Cape Town - South Africa has been ranked as the cheapest country in the world to live and retire, according to a 2016 report which compares dollar strength to a number of global currencies.
GoBankingRates generated the rankings based on cost of living indices sourced from online pricing database Numbeo: Cost of Living. This study surveyed cost indicators for major cities in the 112 nations for which Numbeo had recent and accurate data, using the median cost indicators of the cities to generate a typical cost index for the country.
The four key affordability metrics are:
Local purchasing power index: Measures the relative purchasing power of a typical salary in that country, compared to New York City. A lower purchasing power buys fewer goods, while a higher purchasing power buys more
Rent index: Compares typical rental prices in the country to New York City
Groceries index: Compares typical grocery prices in the country to New York City
Consumer price index: Compares costs of local goods and services — including restaurants, groceries, transportation and utilities — to New York City
When South Africa's prices and cost of living is compared to those in New York, the study found:
Local purchasing power is 26.9% higher
Rent is 87.5% cheaper
Groceries are 71% cheaper
Local goods and services are 65.8% cheaper
“South Africa is the cheapest country to live or retire," GoBankingRates concludes. "It’s also the world’s largest producer of platinum, gold and chromium, which goes far to enrich the country and its economy.
“This resulted in a local purchasing power that’s significantly higher than what New Yorkers face, which is the most favorable factor that puts South Africa at No1.
"Along with a higher local purchasing power, South Africa also offers lower prices on consumer goods and groceries, and rent costs that are typical of the 50 cheapest countries.
In the major city of Cape Town, GoBankingRates found that monthly expenses total just under R6 200 (from $400 at R15.31/$1) while the average rent costs, for a one-bedroom in Durban for example, are around R4 200 (from $280) a month, the report said.
The second cheapest country, India has a local purchasing power of 20.9% lower than New York, while rent is 95.2% cheaper, groceries are 74.4% cheaper, and local goods and services are 74.9% cheaper.
The most expensive country, on the other hand, is Bermuda.
Top 10 cheapest countries to live and retire are: