Nairobi Is More Expensive Than NYC/Geneva/London

Adjusted for Income levels, I have found Nairobi to be far more expensive than not only ALL cities in the western world but also other cities with comparable income levels. Now, before you all start shouting at me, please read the first sentence of this post (“adjusted for income levels”). This ranges all the way from basic foodstuff to real estate.

A waiter at a high end restaurant somewhere in London can easily afford to pay £50 for a cocktail at the end of his shift because it’s less than 1% of his monthly income. Meanwhile, a waiter at an equally high end bar in Nairobi can’t afford the 1.5k to purchase a drink at the end of the night and if he does, it’s almost 10% of his salary. This applies to every establishment in Nairobi which is very sad to think about. Hell, even a cashier at a supermarket will have to part ways with about 20% of his salary to afford a week’s worth of shopping at your Naivases and Migunas. Meanwhile, a guys making $15 an hour in America for example is able to do one month’s worth of shopping on maybe two day’s worth of pay.

A taxi ride in Nairobi from let’s say the CBD to Kasarani where the “middle-class” live is about 1k yet these are people who make between 15-20k. That’s 5% of their income. Congrats that with a $15 Uber ride for someone who makes about $3k a month in Seattle for example. What’s the point here? It doesn’t matter that the cost of living in Nairobi is “supposedly” lower than major European/American cities if the available disposable income is still too little to afford these low prices.

We have had this argument here so many times when people like @Azor_Ahai and co. make ridiculous claims about how making 200k in Nairobi is better than making a similar income in Los Angeles for example. The fact of the matter is the expertise that the 200k guy is providing in Nairobi would probably net him $10k minimum every month in Los Angeles. Now, adjusted for the cost of living compared to the average disposable income, the Los Angeles equivalent is way ahead in every single way. Why you ask? Because the cost basis ratio of goods/services to adjusted income level is simple lower than in Nairobi.

It is hilarious to see Kenyans on X advising each other with broad statements such as “Bro, if you’re making 150k in Nairobi usiende majuu because you’re living a better life than someone in the diaspora.” That’s horse-shit because if you sit down and do the actual math, it makes even more sense to move abroad. Simple put, Nairobi especially is more expensive than NYC/LA/Seattle adjusted for income levels and the general cost of living.

Now that I’m in Nairobi, I’ve gone shopping / taken transport to various places / gone out etc etc and it’s clear as day that this place is expensive adjusted for income levels. Basically, Kenyans have priced themselves out of their own country but comfort themselves by making stupid comments like “Oh, 500k Kenya is better than 500k majuu”.

I will share more findings as I spend more time here soaking in the African sun.

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For once i agree with you on this one, but i still insist you should build yourself a house in othaya.

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Nairobi with that salary you are way fucked. Very slim chances of increasing that income. Inflation will find you and girth you. NYC gets to offer much more unlimited options if your people skills are even a shred of decent. Fuck working hard when knowing who to work with is x10 better

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Nairobi sio the same na Naikuru mjamaa

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All this balls and no shaft kinda talk. All we ask is direct translation. From your kisapere construction of sentences to more informed arguments.
Weka payslip ya NYC vis a vis expenses (rent sana sana) we don’t care about your Mcdees and KFC food receipts and child support.
Then weka payslip ya Kenyan middle class (KRA/Safaricom/UN employee) and their rent, food, and other expenses combined.

The Kenyan lifestyle beats yours 10nil especially on the Social life. You get real kienyeji stinking pussy and not the douched ass thingys you have up there. Oh and the GMO food!!! Fcuk that shit.

Ita Dem Yako @MTINGIZA_KITANDA akutetee niwabake nyi wote mbwa izi

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I usually find that the hotels in Kenya are more expensive than those in the West.
You find that what you pay for one week nyumbani could have enabled you to fly from western Europe to the coastal town of turkey on a one week, all inclusive package.
That could be one of the reasons i always find hotels in nairobi hakuna watu.

