Before you take the plunge...

by Vault Consulting Editors | July 07, 2009

  • My Vault

Hungry for new experiences? Looking for adventure? Or less unemployment? Wary of Sarah Palin's next step? You may consider living abroad for a while, in which case you may want to perk up. Mercer LLC, one of the world's leading HR consulting firms, has released its annual Worldwide Cost of Living survey, which ranks the most expensive cities for expats.

While you'd have to figure in the cost of Mercer's report before making any such move, the firm does offer some of the highlights upfront. For starters, Tokyo has supplanted Moscow as the most expensive city for expats, followed by Osaka (up nine places from 2008) and Moscow. Geneva and Hong Kong follow them, and Johannesburg takes the spot as the least expensive city (although it admittedly comes with many hidden costs…). The firm notes that the global recession has indeed had an impact on these rankings (and on the cities it chose to evaluate in the ranking), and that shifts within the standings were impacted most by currency fluctuations—namely, European cities fell in the rankings, while those in the US, Asia and the Middle East saw their positions rise. The survey covered 143 cities, taking into account over 200 variables in each, including housing, transport, food, clothing, household goods and entertainment.

Filed Under: Consulting

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