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In my head I kept going over and over what I should write about this week. I had a mental block like I have never had before. However I think I came up with something not only interesting but also a little outside the box for me. Australia seems to be one of the most expensive places in the world in terms of living expenses. From rent, to produce, and to even clothing it seems to be more expensive than that of other countries.

When I came here in July I found the prices to be wildly expensive for everything, and I also thought paying rent weekly or fortnightly seemed farfetched and weird. Now looking back it may be weird and expensive but it makes so much sense. The wages of Australia are much higher than that of the United States. The current minimum wage for Australian workers is $16.87 an hour. Which I feel to be a substantial amount of money under some circumstances, however under others it seems to be still not enough.

Now if I were to take this number and apply it to the minimum wage I received in Wisconsin it would be double the amount. Last year when I was working in Milwaukee, Wisconsin at a local bookstore I made $8.00 an hour. This is actually more than what waiters and waitresses earn at casual restaurants and pubs in Wisconsin. Many of these people earn only $2.50 to $3.00 an hour. Then all the rest of that selected income for food industry workers is made from tips. This is a custom that is always acceptable in the states. However in Australia not so much.

Australians don’t tip because workers within all business forms make enough without the need of added income. There is a unique difference in both countries with workers’ rights and the minimum wage. This difference has a lot to do with the amount of money for payment and the custom of tipping and lack thereof between both countries.

Now let’s look at the increased pricing in public goods and services. For a good example, to buy the new IPhone 6 with 16GB space in Australia it would cost you $869. Now the American price for the same product would cost you $649. Now the price difference when using the conversation rate from Australian dollars to American dollars is $93.45 more Australian dollars. Now this is outrageous because of the fact that it is the exact same product with the exact same features. However we should remember that the minimum wage in Australia is double that from the states.

Now on one hand you see the Australian public being ripped off blind for the same products all around the world. However, for shipping purposes it costs a lot more to ship 1 million IPhones to Australia as opposed to 20 million to the United States. The population of a country and the number of products sold affect the price and we have to remember that. Now is it wrong? I would say yes because even with the increased wages, the increase of everything else including rent, food, and commercial goods makes it difficult and unnecessary for the Australian public to consume and buy without burden. Even the housing market has become too expensive for the average Australian family. The median price to buy a house in Sydney has reached 1 million dollars.

Australians get ripped off blind which is why you see them use VPN’s and buy overseas products from the United States because it is so much cheaper than buying it here in Australia. So overall it begs the question even with the higher wage in comparison to the heightened prices makes it about even with the United States.

I know firsthand how much things cost here in Australia and there is no way prices should be this high. I know my American readers will find this shocking. I once went to McDonalds and had a MChicken meal with fries and it was $9.00 in the United States I would pay $3-$4.00 for the same full meal. Why Australia, why?