The world's most expensive cities 2017

African capital knocks Asian metropolis off the top spot

Updated: 

Luanda Bay Area

Luanda has been named the most expensive city in the world, pushing Hong Kong down to second place.

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The Angolan capital topped Mercer's 2017 Cost of Living Survey, which includes 209 cities across five continents and looks at the average cost of more than 200 items in each location, such as accommodation, transportation, food, clothing, household goods and entertainment.

Expats wishing to rent a two-bedroom unfurnished apartment in Luanda can expect to pay around £4,805 per month, while a litre of milk costs £2, bread comes in at a whopping £15.19 and a fast-food hamburger meal is priced at £11.50. In London, which is placed 30th on the list in 2017, accommodation will set expats back an average of £3,200 per month, milk is priced at £1.10, bread costs £1.60 and a burger meal costs £4.49.

The survey found that Asian and European cities are home to the costliest cities for expats, with Tokyo, Zurich and Singapore featuring high on the list.

The world's least expensive cities for expatriates are Tunis in Tunisia (209th), Bishkek in Kyrgyzstan (208th), and Skopje in Macedonia (206th).

view over tunis medina to the great mosque

Looking at Europe, London (30th), Aberdeen (146th) and Birmingham (147th) dropped 13, 61 and 51 spots respectively as a result of the pound weakening following the Brexit vote. Paris fell 18 places to rank 62.

Tel Aviv (17th) was named the most expensive city in the Middle East for expats, followed by Dubai (20th) and Abu Dhabi (23rd).

Mercer found that a number of African cities continue to rank high in this year's survey, reflecting high living costs and prices of goods for expats. As Africa's most expensive city, Luanda (1st) is followed by Victoria in the Seychelles (14th), N'Djamena in Chad (16th), and Kinshasa in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (18th).

In America, New York is the costliest city, placed 9th, followed by San Francisco (22nd) and Los Angeles (24th). Meanwhile, five of the top ten most expensive cities to live in are found in Asia: Hong Kong (2nd), Tokyo (3rd), Singapore (5th), Seoul (6th), and Shanghai (8th).

Take a look at the top 20 costliest cities in the world for 2017...

World's most expensive cities 2017 (Mercer)

World's most expensive cities 2017 (Mercer)