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Cost of living in Sydney

The average monthly cost of living in Sydney for a single person is more than $4,100.

To work out how expensive Sydney is, we've broken down the main costs of living and provided estimates of how much you're likely to pay.

What you need to know

  • Housing and Utilities: $3,224 in total a month.
  • Transport: Around $193 per month for bus/train, $32,000 for a standard car.
  • Food and Drink: Eating out for lunch? Expect to pay around $20.
  • Clothes and Shoes: Need a new pair of shoes? You'll likely pay around $150.
  • Entertainment: Movie tickets for two will cost $41 on average.
  • Personal Care and Hygiene: A trip to the doctor's is around $63.

How we sourced this data

We sourced the data from and in July 2022. Both sources index and compare the cost of living in cities around the world. The costs in the tables below are an average of the two (where possible) based on over 3,300 prices entered by 503 different people.

Costs breakdown of living in Sydney for a month

House icon

Housing and Utilities

Housing is easily the biggest expense living in Sydney. By comparison, housing in Melbourne is 23% cheaper than in Sydney. The average rent in a normal area is around $2,057. Here's a breakdown of the housing expenses you'll need to budget for in Sydney.

Monthly rent for 85 m2 furnished accommodation in expensive areaAU$2,971
Monthly rent for 85 m2 furnished accommodation in normal areaAU$2,057
Utilities 1 month (heating, electricity, gas) for 2 people in 85m2 flatAU$183
Monthly rent for a 45 m2 furnished studio in expensive area*AU$2,529
Monthly rent for a 45 m2 furnished studio in normal area*AU$2,080
Utilities 1 month (heating, electricity, gas) for 1 person in 45 m2 studio*AU$190
Price per square meter to buy apartment in city centre#AU$18,450
Price per square meter to buy apartment outside of centre#AU$10,205
Internet 8 MbpsAU$70
40" flat screen TV*AU$624
Microwave 800/900 Watt (Bosch, Panasonic, LG, Sharp, or equivalent brands)*AU$200
Laundry detergent (3 l. ~ 100 oz.)*AU$14
Hourly rate for cleaning help*AU$39
Car icon


If you drive in Sydney, a standard car is likely to set you back around $32,000 which is very similar to other major cities like Melbourne. Fuel costs work out at around $2.02 a litre, while public transport is more expensive than most other cities in Australia - $193 a month.

Volkswagen Golf 1.4 (or equivalent), with no extras, newAU$32,035
1 litre of gasAU$2.02
Monthly ticket public transportAU$193
Taxi trip on a business day, basic tariff, 8 km*AU$40
Food and drink icon

Food and Drink

In comparison to Melbourne, Sydney is a bit cheaper in terms of food and drink costs. While apples cost a little more – 1 kg is $4.30 compared to $4.17 in Melbourne - bread, milk and domestic beer are cheaper.

Basic lunchtime menu (including a drink) in the business districtAU$20
Combo meal in fast food restaurant (Big Mac Meal or similar)AU$13.50
500 gr of boneless chicken breastAU$6.36
1 litre of whole fat milkAU$1.57
12 eggs, largeAU$5.40
1 kg of tomatoesAU$6.07
500 gr of local cheeseAU$10.04
1 kg of applesAU$4.30
1 kg of potatoesAU$3.07
0.5 l domestic beer in the supermarketAU$5.79
1 bottle of red table wine, good qualityAU$17.13
2 litres of Coca-Cola*AU$3.99
Bread for 2 people for 1 dayAU$2.82
Dress and shoes icon

Clothes and Shoes

Unless they're being made and sold in Australia, clothes and shoes are always going to be more expensive here than in other countries. On average, Sydney is 7.62% more expensive than Melbourne (and other major cities in Australia) for clothes.

1 pair of jeans (Levis 501 or similar)AU$108.26
1 summer dress in a chain store (Zara, H&M or similar retailers)AU$71.78
1 pair of sport shoes (Nike, Adidas, or equivalent brands)AU$152.03
1 pair of men's leather business shoesAU$181.75


Entertainment is an integral part of any city. It can include a dinner for two at the local pub, cinema tickets, drinks at pubs and cocktails and more. In Sydney, 2 tickets to the movies will set you back close to $40 bucks. A pint in a pub will cost you $8.

Basic dinner out for two in neighbourhood pub*AU$51
2 tickets to the moviesAU$41
2 tickets to the theatre (best available seats)*AU$256
Dinner for two at an Italian restaurant in the expat area including appetisers, main course, wine and dessertAU$99
1 cocktail drink in downtown club*AU$19
Cappuccino in expat area of the cityAU$4.87
1 beer in neighbourhood pub (500ml or 1pt.)AU$8
iPad Wi-Fi 128GBAU$753
1 min. of prepaid mobile tariff (no discounts or plans)AU$0.69
1 month of gym membership in business districtAU$82.60
1 package of Marlboro cigarettesAU$43.50

Hand with clean sparkle and magnifying tick

Personal Care and Hygiene

An important one not everyone considers when moving, personal care and hygiene include everything from doctor appointments to haircuts and toiletries. A short visit to a private doctor might set you back as much as $63.

Cold medicine for 6 days (Tylenol, Frenadol, Coldrex, or equivalent brands)*AU$10
1 box of antibiotics (12 doses)*AU$14
Short visit to private doctor (15 minutes)*AU$63
1 box of 32 tampons (Tampax, OB, ...)*AU$7
Deodorant, roll-on (50ml ~ 1.5 oz.)*AU$4.37
Hair shampoo 2-in-1 (400 ml ~ 12 oz.)*AU$5.02
4 rolls of toilet paper*AU$3.48
Tube of toothpaste*AU$3.83
Standard men's haircut in expat area of the city*AU$31

*Data is from Expatistan only
#Data is from Numbeo only

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Cost of insurance in Sydney

To help manage your living costs in Sydney, consider insurance. If driving a car, get car insurance sorted. Health insurance will also cover you for things such as a massage or dentist check-up. To protect yourself and your loved ones if something were to happen to you, life insurance can help alleviating some financial stress.

Insurance typeAverage monthly costLearn more
Life insurance$19.28Cost of life insurance
Car insurance$46Cost of car insurance
Health insurance$107.57Cost of health insurance

The monthly costs are an indicative guide using the cost for basic insurance of a 41-year-old female Sydneysider. The actual cost will depend on your personal situation. Check out the guides for more information.

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