10 Cheapest Countries to Buy Gold in 2024

Cheapest countries to buy gold cover

There are many reasons to invest in gold, not least of which is that it is a sound investment in a volatile market. Investing in gold has long been considered a secure financial strategy due to its enduring value and the stability it can offer in tumultuous economic times. While the precious metal is available in almost every country, prices can vary significantly from one country to another.

There are several factors contributing to lower costs including minimal mining expenses, favorable exchange rates, and lower demand relative to supply. The market for gold in each country can change due to local issues such as social unrest. This has prompted savvy investors to look towards the international market for more cost-effective gold investment opportunities.

If you are weighing the options, wondering where to cost-effectively buy gold, we’ve developed this comprehensive guide. It dives into the current cheapest countries to buy gold, and why each one is worth considering.

If you are in the market for gold, then researching overseas options is often a good idea. Not only will you potentially save money, but you may find that it is easier to buy and trade gold abroad as well. Among the varied destinations for purchasing gold, there are ten countries where investors might find the lowest prices for this precious commodity. These nations typically have active gold markets with less markup from the dealers, often related to the country’s position in the gold supply chain.

Whether through some of the largest gold markets in the world or direct from mines, countries like the United Arab Emirates, Turkey, and Thailand often present investors with the chance to acquire gold at prices closer to the global spot price. Depending on the amount of gold you are looking to buy, you can end up saving a lot of money by shopping around.

Even though buying and selling gold is generally considered a safe investment, there is potential for fraud. Gold scams are very common worldwide. It is therefore essential for potential buyers to conduct thorough due diligence when exploring gold purchases in these cost-effective countries. Understanding the local regulations, taxes, and the authenticity of the gold is crucial to ensure a sound investment. You do not want to end up with gold bars that aren’t gold, or paper investments that aren’t backed up with real gold either.

Additionally, considering transportation and insurance costs when exporting gold can impact the overall savings. Therefore, while the upfront sticker price may be enticing, investors must account for the full scope of expenses associated with international gold acquisition. Buying gold electronically and owning it virtually means that you won’t have the potential for transportation or insurance costs.

Ranked: The Cheapest Countries to Buy Gold in 2024

Much like other commodities, the price of gold will change from time to time. The price of gold can vary significantly across different countries due to factors such as taxes, demand, and mining production. Some of the following countries are considered a great place to start when it comes to doing your research. Investors and buyers looking for affordable gold might consider these countries known for comparatively lower costs and safer transactions.

United States

In the United States, gold prices are influenced by its status as a global financial market. Buyers can benefit from transparent pricing and a wide array of gold investment options. Whether you are looking to buy physical gold that you take possession of or you want to trade in the ETF market, there are a lot of options for you.

United Arab Emirates

Particularly in Dubai, the gold market is renowned for low premiums. The zero-tax policy on gold purchases makes the United Arab Emirates a favorable destination for buying gold. This is a considerably more affordable option for most, but there are added issues when it comes to transportation and taxes.


Switzerland is recognized for its high-quality gold and low margin over spot price. As a prominent gold-refining hub, it offers competitively priced gold to consumers. This country has very flexible banking rules and regulations so it is beneficial for those who would like to keep their gold investments abroad.

Hong Kong

Hong Kong is a free port that does not impose a tax on gold, leading to lower prices. The highly competitive market ensures good deals for gold buyers. However, in Hong Kong, as in some other countries, there is always the potential for fraud – so you must be careful before making any investment.


Mexico, one of the largest producers of gold in Latin America, has a flourishing market for gold with lower costs due to its local production and reduced import fees. When it comes to gold jewelry, coins, and bullion, this is a thriving market.


Gold in Peru is relatively cheaper because of the country’s substantial gold mining industry, which contributes to the local market’s low premiums. For these reasons, a trip to Peru can end up saving you a lot of money on your purchase.


As one of the world’s major gold consumers and producers, China offers gold at lower prices, especially for those buying in bulk. While you may save money on your purchase, you could end up incurring costs in terms of taxation and fees at the border.


The vast natural resources and domestic production of gold in Russia allow for smaller markups on gold purchases compared to global averages. Of course, now is not the time for most people to enter Russia due to the current political situation.


Indonesia is known to offer gold at competitive prices thanks to its rich mining industry, which continues to expand the availability of gold in the Asian markets. This is another market that is ideal for those seeking to purchase physical gold.

