The cost of living in Vietnam is at an affordable level compared to many other countries worldwide. However, this may vary depending on which city you want to settle down in. In this guide, we will help you better understand the average cost of living in the top five cities in Vietnam.
1. What is the cost of living in Vietnam?
The cost of living in Vietnam is generally considered to be relatively low compared to many Western countries. Accommodation, particularly outside major cities, can be affordable, although prices have been rising in popular expat areas.
Daily expenses like food, transportation, and entertainment are generally inexpensive, with street food options being particularly budget-friendly. Healthcare costs are also comparatively low, though the quality of medical facilities can vary.
However, it is important to note that certain cities, like Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City, have higher living costs compared to smaller towns. Overall, Vietnam offers a range of affordable options for those seeking a lower cost of living.
>>> Read our guide on Vietnam money so you can learn more about Vietnam’s currency
2. Is living in Vietnam expensive or affordable?
Is it cheap to live in Vietnam? Yes, it is. Numbeo, a global consumer database on prices, crime rates, and healthcare quality, recently released mid-2022 data, updated in June, revealing several notable insights, including the average cost of living in Vietnam.
The cost of living index for countries and cities worldwide is calculated in relative comparison to the cost of living in New York City (USA). Thus, Numbeo assigns a cost of living index of 100 (100%) to New York City and calculates the index for other countries and cities accordingly. Therefore, countries with a score higher than 100 indicate a higher cost of living than New York, while a score below 100 suggests a lower cost of living than New York.
Vietnam currently ranks 89 out of 139 countries in Numbeo's cost of living index. According to Numbeo's data, Vietnam's cost of living index for 2022 is 37.48 points. Compared to 2021, Vietnam ranked 95 out of 138 countries worldwide, indicating a rise of 6 positions within a year.
This implies that the cost of living in Vietnam has also climbed 6 ranks towards "countries with a higher cost of living." When comparing Vietnam's cost of living to some countries in the Southeast Asian region, this nation of nearly 100 million people is not the most expensive in ASEAN.
According to Numbeo, the country currently topping the list for the highest cost of living is Singapore, with a score of 83.98, followed by Cambodia, 49.11; Thailand, 43.21; and Vietnam, 37.48 points.
>>> If you just want to get to Vietnam for a vacation trip, we highly recommend you check out our article on Vietnam travel costs
3. What is the approximate monthly cost of living in Vietnam?
So, how much does it cost to live in Vietnam?
The approximate monthly cost of living in Vietnam in USD can vary depending on various factors such as location, lifestyle, and personal preferences.
However, as a rough estimate, a comfortable lifestyle in Vietnam can be maintained with a budget of around $700 to $1,200 per month. This budget would typically cover expenses such as accommodation (rent or mortgage), utilities, food, transportation, healthcare, and entertainment.
It is important to note that the cost of living in Vietnam per month may be higher in major cities like Hanoi or Ho Chi Minh City compared to smaller towns or rural areas. Additionally, individual spending habits and choices can significantly impact the overall monthly cost of living.
4. Exploring the cost of living in various cities of Vietnam
Ho Chi Minh City and Hanoi, Vietnam capital, are Vietnam's costliest urban centers. Nevertheless, even in these cities, a couple can maintain a comfortable middle-class lifestyle for under $1,300 per month.
Some Western residents of Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City manage with a monthly expenditure of approximately $500, although it entails a basic, no-frills existence. For those desiring a luxurious experience, the cost of living in Hanoi Vietnam is around $4,000 for high-end indulgences like a spacious furnished home overlooking a lake or park, dining at five-star restaurants, and frequent cruises and sightseeing trips within Vietnam. The same is true with the cost of living in Ho Chi Minh City Vietnam.
Living outside Vietnam's major cities, such as Nha Trang, Hoi An, Da Nang, and Vung Tau, comes with significantly lower expenses. In any of these destinations, a budget ranging from $800 to $1,100 per month covers a delightful house or apartment, including utilities, housekeeping, groceries, daily dining out if desired, and occasional massages.
All these towns offer living options just a short stroll away from the beach, and some even boast ocean-view homes. For instance, if the cost of living in Da Nang Vietnam is around $3,500 to $4,500 per month, one can rent a contemporary villa with a private pool, relishing a regal existence while dining at the finest local establishments.
If you plan to visit Vietnam’s top tourist destinations like Phu Quoc, Nha Trang, Hoi An, Danang, or Halong, we highly recommend you book your accommodations at Vinpearl. This is Vietnam’s top-rated hotel and resort system, with rooms that have the best views and top-tier amenities like superb golf courses, relaxing massages, etc.
In conclusion, the cost of living in Vietnam offers a range of possibilities to suit different budgets and lifestyles. While major cities like Ho Chi Minh City and Hanoi can be relatively more expensive, it is still possible to enjoy a comfortable life as a couple for under $1,300 per month. Those who opt for a simpler lifestyle can get by with around $500 per month. Meanwhile, outside the major cities, places like Da Nang, Hoi An, Nha Trang, and Vung Tau provide more affordable living options with a budget of $800 to $1,100 monthly.