The escalating cost of essential goods, often encapsulated in the term “shopping basket,” has increasingly been a focal point of anxiety among Spanish households. Recent data reveals that this trend is notably prominent in two cities in the Canary Islands: Santa Cruz de Tenerife and Las Palmas de Gran Canaria. A meticulous study conducted by Kelisto.es, a prominent savings advice website, unveils that the price of a shopping basket in these cities has seen a staggering 18% surge within the past year. The inflation has caused particular hardship for families, especially since it often involves basic necessities like food.
Kelisto.es carried out an in-depth examination that included all of Spain’s 50 provincial capitals along with the autonomous cities of Ceuta and Melilla. The study segregated 17 types of products and services into six main categories: housing costs (both purchase and rent), various types of taxes (such as property, road, and rubbish taxes), household bills (including home, car, electricity, and gas insurance), transportation (covering the costs of public and private transport like bus tickets, taxis, and petrol), shopping (the price of the shopping basket, bread, and milk), and leisure activities (like cinema tickets and the cost of a jug of beer).
The methodology employed to ascertain the most and least expensive cities involved calculating the difference between local prices and the national average for each of the variables under examination. These percentages were then aggregated and averaged out.
In this comprehensive analysis, Las Palmas de Gran Canaria found itself in the third position among the most expensive cities in Spain when it comes to the shopping basket, with a monthly expenditure of €445.27, which is 3.6% above the national average. In contrast, Santa Cruz de Tenerife was ranked 15th in the list with a monthly shopping basket cost of €432.60, a figure that is 0.7% above the average.
However, it’s crucial to note that when it comes to the overall cost of living, Santa Cruz de Tenerife positions itself as one of the more budget-friendly capital cities in Spain, holding the 15th rank in terms of being the cheapest, with an overall cost of living that is 5.38% lower than the national average. Las Palmas de Gran Canaria finds itself in a middle-ground, ranked at 26th place, with a cost of living that is 1.86% below the national average.
Furthermore, these two Canary Island capitals have secured spots in the top 10 list of Spain’s most expensive cities in specific expenditure categories. For example, housing rent costs place Las Palmas de Gran Canaria at sixth and Santa Cruz de Tenerife at ninth nationally. When it comes to the price of a single bus ticket, Santa Cruz de Tenerife holds the sixth position, and Las Palmas de Gran Canaria is right behind it at seventh. Additionally, the cost of a cinema ticket places Santa Cruz de Tenerife at third and Las Palmas de Gran Canaria at fourth on the list.
On the broader national canvas, San Sebastian leads as the city with the highest cost of living, registering 33.44% above the national average, followed by Barcelona at 26.76% and Madrid at 16.18%. Conversely, Lugo, Palencia, and Zamora represent the cities with the most affordable living costs, registering 17.44%, 13.85%, and 11.38% below the national average, respectively.
Estefanía González, a spokesperson for Kelisto.es, emphasized that the findings corroborate some prevalent assumptions. For instance, the axiom that “life in the North is more expensive than in the South” holds true, as does the idea that less populous provincial capitals tend to offer more affordable living costs.
These comprehensive findings offer a nuanced understanding of the financial landscape across Spain. They shine a spotlight on the disparities in the cost of living across different regions, drawing particular attention to the economic challenges that residents of Santa Cruz de Tenerife and Las Palmas de Gran Canaria are grappling with.