According to Mercer, a human resources consultancy that publishes an annual report on where you’ll find the best quality of life, the top spot in 2018 goes to Austria’s capital, Vienna. The report helps companies determine the pay packages for employees sent to work abroad and is based on 39 factors ranging from crime levels and medical provision to education, housing and the environment.
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The city in second place this year is Zurich and Munich and Auckland tied for third place. Dusseldorf also appeared in the Top 10, as did Frankfurt, and both Geneva and Basel in Switzerland enjoyed top rankings as well. So, it looks as though Germany, Austria and Switzerland have the cities with the best lifestyles, although in the case of Geneva and Zurich, neither of them are inexpensive places to live. Still, as the saying goes, perhaps it is a case of “you get what you pay for.”
Sydney and Amsterdam came just outside the Top 10 cities worldwide, but then the list reverts back to cities in Germany, namely Berlin, and Bern in Switzerland. Vancouver and Toronto score highly for Canada, as does Ottawa, all appearing in the Top 20.
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Singapore, slightly surprisingly perhaps, given its international profile and its reputation for cleanliness, safety and modernity, only ranked at 25, while Oslo and Brussels claimed places at 26 and 27.
Mercer said: “Western European cities continue to surpass the rest of the world when it comes to expatriate quality of living.” At the other end of the spectrum, we find, as might be expected, cities like Baghdad, Port-au-Prince, Khartoum and Bangui in the Central African Republic.
And, if you’re wondering which is the best city with regard to a lack of air pollution, infectious diseases and waste removal – that’s Honolulu, closely followed by Helsinki and Ottawa.
To find out more about Quality of Living in various parts of the world, read the Mercer 2018 Quality of Living report where you’ll be able to a more in-depth overview of the regions and the cities within them.