Study Reveals Happiness Price Tag Varies Drastically Worldwide, New Zealand Among Most Expensive


The quest for happiness has been eternal and elusive. Research by Purdue University presents an intriguing proposition: happiness comes at a price, a price dependent on the geographical location you inhabit. Astonishingly, New Zealand emerges as the seventh most expensive place to earn your cheer.

Purdue University researchers have attempted to quantify bliss, revealing that citizens of Aotearoa need to pull in an annual income of $193,727, or US$114,597 by Purdue’s evaluation, to feel genuinely happy. Considering the average household income stood at around $117,126 in 2022, contentment seems an unreachable star for many, certainly when examined through the lens of the newly released league table assessing 164 nations’ wealth and wellbeing.

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Following an extensive survey of 1.7 million individuals across the globe, the researchers delineated a maximum income ceiling beyond which happiness does not magnify. Building on Purdue University’s data, a new study has concocted a world ranking for the cost of happiness, ranging from the cheapest to the priciest places.

In neighbouring Australia, contentment costs even more dramatically. Ranked as the third most high-priced place in the world to find joy, Brisbane and Sydney figure in the top 10 most exorbitant cities for happiness, with a staggering price tag of $205,830, climbing to $225,511 in Brisbane.

Still, inexpensive joy isn’t as elusive as it may seem. Boasting the lowest valuation of life fulfillment at merely $14,711 a year, Sierra Leone tops the list, followed by Suriname ($17,424) and Madagascar ($19,293).

Back in New Zealand, Auckland emerged as the country’s priciest city for happiness, demanding $207,000 per annum. In contrast, the most affordable Kiwi city to make the cut is Christchurch, where sustained contentment comes at a comparatively modest $180,000 annually.

The question of whether money can indeed buy satisfaction has been long debated. Yet, a recurrent theme is the correlation between vacations and happiness. Harvard’s Department of Psychology maintains that the anticipation, rather than the experience of a holiday, often brings more joy, suggesting continuous small trips could prove more fulfilling than a few grand bucket-list adventures.

If you’re one of those happiness seekers, pondering your next vacation or your overall life fulfillment, remember that joy comes from the experience and the anticipation more than the destination or end goal. There are cost-effective means to experience and anticipate joy, too. Why not consider a virtual visit to one of the top online casinos listed on our website? After all, a little fun and games on the side never did anyone any harm. But remember – always play responsibly and in moderation.