Data-Assisted Escape

numbeoBy Lentus Ambulandus, currently undergoing treatment for Post Transactional Stress Disorder

Mendoza, Argentina. Wine country. Mountains. Beef. Etcetera. It sounded so perfect.

“Let’s go there”, she said.

We went, on a bus from Santiago.

Hyper-inflation. Unaffordable meals. ATMs without money. Broken Visa terminals. Understandably frustrated Argentines.

We left, on a plane, because it was faster than the bus.

If our four days in Mendoza can be called a fact-finding mission, then it was a very expensive one. I’d have preferred to find out in advance that restaurant prices in Argentina (in Buenos Aires, at least) are 84.58% higher than in Santiago. 1 kg of tomatoes is 96.97% higher…this, too, would have been good to know. And are you aware that 1 Summer Dress in a Chain Store (Zara, H&M, …) is 117.82% higher in Argentina than it is on the other side of the Andes?

I pulled these stats from Numbeo, “the world’s largest database of user contributed data about cities and countries worldwide”. I’d seen Numbeo previously, but completely forgot about it until I’d been slapped in the face by economic reality in Argentina. Never again…

I have no idea how accurate Numbeo is, but it’s at least generally right, based on my recent experience. And it has more than just pricing data: you can also look up perceived levels of crime, health care information, and pollution indices.

Numbeo: useful, fun and interesting. A great time waster the next time you’re bored at work. A tool for planning your escape to greener pastures (hint: don’t go to Berlin…go to Prague).

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Lentus Ambulandus is New Escapologist's Chief Leisure Officer. He advocates doing the things worth doing (hiking, cycling, sipping coffee, reading books), and proudly accomplishes less in a month than most people do in a week. His creed is simple: Death Before Employment.

4 Responses to “Data-Assisted Escape”

  1. Zainab Usman says:

    Argentina is a country difficult to comprehend. So much potential being wasted by a disastrous and long string of poor leadership. Who will save it? It reminds me of my country.

  2. Thanks for the comment, Zainab. Perhaps our expectations for Argentina were unrealistically high, after visiting Colombia and Chile (both of which I’d recommend).

  3. Zainab Usman says:

    I would want to visit Chile one day but not sure of Columbia.

  4. Spoonman says:

    Thank you for pointing out Numbeo, it sounds like a great tool for any escapologist on the lam.

    Your experience in Argentina has comfirmed my suspicions about the country, so it’ll be a long while before we try to go there. It’s good to know that Chile is more than a good alternative.

    I’ll have to do my own research, but I think we’ll end up in Berlin regardless of the relative costs. I’ve been hearing great things about that city. I’m guessing it’s similar (cost-wise) to Paris, maybe even better. And, of course, we’ll go to Prague no matter what!

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