Where are the cheapest countries to work remotely?

Azerbaijan is the least expensive country in the world for work-from-home employees and Barbados is the most costly, new research finds

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Azerbaijan is the cheapest country in the world to work from home, research from price comparison website Compare The Market Australia found.

People working from home in Azerbaijan pay just $112 a month for a fixed-line broadband package, 1GB of mobile data and basic utilities such as electricity for lighting, a kettle, heating and charging a laptop, making it the cheapest country on the list, according to the Worldwide Work From Home Index.


Workers in Azerbaijan pay $0.05 per kWh of electricity, which means it costs only $0.46 to charge a laptop every day for a month, the research shows.

Ukraine, where broadband costs just $6.64 a month, is the second-cheapest country to work from home at $131, the research found. Singapore ($153), Russia ($165) and Turkey ($187) round out the top five positions on the list of least expensive countries to work remotely.

The average monthly cost of a fixed-line broadband package and 1GB of data were estimated using price comparison site cable.co.uk’s worldwide data. The average energy cost was calculated by multiplying the estimated kWh of each activity by the average cost per kWh of electricity in each country, which was sourced from the World Bank.

At the other end of the spectrum, Barbados is the most expensive country to work from home, with residents spending an estimated $586 a month on broadband, mobile data and basic utilities. Spain ($547) and Germany ($530) are the second and third-most expensive countries to work from home, respectively, followed by Denmark ($519) and Portugal ($486).

The UK also ranked in the top 10, with workers spending $381 per month to work from home, the report said.

The Covid-19 pandemic disrupted many traditional norms around employment and triggered the work-from-home trend.

Digital nomads embraced the idea of working from anywhere to reap, among other rewards, the benefits of geographic arbitrage. This means strategic relocation to places where people can continue to earn in a stronger currency but are now spending it in the weaker currency of their new home.

Dubai last year launched a remote working programme that allows professionals to live in the emirate while being employed overseas. The aim is to encourage employees around the world to relocate to Dubai and benefit from the same services residents of the emirate enjoy, including phone and internet, utilities, schooling and tax-free salaries.