The price of being a gamer in South Africa

Console gaming in South Africa is moderately expensive when compared to most western countries, but significantly cheaper than in certain South American nations.

This is according to analysis from, which compared the prices of the latest gaming consoles and their accompanying subscription services in 20 countries.

Out of the countries analysed, South Africa ranked as the 6th most-expensive in which to buy a PlayStation 5, and the 5th most-expensive place to purchase an Xbox Series X.

However, the R12,000 local price tag for both consoles was a far cry from the R21,680 Ukrainians have to put down for a PlayStation 5, or the hefty R19,820 for the Xbox Series X in Argentina.

The South American country also has the 2nd most-expensive price for the PlayStation 5 – at R19,820.

Canadians get the best deal when it comes to console prices for both consoles – R7,540 for the PlayStation 5 and R7,180 for the Xbox Series X.

The graphic and table below show a comparison of the prices for the PlayStation 5 and Series X in the 20 countries which were assessed.

2020 console prices across the world – Cheapest to most expensive
PlayStation 5 Position Xbox Series X
Canada R7,540 1 Canada R7,180
Japan R8,280 2 Japan R8,280
United States R8,490 3 South Korea R8,390
Australia R8,500 4 Australia R8,500
Switzerland R8,610 5 United States R8,510
South Korea R8,810 6 Switzerland R8,630
Italy R9,260 7 Russia R9,270
France R9,280 8 France R9,280
Germany R9,280 9 Germany R9,280
United Kingdom R9,300 10 Italy R9,280
Russia R9,560 11 United Kingdom R9,300
Saudi Arabia R9,640 12 Saudi Arabia R9,640
India R10,580 13 India R10,580
Mexico R10,680 14 Mexico R10,680
South Africa R12,000 15 Ukraine R11,950
Brazil R13,410 16 South Africa R12,000
Turkey R16,220 17 Brazil R13,130
China R18,980 18 China R16,130
Argentina R19,820 19 Turkey R16,220
Ukraine R21,680 20 Argentina R19,820

Gaming subscriptions

When it comes to the console gaming subscription services – PlayStation Plus and Xbox Live Gold – South African gamers get a bit of a mixed bag.

The R750 annual price of PlayStation Plus in South Africa is the 10th most expensive in the world, and more than double that of the cheapest country – Turkey.

Xbox Live Gold – which is only available in three-month packages – works out to R1,000 per year in South Africa.

Although it is more expensive than PlayStation Plus, it is the third cheapest annual price for Xbox Live out of the 20 countries, bested only by Brazil and Turkey.

In the latter country, the pricing for PlayStation Plus and Xbox Live Gold convert to around R350 and R590, respectively.

While consoles in Switzerland are cheaper than in South Africa, gamers here get the short end of the stick in terms of subscriptions prices.

An annual PlayStation Plus sub in the country of the Alps will set you back R1,210, while Xbox Live Gold would have you coughing up R1,730.

The graphic and table below show the differences in PlayStation Plus and Xbox Live Gold in the 20 countries included in the comparison.

Gaming subscription prices across the world – Cheapest to most expensive
PlayStation 5 Position Xbox Series X
Turkey R350 1 Turkey R590
Brazil R430 2 Brazil R980
China R570 3 South Africa R1,000
Argentina R630 4 Russia R1,150
India R630 5 India R1,240
Mexico R630 6 Argentina R1,270
South Korea R630 7 Mexico R1,280
Russia R670 8 Japan R1,290
Ukraine R720 Ukraine R1,310
South Africa R750 10 Australia R1,360
Japan R770 11 China R1,380
Saudi Arabia R790 12 Canada R1,440
Canada R840 13 France R1,480
Australia R910 14 Germany R1,480
United States R1,020 15 Italy R1,480
United Kingdom R1,030 16 United Kingdom R1,490
France R1,110 17 Saudi Arabia R1,490
Germany R1,110 18 South Korea R1,620
Italy R1,110 19 United States R1,700
Switzerland R1,210 20 Switzerland R1,730

Combined pricing

Picodi combined the respective prices of a console in each of these countries with their localised multiplayer gaming subscriptions fees to create an overall picture of gaming costs in South Africa.

The total cost of a year of gaming on either of the new consoles worked out to be the cheapest in Canada at R8,380 for PlayStation gamers, and R8,620 for Xbox players.

Ukrainian would pay the most for gaming on the PlayStation 5 in a year – with a total cost of R22,400.

Gamers in Argentina paid the most for the Xbox Series X – R21,090 – and also have to cough up at least R20,450 per year to make

South Africa slotted in at around the middle of the pack, being more expensive than Western nations such as the UK, US, and Australia.

The map below shows how the costs of gaming compared between several prominent countries on each continent.

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The price of being a gamer in South Africa