Cover This is the most expensive city in the world in 2021 (Photo: Courtesy of Unsplash)

Move over, Hong Kong. Tel Aviv is now the most expensive city in the world to live in

Stressed over the rising live costs each year? Be thankful you’re not living in Tel Aviv, Israel—the city that’s recently been crowned the most expensive city in the world to live in, according to the Economist Intelligence Unit’s Worldwide Cost of Living Survey. 

Overtaking Hong Kong from its top spot from last year, Tel Aviv climbed up four spots, while Hong Kong dropped down to number five. This change is mainly brought by the ripple effects of the pandemic, including shifts in the supply chain, and exchange-rate shifts. However, the most notable reason behind Tel Aviv’s rise in ranking can be attributed to the Israeli currency soaring from the country’s successful Covid-19 vaccine rollout. 

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Israel was responsible for the fastest Covid-19 vaccination programs in the world. On December 6, over five million people, or 62.7 per cent of Israeli citizens have been fully vaccinated, according to Our World in Data

In 2020, Hong Kong ranked as the most expensive city in the world, tied alongside Paris and Zurich. However, the newest ranking has pushed Paris to second place with Singapore, with Zurich ranking just below. 

The study looked at the prices of over 200 products and services in 173 cities and found that the inflation rate of prices this year has been the highest recorded in the past five years. The fastest pace of inflation? Transport, leading the biggest price hump by 21 per cent. Hong Kong is even one of the ten most expensive cities in the world to buy petrol, at US$2.50 per litre. 

Curious to learn more? Below is the ranking for the most expensive cities in the world in 2021. 

The most expensive cities in the world 2021

1. Tel Aviv, Israel

2. Paris, France

2. Singapore

4. Zurich, Switzerland

5. Hong Kong, China

6. New York, U.S.

7. Geneva, Switzerland

8. Copenhagen, Denmark

9. Los Angeles, U.S.

10. Osaka, Japan


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