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Cost of Living in Dubai – Big Mac Index

Are you relocating to Dubai in the next few months and would like to know more about the cost of living? We bet you’re wondering what your weekly groceries will cost, how much it will cost to furnish your home and what about curtains, garden furniture etc.? Over the next few weeks we will publish informative articles to help you work out how much it will cost for you to live in Dubai.

Soliciting the help of a few of our friends and family, this week the team at Expat Echo Dubai compared the prices for a McDonald‘s Big Mac and Happy Meal here in Dubai with those collected in our home countries. In doing so we inadvertently carried out our own, mini (albeit slightly less sophisticated) version of The Economist‘s Big Mac Index.

For comparability our helpers were under strict instruction to get the price for a Big Mac (just the burger) and a cheeseburger Happy Meal with Coke. If you compare the dirham prices amongst the countries it appears most expensive to chow down a Big Mac in Sydney, likewise a Happy Meal seems the least jovial when purchased in Canada.

As mentioned in our previous cost of living articles, the overseas prices are collated in the local currency and then converted into dirhams. Now, we did this for a bit of Thursday afternoon fun, as an interest piece and have no desire to branch out into burgernomics so we’ll leave it to the clever people at The Economist to explain the effect of interest rates…

Click here to download the PDF

The Economist first invented the Big Mac index in 1986 as a light-hearted introduction to exchange-rate theory. Their Big Mac Index is based on one of the oldest concepts in international economics: the theory of purchasing-power parity (PPP), which argues that in the long run, exchange rates should move towards levels that would equalise the prices of an identical basket of goods and services in any two countries – the “basket” is a McDonald‘s Big Mac.

Click here to read The Economist‘s Big Mac Index

Next week we will look at Home Pool Maintenance…


Browse through our New to Dubai section for more tips on what life in Dubai is like!



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