Do you feel a little bit guilty each time you cough up $4 for that morning cup of Joe? You’re not alone (excuse us while we hang our heads in shame), and a new report on the cost of Starbucks around the world might make you feel better – and then worse.
To assess just how extravagant the Starbucks habit feels to caffeine addicts outside the U.S., research group ValuePenguin recorded the price of a tall latte in 39 other countries. Then they converted those numbers to USD and adjusted them, using data from the World Bank, to more accurately reflect the local purchasing power of that dollar amount.
By placing the cost of a typical Starbucks order in context with the price of other local goods and services, they were able to pinpoint the amount of Starbucks-induced sticker shock you’d experience if you lived in that country and made its typical salary.
The results? Turns out that tall latte *feels* cheaper stateside than it does anywhere else on the planet. But the difference in perceived cost varies widely. In some countries, like Australia, the U.K., New Zealand and Canada, the price hike is relatively small at 31 cents or less. But in Thailand, Vietnam and Indonesia, the setback is upwards of $8. And then there’s Russia:
1. Russia: $12.32
2. Indonesia: $8.21
3. Vietnam: $8.18
4. Thailand: $8.04
5. India $7.99
6. Egypt: $7.59
7. Malaysia: $7.23
8. China: $7.18
9. Saudia Arabia: $7.08
10. Poland: $6.74
The Starbucks splurge feels so great abroad in part because staples like bread and milk cost so much less than they do in the U.S. But it also points to the reality that in many places outside of the U.S., Starbucks is still a delicacy.
So, next time you’re abroad, think twice about how you’re feeding your caffeine addiction. For reasons pertaining to both culture and cash, you’re probably better off doing as the Romans do, so to speak. Our tip: Scope out a local coffee shop and save the Starbucks for your first day back at the office.