One of the first things we look at when traveling is control the price of things in our destination country. We can take a look at the prices indicated by the travel guides, take a look at the internet, in forums or even ask a store on twitter for the specific price of a product.
Another method is to take a look at the Big Mac index. It is an indicator of the purchasing power of the inhabitants of a country based on the price of a McDonald's Big Mac hamburger. It seems to be quite reliable and in early January 2017 The Economist has republished a Big Mac index update in his famous magazine.
We cannot take this index to the letter but from it we can give ourselves a fairly real comparative idea of living costs in each of the indicated countries -McDonalds has branches in 120 countries of the world- as well as its valuation with the dollar that is placed in the neutral starting position in this global comparison.
From the 5 dollars that the Big Mac costs in the United States, in China it barely reaches 2.83 dollars, and that comes to tell us that the yuan has devalued 44% in that time. Through the map we can navigate through each country and get an idea of prices and their evolution compared to the dollar since 2000.
The cheapest countries according to the Big Mac index
Among the cheapest countries we find an amalgam between Asian, African and some South American countries. Egypt appears as the cheapest with a price of 1.46 dollars, ideal for those who want to follow the old advice of David Bisbal and contemplate the Pyramids with little company or contemplate the coral with the most intense and beautiful colors of the Red Sea. It is followed by Ukraine, Malaysia, South Africa, Russia, Taiwan, Mexico, Poland and Indonesia.
India is still among the cheapest but the increase it has experienced in the last five years is rising from 1.67 to 2.49 dollars. In India, a Big Mac comes out for $ 1.67 - although it should be borne in mind that for religious reasons the hamburger is not beef but chicken - compared to the $ 4.37 it would cost in the United States or the $ 4.88 in the euro zone.
2017 Big Mac Index
The most expensive countries according to the Big Mac index
The euro crisis seems to have been left behind and prices in the european continent have increased slightly, from 3.59 euros to 3.88 in five years. Even so, the price is still one dollar apart from the United States.
On the other end is Switzerland with a Big Mac at a price of $ 6.35 followed by Norway, Sweden and curiously Venezuela whose prices have skyrocketed and a Big Mac converted to dollars would come out by 5.25 due to inflation of its currency. And it does not surprise me, after spending a month traveling through Venezuela I remember it as one of the most expensive trips I have ever made.
Other countries that used to be in the queue and therefore cheaper and in recent years have climbed price positions are Colombia, Uruguay and Peru.
Source | The Economist5.001