You want how much?! The cost of adventure in Australia.

Posted: January 2, 2013 in Uncategorized
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Trust me to find the negative as I embark on an eighteen month sabbatical adventure, beginning in Sydney, Australia.  But seriously…what in the world is this country thinking when it comes to price! I’m all too familiar with Australia’s reputation as being an expensive place to visit but somehow being faced with a $30 bag of muesli in the local corner shop really brings home how absurd things here are.

 I am particularly disgruntled with the price of two favourites of mine: a hearty pint of beer and a generous mug of steaming coffee.  With a miniature replica of a coffee costing around $4 (£3 ish) and a ‘schooner’ (somewhere between a half pint and a pint) of lager costing around $7 (£5 ish), I have resorted to staring glumly at other – evidently more wealthy – people merrily consuming these over-priced beverages.  Either that or, on the rare occasion I fork out for such luxury, sipping tentatively in a bid to make this rarest of treats last a sociable amount of time along with absent-mindedly sliding a hand up alongside these tiny drink containers and muttering under my breath something along the lines of ‘absurd country’ or ‘what were they thinking’…something I probably need to curb if I intend to make any friends at all.

I suppose I shouldn’t be remotely surprised when venues as world-renowned as Bondi make every attempt to flog a shoddy pairs of plastic flip flops for over twenty quid.  Or when a gaudy Australian-animal-print apron costs £40 at the famous Sunday market at The Rocks, central Sydney.  But it took every ounce of restraint not to execute a drama-queen flounce out of the local newsagents when I saw a Cadbury’s Dairy Milk bar (smallest size available) going for a princely £2! Come on. 

In Sydney’s defence, I have spent my first days here in Australia in Clovelly – renowned sought-after family-based suburb on the outskirts of Sydney costing a mere £1.5 – £2 million for three bedroom semi-detached akin to a pretty bog-standard affair in England costing no more than £300,000.  It is, of course, right next to the sea (though right next to still means a fifteen minute walk) and it appears safe and reasonably friendly.  But cheap it is not.  Tomorrow, I head to Brisbane.  Maybe the river city will offer a more appealing pricing situation.  In the meantime, far from grabbing a sumptuous mug of Costa’s best coffee-bean extravaganza… I’ll put the kettle on.


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