How Much Does It Cost to Live Comfortably in the Philippines?

Living in the Philippines is an attractive and affordable option for those seeking to relocate. 

With a lower cost of living than most countries and a tropical climate, it is a great destination to consider when moving. 

The question, however, is how much does it cost to live comfortably in the Philippines? 

In this blog post, I will provide an overview of the cost of living in the Philippines and offer tips on budgeting to ensure a comfortable lifestyle. 

Living comfortably in the Philippines is easy if you know what to expect and plan accordingly. 

With careful budgeting, you can ensure you can have a lavish lifestyle and save for the future. 

Knowing what to expect in terms of costs, such as rent, food, transportation, and utilities, will help you determine the amount of money you need to live in the Philippines. 

Average Cost of Living in the Philippines

Average Cost of Living in the Philippines
ExpenseAverage Cost
Rent (apartment in a major city)$1,000 per month
Rent (apartment outside a major city)$200 – $320 per month
House/condo (major city)$50,000 – $100,000
House/condo (outside a major city)$50,000 or less
Food (daily)$12
Transportation (monthly pass)$10
Water and electricity billsVaries
The average cost for a family of four$2,727 per month
The average cost for a single person$1,326 per month

Back in the day, when I was still living in the Philippines, my husband and I used to joke about how we’d have to win the lottery if we ever wanted to retire comfortably. We weren’t far off from the truth.

According to numbeo.com, an online database of user-contributed data about cities and countries worldwide, the average monthly cost for a family of four in the Philippines is Php137,838. That’s equivalent to $2,727.

For a single person, the estimated monthly fees are Php67,127 or $1,326.

In comparison, the world average cost of living is $587. 

This means that the Philippines is more expensive than places like India, China, and Morocco but less expensive than France and Japan.

Of course, these numbers can vary greatly depending on your lifestyle and where you choose to live.

For example, if you live in a rural area, your cost of living will be much lower than in a major metropolitan city like Manila.

Breakdown of Food Costs

If you’re curious about how much it costs to live comfortably in the Philippines, fret not. I’ve got you covered.

For a family of four, the estimated monthly costs would be Php137,838. This includes expenses such as rent, transportation, water and electricity bills, and food. Of course, this amount can change depending on your lifestyle and needs.

As for the cost of food, it averages out to 605 pesos (12 dollars) per day. This amount will give you a good idea of what to expect when dining out or buying food from the grocery store.

Just remember that these prices can vary depending on the city you’re in.

In general, the cost of living in the Philippines is relatively low. This is partly due to the low cost of food and necessities. So, if you’re looking to save money, this is the place to do it.

Cost of Housing in the Philippines

Cost of Housing in the Philippines

Renting an apartment in the Philippines is expensive, especially in larger cities. I’ve seen apartments in Manila for as much as USD 1,000 per month. But if you’re willing to live outside the city center, you can find something more affordable.

I’m currently paying USD 320 per month for an 85m2 furnished apartment here in Cebu City. And that’s considered expensive here.

You can find apartments for as little as USD 200 per month in smaller towns and villages. But keep in mind your cost of living will go up if you want to have an ex-pat lifestyle with all the amenities you’re used to.

If you want to buy a house or condo in the Philippines, you can find something for as little as USD 50,000.

But again, it depends on the location. You’ll pay more in a significant city like Manila or Cebu.

In Cebu City, a decent condo will start at around USD 100,000. But if you’re willing to live in a smaller town or city, you can find something much cheaper.

So, how much does it cost to live comfortably in the Philippines? It depends on your lifestyle and where you want to live. But in general, you can expect to pay around USD 500 1,000 per month to live a comfortable life in the Philippines.

Cost of Transportation in the Philippines

Cost of Transportation in the Philippines

The cost of transportation in the Philippines is very reasonable. For those looking to get around by public transport, a monthly pass will only set you back around $9.

If you are hoping to travel by private transport, the cost will be higher. However, it is still possible to find reasonable rates. For example, a one-way ticket from Manila to Cebu City can be found for as little as $16.

