Cost of living and prices in South Africa, prices of food, rent, shopping, etc 🇿🇦 Updated Jul 2023

South Africa, situated in Southern Africa, is a land of diverse cultures and landscapes. It shares borders with Botswana, Lesotho, Mozambique, Namibia, Swaziland, and Zimbabwe. The country covers an area of 1,219,912 square kilometres with a population of 49,000,000, making it the 25th largest country in the world in terms of land area and the 24th most populous nation. The country is home to eleven official languages, which reflect the cultural diversity of its inhabitants. South Africa is considered an upper-middle-income country, with a Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of $353,900,000,000 as of 2020. The GDP per capita is $7222. The South African economy is diverse, with its primary sectors being mining, manufacturing, agriculture, and tourism. The country's currency is the South African Rand, and the top-level domain is .za. South Africa is a relatively affordable country to live in compared to other developed countries worldwide. Prices vary depending on the city, region, and lifestyle. Expats and students can find affordable housing, dining, and entertainment options if they do their research. Foreigners relocating to South Africa should also be aware of the country's high levels of crime and safety concerns. Despite safety concerns, South Africa is a country with vibrant culture, beautiful landscapes, and a unique history that makes it a desirable place to live and work.

Cost of Living Estimate in South Africa

Total cost of living in South Africa for two person with average consumption for one month will be 790.83 USD, no rent price included. Click here to calculate cost-of-living estimate in South Africa

You can calculate cost of living in South Africa by changing quantity using input near each good or service. Resulting total will appear in a floating box in the bottom of your screen.

Restaurants prices

South Africa is famous for its diverse cuisine, which is influenced by many cultures. From the traditional African dishes to the Malay, Eastern, and Western European influences, the country offers an array of dining options for travelers. One of the most popular restaurants in South Africa is Mzansi, located in Ettington, Soweto. It offers a classic South African dining experience with a modern twist, featuring traditional dishes like braised oxtail, tripe, and chakalaka. Another must-try restaurant is the Pot Luck Club in Cape Town, which serves an innovative fusion of flavors from around the world. Travelers can choose from a wide range of small plates, from kimchi spring rolls to tuna tataki and lamb ribs, while enjoying stunning views of the city.

For those looking for more casual dining options, street food in South Africa is a popular choice. Visitors can grab a quick bite from food trucks, vendors, or local markets, offering a wide variety of cuisines at affordable prices. Bunny chow, a hollowed-out bread filled with spicy Indian curry, is a must-try street food in South Africa. Another popular street food is boerewors, a type of sausage often served with a side of pap, a traditional African porridge. For a sweet treat, koeksisters are deep-fried dough twisted into a braided shape, soaked in syrup and sprinkled with coconut flakes.

Meal in Inexpensive Restaurant
7.94 $
Meal for 2 People, Mid-range Restaurant, Three-course
32.46 $
McMeal at McDonalds or Alternative Combo Meal
3.96 $
Domestic Beer, 0.5 liter Draught
1.80 $
Imported Beer, 0.33 liter Bottle
2.16 $
1.69 $
Coca-Cola, 0.33 liter Bottle
0.85 $

Markets prices

Market prices in South Africa can be influenced by a variety of factors, including supply and demand, currency fluctuations, and global economic conditions. As a result, prices for goods and services may vary widely depending on the region and the specific industry. This dynamic pricing landscape can make it challenging for businesses to stay competitive and price their offerings appropriately.

While some industries in South Africa may experience stable prices over time, others can be subject to significant price volatility. This can be particularly challenging for consumers, who may struggle to predict prices and budget accordingly. However, savvy shoppers can use tools like price comparisons, discounts, and promotions to save money and make the most of their spending power. Ultimately, successfully navigating the complex pricing landscape in South Africa requires a deep understanding of market trends and the ability to respond quickly to changing conditions.

