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World’s cheapest cities to live in, from Tbilisi to Tashkent

·2-min read
Narikala Castle and view over Tbilisi, Georgia (Getty Images/iStockphoto)
Narikala Castle and view over Tbilisi, Georgia (Getty Images/iStockphoto)

The world’s cheapest cities to live in have been revealed in a new report.

Mercer’s 27th annual Cost of Living Survey analysed data from 209 cities across five continents to compile its latest research.

It measures the comparative cost of more than 200 items, from accommodation and transportation to food and household items, in order to rank each city.

Bishkek in Kyrgyzstan was named the cheapest, followed by Lusaka in Zambia and Tbilisi in Georgia.

Five of the 10 cheapest cities are in the continent of Africa.

Meanwhile, no North American destinations make the top 20.

The cheapest cities for cost of living in Europe are Minsk in Belarus, which was the 13th cheapest (ranking 197 out of 209), and Skopje, capital of North Macedonia, which was 18th cheapest (ranking 192).

The survey also revealed the world’s most expensive cities to live in.

Several European cities climbed in the ranking due to the strengthening of local currencies, with Paris jumping from 50th place the previous year to 33rd most expensive in 2021.

The UK remained steady with London (18) and Birmingham (121) rising one and eight places respectively.

“UK cities have remained relatively stable in the ranking this year, due to low inflation and the fact the pound has remained strong against all major currencies during the pandemic,” said Kate Fitzpatrick, Mercer’s global mobility practice leader for the UK and Ireland.

“The cost and quality of living a city has to offer is directly tied to its attractiveness as a place to live and work.

“Multinational employers monitor our data closely and over time to ensure they can offer compensation packages to an internationally mobile talent pool which are fair and globally competitive.”

Top 20 cheapest cities to live in

  1. Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan

  2. Lusaka, Zambia

  3. Tbilisi, Georgia

  4. Tunis, Tunisia

  5. Brasilia, Brazil

  6. Windhoek, Namibia

  7. Tashkent, Uzbekistan

  8. Gaborone, Botswana

  9. Karachi, Pakistan

  10. Banjul, Gambia

  11. Islamabad, Pakistan

  12. Algiers, Algeria

  13. Minsk, Belarus

  14. Managua, Nicaragua

  15. Yerevan, Armenia

  16. Addis Ababa, Ethiopia

  17. Almaty, Kazakhstan

  18. Skopje, North Macedonia

  19. Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

  20. Blantyre, Malawi

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