It has been about a year since I moved back to London from San Francisco. Both cities are known as the most expensive place to live, and I agree with it.
I started to keep tracking my spending in October 2013 and continue to record them. The purpose is to understand my exact spending habit. It purely came from my curiosity to find out how much I spent on what, include ice cream.
I draw out my spending portions in 2013 when I was living in San Francisco. So, I made the same drawing again about my living in London.
At this time, I looked at the data from 1st November 2015 to 31st October. During this period, I was in Japan for 53 days, in the US for 16 days, and France for two days. I kept tracking my spending on the trips converted into GBP.
Overall, as I suspected l discovered the living cost in San Francisco is much higher. The total yearly spending in London life is 40% less than in San Francisco life. The difference was bigger than I expected and the recent steep drop in GBP exchange rate might cause this. The rent played a big part in making the overall London spending smaller than San Francisco’s. Even London rent is getting more and more expensive; it is not yet too immoderate like San Francisco’s.
On this term, I spent about £75 on ice creams. This was much lower than my San Francisco ice cream budget; it was about $200. It happened because I didn’t have my favourite ice cream shops nearby and had not so ice cream whether in London.
Proportions of utility bills are much higher in London. Because I counted the council tax a part of it and usually gas and electricity bills are more expensive in the UK. Although, combining the cost of the broadband at home make the utility costs almost the same. I just re-realised how Comcast is overpriced in San Francisco.
Eating Out costs are high in London. I ate out less in London, though the I spent 20% more than I did in San Francisco.
I was working from home and cycle to places most of the time. It made my transport spending lower. The quarter of the transport spending was for the train fees on my day trips to visit English countrysides. I barely used Uber as London public transport is splendid.
It is always interesting to see what data tells. The information is usually different from I expected. I though life in London is a little cheaper, but never thought that is much like 40% less.
I will continue to track my spendings to see what I do to re-discover my everyday life in a different perspective.