Istanbul has fallen from being the 28th most expensive city in the world to the 34th, according to an international cost of living study.
Oslo, Tokyo and Zurich are the most expensive cities in the world, according to the prices for a standardized basket of 122 goods and services. When rents are added to the mix, New York, Hong Kong and Dubai jump up in the list. By contrast, the cost of living is lowest in the Indian cities of Delhi and Mumbai.
The latest edition of the “Prices and Earnings” study from UBS examines wage purchasing power in 72 cities around the globe.
In Istanbul, it takes 42 minutes of work to earn enough to buy a Big Mac, while in Toyko it takes just nine minutes. Workers in Zurich can buy an iPhone after 22 hours work, while in Istanbul it takes around 165.5 hours. The amount of work needed in Istanbul to buy a kilo of bread is 9 minutes, while for rice it is 14 minutes.
The cheapest places to live were Delhi and Mumbai. New York was the sixth most expensive, Moscow came in at No. 40 and Shanghai at 49.
The UBS survey also looked at working hours and found the shortest were in Paris, Lyon and Copenhagen. Workers in Asia, Africa, the Middle East and South America toil the longest, at over 2,000 hours per year, it found.
The top 10 most expensive cities in the world 2012 (New York = 100):
1. Oslo 116
2. Zurich 110.1
3. Tokyo 108.9
4. Geneva 106.5
5. Copenhagen 100.9
6. New York 100
7. Luxembourg 94.4
8. Stockholm 91.9
9. Caracas 91.0
10. London 87.3
34. Istanbul 71.5