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Cost Of Living Vs Salary In South Africa

Updated on Jul 02, 2020 170 views
Cost Of Living Vs Salary In South Africa

How expensive is South Africa? We conducted a review of the cost of living vs salary for major citities in South Africa.

If you are an expert working in South Africa, thinking about relocating to any of the major South African cities for work, then you want to know what the cost of living is in your dream city, and if your current salary can cover this cost?

We know how important knowing the cost of living before moving to a city for work is to you as a professional, so we have done you one better by taking time to research the cost of living and salary is in 37 South African cities, and got you the average price you’ll need to budget for certain essential items you will be needing during your stay there.

From our findings, you will get the average cost of what you might pay for rent, transportation, groceries, clothing, outings, and miscellaneous. 

Before we give you the break down, a few things you should keep in mind are:

  • The general cost of living in South Africa is lower than the cost of living in most of the cities.

  • Salaries in most cities are higher than the general salary of South Africa.

  • Sandton, Bellville, and Cape Town have the highest cost of living.

 

Cost of Living vs Salary in South Africa

Cost Of Living VS Salary In South Africa

 

Salary Breakdown In South Africa

Average Monthly Salary: R17,000

Average Yearly Salary:  R204,000

Cost Of Living: R42,244

 

Extra: You may find this article also interesting to read: 15 Highest Paying Jobs in South Africa 2020

 

10 Most Expensive Cities in South Africa

Below is the list of the most expensive city in South Africa based on the cost of living

  • Sandton
  • Capetown
  • Paarl
  • Bellville
  • Randburg
  • Johannesburg
  • Vanderbijlpark
  • Stellenbosch
  • George
  • Soweto

 

Cost Of Living In South Africa Per Month

For the cost of living in South Africa, the areas we focused on are house rent, transportation, groceries, clothing, outings and self-care. 

Cost Of Rent In South Africa

From our pricing research, we found that a 1 bedroom apartment in South Africa, within the city costs R6,500, whereas a 1 bedroom apartment outside the city costs 5,700. 

A 3 bedroom apartment within the city costs 13,000 and the same apartment costs 11,000

 

Cost Of Transportation In South Africa

Unless you are planning to buy a Volkswagen Gulf  which costs R300,000 or a Toyota Corolla for 292,000,  you should be able to cover transportation costs in SA.

As an SA expert, R728 should cover a one-ticket for R20, a monthly pass for R600 and a total taxi costs of R920 with the normal tariff.

 

Cost Of Groceries In South Africa

Your grocery list should rack up R649 which covers food items like fruits, meat, vegetables, milk, cheese, eggs, bread, and even beer if that’s what you like. Note that beef and local cheese can increase your grocery budget.

 

Cost Of Clothing In South Africa

Shopping with the sum of R3,551 should get you a pair of Levi 501 jeans which go for R754 and a pair of Nike shoes for 1,200 and a leather shoe for 1,100 and it also covers the cost of a Zara summer dress.

 

Cost Of Outings In South Africa

Since you will be working so hard, relaxation is something you need to engage in, in order to properly unwind in SA. You need to breathe and enjoy the exquisite restaurants and fine dining that SA has to offer.

So, how much will a night out at a restaurant cost you? R832 covers a meal at an affordable restaurant and a three-course meal for you and your friend or a partner. 

This amount can also get you your cappucino fix for R27, and espresso for R19, and a delicious cheese burger for R18. R832 will get a good night’s outing in SA.

 

Cost Of Self-Care In South Africa

Pampering yourself with a little self-care as an expert in South Africa, will cost you about R933. This can cover the cost of some essentials like cold medicine, antibiotics for R202, a box of tampon R46, deodorant for R30, tissue paper for R25, etc.

 

Cost of Living VS Salary In Popular Cities In South Africa

Below is the cost of living vs salary in 37 popular cities in South Africa and comparison between these cities and Lagos, Hong Kong, Tokyo, Singapore, and New York City.

