24 Jul 2008

Auckland, Wellington getting more expensive - survey

6:53 pm on 24 July 2008

It is becoming increasingly expensive to live in Auckland and Wellington compared with other cities overseas, an international survey shows.

The Mercer worldwide cost of living survey compares the living costs in 143 cities across the world, based on the cost of 200 items in each city.

The annual survey shows Auckland is now the 78th most expensive city to live in, up 21 places from 2007 when it ranked 99th.

Wellington is the 93rd most expensive city. In 2007, it was ranked 111th.

Rob Knox from Mercer says there are two reasons why the major cities of Auckland and Wellington have become more expensive compared with cities overseas.

One factor is exchange rate movements between the New Zealand dollar and the US dollar, while the other is the overall cost of household goods, fuel and transport.

Mr Knox says though the cost of living has risen across the board, Auckland and Wellington also enjoy some of the highest quality of living standards in the world.

However, New Zealand is cheaper to live in than Australia, with the survey ranking Sydney the 15th most expensive, Melbourne 36th and Brisbane 56th.

Mr Knox says the most expensive city to live in is Moscow, while the cheapest is Asuncion, the capital of Paraguay in South America.