Friday wouldn’t be Friday without some post-work drinks. And that first sip of local beer tastes even sweeter at £3.29 in, you guessed it, Toronto. Perhaps the view of the Eiffel Tower makes up for the £4.76 beer in Paris?

The romantic date

After leaving the bar, you make your way to the restaurant to meet your blind date and announce that dinner is on you. In Hong Kong, the bill is only £31.69. But if you live in New York, you may well have wished you kept quiet after you fork out £56.19.

The movie

You better be really sure you’ll enjoy the film you are planning on taking your date to see in London. That £12 is non-refundable. But in Toronto, you may not feel too disappointed at spending £7.13 on it if it turns out to be a flop.

The apartment

Full of food and a little tired you slump down onto the couch. Just before you drift off, something jolts you awake. The rent! You quickly log into your online banking and wince as you transfer the £2,069.87 for the rent on your one bedroom, city centre apartment in New York. The process is a bit less painful in Edinburgh as you part with the £653.18.

All prices have been converted to Pound Sterling (£GBP) and were correct as of 21 April 2016.


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