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shocking cost of living data (Melbourne)

have been doing some more sleuth work online re. current cost of living in a number of cities i am familiar with and was a tad surprised to see melbourne (sydneys cheaper cousin) comes in almost on top of the heap for living expense while lovely vancouver sits waaaay down. in one case at 75th!!!! now, i always thought that once you factored out housing van city / bc were reasonable so interesting to see it confirmed. the crazy part is that with the obv detractors considered, housing in mel is far more expensive. if toronto cost of living no longer makes any sense, auckland is just stupid, london like van reasonable once you have bought a place, HOW IN THE WORLD ARE PEOPLE LIVING WELL IN SYDNEY AND MEL??? i know oz wages are sometimes higher, but not enough. arent lifesyle/ financial issues overwhelming???