Jun 19, 2011

Cost of Living in Ireland Compared to US and UK

Many people worry that when moving to Ireland that the cost of living will be expensive compared to other countries. Ireland has a reputation for high living costs - but is that true?

See some more figures on weekly household budgets in Ireland -

See some actual figures on the average household spending in Ireland on things like food , fuel , insurance, medical care etc  here......  Cost of Living in Ireland

The OECD  do regular comparisons of the cost of living in different countries . Their comparison uses a method called Purchasing Power Standard (PPS), which equalises the purchasing power of different national currencies and thus allows meaningful comparison.

The figures are based on an initial survey of prices from 2008 - which is then adjusted every month for country inflation and exchange rates.

The April 2011 figures showed that only these countries all had a higher cost of Living than Ireland : Switzerland 31% , Norway 23% , Denmark 19% , Australia 16%, Sweden 2%, Japan 1% and Finland 1%

Some of the countries that had lower prices than Ireland were :

Canada (-5%) ; New Zealand (-11%) ; UK (-12%) ; USA (-31%) , Poland
(-48%) , Turkey (-51%)


Of course - we all know that money isn't everything and you can be living in a place with a low cost of living and be miserable. What good is a cheap groceries if you live in fear of crime or you have poor access to healthcare. Another thing to consider is the income levels in a country.

The OECD also provided data on "real" minimum wage rates  - which  are the statutory minimum
wages which are then deflated by national Consumer Price Indices (CPI) and  converted into US dollars

Ireland came out with a min wage figure of $11.15 an hour -  with only France ($11.86) and Luxembourg ($12.47) having higher figures.

The US had a real min wage of $5.59 just 50% of the figure for Ireland.
The UK came out at $9.40 which works out as 84% of the Irish  minimum wage

In March 2010 a comparison of the cost of living in 214 major cities across the world was carried out by a company called Mercer . They looked at the cost of over 200 items including housing, transport, food, clothing, household goods and entertainment.
They used New York as the base city for the index (All currencies were converted to dollars).

Dublin in Ireland ranked 42nd in the most expensive cities in the world.
Dublin came out cheaper in the cost of living index than 41 other citeis including London , Paris (both ranked 17) , Rome (26) , Amsterdam (35)Tokyo (2), Moscow (4), Geneva (5) and Zurich (8) ,Hong Kong (8),Copenhagen Beijing (16), New York (27) , Sydney (24) , Melbourne (33)

See some more figures on weekly household budgets in Ireland -

See some actual figures on the average household spending in Ireland on things like food , fuel , insurance, medical care etc  here......  Cost of Living in Ireland

2 comments:

Carl Fin said...

I love the way you point out the minimum wage in the US being so low. Its so true. The internet is rife with rubbish information about Ireland.

Thank you for this honest page.

Carl Fin said...

Thank you for this honest piece of work. I am so sick of nonsense online. Ireland is expensive but as you pointed out, minimum wage in Ireland is more than twice that of the US. The US miniumu wage is almost identical to being unemployed in Ireland at E200 a week, not to mention the children allowance. E1000 a month for the unemployed = $1290, and some get rent allowance too. in the US, $5 per hour = $200 per week = $1000 a month with little or no govt support. No free health care!