Africa is a continent of remarkable diversity, from its rich cultures and breathtaking landscapes to its rapidly growing economies. While many parts of Africa remain affordable, there are several cities where the cost of living can be surprisingly high. In this blog post, we will take a closer look at the top 10 African cities with the highest cost of living, shedding light on the factors that contribute to their elevated expenses.

Top 10 African Cities with the Highest Cost of Living

Factors Influencing High Living Costs

Several common factors contribute to the high cost of living in these African cities, and some of them are as follows.

  1. Inflation: Many of these cities experience high inflation rates, which drive up the prices of goods and services.
  2. Reliance on Imports: Due to limited local production, these cities rely heavily on imported goods, which are often subject to tariffs and transportation costs.
  3. Housing: The demand for housing in these urban centers often outpaces supply, leading to high rental and real estate prices.
  4. Infrastructure: Inadequate public infrastructure and services can result in residents having to pay more for basic amenities.
  5. Economic Instability: Political and economic instability can lead to fluctuations in currency values and reduced investor confidence, further driving up living costs.

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Top 10 African Cities with the Highest Cost of Living

Now, let us look at the top 10 African cities with the highest cost of living.

Bangui, CAR

In the heart of Africa, nestled along the picturesque banks of the Ubangi River, lies Bangui, the capital city of the Central African Republic (CAR). While this vibrant city boasts a rich cultural tapestry and natural beauty, it has also earned its place on the list of African cities with some of the highest costs of living

Djibouti City

Djibouti City’s high cost of living can be attributed to its strategic location as a shipping and logistics hub in the Horn of Africa, as well as its reliance on imports and the presence of international organizations.

Luanda, Angola

Luanda, the capital of Angola, consistently ranks as one of Africa’s most expensive cities. High inflation rates, a reliance on imported goods, and a booming oil industry contribute to its exorbitant cost of living.

Kinshasa, DR Congo

Kinshasa is the largest city in the Democratic Republic of Congo. Despite its immense potential, the city faces challenges like corruption, inadequate public services, and high inflation rates, making it an expensive place to live.

Conakry, Guinea

Perched along the Atlantic coast of West Africa, Conakry, the capital city of Guinea, beckons with its striking blend of tropical charm and bustling urban life. However, beneath the surface of its vibrant streets and palm-fringed beaches lies a reality that has earned Conakry a place among the African cities with the highest cost of living. As the largest city and economic epicenter of Guinea, Conakry grapples with a complex web of economic, political, and geographical factors that have driven up the cost of living for its residents.

N’Djamena, Chad

N’Djamena, the capital of Chad, has a challenging economic environment due to its landlocked location, political instability, and limited infrastructure. These factors contribute to its high living costs.

Victoria, Seychelles

Located amidst the crystal-clear waters of the Indian Ocean, Victoria, the capital city of Seychelles, beckons with its stunning landscapes, abundant marine life, and laid-back island charm. Yet, beneath this idyllic facade lies a surprising reality – Victoria is among the African cities with the highest cost of living

Lagos, Nigeria

Lagos is Nigeria’s financial hub and one of the fastest-growing cities in Africa. Its high cost of living is primarily driven by the demand for housing, traffic congestion, and the cost of imported goods.

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Libreville, Gabon

Gabon’s capital, Libreville, is known for its high cost of living, driven by its reliance on oil revenues, a small local market, and an expensive real estate market.

Dakar, Senegal

Dakar, Senegal’s economic center, boasts a high cost of living due to its strong economy, vibrant nightlife, and the expense of imported goods.


While Africa is known for its affordability in many areas, these 10 cities present a different narrative. High inflation, reliance on imports, housing shortages, and economic instability are some of the factors contributing to their high cost of living. However, it is essential to note that living costs can vary greatly within these cities, and there are often affordable options for those willing to seek them out. As these cities continue to grow and develop, efforts to address these cost-of-living challenges will play a crucial role in ensuring a better quality of life for their residents.