Cost of living in Sri Lanka

#1 12 August 2008 12:21:09

expat blog
expat blog
small earth

Cost of living in Sri Lanka

Hi everybody,

It would be very useful to talk about the cost of living in Sri Lanka.

Don't forget to mention where in Sri Lanka you are living.

How much does it cost to live in Sri Lanka?

> accommodation prices

> public transportation fares (tube, bus etc ...)

> food prices(per month, how much does it cost you?)

> health prices (for those who need medical insurance)

> eduction prices (if you need to pay)

> energy prices (oil, electricity)

> common bills (Internet, television, telephone, mobile phone)

> prices of a good menu in a traditional restaurant

> prices of a beer and or a coffee in a regular pub

> price of the cinema

Do not hesitate to add items to this list!

Thanks in advance for your participation!!

#2 14 January 2009 22:52:22

wisetalk
wisetalk
Colombo

Re: Cost of living in Sri Lanka

Well if you look at the Colombo area these days, cost of living is much higher than it used to be.
I would say that an average person would have daily expenses of about $80.

#3 14 January 2009 22:56:30

wisetalk
wisetalk
Colombo

Re: Cost of living in Sri Lanka

When we consider transport facilities, it varies around the city. Bus fares are quite reasonable. They were constantly increasing but eventually it has come down and it is ok now. Other than that there are three wheelers which are little bit expensive but not bad.

#4 23 February 2009 14:22:18

gsrastogi
gsrastogi
colombo

Re: Cost of living in Sri Lanka

I want to know the secirity scenerio keeping in mind the current LTTE issue. further I want to know about the following

accommodation prices

> public transportation fares (tube, bus etc ...)

> food prices(per month, how much does it cost you?)

> health prices (for those who need medical insurance)

> eduction prices (if you need to pay)

> energy prices (oil, electricity)

> common bills (Internet, television, telephone, mobile phone)

> prices of a good menu in a traditional restaurant

>  price of the cinema

#5 05 August 2009 16:07:56

rambolanka
rambolanka
Colombo

Re: Cost of living in Sri Lanka

Monthly rent        45,000
Petrol            30,000
Food – house        30,000
Eating out        20,000
Staff wages        32,000
Electricity        8,000
Water            85
Gas            500
Clothes            5,000
Mobile            15,000
TV            1,200
Internet        2,500
Total            190,000 approx

Per day            $54

All the above are monthly and in SLR.

#7 26 April 2011 07:35:24

buh
buh
Santa Monica, CA

Re: Cost of living in Sri Lanka

So that's about USD400.00 for monthly rent.
I was hoping it wouldn't be more than USD200.00/mo.
What could I get for USD200??
Thanks a lot.
buh

#8 26 April 2011 07:46:29

Slimsl
Slimsl
Colombo

Re: Cost of living in Sri Lanka

for 200$ you will be able to find a small anex or good room sharing with a family or something , but anex would be ideal.

#9 27 April 2011 21:39:30

raulmonda
raulmonda
Arad

Re: Cost of living in Sri Lanka

hi gals and guys,

im thinking to settle in Colombo, starting a small business. as i see above a decent life itll costs about 1500 $/month. How about renting a small place for running a company, something big enough for 3-4 desks (300-350 sq ft)?
Raul

#11 20 May 2011 11:17:02

Paragon
Paragon
Galle

Re: Cost of living in Sri Lanka

wisetalk wrote:

Well if you look at the Colombo area these days, cost of living is much higher than it used to be.
I would say that an average person would have daily expenses of about $80.

Are you saying you are spending $80 per day? That is $2,400 per month, much more than the average Europeans or American earn per month.

#12 20 May 2011 11:26:46

raulmonda
raulmonda
Arad

Re: Cost of living in Sri Lanka

hi
yeah...hard to admit that u need 2400$/month. i know a family , living in Ragama, who pay 8000Rs for 2 rooms, kitchen and a dining room. But thats Ragama....

