New study ranks the top 10 most expensive cities for expats

Credit: CBSNews
Credit: CBSNews

▶ Watch Video: CDC lifts COVID test requirement for international travelers

Hong Kong ranks as the world’s most expensive city for expats, according to a recent study by Mercer, a global consulting firm headquartered in New York. Expat is short for expatriates, those who live outside their native country.

The annual survey features data that is based on research done twice per year, and evaluates more than 200 goods and services from categories such as food, housing, personal care and more. Across the world, high inflation is a growing cause of concern for governments, companies, workers and families.

Here are the top 10 most expensive places for expatriates to live and work abroad:

Daily Life In Hong Kong
Central Hong Kong skyline at night, in Hong Kong, China, on October 17, 2021.

Marc Fernandes/NurPhoto via Getty Images

  1. Hong Kong, SAR

Hong Kong is a Special Administrative Region of the People’s Republic of China and has consistently been featured as one of the world’s most expensive places to live. Known for its iconic skyscrapers and beautiful skyline view, this business hub will cost expats a good amount to call home.

Zurich During The Coronavirus Pandemic
ZURICH, SWITZERLAND – JULY 12: An aerial drone view of the city centre of Zurich, Limmat River, Lake Zurich, and the Grossmuenster Church stand during the coronavirus pandemic on July 12, 2020 in Zurich, Switzerland. Switzerland has largely lifted most of its coronavirus lockdown measures and has so far registered approximately 33,000 infections.

Christian Ender / Getty Images

2. Zürich, Switzerland

This year, Switzerland dominates the top ten, having four cities on the list. Zurich is the most populated city in Switzerland and is known as a global center for banking and finance.

Daily life in Geneva
GENEVA, SWITZERLAND – JUNE 6: A view of the city as citizens and tourists enjoy the sunny day in Geneva, Switzerland on June 6, 2022.

Omer Faruk Yildiz/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

3. Geneva, Switzerland

Geneva follows Zurich not only in the category of cost of living, but also as the second most populated city in Switzerland. The city hosts a myriad of headquarters for several international organizations.

Public transports. Basel. Switzerland
Public transports. Basel. Switzerland.

Public transports. Basel. Switzerland. (Photo by: Giovanni Mereghetti/Education Images/Universal Images Group via Getty Images)/Public transports. Basel. Switzerland. (Photo by: Giovanni Mereghetti/Education Images/Universal Images Group via Getty Images)

4. Basel, Switzerland

Basel is the third most populous city in Switzerland. It is best known for its architecture and has a popular art scene. The city hosts Art Basel, an annual international art exhibition.

Photo taken on May 22, 2022 shows a view through the window on a train that runs on the Rhaetian Railway in the Albula/Bernina landscapes in Switzerland. The Rhaetian Railway in the Albula/Bernina landscapes was included in the UNESCO World Heritage List in 2008.

Zheng Huansong/Xinhua via Getty Images

5. Bern, Switzerland

Switzerland technically does not have a capital city, but Bern is considered the de facto capital. The Swiss city features picturesque views and is currently the seat of the country’s federal government.

Skyline of Tel Aviv at the beach, Tel Aviv, Israel
Israel, Tel Aviv – 10 March 2018: Skyline of Tel Aviv at the beach seen from the Marina

Michael Jacobs/Art in All of Us/Corbis via Getty Images

6. Tel Aviv, Israel

Tel, Aviv, the coastal city in Israel, is world-renown for its nightlife, beautiful beaches, and having more Bauhaus-style buildings than any other city.

TOPSHOT – The Manhattan skyline is seen at sunrise from the 86th floor observatory of the Empire State Building on April 3, 2021, in New York City. – The Empire State Building, a 102-story Art Deco skyscraper in Midtown Manhattan, opened during the Great Depression on May 1, 1931.

ANGELA WEISS/AFP via Getty Images

7. New York City, U.S.

Known as the Big Apple, New York City is America’s most populated city by far. While there is no precise count, some experts believe New York is home to as many as 800 languages, making it the perfect place for international travelers, but not necessarily for their pockets, as it ranks eighth on the list, and the most expensive city to live in the U.S.

Changi Jewel Airport Preview
SINGAPORE – APRIL 11: The skytrain rides past the Rain Vortex at the Jewel Changi Airport on April 11, 2019 in Singapore. Officially opening on April 17, Singapore’s Changi Airport Jewel includes a 40-meter indoor waterfall contained under a steel-and-glass dome reportedly built for SGD 1.7 billion.

/ Getty Images

8. Singapore

The island city-state of the Malay Peninsula ranks in this year’s top ten, and has not only become one of the world’s top financial centers, but also one of its greenest. According to the government, nearly half of Singapore’s land area is under green cover.

Japan, Tokyo City
Japan ,Tokyo City, Akihabara District, Electric town,.

Japan ,Tokyo City, Akihabara District, Electric town,. (Photo by: Dukas/Universal Images Group via Getty Images)/Japan ,Tokyo City, Akihabara District, Electric town,. (Photo by: Dukas/Universal Images Group via Getty Images)

9. Tokyo, Japan

Tokyo, Japan’s capital city, has a mix of traditional and ultramodern architecture, with neon-light buildings and historic temples dazzling the skyline. The city also boasts one of the busiest train stations in the world, the Shinjuku Station, which receives an estimated 3.6 million commuters each day.

Daily Life In Beijing
BEIJING, CHINA – JULY 07: Tourists visit the Forbidden City on July 7, 2019 in Beijing, China.

Visual China Group via Getty Images/Visual China Group via Getty Images

10. Beijing, China

The capital city of China, Beijing is located in the northeastern part of the country and is the second-largest city in China by population. Beijing is home to many well-known attractions, such a section of the Great Wall of China, and the Forbidden City.