Off-Season in Batumi and Kutaisi?

Off-Season in Batumi and Kutaisi?

The FINANCIAL -- In April 2017, the average cost of cooking one standard Imeretian khachapuri decreased to 3.32 GEL, which is 2.5% lower month-on-month (m/m, that is, compared to March 2017), but 4.9% higher year-on-year (y/y, compared to April 2016).

The monthly decline in the price of khachapuri is driven by the seasonal adjustment in the price of milk and cheese. The price of cheese (6.93 GEL) has declined by -5.2% compared to the previous month (March). The prices of other khachapuri ingredients were more stable and changes were very small.   

The price of khachapuri has dropped in all four cities. The biggest monthly decline (-4.9%) was observed in Batumi, followed by Telavi (-2.4%), and then Kutaisi (-2.1%). The smallest monthly decline in price was observed in Tbilisi (-0.8%). 

Tbilisi appears to be the most expensive city in terms of khachapuri (3.45 GEL in April 2017). It is followed by Telavi, with a khachapuri price of 3.40 GEL. Prices in Batumi and Kutaisi are below the average; they stood at 3.28 GEL and 3.15 GEL, respectively.  

It is no surprise that khachapuri prices are cheapest in Kutaisi and Batumi at this time of year. A similar trend has been observed almost every year since the Khachapuri Index started. One explanation could be that in the off-season, tourists mostly visit Tbilisi and the Kakheti region, and this leads to higher prices there, while demand and prices are lower in Kutaisi and Batumi.