#14 01 October 2011 08:03:05

walkedtheline

Re: Cost of living in Sri Lanka

Paragon wrote:

wisetalk wrote:

Well if you look at the Colombo area these days, cost of living is much higher than it used to be.
I would say that an average person would have daily expenses of about $80.

Are you saying you are spending $80 per day? That is $2,400 per month, much more than the average Europeans or American earn per month.

I can't believe those figures...  You are so right, most people live in Europe and North America don't spend half of that amount ($2,400)!

Why anyone is not given the prices in a simpler way:

How much is a loaf bread, a pound of meat, a cake of butter, etc., and please be more realstic about renting;  Remember, this website is here to help us!

Last edited by walkedtheline (01 October 2011 08:03:50)

#16 01 October 2011 19:19:03

walkedtheline

Re: Cost of living in Sri Lanka

Thanks.  Id the place you  live in a house or apartment?   And, the other expenses for two people?

I need to rent a house, it can be small -one or two bedroom - but prefer detached.  Another issue is the security of course...

#17 02 October 2011 20:26:36

robinjaggi
robinjaggi
Chandigarh

Re: Cost of living in Sri Lanka

hi Adam,
Good to see the stats provided by you
Needed one help....
what would the rents be like in Mirigama...am planning to move there in a month's time from India with my Family.

Also, if you could help me understand the expenses for a family of 3

#19 03 October 2011 18:47:09

robinjaggi
robinjaggi
Chandigarh

Re: Cost of living in Sri Lanka

Thanks Adam for answering my querries

also, my wife is working in a bank in india....she would also like to be employed in SL
what are the opportunities she might have?

just to re-confirm, all figures provided by you are in SLR only

#20 09 February 2012 08:38:54

aravinda.SL
aravinda.SL
Ambalangoda

Re: Cost of living in Sri Lanka

House Rent
( 2rooms + living + kitchen + bathroom,etc - around )- 120 $
Transport ( Train, Bus)(fair begins from )  - 0.07 $
Rent a car ( Sedan ) ( per day begins from ) - 30 $
( per month begins from )  - 350 $
Gasoline (1 liter of petrol )   - 1.5 $
(1 liter of diesel )   - 0.9 $
Electricity ( television, pc, a/c, household items ) - 35 $
Water ( washing machine, gardening )  - 5 $
Satellite Television ( per month )  - 27 $
Broadcast Television - free
Internet ( unlimited ADSL connection / 1 mbps ) - 17 $
LP Gas (13.7Kg) - 18$
Nanny (with cooking and cleaning) - 120$-200$
Clothes ( T-shirts / shirts ) - 10$ / 15$
Denim Trousers    - 25 $
Mobile Phones (from)   - 20 $
Prepaid Sim - 1 $
Pack of cigarettes ( 20 cig. )  - 4.4 $
Beer (650ml Bottle)   - 1.5 $
Food ( good meal from a good restaurant )  - 5$-8 $
Food expenses for a month approx per 1 (by cooking) - 150 $
per 2 or 3 (by cooking in home) - 250$
1 liter of milk - 1.5$
1 Kg of Chicken - 4$
12 pack of Eggs - 2$
A loaf of Bread - .5$
1 Kg of Rice - .7 $
Gym ( per month) - 15$
Movies / cinema     - 3$-6$
Karaoke Clubs / Dance Clubs ( entrance ) - 10$-20$

These are roughly expenses according to Galle/Ambalangoda area. But they would change by less amount in all island,.

#21 09 February 2012 16:11:28

Ravi Rohan
Ravi Rohan
Gampaha

Re: Cost of living in Sri Lanka

From a foreigner's angle what Adam from Perth says is useful.You'd better follow him.The prices Aravinda gave are realistic.Why stay in Colombo?It's a noisy place.Within 20KMs from Colombo either on the Kandy road or Galle road you can get nice quiet accommodation for around Rs10000.Remember all over the world there are con men and con women.So use your brains.Recently i got tricked into parting away with $40 for a movie download site,[Moderated].Anyway i learnt a lesson from my $40.

