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The cost of beer around the world, compared

With Oktoberfest around the corner, and summer just beyond that (we are counting the days...), we thought we’d bring you results of a new study that contrasts the cost of beer around the world. But expect the unexpected... 


Conducted by German-based information and technology consultancy ECA International, the Cost of Living survey found that some of the most expensive places to buy beer at a bar were in Asia, with Dhaka (Bangladesh) deemed the priciest for a 500ml bottle of beer at around $23.75, followed by Singapore at $21.84 and Hong Kong at $16.10. 



Although there were high prices found in many cities in the Asian region, Dhaka stood out because of its policy of only selling beer to “foreigners in selected restaurants and hotels”, according to ECA International production manager Steven Kilfedder. 


In Europe, hotspot Reykjavik was found to be the most expensive city in which to buy a beer, at a whopping price of EUR13.59 ($22.12), while Oslo and Paris were also deemed pricey ($20.77 and $15.30 respectively). In the home of Oktoberfest, Munich, half litre of beer will set you back a reasonable $10.30 in a bar.


“Although the prices at Oktoberfest are slightly higher than last year, the cost of buying a bottle of beer at a bar is still significantly cheaper than many locations around the world,” said Kilfedder. 


“Places such as Scandinavia, as well as the UK and Ireland, have higher taxes on beer and alcohol resulting in higher prices when visiting a bar whereas the alcohol taxes in Germany are comparably low.”


The cheapest city in Europe for beer is Brno (Czech Republic), where a bottle of the beverage will cost just EUR2.48 (around $4). 


“The Czech Republic has long been known for cheap beer and the prices are among the cheapest in Europe, with Brno being the cheapest place to buy a bottle in the whole of Europe,” Mr Kilfedder said.


If you can get yourself to Maseru (Lesotho), you’ll find even cheaper beer, at around $3.88 a bottle. 


The price of a bottle of beer around the world (selected)


Price of beer(EUR)

% difference with Munich

Dhaka, Bangladesh



Reykjavik, Iceland






Oslo, Norway



Paris, France



London, UK



Brussels, Belgium


- <1%

Madrid, Spain



Rio de Janeiro, Brazil



Johannesburg, S. Africa



Brno, Czech Republic



Maseru, Lesotho




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Written by: Mark Harada
Published: 25 September 2018

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