This Vacation Destination Is the Most Expensive Place in the World

Jul 10, 2018

This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. Terms apply to the offers listed on this page. For an explanation of our Advertising Policy, visit this page.

The next time you complain about the bill the next time you eat out, how much you pay in rent or how much the tourists have ruined your hometown for the locals, cast an eye toward the North Atlantic, because the people of Hamilton, Bermuda, have it worse.

The tiny capital of the island nation — population 1,000 — is the most expensive place in the world for the fourth year in a row, according to the midyear Numbeo Cost of Living Index.

Factoring in the price of the essentials of life (transportation, rent, groceries) with the price of things that make every week more bearable (restaurants, purchasing power), Hamilton was overall the hardest place on Earth to stretch a dollar. Zurich, Switzerland, came in second, followed by six more cities in Switzerland, two in Norway and Reykjavik, Iceland. If you take into account the cost of rent, Hamilton was still the most expensive place in the world, followed by San Francisco, New York City, Zurich and Geneva.

On the other end of the spectrum, the 14 cheapest places in the world were in India, with Ukraine coming in at No. 15.

Hamilton did especially badly when it came to eating out, with restaurant prices far worse than the runner up in that category, the oil town of Stavanger, Norway. (By the index’s measure, it costs about 50% more to dine out in Hamilton than a comparable meal in New York City.) Groceries were slightly more expensive in Zurich than in Hamilton (still No. 2 at the supermarket, or about 25% more than what it would cost in New York), and rent was the worst in San Francisco, with Hamilton trailing behind but still ahead of New York City.

How did a tiny seaside town best heavyweight metropolises like San Francisco, Zurich and New York when it comes to bragging — or complaining — rights? Tourists and foreigners and expats using Bermuda as a tax haven have exploded the cost of living. But don’t let that dissuade from visiting — the place is gorgeous, with relatively cheap flights from the US. And you could run into TPG editor-at-large Zach Honig there.

Delta SkyMiles® Platinum American Express Card

Earn 90,000 bonus miles and 10,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $3,000 in purchases on your new card in the first three months of card membership. Offer ends 11/10/2021.

With Status Boost™, earn 10,000 Medallion Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $25,000 in purchases on your Card in a calendar year, up to two times per year getting you closer to Medallion Status. Earn 3X Miles on Delta purchases and purchases made directly with hotels, 2X Miles at restaurants and at U.S. supermarkets and earn 1X Mile on all other eligible purchases. Terms Apply.

Apply Now
More Things to Know
  • Limited Time Offer: Earn 90,000 Bonus Miles and 10,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $3,000 in purchases on your new Card in your first 3 months. Offer expires 11/10/2021.
  • Earn up to 20,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) with Status Boost® per year. After you spend $25,000 in purchases on your Card in a calendar year, you can earn 10,000 MQMs two times per year, getting you closer to Medallion® Status. MQMs are used to determine Medallion® Status and are different than miles you earn toward flights.
  • Earn 3X Miles on Delta purchases and purchases made directly with hotels.
  • Earn 2X Miles at restaurants worldwide, including takeout and delivery and at U.S. supermarkets.
  • Earn 1X Miles on all other eligible purchases.
  • Receive a Domestic Main Cabin round-trip companion certificate each year upon renewal of your Card. *Payment of the government imposed taxes and fees of no more than $75 for roundtrip domestic flights (for itineraries with up to four flight segments) is required. Baggage charges and other restrictions apply. See terms and conditions for details.
  • Enjoy your first checked bag free on Delta flights.
  • Fee Credit for Global Entry or TSA Pre✓®.
  • Enjoy an exclusive rate of $39 per person per visit to enter the Delta Sky Club® for you and up to two guests when traveling on a Delta flight.
  • No Foreign Transaction Fees.
  • $250 Annual Fee.
  • Terms Apply.
  • See Rates & Fees
Regular APR
15.74%-24.74% Variable
Annual Fee
$250
Balance Transfer Fee
N/A
Recommended Credit
Excellent/Good
Terms and restrictions apply. See rates & fees.

Editorial Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

Disclaimer: The responses below are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser’s responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.