Would it surprise you to know that the average monthly cost of living in the United States is $1,951 in 2022? Looking at it from a perspective of U.S. dollars, the United States is the tenth most expensive country to live in out of all 195 countries in the world! But we’re not here to look at the most expensive countries in the world. We’re looking at cheap luxury – a good-sized home, low-cost transportation, affordable healthcare, and enough money leftover to not have to worry about things like how much food you can eat on your budget.
Here are the 25 cheapest countries to live in luxury.
Vietnam is a beautiful country. With 97.34 million people, it’s the second largest Southeast Asian country in terms of population – beaten only by Indonesia. In size, Vietnam is slightly larger than New Mexico. It’s bordered by China, Laos, Cambodia, and the South China Sea – or, as it is called in Vietnam, the “Eastern Sea.”
For cost of living, the average sits at about 639 US dollars monthly. Combined with its beautiful views, wondrous cuisine perfect for adventurous eaters, and low-cost public transportation available, this “cheap”-living country can certainly make for some luxury.
History buffs: if you love classic architecture and other historical artifacts from the Byzantine, Baroque, and Romanesque time periods, Serbia is a great place for you! Particularly, more than 200 monasteries from the middle ages reside in this country, and act as direct windows into our past.
$711 is the average monthly cost of living for this country – which, while more than Vietnam, is offset by the interesting culture the country has to offer. With the generally warm and friendly people there to welcome you, this is a hot destination for “cheap” luxury.
With 123.5 million people, Mexico is the second-largest Latin American country and the most populated Spanish-speaking nation in the world. While it is very large in size – being nearly 2 million kilometers – or 1.25 million miles – almost 70% of the population lives in the country’s urban areas.
Mexico is also home to some of the refined ancient cultures of the Americas, including the Olmecs, Mayas, Toltecs, and Aztecs. Cost of living sits at 678 US dollars – or approximately 13,588 pesos – per month.
South Africa gives affordable luxury without a language barrier, as the primary language is English, thanks to British colonization in the early 19th century. It is considered by some to be the cheapest country to live in with English as the main language, at approximately $937 per month. It is also home to some of the most diverse nature you’ll ever see, and it is a cultural hotspot for ethnic diversity.
Nicaragua is one of the poorest countries in the world – and not everywhere in the country would be an ideal place for luxury. But Managua, the capital of Nicaragua, is a nice gem the country has to offer.
At an average of 633 US dollars, it definitely sits toward the cheaper side of monthly cost of living. While it is slightly more expensive than the rest of the country to live in Managua, as any urban area will be, it is still considered an affordable luxury.
It’s not a secret that Americans have a lot of political “beef” with China – and the culture shock for an American to move to China would be pretty significant. But it is certainly not to be overlooked when examining cheap luxury.
China has an average cost of living of 752 US dollars per month – or about 5415 yuans (Chinese currency) – and the economy is booming! Generally, China has higher average salaries than other Asian countries, and the unique culture makes it even better. With delicious Chinese foods, the art culture, festivals, landscapes, and man-made beauties like the Great Wall of China, attuning to the culture would be easy for anyone eager to learn.
Machu Picchu may be what most people know Peru for, but it is also home to the amazing history of the ancient Inca empire. In addition, Peru is a very cheap place to live, sitting right at 630 US dollars a month on average. Mixed with its cultural history and beautiful nature, Peru may be the next home for someone seeking cheap luxury.
Set on living cheaply in Europe? Poland might be the right place for you. With 882 US dollars as a monthly cost of living, Poland is one of the cheapest European countries to live and work in.
Cities like Warsaw are very modern, but you also get the beauty of nature in one of Poland’s 23 National Parks. And don’t forget that It’s a hub for world history – particularly for those who are World War II buffs or interested in the invasion of Poland in 1939.
Malaysia, known for its white-sandy beaches, ancient rainforests, and beautiful islands, is a great place to cheaply enjoy luxury. The southeast Asian country is actually divided into two regions, separated by the South China Sea. There’s Peninsular Malaysia, or West Malaysia, and Malaysian Borneo, or East Malaysia.
In total, it has a population of about 33 million people, its largest (and its capital) city being Kuala Lumpur. Sitting comfortably at 652 US dollars for a monthly cost of living, Malaysia is one of the cheaper countries to enjoy luxurious affordability.
Like Malaysia, the beaches of Costa Rica draw visitors. Because of the tropical nature of the island, mixed with the thick jungles and friendly locals, it’s definitely a cultural hotspot. Costa Rica has a higher cost of living than most of its adjacent countries, at 852 US dollars per month, but it makes up for it with higher salaries. Enjoy the grand adventures that come with island life in Costa Rica, and get ready to bear the heat of the tropics.
Bula! This is a common greeting used in Fiji, and defines the idea of Fiji island living. Bula is an informal way of saying hello, good morning, good afternoon, and the like. Made up of 333 tropic islands, Fiji is known for its beautiful landscapes and adventurous coral reefs. The capital of Fiji is Suva, and the entire country has a population of almost 900,000.
773 US dollars would be your average monthly cost of living in Fiji, so you can enjoy the life of the Fiji islands, explore the beautiful nature, including those famed coral reefs, in cheap luxury.
