Every May, Deutsche Bank releases its annual “Mapping the World's Prices” survey, which highlights the disparities in the cost of living in 50 major cities around the world. Do you want to get away for the weekend? Copenhagen is the most expensive city to visit, followed by Milan, Oslo, Tokyo, and Amsterdam, although a trip to Istanbul is less expensive. If you can't afford a whole weekend, consider a date night — but keep in mind that a dinner for two at a neighborhood pub in Zurich is 30% more expensive than in the next four cities: Copenhagen, Oslo, Tokyo, and Amsterdam. Zurich, Switzerland is also the most expensive city in the world to see a movie and get a regular men's haircut.
Those in London, on the other hand, may be holding their date nights at home. The city ranks first for the most costly monthly transportation ticket, and second for movie tickets and car rentals. This however is mainly discretionary spending, which Hong Kong, New York, San Francisco, Paris, and London residents may lack given that they live in the top five cities with the highest monthly rent for a two-bedroom apartment. The average cost of monthly rent in the most expensive city to rent in Hong Kong is $3,737. Singapore is the most expensive place to buy a car and New Delhi is the cheapest at: $86,412 and $12,066. The cost of a weekend getaway is the most expensive in Copenhagen at an average of $2,503(including two nights at a five star hotel, four meals, car rentals, two pints of beer, soft drinks, and light shopping). A gym membership is the most expensive in Tokyo at an average cost of $127.20. Global companies also have disparities in pricing such as Nike with the most expensive average selling price being $141 in Norway and the cheapest at $55 in India.
The reasoning for these differences in price could be a result of many different factors. The first could be transportation costs with higher prices in harder to access areas. Transaction costs also exist across many different markets and geographic regions. Legal restrictions are a large barrier that many businesses also face. Things such as wages, immigrations restrictions, and capital controls can have an impact. Market structure is also an important aspect because the number of buyers and sellers can vary between markets thus impacting prices.