United States becoming more expensive for expats

The United States has become an increasingly expensive place for expats over the past year, the latest ECA International cost of living rankings show.

The continuing strength of the US dollar has seen all locations in the US increase by an average of 18 places. Both New York (15th) and Honolulu (20th) in Hawaii have entered the global top 20.

This continues a trend which has seen 28 US locations enter the top 100, compared to just five in 2014.

Canadian locations also saw big increases, rising 20 places on average with Vancouver (91st) and Ottawa (96th) returning to the top 100. Toronto (101st) and Montreal (124th) remain outside the top 100 but did increase 23 and 12 places respectively.

North America now accounts for almost a third of the top 100 most expensive locations in the world with 30 cities located in either the United States or Canada; overtaking Asia which has 28. The continent’s strong performance has also seen seven European locations drop out of the top 100 most expensive in ECA’s cost of living ranking.

Steven Kilfedder, Production Manager at ECA International, said: “The strength of the US dollar has made the United States more expensive for workers and businesses looking to move to the country with 28 cities in the top 100 – more than five times as many as five years ago. On the other hand, US companies are benefitting from the cheaper cost of sending staff abroad to locations in Europe and China.”

Elsewhere, the average cost of living has continued to fall across Australia. While Sydney (79th) and Melbourne (94th) still rank in the top 100, Perth (113th), Brisbane (118th) and Canberra (120th) all dropped out of the global top 100. However, the cost of living in these cities is still more expensive than major European capitals including Central London (140th), Madrid (150th) and Lisbon (158th).

Article published 12th December 2019