Water, 0.33 liter Bottle
0.68 $
Milk, Regular,1 liter
0.98 $
Loaf of Fresh White Bread, 0.5 kg
0.91 $
White Rice, 1 kg
1.39 $
Eggs, 12 pack
1.67 $
Local Cheese, 1 kg
6.52 $
Chicken Breasts, Boneless and Skinless, 1 kg
4.69 $
Beef Round or Equivalent Back Leg Red Meat, 1 kg
6.12 $
Apples, 1 kg
1.48 $
Banana, 1 kg
1.20 $
Oranges, 1 kg
1.44 $
Tomato, 1 kg
1.31 $
Potato, 1 kg
1.20 $
Onion, 1 kg
1.10 $
Lettuce, 1 head
0.97 $
Water, 1.5 liter Bottle
1.05 $
Bottle of Wine, Mid-Range Price
3.96 $
Domestic Beer, 0.5 liter Bottle
1.26 $
Imported Beer, 0.33 liter Bottle
1.90 $
Pack of Cigarettes
2.89 $

Transportation prices

South Africa offers a variety of transportation options to suit all preferences. For those looking for a more fast-paced, urban adventure, the country's major cities have reliable public transportation systems, including buses, trains, and taxis. However, expect to potentially face traffic and delays. For those seeking a more leisurely experience, car rentals are widely available, and tours can also be arranged for those wanting a guided experience. Additionally, for those who wish to explore more rugged terrains, there are off-road vehicles available for rent, including 4x4s and quad bikes.

One unique transportation option in South Africa is the Blue Train, a luxury train that runs between major cities and tourist destinations. This train offers premium cabins with amenities such as a personal butler, fine dining, and access to a spa and bar. The Blue Train is an experience in and of itself, with passengers able to take in breathtaking scenery while enjoying their luxurious accommodations. For those looking for a romantic getaway or a special occasion, the Blue Train is an unforgettable choice.

One-way Ticket, Local Transport
1.08 $
Monthly Pass, Regular Price
36.07 $
Taxi Start, Normal Tariff
1.45 $
Taxi, price for 1 km, Normal Tariff
0.72 $
Taxi, price for 1 hour Waiting, Normal Tariff
3.61 $
Gasoline, 1 liter
0.96 $
Volkswagen Golf 1.4 90 KW Trendline (Or Equivalent New Car)
18,757.75 $
Honda Civic 1.6 Or Alternative New Car
19,333.07 $

Utilities Per Month prices

When traveling to South Africa, it's important to consider the cost of utilities. In general, utilities in South Africa are relatively affordable compared to other countries. However, it's important to keep in mind that there can be significant differences in cost depending on where you are in the country.

One factor that can influence the cost of utilities in South Africa is the type of accommodation you choose. For example, if you opt for a luxury hotel or a vacation rental with all the amenities, you can expect to pay more for utilities such as electricity, water, and gas. On the other hand, if you're staying in budget-friendly lodging, you may be able to save money by using less energy and water. Additionally, it's important to be mindful of your energy usage during peak hours, as this can impact your overall utility costs.

Basic utilities for 85m2 Apartment including Electricity, Heating or Cooling, Water and Garbage
73.26 $
Prepaid Mobile Tariff Local, price per 1 min, No Discounts or Plans
0.13 $
Internet, 60 Mbps or More, Unlimited Data, Cable/ADSL
58.83 $

Sports And Leisure prices

South Africa offers visitors a wide range of sports and leisure activities to enjoy during their stay. Spectator sports like rugby, cricket, and soccer are incredibly popular and provide an exciting way to experience the local culture. Adventurous travelers can take part in activities such as shark cage diving, bungee jumping, and zip lining for an unforgettable thrill. For those seeking a more relaxed pace, South Africa's beautiful beaches provide the perfect setting for lounging in the sun, surfing, and swimming. Overall, there is no shortage of options for sports and leisure in this diverse country.

Beyond traditional sports and leisure activities, South Africa also offers unique experiences perfect for travelers seeking something truly exceptional. Golf enthusiasts can play on some of the world's most breathtaking courses, which are designed by legendary golfers such as Gary Player. Wine lovers can indulge in a tour of South Africa's famous vineyards, where they can sample award-winning wines and soak up the stunning scenery. Lastly, nature lovers can explore South Africa's vast national parks, home to some of the world's most incredible wildlife, including lions, elephants, and rhinos, making it the perfect destination for a safari adventure.

Fitness Club, Monthly Fee for 1 Adult
32.91 $
Tennis Court Rent, 1 Hour on Weekend
6.73 $

Salaries And Financing prices

Salaries in South Africa can vary depending on the industry and job type, but overall, the cost of living is relatively low compared to other countries. Those in the tech and finance industries tend to earn higher salaries, while minimum wage earners may struggle to make ends meet. However, there are plenty of ways to cut costs while still enjoying all that South Africa has to offer, such as seeking out budget-friendly accommodations and local food options.