South Africa

South Africa has long been known as the center of the gold market, with its deep history in gold mining. It provides ample opportunity to purchase gold at competitive prices, with minimized transportation and importation costs.

What Determines the Price of Gold in Different Countries

Gold prices are very fluid and, at times, volatile. The price of gold is influenced by a variety of factors, including local taxes, exchange rates, and market regulations. These elements contribute uniquely to the final cost of gold in each country. Gold prices can be influenced by local and international issues such as wars and terrorism, natural disasters, strikes, weather, and more.

Taxes and Premiums

In many countries, taxes and premiums significantly affect the price of gold. In other words, the price per ounce that you see listed is not going to be your final price. For example, in India, the government imposes a Goods and Services Tax (GST) on gold purchases, increasing the final price for consumers. Conversely, some countries offer lower tax rates to incentivize gold trading, affecting the premiums. The United Arab Emirates, known for its gold markets, levies minimal taxes on gold, making it a cheaper market for those wishing to buy gold and take it home.

Exchange Rates and Inflation

Exchange rates and inflation play a pivotal role in gold pricing. Much like gold prices, prices can change greatly, even on a daily basis. Fluctuating exchange rates can increase the cost of gold in countries with weaker currencies relative to gold trading currencies like the US dollar. For instance, if the United States sees a stronger dollar, gold may become more expensive in other countries using weaker currencies. Additionally, gold is often seen as a hedge against inflation. In countries like China, where inflation rates are managed meticulously, gold prices can be more stable but you will still be dealing with an exchange rate issue when importing your gold.

Regulations and Market Dynamics

Even though you can theoretically purchase gold in a variety of countries does not mean that it is legal for you to import it. There are currently a number of countries from which gold importation is illegal for American citizens.

In addition, gold prices are shaped by regulations and market dynamics. Restrictions on gold imports or exports, investment-grade specifications, and local gold market conditions all impact gold’s affordability. Supply and demand forces are critical, with countries like China and India having massive consumer markets that drive global gold prices. Market dynamics in these countries can push prices lower when demand is high and supply is sufficient and this can certainly work in your favor.

Understanding Gold as an Investment

For most of us, when we think of great wealth, we think of gold. Investing in gold entails recognizing its role as a precious metal that serves as both a wealth store and a potential hedge against economic uncertainties. Here is an overview of the intrinsic value gold holds in the investment landscape and how it can help you widen your investment portfolio, making it potentially more secure.

Benefits of Investing in Gold

The most common reason for buying gold is that it has the ability to maintain its worth over time. In comparison, American dollars that were put away a century ago would have only a fraction of the value that they had when they were purchased.

Gold has been historically sought after for its ability to preserve value over time. Investors often consider gold a safe haven and insurance against inflation. As gold is a tangible asset, it provides a sense of peace of mind that more abstract investments may lack. Key benefits of owning gold include the following:

  • Wealth Preservation: Retains value and purchasing power over the long term.
  • Hedge Against Inflation: Often maintains or increases in value when currency values decline. When the stock market goes down, your gold will go up.
  • Diversification: Adds a non-correlated asset to investment portfolios, which can reduce risk. By diversifying your investment portfolio to include gold, you will be less at risk of loss should the markets go down.

Factors Affecting Gold Prices

Gold prices change on a daily basis, all around the world. The gold price is subject to a variety of factors, most notably supply and demand dynamics. Other factors influencing gold prices include:

  • Central Bank Policies: Purchases or sales by central banks can materially impact supply and increase or decrease prices.
  • Economic Indicators: Inflation, currency strength, and interest rates can affect investment demand for gold.
  • Geopolitical Events: Political and economic instability can increase gold’s appeal as a safe-haven asset. Wars and political upsets can increase the value of gold very quickly.
  • Mining Supply: Changes in production costs and mining output can influence gold’s scarcity and its price, though these changes tend to be much slower than geopolitical events.

Physical Gold vs. Gold Equities

There are generally two ways to invest in gold and many people choose to own their gold in both ways. Investors can choose between physical gold and gold equities. Each method of ownership carries its own specific considerations:

  • Physical Gold:
    • Investment-grade Bullion: Offers direct exposure to gold prices and involves holding coins or bars. Obviously, this is a great way to own gold if you really enjoy the actual look and feel of having it around.
    • Storage and Insurance: Requires secure storage and possibly insurance, which can incur additional costs. There are various ways that gold can be stored for safety, including your own safe deposit box, or with companies that specialize in this service.
  • Gold Equities:
    • Stocks and Funds: Represents shares in gold mining companies or gold-focused investment funds. These types of market implements tend to be ETFs which can diversify you within the gold market itself.
    • Performance Factors: Influenced by company performance, management decisions, and gold market trends, not just the price of gold.

