If you live outside USA, own a Kindle (or consider buying it), you’ll probably be interested in this comparison.
I’ve listed prices and availability of 100 bestselling Kindle titles. For users of Kindle Store US (Amazon.com site) the prices are different, depending on the region and country they live in. So, if you buy from Europe, you’ll probably pay more for a book than a user in United States.
There are two major factors, which influence the prices:
- the price policy of publishers and authors
- the cost of VAT plus Amazon’s fees for international Kindle Store customers
Those two factors combined make it extremely difficult to find a general rule. As you’ll see in a table at the end of a post, prices differ significantly, depending on the title. What might seem obvious – that the prices are the lowest for US – is not true.
Four regions are included in the analysis:
3. Latin America & Caribbean
4. Asia & Pacific
The prices used are the ones visible for unregistered users.
Major highlights come first, more detailed information afterwards.
Europe is the most expensive region: on average the prices are higher by 18,66% than in US.
Approximately 85% of books are available in all regions.
Out of 100 top Kindle ebooks available in US, as much as 91 are sold in Europe, 86 in Latin America and 88 in Asia.
I expected to find much fewer books in non-US regions. When international version of Kindle was launched in October 2009, the official statement was saying about more than 200 thousand books available internationally – compared to more than 300 thousand for US.
However, if we limit the comparison to top 30 titles, the availability is not that high any more: only 23 are sold in Europe and Latin America, 24 – in Asia.
84 titles are available in all regions compared. Those titles are a base for price comparison.
The total price for all 84 books is:
- USA – $646.44
- Europe – $767.09
- Latin America – $670.81
- Asia – $654.83
The most expensive location is Europe. The prices are higher on average by 18.66%. Latin America is more expensive than US by 3.77%, Asia – only by 1.29%. Europe has also the biggest number of highest-priced books – 55.
The main reason for such significant difference between US and Europe is that several titles are priced specifically for Europe – with a much higher price tag. In some cases the price is almost twice as high, mentioning only Robocapypse (listed on #80) by Daniel H. Wilson. The book costs in US $12.99 and in Europe $20.60.
When the book’s prices differ by 3-4 dollars at most, it’s a result of adding VAT and a fee for Kindle Store’s non-US clients. This fee is not the same as the “international wireless delivery”.
Amazon’s international fee policy is hard to understand. In case of $0.99 books, like for instance Looking for Trouble by Erin Kern (#90), the same price is kept in Latin America and Asia, but in Europe it’s $1.40. Another $0.99 book, Fifth Avenue (#26) is $3.37 in Europe, but $2.99 in Latin America and Asia.
The international charges are making low price titles much less attractive outside USA – and European readers seem to suffer most.
The average price of a book for Europe is $9.13, compared to $7.70 for USA, $7.99 for Latin America and $7.80 for Asia. A difference in prices between USA and Europe is $1.43. It means that if you buy 100 books in Europe, you’ll lose the equivalent of a Kindle e-reader.
It’s worth highlighting that the prices in Latin America and Asia are, with few exceptions, exactly the same. It may mean that Amazon’s international fees are the same for those two regions.
Prices and availability of Kindle bestsellers – June 17th, 2011
# – current position at US Kindle Ebooks (13 places in Top 100 are occupied by games and other active content and are excluded from a list) , US – USA, EU – Europe, LA – Latin America, AS – Asia & Pacific
All prices in US dollars. A location with a highest price of a book is highlighted in bold typeface.
|2.||A Little Death In Dixie by Lisa Turner||9.39||-||-||-|
|3.||Cotillion by Georgette Heyer||7.99||11.67||10.67||10.67|
