Cost of Living in Italy



Many expats choose to start a new journey in Italy, prime European destination, because of its rich culture and luxurious vibe. But though there are a plethora of attractive things to look forward to, expats must first know how much it will cost them to enjoy la dolce vita or the sweet life.

Expats will be surprised that the cost of living in this country is not as expensive as everyone assumes whereas consumer prices are actually 1.65% higher in the United Kingdom. When relocating to Italy, try not to bring your entire household. Aside from the effort to pack everything up, shipping costs may prove to be high and most of what you need can be found locally. Another useful tip is to avoid tourist hot-spots where the cost of accommodation and daily needs are several bars higher. A comfortable life in Italy is still not cheap considering the large array of taxes. However, those who are willing to live outside Milan and Rome, cities that conjure sophistication and glamour, will find a huge difference in the cost of living.

Rental Costs

Rest assured that in Italy most apartments for rent are fully furnished, or at least endowed with a bed, a dresser, a refrigerator, and a washing machine. Expats find it hard to pass up the chance to score antiques and premium quality furniture in Italy, so most leave their furniture behind. When it comes to accommodation, even a humble abode in Rome is expensive. Rent in Italy all depends on location, and in the major cities such as Milan this means parting with more of your hard-earned money. Expats may choose to live in suburban areas in the medium-sized house and in rural areas where farmland, cottages and villas are aplenty.

  • One bedroom apartment (city centre) - € 565 per month
  • One bedroom apartment (outside the city centre) - € 430 per month
  • Three bedroom apartment (city centre) - € 1,000 per month
  • Three bedroom apartment (outside the city centre) - € 730 per month
  • Two bedroom unfurnished apartment in rural areas - € 650 to €1500 per month

Services such as hot water, garbage removal and communal lighting and maintenance are covered by the rental pay. However, it is the tenants’ responsibility to cover their monthly utilities. In Italy, an expat must budget at least € 150 for their water, electricity and gas. Expatriates should also expect to have additional charges of 10-20% in taxes (housing and insurance benefits) if they are staying in urban areas.

Average Cost of Food

Food is one of the highest expenditure of people in Italy which takes up to 32% of their monthly income. Expats in this country should expect that local products are pricey because of taxation but are still relatively affordable than imported products. The venerable Italian cuisines and recipes have made local herbs expensive even to its citizens from cheese to extra virgin olive oil, to pasta and pastries, canned tomatoes and Italian vinegar. However, shoppers can still save up a couple of euros if they opt to buy for fresh produce in the outdoor mercatos instead of going to the large air-conditioned supermarkets.

  • One litre of milk - € 1.20
  • A dozen eggs - € 2.50
  • A loaf of fresh white bread - € 1.50
  • One kilogramme of white rice - € 2.00
  • One kilogramme of locally produced cheese - € 11.50
  • One kilogramme of boneless chicken breasts - € 7.90
  • One kilogramme of beef round - € 15.01
  • One kilogramme of oranges - € 1.60
  • One kilogramme of apples - € 1.70
  • One kilogramme of tomatoes - € 1.82
  • One kilogramme of onions - € 1.30
  • One kilogramme of potatoes - € 1.20
  • One head of lettuce - € 1.10
  • A bottle of mid-range wine - € 5.00

Cost of Daily Transportation

Owning a vehicle in Italy is not a great idea since this country has one of the most expensive prices per litre of fuel in the world. Aside from that, cars and insurance are also pricey. Italians usually use the public transportation because it is more affordable. Italy has buses, ferries, taxis, trains and the metro which have routes across the major cities and small surrounding towns.

  • One way bus and metro ticket - € 1.20 to € 2.00
  • Monthly pass - € 35.00
  • Taxi flag down rate - € 5.00
  • Taxi one kilometre rate - € 1.50
  • One litre of gasoline – € 1.45 to € 2.00


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Cost of Living Abroad

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