Bolivia is a South American country completely bordered by land; five countries, Brazil, Peru, Paraguay, Chile, and Argentina, surround the country. Bolivia once belonged to the ancient Incas, but now, current-day Bolivia is an independent state and one of the few countries to have two capitals: La Paz and Sucre.
At 750 US dollars a month, Bolivia is definitely on the more affordable side of monthly cost of living. And who could resist the beautiful Andean Baroque architecture of some of Bolivia’s most beautiful buildings, including the Facade of the Basílica de San Francisco in La Paz.
The Philippines is an island nation in Southeast Asia, made up of more than 7640 islands divided into three main parts: Luzon, which holds the capital city Manila, Visayas, and Mindanao. At 601 US dollars for monthly living expenses, this country bridges affordability with luxury, as you can explore some of the things the Philippines are famous for, including the Tubbataha Reef Marine Park in the Sulu Sea, the walled area of Intramuros in the city of Manila, the Banaue Rice Terraces, and many other things.
Pakistan is definitely going to have one of the least expensive costs of living on this list, at 370 US dollars a month on average. And while there may be good reasons for its low expenses – considering the tension happening in the Middle East region with the U.S. right now, along with other troubles, you can find luxury in the gem city Karachi. Karachi is an economic hub and the country’s largest city – maintaining the big city lifestyle with low cost of living.
Colombia is kind of unique in that it is the second-most biodiverse country in the world, meaning whatever climate you’re after, you can probably find it in this country! The South American country is known for its beautiful climate in the lower Andes mountains, giving it a nice spring-time feel. And not too far away is the cooler climates of the upper mountains. Go further toward the coast and you’ve got the warm tropics. And who could beat this biodiversity with only a $574 cost of living per month?
Often referred to as “The Land of Smiles,” Thailand has done well in establishing itself as a happy, affordable country. Even in cities like Bangkok, cost of living is fairly low, at 831 US dollars per month on average. And with Thailand’s beautiful clear waters on white sandy beaches, it establishes a kind of luxury most people long for.
With ethereal spring weather, warm beaches that somehow evade the damp moisture that comes with the tropics, inland hills, and flourishing agriculture, Ecuador is a South American coastal country that presents beautiful nature while being easy on the wallet. $756 – as Ecuador uses the US dollar as currency – is the cost of living that will get you a satisfactory lifestyle in comfortable weather and luxurious nature all around you.
With one of the higher amounts on this list, Chile has an average monthly cost of living of 905 US dollars – but its incredible attractions draw you in for the height of luxury. In this long, thin country. as it borders the southwest edge of South America, you’ll find very friendly locals. Listen for the phrase “Buena onda” – as it translates to “good vibes.” Locals are open to adventure – as we all should be! And with the luxurious wine culture Chile has to offer, you’re going to find it absolutely phenomenal.
The Caribbean is an effervescent place full of deep wonders and rich history. And at 889 US dollars per month for living expenses, one can definitely feel the comforts of luxury in this very lowly populated country. In fact, it remains one of the least populated countries in Central America at a little over 405,000.
Another Caribbean country, Honduras is significantly bigger than Belize, as it has a population over 9 million, and is over 112,000 kilometers (or almost 44,000 miles) in size.This country is known for its sharp mountain ranges and volcanic highlands, although Honduras is the only Central American country without volcanoes. And at 765 US dollars in cost of living per month, it makes for a beautiful natural environment while living at an inexpensive cost.
We’ve all dreamed of seeing the Great Pyramids up close… right? A life in Egypt is certainly one filled with ancient history as well as some of the great wonders of the ancient world. In fact, Egypt is the second-oldest civilization in our world, being established in 3100 BC. It is second only to Iran, at 3200 BC. And in modern times, the locals are said to be extremely friendly and helpful. Bordering Africa and the Middle East, this country is cheap to live in, averaging a cost of only 449 US dollars per month.
Papua New Guinea
Papua New Guinea, on the Oceania continent, is one of the least developed countries in the world. Despite this, it is rich in resources, has beautiful landscapes, and is home to warm, friendly people. But be warned: modern luxuries are not available to everyone in Papua New Guinea, even though they have an abundance of resources. You’d have to settle in the right place to consider it “luxurious,” but it is still a country that should be considered. And at 530 US dollars per month on average, you could make this a luxury home.
The most significant advantage of a country like Bulgaria is its low cost of living, which is $654 USD per month. It also maintains a relatively short distance from more expensive countries like Italy and France and other closer countries like Greece and Turkey. The history in Bulgaria is also something worthwhile and can be an excellent source of happiness for history buffs.
The Czech Republic
The Czech Republic is one of the only countries on this list to exceed 1,000 US dollars in monthly cost of living, but by only $14! At 1014 US dollars, it’s the most expensive on this list, but well worth it! The amazing culture of the Czech Republic, particularly in a city like Prague, draws people from all over the world with its old-world charm. Prague is also one of the safest cities in the world. That in itself should equal luxury.
Alright alright – Greece also exceeds 1000 US dollars in living costs. But this time by only $8! With $1008 in living expenses, Greece is one of the most culturally diverse, historically rich places one could live. The luxury of the sights, history, architecture, nature, and friendly people far outweighs the extra $8. Even a visit to somewhere like Athens is luxury in itself.
What cheap countries do you think can provide a life of luxury? Is there any country that you have always dreamed of living in?Let us know in the comments below.