If in neighboring Montenegro you can live modestly but tastefully for 500 euros, including a rented apartment, then for Croatia this amount is only suitable in rural areas, provided you have your own home. In addition, living expenses in different cities of the country differ quite noticeably from each other and are determined not only by the status of the locality, but also by the main type of activity of local residents. At the same time, Croatia is one of the few countries where life is most expensive not in the capital.
Life in Croatia
According to the country’s National Institute, on average, living in Croatia costs 6,500 kuna per month (according to the exchange rate as of August 2019, one kuna cost 0.14 euros) – that is, 910 euros. Of this amount, approximately 280 euros per person per month are spent on food, which is more than many highly developed European countries – for example, Italy or Spain.
The average minimum wage in Croatia is almost 460 euros, and the national average after taxes is 825 euros per month.
The country’s leading supermarkets include Konzum, Bill, Spar, real estate rental is mainly carried out by Njuskalo, installation of satellite television, Internet and telephony – Hrvatski Telekom, Tele2, Vip, and the sole leader in terms of health insurance is the national HZZO system.
Each of the large cities, which include Zagreb, Split, Osijek, Rijeka and Dubrovnik, has its own level of income and prices for food, housing, etc.
Cost of living in Croatia: Zagreb and Dubrovnik
We should dwell in more detail on the two most famous cities of the country: the capital of Croatia, Zagreb, where about 800 thousand residents live, and the main tourist center, Dubrovnik, whose permanent population is twenty times smaller. However, this difference, as well as Dubrovnik’s distance from the main routes, does not prevent it from remaining the most expensive city in Croatia.
A month of living here will cost at least 1010 euros, almost half of which will be for rent in the city center and a little over a third – if you choose the outskirts.
Such prices are explained by the influx of tourists who arrive in Dubrovnik mainly through the international airport.
Foreign tourists have had a significant impact on the standard of living in Croatia when it comes to Dubrovnik. Even a trip to a modest restaurant will cost almost twice as much as in Zagreb with the same menu, not to mention purchasing food for a long stay in this city.
Life in Croatia is slightly cheaper in its capital, Zagreb – approximately 990 euros per month per person. In the capital, where many universities are located, students spend the least, for whom they have their own dormitories, canteens, sports sections and travel benefits.
Suffice it to say that living in a student dormitory, including utility bills, will not exceed 200 euros per month, and some educational institutions even charge students a nominal fee of 30-50 euros per month. Everyone else will have to fork out for rent in the amount of 250-370 euros per month, depending on the location of the property.
However, the transport network in Zagreb is quite developed, and the ticket price is comparable to Western Europe: 1.4 euros per hour and 60 cents per half hour (this tariff was introduced in 2017).
- You can learn about real estate in Zagreb from our article.
Standard of living in Croatia: other major cities in the country
In the other three large cities by Croatian standards, prices for basic goods and services are approximately the same, with the exception of Osijek, which can be called cheap compared to the general background. However, young people who want to get a higher education here tend to move to the more expensive Split and Rijeka. They also offer decent discounts and benefits for students, so the high standard of living in Croatia, which is noticeable to adult immigrants from Eastern Europe, is practically not felt. Those who work or simply live in the above-mentioned cities pay on average the following amounts (in euros).
|Cost of living €
|Housing rental €
|Utility payments €
|Cellular prepaid €
|Travel by public transport €
|Medical insurance (per month) €
|Meals (per month) €
|Fitness center €
|Going to the cinema €
*In Croatia, standard national channel charges apply.