#23 13 June 2013 09:09:30

Farhaz
Farhaz
Manama

Re: Cost of living in Sri Lanka

Brass wrote:

aravinda.SL, Are these prices converted into estimated US dollars? thank for the post

The figures appear to be estimates, Brass - and also appear realistic. Checked some of them against what I spend on my household in Sri Lanka.

I too think $80 a day is way too high. Thanks to Adam for Perth and Aravinda for giving a more realistic estimate of living costs. Living in Colombo is generally more expensive. As suggested take a look at the suburbs.

And yes, I agree - private hospitals in Sri Lanka are a rip-off. Some of these "doctors" are merciless with their charges and tests. Having said that, there are still quite a number of good respectable doctors in the private sector who are not money minded. If you have to visit a consultant in a private hospital, make sure you ask around and get proper recommendations from friends and colleagues.

Last edited by Farhaz (13 June 2013 09:14:21)

#24 13 June 2013 18:56:41

Brass
Brass
Pittsburgh

Re: Cost of living in Sri Lanka

I'm certainly thankful for the detailed post. If aravinda.SL is quoting US dollars I would need $700 to $1,100 USD have a quality life there.



Are you two in Colombo? Which neighborhoods are you in?

Thanks for the input Farhaz, aravinda.SL and everyone.


With a room mate I can live on the same amount in my city depending on the neighborhood for $1,400 to 1,600 ok by myself.

Last edited by Brass (13 June 2013 19:16:32)

#25 13 June 2013 22:36:55

Farhaz
Farhaz
Manama

Re: Cost of living in Sri Lanka

Yes the range of amounts you estimated appears reasonable to live comfortably. However, you should remember this is if you rent out houses in the suburbs and get used to the way we usually live in Sri Lanka. The amounts would go up if you wish to live near the city centre and need modern accomodation and comforts.

My folks live in Colombo 9 (known as Dematagoda), mainly because our family has lived in the same area for the past 70 years :)

#26 21 July 2013 23:58:11

chaska
chaska
Vilcabamba Ecuador/Maui

Re: Cost of living in Sri Lanka

All these posts arew very helpfull but only oriented to Colombo city dwellers.  What about places like Bandarawela, and Newara Eliya (sp?), hill stations countryside villages.   Whare are the countryside  expat communities concentrated? I live in a small sacred Valley in Southern Ecuadorian Andes, Vilcabamba (Valley of Longevity and Synchronity to the Inca) with a population of about 5000-6000 and about 1500 expats, pretty amazing enclave.  As can be expected, the costs here are far different from Quito, the capital city of Ecuador, and so is the quality of life one can enjoy. It is an hour to the nearest city, and 4 hours to a really big city.  I am trying to guage costs of living in Sri Lanka Hill stations.   Thankyou, and many blessings from Ecuador's Sacred Valley

#27 31 July 2013 08:14:51

dilesha
dilesha
Colombo

Re: Cost of living in Sri Lanka

I assume you move to Sri Lanka.
> accommodation prices  80USD & upwards per month

> public transportation fares (tube, bus etc ...) 10c USD & upwards per trip

> food prices(per month, how much does it cost you?) 750usd & upwards

> health prices (for those who need medical insurance)Public hospitals are free. Semi if you admit per day 10usd and up per day. For OPD 5USD and up

> eduction prices (if you need to pay) Public Schools are free. Private 10usd per month & upwards

> energy prices (oil, electricity) petrol 1.6USD, diesel 1.4USD Per liter

> common bills (Internet 14usd p/m, television 5usd up p/m, telephone 5 and up, mobile phone 5 and up)

> prices of a good menu in a traditional restaurant 10usd and up for 2

> prices of a beer and or a coffee in a regular pub - no ideal for beer. coffee 0.4 Cappuccino 5usd

> price of the cinema 1.5usd economy halls 5usd good hall A/C 10usd for 3D


Normally 300usd per month is manageable for a family of 3

80usd per day can go for a semi luxury life.

I manage from around 200usd.

