Many people in Dubai say they feel squeezed by household expenses because the prices of daily essentials, as well as rent, are increasing. But are people in the emirate really worse off than others?
Dubai may have earned a reputation for being a costly town to live in, but data collated by a comparison site showed that the emirate is not as expensive as some of the cities in the United States (US), Switzerland, United Kingdom (UK) and even Singapore.
Numbeo has reviewed the prices of groceries, restaurants, transportation and utilities in more than 500 cities around the world and found that consumers elsewhere are spending far more money on services, goods and daily essentials, as well as rent.
When the countries surveyed were ranked according to consumer price index and rent index, which took into account the latest rental figures and prices of groceries, restaurant meals, transportation and utilities, Dubai came in the 39th place, while Abu Dhabi came in the 62nd place, as of Tuesday.
Compared to New York City, a pack of groceries in Dubai can cost about 40 per cent cheaper, while restaurant meals are estimated to be about 30 per cent less. Renting an apartment in the emirate was also estimated to be around 28 per cent cheaper than in New York, though it’s considered more expensive compared to Singapore, Geneva or Zurich.
As of Tuesday, the city state of Monaco in Europe was rated the most expensive city in the world, based on the consumer price and rent indices.
Hamilton, Bermuda came second, followed by Luanda, Angola; San Francisco, California,US; Geneva and Zurich, Switzerland; New York City, US; Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea; Zug, Switzerland and London, UK – all in the top 10.
Numbeo estimated that the average price of a meal for two at a mid-range restaurant in Dubai costs about Dh150. If you move to Monaco, the same meal is going to cost you more than double what you pay in Dubai at Dh366.15 on average.
A litre of milk in Dubai costs about Dh5.61 on average, but if you buy it in Moncao, you’ll have to spend more than twice that amount, with the price averaging at Dh12.21 per litre.
People living in an 85-square-metre apartment in Hamilton, Bermuda, the second-most expensive city on the list, spend about Dh994.95 a month on electricity, heating, water and garbage. In Dubai, residents spend about D578.27 per month on average for similar services.
Below are the first 70 countries in Numbeo’s Mid-Year Cost of Living Index 2015. The numbers are historical and are updated periodically.