When Kate Middleton went into labor, she and HRH Prince William rushed to the Lindo Wing at London’s St. Mary’s Hospital, a private maternity ward that is the top pick for London’s royals. According to a woman who gave birth there, it’s akin to “a five-star hotel,” albeit a five-star hotel filled with miserable women forcing other humans out of their bodies. The rooms come with “spacious ensuite bathrooms, lavish menus–including a wine and champagne list–and celebratory post-labour afternoon tea” plus top-notch medical care and low maternal and infant mortality rates, all for the price of £10,000, or $13,987.
While that is a jaw-dropping sum, as The Economist recently pointed out, that figure is actually less than what women in the U.S. typically pay to give birth in regular old hospitals, which offer no celebratory tea or champagne and have higher infant and maternal mortality rates. (Citing studies, the magazine pegged the average delivery cost at $10,808, plus another $3,000 in out-of-pocket healthcare costs before and after pregnancy.) Check out the chart that The Economist put together showing that the U.S. reigns supreme—at least when it comes to paying for births.