The Cost of Living in Portugal

These days, international travel or living is feeling like more and more of an attractive option. The world’s transition to remote workplaces means that people have more freedom than ever when it comes to deciding where to live, work, and vacation, and for people who are ready to explore and experience more of the world, moving abroad is a great way to pursue the quest for adventure! One of the world’s nicest up and coming expatriate locations for people to move to is Portugal. Today’s blog is all about the Cost of Living in Portugal.

Welcome to Portugal!

Portugal is a beautiful coastal country situated right on the Iberian Peninsula. The Atlantic Coast provides Portugal with plenty of access to the sea as well as a long-standing cultural history of transport and seafood. Despite being a tropical paradise, Portugal offers one of the lowest costs of living in Western Europe. Everything in Portugal is more affordable, ranging from the cost of food to the cost of your accommodations. It’s easy to tailor your new lifestyle to your budget or to your overall preferences, and it’s also easy to afford additional resources to support your transition into Portuguese life. If you’re looking for a new international place to call home, Portugal might just be the place for you, but how much will this new home cost you?

What is the Cost of Living in Portugal?

Many people find that they can live comfortably in Portugal for between 800-1600 euro per month. Those fees can encompass everything from rent to food to utilities and can expand or shrink as needed depending on your specific financial situation. You can also comfortably spend a bit more on luxury experiences like yachting, drinking, golf, and more, personalizing your Portugese living experience to your own needs.

Cost of Rent in Portugal

Rent is one of the most expensive parts of a monthly budget, but in Portugal rent can actually be fairly affordable. In the center of Portugal, Lisbon is probably the most expensive place to rent. Expect your rent in Lisbon to start at about 530 euro a month for an apartment that’s just a half an hour walk away from the central tourist locations or neighborhoods within Lisbon (expect to pay closer to 800 euro a month for an apartment here). The further away you get from the city center, the less your apartment will cost; rent in the countryside can be as low as 295 euro a month. Purchasing real estate is also fairly inexpensive, with between 80,000 to 120,000 euro as an average price for purchasing your apartment property.

Cost of Food in Portugal

The price of food in Portugal is also extremely affordable. Thriving traditional and community food markets are standards in Portugese culture, so it’s easy to have access to affordable and traditional foods and produce. You could easily eat for approximately 80 euro a month as a single person, including locally produced wines and other delicacies. You can also easily add in eating out to your meal plans. Portugal restaurants usually offer an affordable lunch special and a dinner special for between 8 to 15 euro a person, meaning you can treat yourself to full sit down service without having to pay a fortune for it. These prices only get cheaper the further away from the center of Lisbon you travel. With affordable prices at both local markets and sit down restaurants, you have plenty of options to keep your food full of variety without having to worry about spending too much money on it.

Cost of Drinking in Portugal

Drinking with friends is also an affordable and exciting hobby for Portugese visitors or expats. Portugal has a thriving restaurant and bar scene with plenty of live music, rich food, and exciting cultural offerings that combine the tropical atmosphere of Portugal with excitement and colorful experiences. In many cities you can enjoy a drink or beer with friends for between 2-4 euros a piece, and in Tomar, you can even get a beer for just one euro! Enjoy life on the town in Portugal at an extremely affordable price.

Public Transport

One of the biggest concerns for many people when they move to a foreign country is being able to manage transportation or other navigation from place to place. In Portugal, there’s a healthy system of public transportation available to you for an extremely affordable price. You can use the public metro in Lisbon to travel from place to place with ease. The cost of a Metro ticket in Lisbon is €1.50.

There are also long distance trains that criss cross the majority of Portugal and make it easy and convenient to visit anywhere or get to workplaces with ease. You can also hop on local buses to journey across town and get to the places you need to go without fuss or traffic delay for an affordable daily price that’s less than buying a car or other transport system.

Remember to Learn some Portuguese if you can!

If you’re worried about fully integrating into your new Portugese life, don’t worry- you can also consider taking Portugese lessons! Many universities or other local areas teach introductory Portugese or long-term Portugese language lessons for affordable prices. Some universities offer intensive study (up to 18 hours a week) for a steeper tuition fee, but you can also vary the hours of study and the price you pay depending on your budget. If neither of those sound attractive to you, you can download language learning apps like Duolingo or Rosetta Stone to practice learning.

Overall Cost of Living in Portugal

For a single person, living in Portugal can be a freeing experience that’s also economic and budget friendly. Use the following figures to guide your own budget design for a stay in Lisbon:

  • Rent – 900 euro
  • Utilities – 100 euro
  • Groceries – 150 euro
  • Entertainment – 150 euro
  • Health Insurance – 50 euro
  • Transportation – 150 euro
  • Incidentals – 100 euro

Total: 1600 euro per month per person

If you are interested in moving to Portugal you might like to see this relocating to Portugal checklist.

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