1. Cape Town  

Salary - R216,000/year

Cost of living - R63,788.46

Cost Of Living Comparison For Cape Town 

  • 12% cheaper than in Lagos

  • 60% cheaper than in Hong Kong

  • 53% cheaper than in Tokyo 

  • 53% cheaper than in Singapore

  • 65% cheaper than in New York City 

 

2. Paarl

Salary - R178,000/ per year

Cost Of Living - R60,277

Cost Of Living Comparison For Paarl

  • 17% cheaper than in Lagos

  • 62% cheaper than in Hong Kong

  • 56% cheaper than in Tokyo 

  • 56% cheaper than in Singapore

  • 67% cheaper than in New York City

 

3. Bellville 

Salary - R205,000

Cost Of  Living -R53,061.51

Cost Of Living Comparison For Bellville

  • 12.20% cheaper than in Lagos

  • 64.7% cheaper than in Hong Kong

  • 57.19% cheaper than in Tokyo 

  • 61.08% cheaper than in Singapore

  • 72.36% cheaper than in New York City 

 

4. Johannesburg

Salary- R257,000/year

Cost Of Living -R44,510

Cost Of Living Comparison For Johannesburg

  • 16% cheaper than in Lagos

  • 62% cheaper than in Hong Kong

  • 55% cheaper than in Tokyo 

  • 55% cheaper than in Singapore

  • 67% cheaper than in New York City 

 

5. George

Salary- R140,000/year

Cost Of Living- R38,272.97

Cost Of Living Comparison For George

  • 30% cheaper than in Lagos

  • 68% cheaper than in Hong Kong

  • 62% cheaper than in Tokyo 

  • 62% cheaper than in Singapore

  • 72% cheaper than in New York City 

 

6. Carletonville

Salary -R276,000

Cost Of Living- R35,941

Cost Of Living Comparison For Carletonville

  • The same cost of living with Lagos

  • 57% cheaper than in Hong Kong

  • 45% cheaper than in Tokyo 

  • 49% cheaper than in Singapore

  • 59% cheaper than in New York City 

 

7. East London

Salary -R182,000/year

Cost Of Living -R35,039.5

Cost Of Living Comparison For East London

  • 12% cheaper than in Lagos

  • 60% cheaper than in Hong Kong

  • 53% cheaper than in Tokyo 

  • 53% cheaper than in Singapore

  • 65% cheaper than in New York City 

 

8. Durban

Salary- R195,000/year

Cost Of Living - R33,895.32

Cost Of Living Comparison For Durban

  • 18% cheaper than in Lagos

  • 63% cheaper than in Hong Kong

  • 56% cheaper than in Tokyo 

  • 56% cheaper than in Singapore

  • 68% cheaper than in New York City 

 

9. Krugersdorp

Salary-R159,000/year

Cost Of Living -R33,612

Cost Of Living Comparison For Krugersdorp

  • 12% cheaper than in Lagos

  • 60% cheaper than in Hong Kong

  • 53% cheaper than in Tokyo 

  • 53% cheaper than in Singapore

  • 65% cheaper than in New York City 

 

10. Nelspruit

Salary-R252,000/year

Cost Of Living- R32,445.46

Cost Of Living Comparison For Nelspruit

  • 26% cheaper than in Lagos

  • 66% cheaper than in Hong Kong

  • 60% cheaper than in Tokyo 

  • 60% cheaper than in Singapore

  • 71% cheaper than in New York City 

 

11. Kimberley

Salary-R179,000/year

Cost Of Living -R31,636.68

Cost Of Living Comparison For Kimberley

  • 9% cheaper than in Lagos

  • 59% cheaper than in Hong Kong

  • 50% cheaper than in Tokyo 

  • 51% cheaper than in Singapore

  • 64% cheaper than in New York City 

 

12. Bloemfontein

Salary-R127,000/year

Cost Of Living-R28,546.22

Cost Of Living Comparison For Bloemfontein

  • 32% cheaper than in Lagos

  • 69% cheaper than in Hong Kong

  • 63% cheaper than in Tokyo 

  • 63% cheaper than in Singapore

  • 73% cheaper than in New York City 

 

