The Saudi Arabian cities of Riyadh and Jeddah are two of the least expensive cities in the world when it comes to living costs, according to a new report by the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU).
The analyst company’s Worldwide Cost of Living 2014 study found the two destinations to be among the planet’s cheapest cities based on inflation of a basket of consumer staples over the last decade.
The EIU’s research found that petrol prices, one of the key components of the index, in the Gulf kingdom had actually fallen in both cities from an average $0.24 per litre ten years ago to just $0.13 now. This compared with an average of $1.73 per litre in Singapore, ranked as the world’s most expensive city according to the index.
Both Saudi cities were also rated as being good value for money when it came to buying other staples such as bread and cigarettes, although wine, another one of the components, was excluded as alcohol is illegal in the country.
According to the study, Mumbai was the world’s least expensive city overall, with the top ten also including Karachi, New Delhi, Damascus, Algiers and Bucharest.
In terms of the most expensive, Singapore moved up five places to replace Tokyo in top spot, followed by Paris and Oslo. Other destinations in the top ten included Zurich, Sydney, Caracas, Geneva and Melbourne.