f it is true that the price of a Big Mac is the best gauge of measuring a country's purchasing-power parity, then Israel became a whole lot more affordable for its inhabitants overnight.
McDonald's Israel slashed prices on a range of products at its 160-plus branches Sunday, including the benchmark Big Mac, which it cut from NIS 15.90 to NIS 11.90. Big Mac, Easy Mac, McFish Royal, McNugget and Corn-on-the-cob meal deals were reduced 16 percent from NIS 34.90 to NIS 29.90. Family meal deals were slashed by as much as 12%.
The company implemented the reductions following a price hike of up to 40% on certain products at its 40 kosher branches during Passover. It said the temporary price hike was introduced to compensate for the increased cost of producing kosher-for-Passover items such as rolls made from matza meal.
The cost of an Israeli Big Mac was $4.13 at the time of the survey, less than in the United States ($4.30), but more than in many countries with far higher per capita income, including Britain ($3.82) and Singapore ($3.75). Switzerland was the most expensive place to purchase a Big Mac ($6.81), and India, where it is made with chicken instead of beef, the cheapest ($1.62).
The index is based on the theory of purchasing- power parity; in the long run, exchange rates should adjust to equal the price of a basket of goods and services in different countries. For example, the January index showed that the shekel was about 2% undervalued against the US dollar at the time. The exchange rate that would have brought the price of an Israeli Big Mac into parity with an American one was NIS 3.79 to the dollar, while the actual exchange rate was NIS 3.85.
Full article: http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L
When I travel I like to eat at local restaurants to literally get the flavour of a place, but Israelis, like us, sometimes need to eat in a hurry and would like a cheap bright place to take the kids. However one of the surprisingly nice aspects of Israel is the general absence of international chains.