Cost of Living in Venezuela



The sharp drop in oil prices has taken a huge toll on the oil-rich country, which over-relies on its oil exports. Venezuela's current economy is in such dire straits that the country is starving and in a state of emergency.

According to International Monetary Fund, Venezuela has the world’s inflation rate of 482% in 2016.

Locals have to queue for hours or even overnight for rationed necessities and food. Staples are sold at the black market for a month's salary and supermakets are ransacked by mobs. Provision of electricity and healthcare has also been unstable.

As locals lose confidence in the government's decisions, many are scrambling to leave the country. Due to the economic volatility, the pricing below serves only as a guideline and may not be accurate.

Real Estate

Foreign individuals are allowed to purchase real estate in Venezuela, provided that all requirements are met: a valid passport, visa and a Registro de Información Fiscal (RIF) - a fiscal identification obtained at any Tax Administration Office.

The price per square meter for buying an apartment in the city is US$1,900 while outside the city it costs US$650 per square meter. Buying a small studio or 1-bedroom apartment ranges from US$50,000 to US$150,000.

Renting Property

A rental contract may be written in Spanish, and it is important to review the contract or have someone help you with its translation or have it written in English.

Renting in a 1-bedroom apartment in Caracas costs US$1,272 per month while a 2-bedroom apartment costs US$1,492. Outside the city center, an apartment costs between US$373 and US$670. In Margarita, a 500-square meter apartment costs US$1,500 a month.

Monthly Utilities

You should set aside US$250 to US$300 for monthly utilities. A good Internet connection (2mbps) costs approximately US$70. Cable television cost US$55 while electricity depends on usage and can range from US$45 to US$50. Telephone bills cost approximately US$100 monthly.


Tipping is customary; however, it will depend on your discretion and the service received. Most restaurants and bars add a 10% service charge to the bill. Taxi drivers do not expect any tip though it is always appreciated.


Despite the soaring oil prices worldwide, Venezuela maintains the price of fuel at BsF 0.097 (approximately US$0.05) per liter because of its vast oil resources. The price for a 91-octane fuel is BsF. 0.071 (approximately US$0.19). This is certainly good news for expats. Those wanting to buy a car can purchase a used car for approximately US$10,000. Renting a car costs between US$20 and US$50 per day.

Bus rides are affordable too; a one-way ticket bus ride costs US$0.07. A 5 kilometers journey in a taxi costs US$8.58.


Effective April 2009, the value added tax (VAT) rate in Venezuela increased from 9% to 12%. VAT is known locally as Impuesto al Valor Agregado or IVA.



Continue reading:

Cost of Living Abroad

Expat Services in Venezuela