Cost of Living in Istanbul, Turkey

How Much Does It Cost to Live In Istanbul?

When compared to other European countries, it can be said that Istanbul is not among the expensive cities.

Nevertheless, Istanbul has a high cost of living in relation to other Turkish cities, and it is one of the priciest in the country.

Istanbul is a very popular city due to its cultural, historical and economic development.

Being the largest city in Europe it has to offer something for each person’s taste.

Cost of Living Index:
37.85
Restaurants

RESTAURANTS

Both imported alcohol and international food are more expensive than the traditional Turkish meal.

The taxes imposed on alcohol are so high that they affected the prices, too.

Meals in Istanbul are not too expensive if you do not mind eating in an inexpensive restaurant.

Markets

MARKETS

In comparison with other Western countries and their major cities, Istanbul is considered cheap for daily groceries.

Residents tend to buy fresh vegetables and fruit at bazaars at the lower prices, but of  equally satisfying quality as in supermarkets.

If you follow their spending habits, you will be able to save some money on this huge monthly expense.

Transportation

TRANSPORTATION

Gasoline prices in Istanbul are particularly high and driving in this enormous city is not advisable, especially if you do not know it well.

If you are using a public transport system, you will save both time and money, as it is inexpensive and efficient.

Utilities

UTILITIES (MONTHLY)

According to the data, only 6% of monthly salary is spent on utilities, which means that they are not such a great expense in Istanbul.

Actually, all the basic services with the Internet connection included would cost you around $90, which is really affordable and almost unimaginable in many of the cities in the world.

Sports and leisure

SPORTS & LEISURE

Bearing in mind the fact that sports people are ready to invest a lot of money in their daily activities, Istanbul is a place where the will be extremely satisfied with the prices.

Both fitness club fees and tennis court rents are affordable here, as well as the cinema tickets which can be found at the price of $4.6 per person.

Clothing and shoes

CLOTHING & SHOES

The prices of clothing items are not high in Istanbul and for those budget-minded people, designer apparel would be affordable.

On the other hand, those who earn the minimum salary would not be able to afford it, so they will satisfy themselves with low-cost clothing which is frequently sold in Istanbul.

Rent per month

RENT PER MONTH

Due to the fact that this is a city that is located on two continents, accommodation prices will depend on this, too.

The European side is more expensive when the rent is in question, but in general this is going to be a high expense in Istanbul.

Cost of Living Averages Table for Istanbul

*Note: All prices are indicated in USD.
Average Restaurant Prices
Meal (Inexpensive Restaurant)$4.73
Domestic Beer (0.5 Liter)$2.84
Water (0.33 Liter)$0.24
Average Market Prices
Milk (1 Liter)$0.79
Loaf Bread (500g)$0.44
Eggs (12)$1.91
Average Transport Prices
One Way Ticket$0.49
Monthly Pass$38.79
Gasoline$1.21
Average Utilities Prices
Basic (Water, Electricity, Garbage, Heating, Cooling)$70.79
1 min. of Prepaid Mobile Tariff Local$0.14
Internet (Unlimited Data, Cable/ADSL)$15.89
Average Leisure Prices
Fitness Club, Monthly Fee for 1 Adult$28.80
Tennis Court Rent (1 Hour)$15.01
Cinema, 1 Seat, International Release$4.68
Average Clothing Prices
1 Pair of Jeans (Levis 501 Or Comparable)$38.76
1 Summer Dress in a Chain Store (Zara, etc...)$26.82
1 Pair of Adidas Walking Shoes (Mid-Range)$66.03
Average Rent Prices
Apartment (1 bedroom) in City Center$340.95
Apartment (1 bedroom) Outside of Center$203.68
Apartment (3 bedrooms) in City Center$631.18

How Does the Average Person Spend Their Money in Istanbul?

Even though residents of Istanbul do not sped too much on the rent due to the fact that the majority of them own their properties, newcomers will find that accommodation is their biggest expense.

Food is also important and great cost here, but fresh products can be found at the local markets and are more affordable compared to the stores and supermarkets.

The third most expensive category is transportation, and almost 19% of the monthly salary will be spent on it.

Average Costs Breakdown

11%
33.5%
18%
6.6%
7.1%
3.3%
19.6%

Istanbul: Average Salary, Minimum Wage & Mortgages

There are so many places to be seen at this beautiful city and you should not miss exploring it once you get there.

If you are thinking of buying a property here, bear in mind the high mortgage interest rates.

The difference between the minimum and average salary is not high, so you should negotiate the income, if there is a chance, and do not accept anything below the average.

That is the only way of providing a decent life In Istanbul.

Average Salary$489.48
Minimum Wage$264
Mortgage Interest Rate21.11%

What About Travel Safety in Istanbul?

Istanbul Safety Overview

READ THE FULL REPORT: Istanbul Safety Review

Safety Index:
58
  • OVERALL RISK : MEDIUM
  • TRANSPORT & TAXIS RISK : MEDIUM
  • PICKPOCKETS RISK : HIGH
  • NATURAL DISASTERS RISK : MEDIUM
  • MUGGING RISK : MEDIUM
  • TERRORISM RISK : HIGH
  • SCAMS RISK : MEDIUM
  • WOMEN TRAVELERS RISK : MEDIUM

Cost of Living by City in Istanbul

CityCost of Living Index
Ankara34.77
Antalya33.78
Bursa33.72
Izmir34.03

Where to Next?

See these related locations:

Or, browse the country/city indexes:

Cost of Living - Country Index Cost of Living - City Index

3 Reviews on Istanbul

  1. B
    Bisola Ngunan segun-Samuel says:

    Istanbul is ok for newcomers and the weather is good & friendly. I will like to have business relationship.

    1. J
      Justine says:

      Istanbul is an expensive city by any standard. Average salary is around $500, yet it is difficult to find a decent apartment in good areas for $500. Prices for many daily necessities are almost similar to the prices in US, in some cases even more expensive than in US. It is a mystery how people get by making 500 dollars or less a month. Turkey has become a magnet for poor people from the middle east, Afghanistan, Pakistan and Central Asia. Life in those places must be even worse than in Turkey.

  2. Double all of the above prices
    Inflation is 100%+ average costs based on 2022/8:
    Bread: $1; Milk $1; 1 kilo of minced beef $8; 2 chicken breasts $3.25; bus/metro fare $0.38; big mac menu $4; meal for 2 in an average restaurant $35; rent pcm $1250; a local draft beer $7/import bottled beer; winter heating $50; electricity $16.
    These prices increase 10-20%/month

Rated 3.67 / 5 based on 3 user reviews.

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