SOCCER

The price of beer piles on the pain for fans of Spain

But consultants' 'beer index' brings cheers to Greeks and Hongkongers visiting Brazil

PUBLISHED : Friday, 20 June, 2014, 2:43am
UPDATED : Friday, 20 June, 2014, 2:43am

As if crashing out of the soccer World Cup wasn't enough for defending champions Spain, their disappointed supporters had to take a second hit when they tried to drown their sorrows.

According to a specially compiled "beer index" drawn up by ECA International - a London-based consulting firm that conducts annual surveys on the cost of living worldwide - Spanish fans made some of the lowest savings when it came to the price differential between the cost of a beer at home and one in Brazil.

But there's better news for Greeks, the biggest savers in the Brazil 2014 "beer index".

Of course, Hong Kong's perennially underachieving soccer team didn't get within 5,000 miles of Brazil after crashing out in the early stages of qualifying. But the city is still full of soccer lovers, and any Hongkonger savouring a cool one down Copacabana way will be doing so at half the price they would pay in Lan Kwai Fong or Wan Chai.

Ghana, who lost to the USA in their first game, come bottom of the beer index; their fans must shell out 60 per cent more for a beer than they do back home.

Lee Quane, ECA International's regional director for Asia, has warned against being lost in the thrill of football, as bars worldwide may jack up prices for beers at any moment. He suggested that fans stay away from international brands and instead go for a pint of locally brewed beer.

"Even if travelling supporters are unlucky enough to find themselves paying over the odds in Brazil, they can take solace in the fact that the Brazilian real has depreciated significantly over the year," Quane said. "Most fans will find that their money will go further now than it would have done in the four years since the previous World Cup in South Africa."