13. Boksburg

Salary- R264,000/year

Cost Of Living - R28,613.57

Cost Of Living Comparison For Boksburg

  • 10% cheaper than in Lagos

  • 59% cheaper than in Hong Kong

  • 51% cheaper than in Tokyo 

  • 52% cheaper than in Singapore

  • 64% cheaper than in New York City 

 

14. Brakpan

Salary-R152,000/year

Cost Of Living-R27,277.193

Cost Of Living Comparison For Brakpan

  • 12% cheaper than in Lagos

  • 60% cheaper than in Hong Kong

  • 53% cheaper than in Tokyo 

  • 53% cheaper than in Singapore

  • 65% cheaper than in New York City 

 

15. Klerksdorp

Salary-R152,000

Cost Of Living-R25,138.5

Cost Of Living Comparison For Klerksdorp

  • 12% cheaper than in Lagos

  • 60% cheaper than in Hong Kong

  • 53% cheaper than in Tokyo 

  • 53% cheaper than in Singapore

  • 65% cheaper than in New York City 

 

16. Pietermaritzburg

Salary-R180,000/year

Cost Of Living-R26,541.9

Cost Of Living Comparison For Pietermaritzburg

  • 28% cheaper than in Lagos

  • 67% cheaper than in Hong Kong

  • 61% cheaper than in Tokyo 

  • 61% cheaper than in Singapore

  • 72% cheaper than in New York City 

 

17. Polokwane

Salary-R177,000/year

Cost Of Living-R28,569.59

Cost Of Living Comparison For Polokwane

  • 24% cheaper than in Lagos

  • 65% cheaper than in Hong Kong

  • 57% cheaper than in Tokyo 

  • 59% cheaper than in Singapore

  • 69% cheaper than in New York City 

 

18. Potchefstroom

Salary-R175,000/year

Cost Of Living-R27,653.9

Cost Of Living Comparison For Potchefstroom

  • 30% cheaper than in Lagos

  • 68% cheaper than in Hong Kong

  • 62% cheaper than in Tokyo 

  • 53% cheaper than in Singapore

  • 65% cheaper than in New York City 

 

19. Port Elizabeth

Salary-R183,000/year

Cost Of Living-R26,794.4

Cost Of Living Comparison For Port Elizabeth

  • 24% cheaper than in Lagos

  • 66% cheaper than in Hong Kong

  • 59% cheaper than in Tokyo 

  • 60% cheaper than in Singapore

  • 70% cheaper than in New York City 

 

20. Randburg

Salary- R147,000

Cost Of Living- R46,272.9

Cost Of Living Comparison For Randburg

  • 12% cheaper than in Lagos

  • 60% cheaper than in Hong Kong

  • 53% cheaper than in Tokyo 

  • 53% cheaper than in Singapore

  • 65% cheaper than in New York City 

 

21. Roodepoort

Salary-R187,000/year

Cost Of Living-R38,033

Cost Of Living Comparison For Roodepoort

  • 12% cheaper than in Lagos

  • 60% cheaper than in Hong Kong

  • 53% cheaper than in Tokyo 

  • 53% cheaper than in Singapore

  • 65% cheaper than in New York City 

 

22. Rustenburg

Salary - R185,000/year

Cost Of Living-R24,320.03

Cost Of Living Comparison For Rustenburg

  • 11% cheaper than in Lagos

  • 60% cheaper than in Hong Kong

  • 52% cheaper than in Tokyo 

  • 52% cheaper than in Singapore

  • 65% cheaper than in New York City 

 

23. Secunda

Salary-R249,000/year

Cost Of Living-R33,319.61

Cost Of Living Comparison For Secunda

  • 12% cheaper than in Lagos

  • 60% cheaper than in Hong Kong

  • 53% cheaper than in Tokyo 

  • 53% cheaper than in Singapore

  • 65% cheaper than in New York City 

 

24. Soweto

Salary-R118,000/year

Cost Of Living-R38,132

Cost Of Living Comparison For Soweto

  • 19% cheaper than in Lagos

  • 63% cheaper than in Hong Kong

  • 55% cheaper than in Tokyo 

  • 53% cheaper than in Singapore

  • 67% cheaper than in New York City 

 

