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January 12, 2017

The cheapest places in the world to smoke, drink and do drugs

Does your weekly shopping list include alcohol, tobacco and drugs?

The folks at Bloomberg Index were curious what folks around the world would pay for such a weekly habit. They compared the prices in more than 100 countries of a shopping basket of vice. According to Bloomberg: 

Here is what we put in the basket: a pack of cigarettes, most popular and premium brands; a bottle of alcoholic beverages, including beer, wine and spirits; a gram of amphetamine-type stimulants, including amphetamine, methamphetamine and/or ecstasy; a gram of cannabis, including marijuana herb, hashish resin and/or cannabis oil; a gram of cocaine, regardless of salts, paste or base forms; a gram of opioids, including heroin and/or opium.

They looked at the cost, relative to the cost in the United States, where a consumer would pay nearly $400 weekly, about a third of average weekly income.

The United States finished 17th on the index of affordability. Landing atop the index was tiny Luxembourg, where the $259 basket cost was countered by the $2,035 average weekly income.

More of a beach person? If you can get by on a weekly income of $470 a week then the Bahamas is your place, where you can score your basket (to help forget the bottom line on your paycheck) for just $75.20. That's cheap enough to land at #3 on the index.

The cheapest place to stock that basket? The African nation of Congo, where you can purchase a whole lotta vice for just $19.60 week, but it will cost a little more than half the average weekly salary.

For the full index and to find out which country (where cigarettes are $20-plus a pack) joined Russia as the place you definitely cannot afford to smoke, drink and pop pills, check out the Bloomberg story.