Of course, the cost of living in the Philippines is not all about transportation. There are other factors to consider as well. For instance, food and accommodation will also affect your overall monthly expenses.

All in all, the cost of living in the Philippines is very reasonable. With careful planning, finding comfortable rates for your budget is possible.

Cost of Healthcare and Insurance in the Philippines

Regarding health insurance, you have a few options in the Philippines. For example, you could go with PhilHealth, a government-run health insurance program. The cost for ex-pats ranges from ₱2,400 – ₱3,600 a year.

Or you could go with a private company like Insular Life. They offer P500,000 life coverage and P100,000 medical coverage for P11,750 a year.

Philippine health insurance starts from Php1,400 to Php60,000 annually, depending on the kind of insurance you want and the company you choose.

For those who want to get health insurance from a government-run institution, there is PhilHealth. It is an affordable option as the rates start from Php2,400 to Php3,600 per year.

If you want to get health insurance from a private company, Insular Life is one of the most popular choices.

They offer an annual insurance plan that costs Php11,750 and gives you P500,000 life and P100,000 medical coverage. When it comes to the cost of healthcare, the Philippines is very affordable.

For example, a visit to the doctor for a consultation will only cost you around Php200. And if you need to go to the hospital for something like a tonsillectomy, it will only cost you around Php 10,000.

Miscellaneous Expenses to Consider Living in the Philippines

Miscellaneous Expenses to Consider Living in the Philippines

You’ll need to factor in a few other things when budgeting your cost of living in the Philippines.

For example, you’ll need to pay for your visa, which costs $50 for a tourist visa and $60 for a business visa. You’ll also need a residence permit, which costs $200.

If you’re planning on staying in the Philippines for an extended period, you’ll need to get a health insurance policy. A good policy will cost you around $100 per month.

You’ll need to factor in the cost of transportation.

If you’re planning on using public transportation, it’s very affordable. 

A one-way ticket on the bus costs around $0.15.

If you’re planning on renting a scooter or motorcycle, you can pay around $50 per month for gas.

So, how much does it cost to live comfortably in the Philippines?

If you’re on a tight budget, you can live comfortably on around $600 per month. You can live comfortably on around $1,000 per month if you have more to spend.

Is it expensive to live in the Philippines?

It’s relatively inexpensive to live in the Philippines. 

The average cost of living in the Philippines is 52.40% lower than in the US, and rent is 78.88% lower than in the US.

What does that mean for your monthly budget? For two people, the average monthly budget in the Philippines is $1,000.

That includes food ($288), housing ($386), transportation ($48), health care ($42), utilities ($60), and other expenses ($79).

So as you can see, you can live comfortably in the Philippines on a budget of $1,000 per month.

Of course, if you want to live a more luxurious lifestyle, you can also do that; it might cost you a bit more money.

However, remember that the cost of living in the Philippines can vary depending on your city.

For example, if you live in Manila, the capital city, you can expect the cost of living to be higher than in a smaller city or town.

Conclusion

It’s not easy to estimate the cost of living in the Philippines because it varies so much from one place to the next.

However, as a general rule, you can expect to need at least 10,000 Philippine pesos (PHP) per month to cover your basic expenses. To live a comfortable life, you’ll need to budget much more than that.

Some things that will affect your monthly expenses include your lifestyle, the climate, and the cost of living in your area. Remember that prices can change quickly, so it’s always a good idea to update your budget regularly.

If you’re planning to move to the Philippines, it’s a good idea to research the cost of living in your chosen area. That way, you’ll know exactly what to expect and start putting together a budget that will allow you to live comfortably.

Website | + posts

As a lifelong traveler and founder of lovefortraveling.com, I, Alex Deidda, have always been driven by my passion for exploring new places and cultures.

Throughout the years, I have had the opportunity to live in various countries, each offering unique perspectives and experiences.

My love for traveling led me to create lovefortraveling.com, a website and blog dedicated to helping people plan their trips.