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No. 1: Tokyo, Japan

No. 1: Tokyo, Japan

Rank in 2009: 2

FOOD: Lunch at a restaurant: $18*
Can of beer from grocer: $3.37*
One kg of rice: $8.47*
One dozen eggs: $3.78*

ENTERTAINMENT: Movie ticket: $22*

APPLIANCES: Washing machine: $879*

The strength of the yen has brought Tokyo back to the No. 1 spot on ECA International’s ranking for the first time since 2005. In addition to the costs above, rent for a two-bedroom apartment for expats is typically more than $5,000 per month in Tokyo, according to data from EuroCost International. While visitors need more pocket money here than in any other city, the monthly consumer price index in Tokyo’s wards has actually dropped year-on-year for 14 straight months as of May 2010, based on figures from Japan’s statistics bureau.