|4.||The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins||4.69||6.13||4.69||4.69|
|5.||Hybrid by Brian O’Grady||2.39||3.95||4.39||4.39|
|6.||The Help by Kathryn Stockett||9.99||9.67||10.96||10.96|
|7.||Summer Secrets by Barbara Freethy||4.99||5.62||5.99||5.99|
|8.||My Horizontal Life by Chelsea Handler||5.00||2.37||5.00||5.00|
|9.||Dating Mr. December by Phillipa Ashley||1.46||-||-||-|
|10.||Catching Fire (The Second Book of the Hunger Games) by Suzanne Collins||7.70||9.37||7.70||7.70|
|11.||Mockingjay (The Final Book of The Hunger Games) by Suzanne Collins||7.14||10.13||7.14||7.14|
|12.||Solitary: A Novel by Travis Thrasher||7.99||9.01||9.99||9.99|
|13.||Ex-Boyfriend’s Handbook by Matt Dunn||9.68||-||-||-|
|14.||Lot’s Return to Sodom: A Liv Bergen Mystery by Sandra Brannan||7.99||11.26||9.99||0.00|
|15.||Buried Prey by John Sandford||12.99||16.73||11.99||11.99|
|16.||Winter Sea by Susanna Kearsley||7.99||-||-||-|
|17.||Outcast by Cheryl Brooks||4.61||6.31||4.61||4.61|
|18.||Blood of My Brother by James Lepore||3.03||3.76||3.03||3.03|
|19.||In the Garden of Beasts: Love, Terror, and an American Family in Hitler’s Berlin by Erik Larson||12.99||-||11.99||11.99|
|20.||In the Belly of Jonah: A Liv Bergen Mystery by Sandra Brannan||7.39||9.01||7.69||7.69|
|21.||Heaven is for Real: A Little Boy’s Astounding Story of His Trip to Heaven and Back by Todd Burpo, Sonja Burpo, Colton Burpo and Lynn Vincent||6.13||8.05||6.13||6.13|
|22.||Something Borrowed by Emily Giffin||7.99||7.20||-||-|
|23.||Seduced by the Wolf by Terry Spear||5.24||6.31||5.24||5.24|
|24.||10th Anniversary (Women’s Murder Club) by James Patterson and Maxine Paetro||12.99||-||-||11.99|
|25.||Dixie Divas by Virginia Brown||9.99||10.07||9.99||9.99|
|26.||Fifth Avenue by Christopher Smith, Constance Hunting and Kathlyn Tenga-Gonzalez||0.99||3.37||2.99||2.99|
|27.||A Game of Thrones: A Song of Ice and Fire: Book One by George R.R. Martin||8.99||7.75||9.19||9.19|
|28.||Bossypants by Tina Fey||12.99||-||-||-|
|29.||No Good Deed: Book One (The Mark Taylor Series) by M.P. McDonald||0.99||1.20||0.99||0.99|
|30.||The Sixth Man by David Baldacci||12.99||12.61||11.99||11.99|
|31.||The Paris Wife: A Novel by Paula McLain||12.99||19.49||11.99||11.99|
|32.||State of Wonder by Ann Patchett||12.99||14.88||11.99||11.99|
|33.||Something Blue by Emily Giffin||7.99||7.20||-||-|
|34.||Unbroken: A World War II Story of Survival, Resilience, and Redemption by Laura Hillenbrand||12.99||16.73||11.99||11.99|
|35.||A Season in Hell by Jack Higgins||9.99||-||-||-|
|36.||Allegra Biscotti Collection by Olivia Bennett||7.19||8.28||9.19||9.19|
|37.||The Lincoln Lawyer: A Novel by Michael Connelly||7.99||8.76||-||-|
|38.||Miranda’s Big Mistake by Jill Mansell||2.51||8.76||10.42||10.42|
|39.||The Spark: The 28-Day Breakthrough Plan for Losing Weight, Getting Fit, and Transforming Your Life by Chris Downie||9.58||15.29||9.58||9.58|
|40.||The Jefferson Key: A Novel by Steve Berry||12.99||15.44||11.99||11.99|
|41.||Bound By The Heart by Marsha Canham||1.99||3.37||3.99||0.00|
|42.||Water for Elephants: A Novel by Sara Gruen||4.17||8.76||-||-|
|43.||The Deadliest Sin by Caroline Richards||8.09||10.30||8.09||8.09|
|44.||The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet’s Nest by Stieg Larsson and Reg Keeland||12.99||9.73||11.99||11.99|
|45.||Dead Reckoning: A Sookie Stackhouse Novel by Charlaine Harris||12.99||15.44||11.99||11.99|
|46.||A Clash of Kings: A Song of Ice and Fire: Book Two by George R.R. Martin||8.99||7.49||9.19||9.19|
|48.||Stingray Bit My Nipple!: True Stories from Real Travelers by Erik Torkells||7.99||11.96||9.99||9.99|
|49.||The Fifth Witness by Michael Connelly||12.99||17.54||11.99||-|
|50.||A Turn in the Road by Debbie Macomber||8.37||10.23||8.37||8.37|
|51.||The Dogs of Rome by Conor Fitzgerald||9.79||15.37||-||10.32|
|52.||Faking It by Elisa Lorello||2.99||4.38||4.39||4.39|
|53.||My Mother’s Lover (Kindle Single) (The Atavist) by David Dobbs||1.99||2.28||3.99||1.99|
|54.||Darkness on the Edge of Town (Laura Cardinal Series, Book One) by J. Carson Black||0.99||1.45||2.99||2.99|