Financing in South Africa can be a bit more complicated than in some other countries, but there are still plenty of options available to travelers. It's important to be aware of common scams and to always use ATM machines located in safe areas. For those who need larger amounts of money, it may be worth considering wire transfers or prepaid debit cards. It's also a good idea to have a mix of cash and cards on hand, as some businesses may not accept credit or debit cards.

Cinema ticket, 1 Seat
5.05 $
Average Monthly Net Salary, After Tax
1,233.17 $
Mortgage Interest Rate in Percentages for 20 Years Fixed-Rate, Yearly, Fixed-Rate
0.06 %

Childcare prices

Childcare prices in South Africa vary depending on the type of facility in which parents choose to enroll their child. Schools, in particular, tend to be more expensive compared to Kindergartens. This is because schools often provide more specialized facilities and better-trained teachers who have higher qualifications. Additionally, schools often have a more structured and rigorous curriculum for higher-level education, requiring more qualified and experienced teachers to execute the programs effectively.

Kindergartens, on the other hand, generally provide a more relaxed atmosphere suitable for young children. This often means that they may have less expensive fees compared to schools. Kindergartens usually focus on play and social interaction to help young children develop skills necessary to move on to more formalized learning in schooling years. Despite their more laid-back approach, Kindergartens are still professionally run institutions and the fees will still vary depending on the quality of the facilities and education provided.

Private Preschool or Kindergarten, Monthly for 1 Child
200.78 $
International Primary School, Yearly for 1 Child
4,581.62 $

Clothing And Shoes prices

When it comes to clothing and shoes, South Africa offers a wide range of options for every budget and style preference. From trendy boutiques to big-name stores, there's something for everyone. If you're looking for designer brands and high-end fashion, head to one of the country's upscale malls. These shopping centers feature international labels, signature collections, and luxury accessories. On the other hand, if you're on a tighter budget, consider checking out the various outdoor markets scattered throughout the cities. With a little bit of bargaining, you can score some great deals on unique finds that you won't find anywhere else.

South Africa is also home to a host of local clothing and shoe retailers. These smaller businesses often specialize in locally-made garments and accessories that are both stylish and affordable. Many of these shops take pride in their use of sustainable materials and ethical manufacturing practices, making them a great choice for conscious shoppers. Whether you're in search of a statement piece for a special occasion or just looking to update your wardrobe, you're sure to find what you're looking for in South Africa.

Pair of Jeans in a Chain Store Like George, H&M, Zara, etc.
49.97 $
Summer Dress in a Chain Store Like George, H&M, Zara, etc.
33.43 $
Pair of Running Shoes, Mid-Range Price
78.59 $
Pair of Leather Business Shoes
77.51 $

Rent Per Month prices

South Africa offers a variety of short-term rental options for travelers looking for a quick getaway. From furnished studio apartments to luxurious villas, there is something for everyone. The rates for these rental options vary depending on the location, amenities, and duration of your stay. Generally, short-term rental rates in South Africa are quite affordable compared to other destinations.

For travelers looking for a more local experience, there are also plenty of short-term stay options in South Africa's townships and homestays. These provide a great opportunity to immerse yourself in the local culture and cuisine. Prices for these options tend to be lower than traditional short-term rentals, however, amenities may be more basic or shared. Overall, South Africa offers many affordable and unique short-term stay options for travelers on a budget or those looking for a more personalized experience.

One bedroom apartment in city centre
420.01 $
One bedroom apartment outside of city centre
345.71 $
Three bedroom apartment in city centre
826.89 $
Three bedroom apartment outside of city centre
698.04 $

Buy Apartment prices

South Africa offers a diverse range of real estate buying options to suit every budget. Whether you're looking for a sprawling beachfront property or a cozy city apartment, there's something for everyone. When it comes to prices, the cost of real estate varies depending on the location, size, and level of development. Generally speaking, property prices in metropolitan areas tend to be higher than those in rural areas. This is due to factors such as proximity to amenities, access to public transport, and the level of demand for housing.

If you're looking to invest in South African real estate, there are a variety of options available to you. You can choose to buy a property outright, or you can invest in a property development scheme. Many real estate developers offer pre-sale opportunities to investors, which can provide significant discounts off the final purchase price. Alternatively, you may want to consider purchasing a rental property, which can provide a steady income stream over time. Whatever your real estate goals, South Africa is a great place to invest in property.

Price per m2 to Buy Apartment in City Center
908.97 $
Price per m2 to Buy Apartment Outside of City Center
747.86 $