It's easy to think that the capital city of any country would be expensive. It is the home of the seat of power of the nation, after all. It makes sense that living costs there would be rather high. Paris is an expensive city. So is Rome. London is infamously expensive. While Washington D.C. ranks high among the costliest cities in the United States. However, then there's a city like Lisbon, the capital city of Portugal. Though it's not a cheap city by any means, you're right in thinking that you may afford to live here more than in other cities.
Costs of Renting in Lisbon
Compared to the likes of Washington D.C.
, renting in Lisbon is practically cheap. While those cities charge their renters thousands of bucks, it's possible to find a place in Lisbon, even a luxury apartment
, that'd actually cost less than a thousand per month. In fact, the common range of the monthly rental fee for a one-bedroom at the heart of the Portuguese capital is from €700.00 to €1,200.00. For a place in the outer districts, it'll only be from €500.00 to €800.00! What about a three-bedroom home? That will cost you around €800.00 to €2,000.00 a month!
Costs of Buying Property in Lisbon
Now, even though renting a place in Lisbon is affordable—or at least, more affordable than in other cities—that doesn't mean it's the same when it comes to actually buying property here. On the contrary, owning your home will always cost a lot of money, regardless of where you are in the world. Here in Lisbon, no matter which neighborhood in the city
you choose, it will inevitably cost you thousands or even millions of Euros to buy your own property. To be specific, it will commonly range from €1,600.00 to €6,500.00 per square meter! That's gonna be a lot of money!
Fortunately, when you do secure a home here, whether you bought it you're just renting, at least the utilities costs in Lisbon aren't so bad. For your basic monthly bills, they'll mostly total to around €80.00 to €185.00. That's less than €200.00! And it will already take into account your electricity, water, heating, garbage disposal, and more! Of course, if you're in a bigger home use more appliances than an average person, that'd cost would go way higher. As for your wifi connection, you can easily get a plan that will only cost €28.00 to €50.00 a month!
Not even food will cost you a lot here in Lisbon. When you go to a standard grocery, you can already get by with €50.00. Why? Because the total common median price is €46.61 for everything. This includes milk, a dozen eggs, fruits, vegetables, canned goods, different types of meat, and even some alcohol if you want. Though Lisbon does have its own upscale stores and deluxe supermarkets and whatnot, going there will cost you a lot more. But in a mid-rance store? You won't need to spend a lot to fill your fridge, pantry, and the like!
Even dining out isn't as bad as long as you stay economical about it. If you go for the upscale restaurants in the city, you'll likely have to spend hundreds or even thousands just for a single meal. However, you're lucky that not all of Lisbon's finest culinary hotspots are that swanky. But at the same time, they're a step above fast food places too! You can already get a delicious meal in a mid-range place that will only cost you around €6.00 to €12.00 tops! Up for a date with your partner? A three-course meal can just cost you €25.00 to €55.00! Not bad, right?
What of transportation? Is it expensive to get around Lisbon? The truth is it depends! You can always get a car here so you can drive to where you need to be. But just know that it will cost you €24,900.00 to €30,000.00 for one, regardless of its model. You can also rely on transportation apps
such as ride-hailing platforms to book yourself a ride, though this can get pricey too compared to just getting a cab off the street. As for other public transport systems
, the most expensive one-way ticket you can buy is €2.00. Double that for a round-trip and you'll only have to pay €4.00!
Lisbon is far from being a fashion capital of the world, most especially when you compare it to the likes of Paris, Milan, and London. So it makes sense that clothing here isn't all that expensive either! Though there are still some designer brands that have set up shop here, for the most part, you can get by with just a little over €100.00 for a shopping spree. If you shop at a high street store, for instance, most pieces will cost around €19.99 to €120.00 tops! As would a new pair of trainers from any of the world-famous sportswear brands. That'd only cost you about €45.00 to €90.00!
You'd think that things like working out and going to the movies would be too frivolous right? Well, perhaps in more expensive cities, they can be, but not here in Lisbon! On the contrary, going to the gym, for instance, as long as it's not that upscale, will only cost you €22.00 to €50.00 per month as a membership fee. You can exercise to your heart's content without breaking the bank! And when you want to watch a movie, you'll only have to pay around €6.75 to €8.00! Of course, if you add in the popcorn and drinks, it'll cost a tiny bit more!
Childcare and Education Costs
Argubaly the wisest investment you can make here in Lisbon is enrolling your kids in the best daycare centers and schools in the city. For the price of your child's safety and future, any price is right, right? Specifically speaking, enrolling your little one in a prominent daycare center would cost you €300.00 to €550.00 a month. And when they grow up, enrolling him/her in any of the finest international schools in the city
would cost you €5,400.00 to €13,000.00 a year! Not bad considering that your kid's future is on the line here!
Don't think that just because Lisbon is the capital city of Portugal that it's automatically one of the most expensive cities in the world. On the contrary, compared to other cities of its kind, the living costs are actually affordable!