Jamaica is an island in the Caribbean Sea, south of Cuba. Tropical; hot, humid; temperate interior. Mostly mountains, with narrow, discontinuous coastal plain. The official language is English. This is the dominant and business language of the country Most Jamaicans understand English, but speak patois – a dialect derived from English and African languages. The main religion is Christianity. The economy of Jamaica is a mixed economy with both state enterprises and private sector businesses. Major sectors of the Jamaican economy include agriculture, mining, manufacturing, tourism, and financial and insurance services. Tourism and mining are the leading earners of foreign exchange. The security risk for expatriates in Jamaica is medium, but high in West Kingston and Spanish Town. Risks include violent crime, murder, rape, robbery and gang violence. The population in Jamaica is 2.8 Mil (2014 est.), while the inflation rate is 8% (2014 est.).
Cost Of Living
The cost of living for expatriates in Jamaica as at 1 April 2015 is high in comparison to other places in the world. In Jamaica, the cost of each basket, based on local prices, compared to the international average in USD, is categorized follows: 1) Alcohol (where available) & Tobacco: Very High 2) Clothing: Average 3) Communication: Low 4) Education: Average 5) Furniture & Appliances: Very High 6) Groceries: Very High 7) Healthcare: Low 8) Household Accommodation: High 9) Miscellaneous: Very High 10) Personal Care: Very Low 11) Recreation & Culture: High 12) Restaurants Meals Out and Hotels: High 13) Transport: Low Jamaica is for example 48.7% more expensive than Uruguay for groceries, 31.3% more expensive for household costs than South Africa, and -6.3% cheaper for transport costs than Greece. Jamaica is ranked as a some hardship location. Hardship (also know as quality of living) refers to the degree of hardship an expatriate and their family are likely to experience in the host location. Hardship pay is compensation to encourage people to move, in particular to less desirable locations. In determining the amount of hardship premium payable, factors such as economic, political, religious, infrastructure, environment/climate, personal safety, health, education, and transportation factors are considered. The hardship premium for Jamaica for an expat from Switzerland, is for example 10%, i.e. host location (Jamaica) premium of 20% minus home (Switzerland) location premium of 10%. Xpatulator.com has been created to assist subscribers calculate expatriate pay using the online calculators and extensive database of cost of living and hardship indexes, for 780 international locations. Want to know more about cost of living, hardship or expat pay in Jamaica? Register subscribe to your home location and Jamaica and run your personalised reports.