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Yeap, the Norfolk for example charges $300+ a night while a 5 star hotel in NYC like The Plaza hotel charges about 150-$250. There’s absolutely no reason for those high prices in Nairobi when the average income is not even $100 a month :joy:.

Somehow @Josto_Bwaku wants to convince us that it still makes sense. The point is that an average American can afford that $300 hotel price in NYC while an average Kenyan can’t afford the Norfolk.

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I concur with you that living in Nairobi under the Kenyan wages is akin to living in hell. But once you move to the smaller towns like Nyeri, Kitale, Meru etc things get cheaper and more affordable

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Nbi is becoming a mini-Luanda, Angola in terms of cost of living. It’s a very expensive city considering the facts you mentioned. One reason for this is because Nairobi has grown into a major metropolis which hosts two UN agencies, Silicon Valley startups, politicians and businessmen from South Sudan, Somalia, India, China, Nigeria etc. The property values and rents are simply outrageous for a developing country. No matter how much we try to elevate the status of counties, most people feel they must have a slice in the big city.

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I still prefer to live like a king in hell than a slave in heaven…

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I used to see broke lecturers and professors in Uni nashindwa what the actual fk. Kumbe jamaa has 3 kids to raise and aging parents to take care of. Suddenly you realize that a lecturer’s income is peanuts in Nairobi.

A decent house, say 4-bedroom + DSQ in Nairobi and satellite towns will set you back at least 10M (bare minimum). How many Nairobians can afford just that?? That’s why you see most people wanakuja Nairobi and at 60 wanarudi ocha kuretire because they could not manage to settle here.

I have even seen broke doctors banae, let alone lecturers. Hii city ni shamba la mawe. Its a fucking conveyor belt of workers. Most people you see on the street will never afford a decent house in this city. They will just go back to the village at 60 and die there when they can no longer afford to live here.

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I avoid Nairobi as much as I can. Watching this topic somewhere in nyeri on my way to muranga. A neighbor recently resigned from his job in Nairobi and relocated to the village, by luck he got a job at kanyenyaini tea factory as a driver. He swears he can’t go back to Nairobi even if he was to get 10* his current salary.

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Statistics from the west also show that workers spend nearly all their lives servicing house mortgages. If you start working at 25yrs and take a 30yr mortgage you will finish paying it at 55yrs.

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I think Nairobi is just like any other city. Its easy to make money here. But its also easy to lose it. Its a double-edged sword and the only people who win in the long run are the ones who live below their means instead of keeping up with the Joneses. Neighbor yako akinunua Lexus sio lazima ununue even if you can afford it.

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And you didn’t know these things? Kenya has been like this since the late 70s. Ok those days, Lavington, Kileleshwa, was for mid level government workers.

There’s simply too many people for the number of jobs available. So businesses pay peanuts.

Hotels have never been meant for locals. Even when you go out of town, you sleep at a relatives place, unless it’s a business trip.

Simply put, nothing has changed.

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Same job, similar pay, yet i lived a truly middle class life in capetown where kids attended great schools and i would frequent 5 star establishments, shop at exclusive shops and afford membership fees to various clubs. My savings were also higher.Back in kenya i cant comfortably afford meals at 5 star establishments without straining my income, i cant regularly enjoy my favourite liquor and i cant really afford to live in a proper estate similar to gated communities i called home in capetown. Nairobi sio mchezo, you need lots of money to lead a decent life

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Saying all that without stating the why…

Why was cape that way? Non scarce resources? Evenly spread development? Average higher incomes?

Yeap, this city is now meant for people who earn money in the west and spend it here and even so, it’s just as expensive as the west in many ways.

Don’t you think a city should be meant for citizens? All I’m seeing around is foreigners dominating every nice establishment……too many Indians, Muzungus and Somalis. It’s very difficult to find locals just enjoying life. Man, fuck this country.

Nairobi isn’t like any other city because locals for the most part are not the ones who own the city. Big difference. Although other cities are expensive, locals by and large are the owners of capital. Here, all I’m seeing is fucking Pajeets and wazungus.

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