Two European cities, two vastly different countries – Geneva and London both have their plus and minus points. So, let’s take a closer look at comparing the two in our definitive Geneva versus London guide.
Unsurprisingly, London has a warmer yearly average than Geneva, with 15.5 degrees C in London versus 14.4 in Geneva. London also experiences less rain, by around seven days per year.
Geneva has a lot more snow, which is great for those who appreciate the finer things in life, such as skiing and winter sports, as the mountains are so close by.
Geneva has a significantly lower unemployment rate of 6.3%, as opposed to the 8.1% that’s the current figure in London. The average salary is also far higher in Geneva, with the average monthly disposable salary after tax being £4,106, in comparison to London’s £1,983.
However, the cost of living in Geneva is generally much higher. Let’s look at that in more detail:
This is one area where Geneva beats London, with rental prices in the city centre being 23% – 28% cheaper. And if you want to purchase property, the gap becomes even wider – with Geneva prices coming in up to 45% less expensive for a comparable property than the UK capital.
Once you’ve found somewhere to live, then of course you need to pay to run it. Heating, water, and electricity all add up, and you’ll pay around 6% more in Geneva than you will in the UK.
That’s not to say that running your home in London is cheap, because it’s not, but there are ways to ensure that you’re paying the least amount possible for the utilities you need.
Phone and broadband are also somewhere you can potentially save money in London (as well as it being around 77% cheaper than in Geneva).
Whichever company you choose to go with for your utilities, be sure to make your purchase using a money back website such as Top Cash Back.
You shop in exactly the same way as usual, but any commission that would normally go to an affiliate website instead comes directly to you.
You can make hundreds of pounds in this manner, especially setting up all you need for your new home – and it’s all perfectly safe and legitimate.
When it comes to grocery shopping, the weekly spend is much kinder on your pocket in London than it is in Geneva. In fact, with the single exception of bottled water (which is around 5.5% cheaper in Switzerland), groceries in the UK capital are much cheaper – and some of the differences may well surprise you.
For example, milk is around 10% cheaper, and cheese is a crazy 110% less in London. Beef will set you back around 170% more in Geneva, and you’ll also pay more for vegetables – ranging from the humble tomato being about 9% dearer to the poor old onion at about 123% more!
Bread in Geneva costs around 77% more per loaf, eggs 51% more, and chicken breasts are around 106% dearer.
For those of you who like to dine out, you’ll pay around 25% – 30% more in Geneva than in London. That is, unless you’re a McDonalds aficionado, because in Geneva your Big Mac will cost you almost double the price that it will in London.
Now, this is one area that Geneva scores far higher than London. A monthly season pass for public transport in the Swiss city is about 65% less than in London, and even a simple one-way ticket on local transport is 22% less.
Petrol prices are less too, by about 12%, but new car prices are pretty much the same whichever city you purchase them.
Taxi rides are the one area of transport that Geneva fails to beat London, with the per kilometre rate being almost 30% more than in London.
For movie buffs, you’ll pay around the same price to see a big film in both cities, but for London, check out Cineworld’s Unlimited Card that, as its name suggests, allows you to watch as many movies as you like for only £16.90 per month (£19.90 if you want to include London’s West End cinemas).
This means that as long as you go to the movies at least twice a month, your card will pay for itself. Go any more than that and you’re quids in…
For those of you who like to keep fit, then London’s the place to be – with gym memberships coming in at around 62% less than those in Geneva.
However, if you’d like your fitness costs to be even lower, consider joining a group that enjoy the same sport as you do. There are loads of different groups that can be found on the website Meet Up.
Pretty much any sport that you can think of has other likeminded people doing the same, including as badminton, squash, ultimate frisbee, volleyball, various martial arts, tennis, golf, kickboxing, table tennis, cycling, and multi-disciplinary groups as well…
One thing that is cheaper in Geneva is the theatre, by around 25%. But all savvy Londoners know not to pay full price for theatre tickets.
Instead, head to The Ticket Hut in Leicester Square in the early morning. Here you can find great value discount tickets for some of the best-known shows in London – often up to half price of the value of the ticket.
All the tickets sold here will be for that day’s performance, either matinee or evening. Just be sure to get there early, as they get snapped up fast.