Investing in gold equities provides leverage to gold price movements but also introduces risks associated with individual company performance. It is less tied to the inherent value of gold, and more to the movements within the stock market.

Buying and Storing Gold Internationally

When it comes to acquiring and safeguarding gold in a global context, individuals must understand the intricacies of offshore storage and carefully select credible sellers. There is a real possibility for fraud and scams, so be sure to fully research any storage opportunities, especially overseas.

Understanding Offshore Gold Storage

There are many benefits to storing gold overseas, especially for high-wealth individuals. Investors often seek offshore gold storage for enhanced safety and stability. Opting for a storage facility outside one’s home country can serve as a form of financial protection against domestic economic fluctuations. Certified gold in the form of bullion bars, gold coins, or gold jewelry can be stored safely in these facilities. It is vital to ensure that the storage location has a strong insurance policy to safeguard against any potential loss or theft.

  • Safety Features to Consider:
    • 24/7 security monitoring that can be verified.
    • Access control systems so that not just anyone can enter
    • Fire and flood protection of the facilities
  • Insurance Aspects:
    • All-risk insurance coverage for your investments
    • Replacement value insurance
    • Inventory and audit checks that are provided to you regularly

Choosing Reputable Sellers and Dealers

When purchasing physical gold locally, ensuring that you are getting the “real thing” is vital. Purchasing gold from reputable online precious metals firms, local coin shops, or directly from government mints is paramount to ensure legitimacy and quality. It is advisable to invest in gold bullion, gold bars, and popular coins like Austrian Philharmonics, Canadian Maple Leafs, Mexican Gold Libertads, Chinese Gold Pandas, Russian Gold Rubles, and South African Krugerrands, all of which are highly recognized and easier to sell if needed. Verify that the dealer offers certified gold to guarantee purity and authenticity. These are all actual coins that are minted in each country and have both intrinsic and extrinsic value to those who trade in them.

  • Criteria for Selecting Sellers and Dealers:
    • Accreditation by industry bodies
    • Positive customer reviews and testimonials
    • Transparent pricing and purchase processes

Before making any physical gold purchase, do your research and make sure that the companies you are working with have been around for a while and are well-respected in the industry.

Practical Tips for Purchasing Gold

When purchasing gold, it’s vital to consider both the quality and authenticity of the product. Investment-grade gold bullion should be 100% pure gold, typically 24 karats. Buyers should ensure verifiable documentation accompanies every purchase to confirm authenticity. Lesser-grade gold will not be nearly as valuable.

For those seeking the cheapest place to buy gold, researching various countries is recommended. Some countries offer gold at a low premium above the spot price, making them the best countries to buy gold. It’s essential to also factor in customs fees when importing from these locations, as this can affect the overall value. These fees will depend not only on the country of origin but also on the amount that you are importing.

While gold coins may be out of reach for some individuals, silver coins are a legitimate alternative. They represent an alternative option with a lower entry cost. Like gold, purchasing silver should also focus on quality and authenticity.

Here are some practical steps to consider when buying precious metals:

  • Compare Prices: Shop around and compare prices from reputable dealers like Apmex or BullionStar to get the best price.
  • Online Purchases: If buying gold online, verify the dealer’s credibility, and consider any shipping costs and insurance. Take the time to read the reviews and make sure the company is legitimate.
  • Consider Economics: Be aware of global economic factors like money printing and government spending which can affect gold and silver prices.
  • Understand Risks: Recognize the risks associated with gold investing, including instability in certain regions that may affect market prices. You should be prepared to hold gold for the long term to maximize your profits.
  • Physical vs. Paper Gold: Decide if owning physical gold or paper gold (gold certificates, ETFs) suits your investment strategy. In some cases, a combination of the two might be beneficial to diversify your portfolio.

Purchasing gold can act as a store of value amidst economic fluctuations. Make informed decisions and due diligence a priority during the purchasing process. Buying and owning physical gold can actually be an enjoyable pastime in addition to a profitable investment option.


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