25. Springs

Salary-R158,000/year

Cost Of Living-R24,986

Cost Of Living Comparison For Springs

  • 12% cheaper than in Lagos

  • 60% cheaper than in Hong Kong

  • 53% cheaper than in Tokyo 

  • 56% cheaper than in Singapore

  • 65% cheaper than in New York City 

 

26. Stellenbosch

Salary- R346,000

Cost Of Living- R38,316.71

Cost Of Living Comparison For Stellenbosch

  • 12% cheaper than in Lagos

  • 60% cheaper than in Hong Kong

  • 53% cheaper than in Tokyo 

  • 53% cheaper than in Singapore

  • 65% cheaper than in New York City 

 

27. Uitenhage

Salary-R153,000/year

Cost Of Living-R35,177

Cost Of Living Comparison For Uitenhage

  • 12% cheaper than in Lagos

  • 60% cheaper than in Hong Kong

  • 53% cheaper than in Tokyo 

  • 53% cheaper than in Singapore

  • 65% cheaper than in New York City 

 

28. Vanderbijlpark

Salary- R298,00

Cost Of Living-R41,689

Cost Of Living Comparison For Vanderbijlpark

  • 12% cheaper than in Lagos

  • 60% cheaper than in Hong Kong

  • 53% cheaper than in Tokyo 

  • 53% cheaper than in Singapore

  • 65% cheaper than in New York City 

 

29. Vereeniging

Salary-R158,000/year

Cost Of Living-R30,061.5

Cost Of Living Comparison For Vereeniging

  • 18% cheaper than in Lagos

  • 63% cheaper than in Hong Kong

  • 56% cheaper than in Tokyo 

  • 56% cheaper than in Singapore

  • 68% cheaper than in New York City 

 

30. Welkom

Salary-R134,000/year

Cost Of Living-R23,068

Cost Of Living Comparison For Welkom

  • 29% cheaper than in Lagos

  • 60% cheaper than in Hong Kong

  • 52% cheaper than in Tokyo 

  • 54% cheaper than in Singapore

  • 63% cheaper than in New York City 

 

31. Worcester

Salary-R138,000/year

Cost Of Living-R22,813

Cost Of Living Comparison For Worcester

  • 45% cheaper than in Lagos

  • 75% cheaper than in Hong Kong

  • 69% cheaper than in Tokyo 

  • 70% cheaper than in Singapore

  • 65% cheaper than in New York City 

 

32. Richards Bay

Salary-R193,000

Cost Of Living-R32,977

Cost Of Living Comparison For Richards Bay

  • 25% cheaper than in Lagos

  • 66% cheaper than in Hong Kong

  • 59% cheaper than in Tokyo 

  • 60% cheaper than in Singapore

  • 70% cheaper than in New York City 

 

33. Orkney

Salary- R353,000

Cost Of Living-R36,111

Cost Of Living Comparison For Orkney

  • 13% cheaper than in Lagos

  • 60% cheaper than in Hong Kong

  • 47% cheaper than in Tokyo 

  • 52% cheaper than in Singapore

  • 60% cheaper than in New York City 

 

34. Sandton

Salary-R289,000/year

Cost Of Living-R74,612

Cost Of Living Comparison For Sandton

  • 12% cheaper than in Lagos

  • 60% cheaper than in Hong Kong

  • 53% cheaper than in Tokyo 

  • 53% cheaper than in Singapore

  • 65% cheaper than in New York City 

 

35. Somerset West

Salary-R180,000/year

Cost Of Living-R29,623.52

Cost Of Living Comparison For Somerset West

  • 12% cheaper than in Lagos

  • 60% cheaper than in Hong Kong

  • 53% cheaper than in Tokyo 

  • 53% cheaper than in Singapore

  • 65% cheaper than in New York City 

 

