Abigail Klein Leichman
December 1, 2021

Tel Aviv ranks proudly on many “best” and “most” lists, but its latest distinction is not necessarily something to brag about: It is now the world’s most expensive city to live in.

That’s right, the White City tops the list published yesterday by Economist Intelligence Unit, the research and analysis division of the London-based Economist publishing group.

Last year’s rankings had Tel Aviv at #5 and Paris at #1. But Israel’s soaring shekel against the dollar, and rising grocery and transport prices, bumped it up to the top for 2021.

The EIU cost-of-living report is based on a US dollar comparison of more than 400 individual prices across 200 products and services in 173 cities. Prices rose sharply in 2021 across all cities studied, in large part because of major disruptions in the supply chain.

“Transport costs rose most rapidly in this year’s survey, mainly because of rising oil prices driving a 21% increase in the price of unleaded petrol, but the recreation, tobacco and personal care categories also showed strong increases,” EIU reported.

Paris and Singapore tied for second most expensive cities, followed by Zurich, Hong Kong, New York, Geneva, Copenhagen, Los Angeles and Osaka. Damascus, Syria’s capital, ranked at the very bottom of the cost-of-living list.