#29 05 August 2013 07:16:14

hookra
hookra
Kadigamuwa

Re: Cost of living in Sri Lanka

I think you are quite foolish in your understandings of financial incomes, and I am here only to ensure you are not stupid and think you can live "decently" in SL and not like a dog in a cage like so many live in filth, sickness, and very inhumane ways. If you're in for cheap like those who go to Middle East nations, then so be it, but in SL it is very different.

You are either a Western Expat living from a lot of home money, or you live in (Asian) substandard ways trying to survive and keep for diseases.

One the "Average" wage of "Asians" living in UK?USA may fall low like $2400, but not citizens who work in real jobs and earn from $5,000 up to $15,000 and are still trying to make it.

The prices listed are very close to reality, so don't be misled if you aren't there yet, any planning for less will equal failure for self and business, and it still doesn't consider any business cost or equipment which will triple this figure.

I returned to USA just to refill my savings because cost absorbed all my money, so back to USA netting $1200 per week NET as an AVG American!

The only thing I can say is if you don't have a way to refill your bank accounts from another source, SL is not a country to go to for great financial gain! I can make more just be a nobody worker in USA then being a businessman in SL.

Don't be scared, BE SMART!

#30 05 August 2013 08:04:30

dilesha
dilesha
Colombo

Re: Cost of living in Sri Lanka

"hookra" is Quite true and i agree.
Most of the people in Sri Lanka suffer this. Since average Sir Lankans local income is very low compared to the expense.
In my case I earn around 150-250USD per month. Just for my babys diapers and milk powder cost 80usd. and for the food for me and my wife it takes around 60usd. Electricity bill 20USD water 10USD fuel for my Bike 30usd. If you total the values its above 150. So i have to add my wife's income also which is also not much. And extra expenses are not mentioned above. So for the savings its like 20USD from me and my wife.

IMAGINE!

#31 Yesterday 19:12:55

mal
mal
Colombo

Re: Cost of living in Sri Lanka

I live in Negombo city.

> accommodation prices
House Rent 200 $ - 500 for a foreigner
House Rent 150$ for a local

> public transportation fares
Transport fair for Train, Bus starts from  - 0.10 $ per 1 Km
Car rental per day begins from  - 30 $
Car rental per month begins from  - 390 $
Petrol 1 liter - 1.2 $ diesel 1 liter   - 0.9 $

> food prices(per month, how much does it cost you?)
Food for a month per 1 (cooking) - 150 $
1 liter of milk - 1.5$
1 Kg of Chicken - 4$
12 pack of Eggs – 1.5$
A loaf of Bread - 0.5$
1 Kg of Rice - 0.7 $
1 L bottled water - 0.6 $

> health prices (for those who need medical insurance)
Insurance -depends
Doctor- 3$
Consultant – 10$
Government hospitals – free of charge

> Education prices (if you need to pay)
government- free of charge
international school –nursery per one year -2000 $
international school – Grade 1 per one year -2550 $
international school – Grade 10 per one year - 4135 $
(I checked only one school and did not compare it with another)
> energy prices (oil, electricity)
Electricity ( television, pc, a/c, household items ) - 47 $ to up
Water for washing - 7 $
LP Gas (13.7Kg) - 18$

> common bills (Internet, television, telephone, mobile phone)
Satellite Television ( per month )  - 27 $
Broadcast Television - free
Internet ( unlimited ADSL connection / 1 mbps ) - 25 $
Mobile Phones - 20 $ onwards
Prepaid Sim - 1 $
Gym ( per month) - 15$

> prices of a good menu in a traditional restaurant
good menu in a restaurant  - 7$-10 $

> prices of a beer and or a coffee in a regular pub
Pack of cigarettes ( 20 cig. )  - 4.6 $
Beer (650ml Bottle)   - 1.5 $
Local coffee - 0.25 $

> price of the cinema
Movies / cinema     - 3$-6$
Karaoke Clubs / Dance Clubs ( entrance ) - 10$-20$

>Services
Nanny - 150$-200$
Gardener/labourer – 7$ per day

>Clothing
T-shirts / shirts ) - 10$ / 15$
Denim Trousers    - 25 $

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