Amsterdam climbs 20 spots in most expensive cities ranking
Amsterdam shot up on the consultancy firm Mercer's world ranking of most expensive cities for expats to live in over the past year. The Dutch capital is in 44th place on the Cost of Living ranking for 2021 - twenty spots higher than last year's 64th place.
According to Mercer Nederland consultant Ellen van Arenthals, Amsterdam's jump in the ranking can largely be attributed to the euro gaining 10.79 percent in value against the dollar between March 2020 and March 2021. That resulted in prices in Amsterdam being considerably higher compared internationally with other cities in the world. Other European cities like Paris, Milan and Vienna climbed in the ranking for this same reason.
Over 200 cities were ranked based on pricing data about housing, transportation, food, household goods, clothing, and entertainment. The Dutch capital came in slightly less expensive than Honolulu, and slightly more expensive for expats than Chicago.
The most expensive city in the world for expats is the Turkmenistan capital of Ashgabat, dethroning Hong Kong for the first time in three years. Hong Kong came in second place. Zurich in Switzerland is fourth and the first European city on the ranking. Third place went to Beirut. Mercer attributed the Lebanese city's high position to the cornavirus pandemic and a massive explosion in the city landing Lebanon in an economic depression.
The cheapest city for expats is Bishkek, the capital of Kyrgyzstan, followed by the Pakistani city of Karachi and Gaborone in Botswana.