|55.||Dreams of Joy by Lisa See||12.99||16.73||11.99||11.99|
|56.||The Snowman by Jo Nesbo and Don Bartlett||12.99||10.38||11.99||11.99|
|57.||The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo by Stieg Larsson and Reg Keeland||9.99||9.54||9.59||9.59|
|58.||Against All Enemies by Tom Clancy and Peter Telep||14.99||13.13||15.85||15.85|
|59.||Smokin’ Seventeen: A Stephanie Plum Novel by Janet Evanovich||13.99||16.74||11.99||11.99|
|60.||The Girl with the Long Green Heart by Lawrence Block||6.64||6.80||6.64||6.64|
|61.||The Belly Fat Cure by Jorge Cruise and David Katz||9.18||7.30||9.18||9.18|
|63.||The BITCH-PROOF SUIT (Romantic Comedy) by De-ann Black||0.99||1.42||0.99||0.99|
|64.||A Storm of Swords: A Song of Ice and Fire: Book Three by George R.R. Martin||8.99||8.28||9.19||9.19|
|65.||The Shop by J. Carson Black||2.99||3.44||4.99||4.99|
|66.||Love Drunk Cowboy by Carolyn Brown||6.39||7.20||6.39||6.39|
|67.||The Girl Who Played with Fire by Stieg Larsson and Reg Keeland||9.99||9.73||9.59||9.59|
|68.||A Tailor-Made Bride by Karen Witemeyer||8.54||10.40||8.54||8.54|
|69.||Death By The Glass by Gordon||7.69||9.21||7.69||7.69|
|70.||Her Perfect Revenge (a romantic comedy novel about getting even with a bad boy!) by Anna Mara||0.99||1.40||2.29||2.29|
|71.||Grand Sophy by Georgette Heyer||7.99||11.72||-||10.67|
|72.||I’ll Walk Alone by Mary Higgins Clark||12.99||19.31||11.99||11.99|
|73.||The Voyage of Promise (Grace in Africa) by Kay Marshall Strom||9.99||13.80||11.99||11.99|
|74.||Rock Hard by Olivia Cunning||7.19||1.18||7.19||7.19|
|75.||The Devil’s Hour (Laura Cardinal Series, Book Three) by J. Carson Black||3.97||4.58||5.97||5.97|
|77.||The Dead Saint (Bishop Lynn Peterson) by Marilyn Brown Oden||9.99||13.80||11.99||11.99|
|78.||Caleb’s Crossing: A Novel by Geraldine Brooks||12.99||15.44||11.99||11.99|
|80.||Robopocalypse: A Novel by Daniel H. Wilson||12.99||20.60||11.99||11.99|
|82.||Marked: a Northern Shifters novel by Joely Skye||3.44||4.15||3.44||3.44|
|83.||Fire Dance by Delle Jacobs||0.99||1.20||0.99||0.99|
|86.||Quiet Strength by Tony Dungy, Nathan Whitaker and Denzel Washington||8.33||11.72||8.33||8.33|
|90.||Looking For Trouble by Erin Kern||0.99||1.40||0.99||0.99|
|91.||Heart of the Witch by Alicia Dean||2.68||6.31||2.68||2.68|
|93.||Forever Queen by Helen Hollick||9.99||-||-||-|
|94.||No Time Left (Kindle Single) by David Baldacci||0.99||1.72||3.10||3.10|
|95.||Cutting for Stone by Abraham Verghese||9.99||11.99||10.23||10.23|
|97.||Brain Rules: 12 Principles for Surviving and Thriving at Work, Home, and School by John Medina||8.10||12.11||8.10||8.10|
|98.||Before I Go To Sleep: A Novel by S. J. Watson||12.99||15.44||11.99||11.99|
|99.||Beach Lane (Chesapeake Shores Novel) by Sherryl Woods||5.38||6.37||5.38||5.38|
|100.||Vegas Moon (A Donovan Creed Novel) by John Locke||0.99||1.40||0.99||0.99|
|101.||Self-Reliance by Ralph Waldo Emerson||7.99||1.41||2.99||2.99|
|102.||A Knight to Remember (Blood Sword Legacy) by Karin Tabke||0.99||1.42||2.99||2.99|
|103.||George R. R. Martin’s A Game of Thrones 4-Book Bundle: A Song of Ice and Fire Series: A Game of Thrones, A Clash of Kings, A Storm of Swords, and A Feast for Crows by George R.R. Martin||29.99||25.77||19.79||19.79|
|104.||Hit List by Laurell K. Hamilton||12.99||15.44||14.99||14.99|
|105.||Island of the Swans by Ciji Ware||7.99||9.01||7.99||7.99|
|106.||A Dance with Dragons: A Song of Ice and Fire: Book Five by George R.R. Martin||14.99||20.60||11.99||11.99|
|107.||Murder on the Rocks (Gray Whale Inn Mysteries, No. 1) by Karen MacInerney||8.58||12.58||8.58||8.58|
|108.||When You Went Away by Michael Baron||3.82||4.59||3.82||3.82|
|109.||The Byzantine Empire: A Brief History by Charles River Editors||3.99||4.61||5.99||5.99|
|110.||Western Civilization: A Brief History by Charles River Editors||3.99||4.61||5.99||5.99|
|111.||The Enlightenment: A Brief History by Charles River Editors||3.99||4.61||5.99||5.99|
|112.||The Middle East in the 20th Century: A Brief History by Charles River Editors||3.99||4.61||5.99||5.99|
|113.||Carte Blanche by Jeffery Deaver||12.99||23.76||14.99||14.99|