Fans of “Pulp Fiction” already know that the names of items on the McDonald’s menu change around the world (“A royale with cheese” is a quarter-pounder in France), but according to a new study, the prices of items change around the world, too.
The world’s most expensive Big Mac can be found in Switzerland for $6.35—significantly higher than the typical price of an American Big Mac, at $5.06.
The Economist invented the Big Mac Index in 1984 as a “lighthearted” way to gauge exchange rates around the world. Since then, it’s become an annual metric for currency around the world.
In the words of the magazine, “in the long run exchange rates should move towards the rate that would equalise the prices of an identical basket of goods and services.” In this case, that good is the Big Mac.
By using a standardized item like the Big Mac, The Economist then determines which currencies around the world are over and undervalued. Of course, the whole thing gets a bit complicated when you add in labor costs, GDP and local purchasing power. Full results of the index are available here.
Runners up for world’s most expensive Big Mac are Norway and Sweden, with burgers costing $5.67 and $5.26, respectively.
Although, according to the index, the worst-performing currency in the world last year was the Turkish lira, one of the world’s cheapest Big Macs is available in Russia for $2.15. So travelers who are craving a bit of America while abroad can rest assured that they are not overpaying for their burger.