What would you consider buying abroad? Beer? A luxury car? A camel? A new infographic from Fixr.com, a cost estimating site, reveals that the answer differs by country. Taking the top Google autocomplete search for “How much does * cost in (country),” they made a map of some of the most searched-for goods around the world.
It’s worth noting right off the bat that this is in no way scientific; the results are based solely on English-language searches across the globe, and Google auto-complete results are not a measurement of the most searched terms, which can vary widely based on your own web browsing history. Still, the results paint an interesting and sometimes disturbing picture of our world.
Some countries are targeted as destinations for medical tourism: the top search for Mexico is “tummy tuck,” while South Korea’s is “rhinoplasty.” In developing countries, the searches tend to be more basic. Things like food, building a house, and livestock dominate across much of Africa and the Middle East. Searches in the Middle East are also revealing of the vast differences in wealth there.
The top result for the United Arab Emirates is “Ferrari,” while those in the countries surrounding it largely search for basic life necessities. In Iran, the top result is “kidney,” but that’s not quite as alarming as it may seem: Iranians are permitted to buy a human kidney, or sell their own, for surgical transplants. In many countries, the top search is for “prostitute,” confirming that the world’s oldest profession is going strong internationally. Most disturbing is probably the search for “slave,” the most popular autocomplete result for Mauritania, where slavery was just abolished in 1981 (and where it’s believed hundreds of thousands of slaves still exist.)
Again, this map is nowhere near accurate, and should be taken with more than a few grains of salt. But this exploration of the world’s id makes us wonder what could come of someone replicating this project with a more scientific approach and producing some data that’s actually useable. And seriously, does anyone know how much a cow costs in India?