Cost of Living Index
A great place to locate your business - and it's less expensive to live and work in Scotland than cities like London, Zurich, Paris and Dublin.
If you're thinking of setting up a business in Scotland we can offer competitive costs and a welcoming business environment to help deliver a return on your investment.
That's why Scotland enjoyed a record breaking year for foreign direct investment (FDI) in 2015.
Cost of living in Europe
- Zurich, Switzerland: most expensive city in Europe
- London, UK: 13th most expensive
- Dublin, Ireland: 16th most expensive
- Amsterdam, Netherlands: 21st most expensive
- Cork, Ireland: 25th most expensive
- Frankfurt, Germany: 27th most expensive
- Edinburgh, UK: 40th most expensive
- Glasgow, UK: 46th most expensive
- Source: Numbeo, mid 2016 Cost of Living Index by City
But Scotland can offer even more.
Moving your business here means you'll have the chance to enjoy our fantastic quality of life - and a cheaper cost of living than many other regions in the UK and Europe.
You might have heard of our stunning scenery, our vibrant cities and our famous golf courses - our low cost of living gives you even more chance to enjoy them all.
Cost of living by city
Along with highly competitive salaries, Scotland offers weekly household costs that are around 20% cheaper than London and 10% cheaper than the rest of the UK.
And it's not just compared to the rest of the UK that Scotland offers a less expensive cost of living.
The 2016 Mercer Cost of Living Rankings placed Glasgow as the 119th and Aberdeen the 85th most expensive cities to live in compared to:
- New York - 11th
- London - 17th
- Paris - 44th
- Dublin - 47th
- Amsterdam - 64th
- Houston - 75th
- Frankfurt - 88th
Take a closer look at life in Scotland
Established industry clusters with competitive costs
Edinburgh remains the UK's largest financial hub outside London - but there is a growing difference in the cost of living between the two cities with consumer prices including rent 144% higher in London in July 2016.
And workers in Glasgow's growing financial services industry fare even better with consumer prices including rent 62% higher in London and rental prices alone 180% more expensive.
That pattern is repeated for other financial hubs in Europe and beyond:
- Zurich: consumer prices including rent 89% higher than Edinburgh, 100% higher than Glasgow
- New York: consumer prices including rent 86% higher than Edinburgh, 96% higher than Glasgow
- Paris: consumer prices including rent 23% higher than Edinburgh, 30% higher than Glasgow
- Amsterdam: consumer prices including rent 20% higher than Edinburgh, 28% higher than Glasgow
- Frankfurt: consumer prices including rent 3% higher than Edinburgh, 9% higher than Glasgow
In other industries, as well, Scotland offers a competitive cost of living.
The links between Scotland's oil and gas industry and Norway and the United States are well known.
But did you know that consumer prices in Stavanger are 32% higher than in Aberdeen, the centre of the industry in Scotland while rent prices in Houston are 34% higher?
And the cost of living in California's Silicon Valley is even higher compared to Scotland's cities:
- Rent is 147% higher in San Jose compared to Aberdeen
- Rent is 291% higher in San Francisco compared to Edinburgh
- Rent is 295% higher in San Jose compared to Dundee
- Rent is 347% higher in San Francisco compared to Glasgow
If you're planning to buy your own home, you'll also find Scotland compares favourably - property prices in Dublin are up to 80% higher than Edinburgh and up to 112% higher than Inverness.
Why I chose Scotland
The city has all the things you want, but in a package that means you actually want to live there. I’d say the lifestyle element of Edinburgh beats anywhere in the UK – and the world – hands down.
James Varga, CEO, miiCard
It's little wonder that more and more tech companies are choosing to join the global financial services and energy companies that already call Scotland home.
Compare the cost of living in global cities at the Numbeo website
A better quality of life
Of course, we understand that you need to consider more than just the cost of living before deciding to invest in a new country.
By investing in Scotland you'll still have the connections you need to grow your business - including easy access to more expensive cities like London and Dublin and convenient transport links to the world's major markets.
And, with convenient commute times between our major cities, Scotland gives you the opportunity to find the work-life balance that suits you.
From our vibrant cities to our stunning landscapes, quality of life is important to us.
In fact Edinburgh was ranked top of the UK Quality of Life Index in 2015 - with three other Scottish regions featuring in the top 10.
A welcoming business environment, fantastic quality of life and a low cost of living - it's time to connect with Scotland.
Ready to find out more about living and working in Scotland?
We've got staff in markets across the world who can help you get started:
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