36. Heidelberg

Salary-R120,000/year

Cost Of Living-R29,571.25

Cost Of Living Comparison For Heidelberg

  • 60% cheaper than in Lagos

  • 26% cheaper than in Hong Kong

  • 53% cheaper than in Tokyo 

  • 53% cheaper than in Singapore

  • 65% cheaper than in New York City 

 

37. Queenstown

Salary-R133,000

Cost Of Living-R26,916

Cost Of Living Comparison For Queenstown

  • Same as Lagos

  • 56% cheaper than in Hong Kong

  • 44% cheaper than in Tokyo 

  • 48% cheaper than in Singapore

  • 58% cheaper than in New York City 

 

Cost Of Living in South Africa vs Nigeria

To make sure we got the exact cost of living percentage for SA and Nigeria, we compared the two countries with the cost of living comparison tool provided by Expatisan.

This is what we found:

1.The cost of living in SA is R41,311 and the estimated cost of living in Nigeria is N813,292 when converted to rands it's approximately R36,055.80.

2. The cost of living in SA is 12% higher than the cost of living in Nigeria. 

3. Food in South Africa is 9% cheaper than in Nigeria:

  • A combo meal in a  Nigerian restaurant goes for N1,680 (R75) while it costs R61 in a South African restaurant.

  • A litre of milk is N749(R33) in Nigeria and R14 in South Africa.

  • A kg of tomatoes is N641 in Nigeria (R28) and R20 in South Africa.

4. Housing in South Africa is 1% higher than in Nigeria, which is almost the same as that of Nigeria:

  • Monthly rent for a furnished house in an expensive area in Nigeria goes for approximately N441,012 (R 19,609) and R 14,593 in South Africa

  • Monthly rent for a furnished house in an affordable area in Nigeria is approximately N261,408 (R 11,623) and R 9,319 in South Africa.

5. Clothes in South Africa is 70% more expensive than in Nigeria:

  • A pair of Jeans in Nigeria is N5,049 (R 224) and R 720 in South Africa

  • Pair of sports shoes in Nigeria is N10,731 (R 477) and R 1,299 in South Africa.

6. Transportation in South Africa is 44% more expensive than in Nigeria:

  • Fuel in Nigeria is N121.5 (R5) and R16 in South Africa.

7. Personal Care in South Africa is 22% more expensive in Nigeria, than in South Africa:

  • Cold medicine 6 days dosage (tylenol, frenadol, coldrex, or equivalent brands) in South Africa costs R67 (N1,518) but costs N748 in Nigeria.

  • Hair shampoo 2-in-1 R 55 (₦1,234) ₦930 in Nigeria.

  • 4 rolls of toilet paper R 25 (₦575) ₦311 in Nigeria.

  • Tube of toothpaste R 19 (433 ₦) ₦396 in Nigeria.

8. Outing in South Africa is 13% more expensive than in Nigeria:

  • Dinner for two costs about N 4,367 (R 194) and R 342 in South Africa.

  • 2 tickets to the movies cost R3,852 (R 171) and R 174 in South Africa.

  • A beer costs N366 (R 16 ) in Nigeria and R32 in South Africa.

 

Cost Of Living Calculation South Africa VS Nigeria:

  • Food: -9%

  • Housing: -1%

  • Clothes:70%

  • Transportation: +44%

  • Personal Care: 22%

Total - 12%

 

Note: This calculation was given by the cost of living calculator tool Expatisan.

 

 

Conclusion:

To summarize, here are a few takeaways from this article to keep in mind, should you move.

  • The cost of living in South Africa, can be rounded up to an estimated price of R42,244. The poverty rate in South Africa is 55.5% that is 30,383,788 (thirty million three hundred eighty-three thousand, seven hundred eighty-eight) South Africans living in poverty.

  • Sandton has the highest cost of living, raking in R74,612 as it’s total cost of living. The average annual salary an expert can earn in Sandton is R289,000. This city has a high cost of living, and an equally high salary to help you live comfortably, while working there.


 

Note

Before you move to any of these cities for a job, you should keep in mind that these cost of living were gathered from estimated prices, and can increase or reduce due to a number of unforeseen factors. This is just to show you what you should expect while moving.

 

 

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