An Amateur Cost of Living Analysis: Upstate Versus Down

  |  February 19, 2013
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This weekend, we found ourselves paying $6 for a bag of chips in a certain shmancy Columbia County market (we will not name names). Now, before you assault us for squandering our kid’s college fund on fried tubors, we must admit that there were several factors behind the purchase: extreme hunger, extreme dietary restrictions (they were sweet potato chips!) and an extremely badly behaved three-year-old. Also, we were kind of in the middle of nowhere, and this shop was our one chance for non-junky nourishment.

But this gave us something besides the chips to chew on. We always think that upstate is much cheaper than down, and of course that’s the case with real estate — you can get a beautiful house for the price on a studio in New York City. Movies are cheaper, and so are plays; most culture is more affordable up here. But what about food? Specifically, what about the shmancy chips and 72% cacao chocolate that spoiled, obnoxious New Yorkers (we’re writing about ourselves here) are accustomed to finding on every corner. Are there some things that cost more because you have to find them in rural America? Or are we just being silly and should stop eating fancy chips?

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