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Forbes Ranks Providence One of Most Overpriced Cities in the U.S.

Tuesday, October 13, 2015


Can't afford a nice apartment in Providence? Paycheck not going far enough?

You should according to a new report from Forbes magazine that names Providence-metro area as one of the most overpriced cities in the U.S.

The most overpriced is Honolulu ranking #1 followed by Western Connecticut suburbs on New York City ranking #2 and Boston, MA #3.

This ranking may reinforce the concerns in Providence regarding the cost of housing.

20. Providence, R.I.

MSA: Providence-New Bedford-Fall River, RI-MA

Median Income: $72,200

Q4 2014 median sales price: $199,000

Housing affordable at median family income: 73.2%

Cost Above National Average: Groceries: 9.6%; Utilities: 28.3%; Transportation: 4.5%; Health: 15.


Related Slideshow: 10 Things You Can Buy for $2 Besides the Providence Journal

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Enjoy a Beer

At Chelo's, so-called domestic label drafts--Miller, Budweiser, and Coors--are all $1.99 for a 10 ounce mug. You can enjoy a libation, and watch some sports on the flat screen at a legendary Rhode Island establishment for less than the cost of a Providence Journal.

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Enjoy a Coffee

A medium coffee at Dunkin Donuts, according to fastfoodmenuprices.com, comes in at $1.89 cents. Not thirsty? There are plenty of food options that ring in under $2, but i recommend the Turkey Sausage wrap for $1.39.

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Grab a Burger

If you're more of a red meat kind of person, head over to the nearest McDonald's. Big Macs are $3.50, and the budget here is $2 if we're looking to spend less than we would on a Providence Journal. So, the play here is to order a McDouble (a double cheeseburger with just one slice of cheese), but ask the cashier to hold the ketchup, and to include Big Mac Sauce instead. McDoubles are $1.20, and the Big Mac sauce costs an extra .30. That's a grand total of $1.50 - still far below the $2 of a Providence Journal.

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Catch a Movie

If you're looking for entertainment, East Providence's Empire Cinema, a bargain priced cinema that shows so-called second run movies is located on Newport Avenue. The cinema features two bargain days, in which movies are shown for...you guessed it, $2.

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Red Box

Would you rather watch a movie in the comfort of your own home? Red Box movie kiosks are located virtually all over the state of Rhode Island in just about every supermarket or street corner where retail stores are located. If you want to rent  a dvd, it will cost you $1.50, but if you want the high definition clarity of a blu ray, it will cost you...$2.

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Take a Cruise

Maybe you need to head out for a drive in order to clear your head? If you've got a sedan that averages around 20 miles to the gallon, and most cars do these days, pump a half gallon of gas in the tank (which shouldn't cost more than $1.25 anywhere in RI) and go on a ten mile, mind clearing drive. Just watch out for pot holes. Car repairs cost way more than $2. 

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Make a Bet

If gambling is one of your favorite forms of entertainment, I suggest you take a ride over to Twin River and walk into the racebook portion of the establishment. The minimum bet at the New York based horse tracks (Aqueduct, Belmont, and my personal favorite, Saratoga), is just $1. That means you can bet $1 to show on a horse, as retired Providence Journal columnist M. Charles Bakst so loved to do, and even if you lose both races, you've still passed an hour of your time. But if you're a skilled handicapper, you can probably last all day with just $2 by betting horses to show.

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Work Out

If you're a person who likes to keep active, you can exercise for free. But if you prefer to be insulated from the elements (wind, rain, snow, stifling heat), and since you live in Rhode Island or southeastern Massachusetts, of course you do, you can join a gym like Planet Fitness or Workout World for way less than $2 per day. Both gyms charge somewhere around $10 per month.

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Hit the Dollar Store

Are you in the mood to shop? Walk into a $1 dollar store such as The Dollar Tree, and you'll be able to purchase any two items there. They sell everything from food, to automotive needs, to kitchenware, to hardware and clothing.

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Grab a Book

If you're reading this, you like to read. Assuming you're willing to pay to read, Providence is stocked with used book stores like Cellar Stores, Symposium books, Ada Books, and Paper Nautilus. And all of them have plenty of books ringing in at less than $2.


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