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Is Australia an expensive country? Is Australia expensive

Is Australia an expensive country?

06 May 2019 | Budget tips
Photo: Is Australia an expensive country?

“Australia is a beautiful country, but life there is expensive! That’s one of the most heard comments from people who have been there on holiday. We have been on holiday in Australia for a month now and have experienced how expensive it is. Our first perception there was that everything seemed very expensive. From the beer in the pub to the cheese in the shop. However, in hindsight our expenses per day per person were not that bad, when I started to calculate back over the whole holiday.

The exchange rate

Then how come we feel that everything is so expensive in Australia? Personally, I think it’s a few things that cause the feeling. First of all, of course, you have to deal with the conversion factor of the exchange rate. 1 Australian dollar was about 0,7 Euro in our holiday. So when we bought something for 10AUD it was actually 7 Euro. Of course, you often convert to get a feeling for the price, but in the supermarket there is a lot to convert. And you go unconsciously on the Australian Dollar prices, which give you a more expensive feeling.

Tip: before heading to Australia, always look at the current exchange rate. This way you’ll never be surprised and you’ll start your trip through Australia well prepared in financial terms. Wondering where you can quickly see the exchange rate? On you can easily convert the euro to the Australian dollar.

Larger packages

Then there’s another factor that clouded your image of expensive and inexpensive. In Australia, many product packages are larger than in the Netherlands. So you seem to pay more, but you also get more for it. The price per kg/litre is often not more expensive at all.

Compare the Netherlands with Australia

For the sake of comparison, I have put a few things together that are based as far as possible on equivalent products. Of course this does not apply at all 100%, because I have no scientific basis for this short comparison, but it does give a different picture than we first thought.

Price table: Netherlands vs Australia
Price table: Netherlands vs Australia (prices from 2017)

As you can see, some things are a bit more expensive and some things are a bit cheaper in Australia compared to the Netherlands. On average I don’t think there is much difference. In addition, just like in the Netherlands, you can choose between expensive A-brands and cheaper private labels. There is still a big difference in price.

What about housing costs?

What about homes? If you’re looking for a one-bedroom apartment to rent outside central Sydney, you’ll pay around 1,230 euros a month in Sydney. If you’re looking for a one-bedroom apartment outside the city centre in Amsterdam, you’ll pay around 1,500 euros per month.

I also looked at the average salary in Australia in Sydney and the average salary in the Netherlands. In Sydney an average of 3,154 euros per month is earned net, while in the Netherlands the average income is around 2,050 euros net.

Life in Sydney - Is Australia expensive
Life in Sydney – How expensive is Australia?

Is Australia really that expensive?

When you look at all this, you would say that Australia is not more expensive than the Netherlands and that people earn more and can therefore spend more. Now the above research is too short to be able to draw this conclusion firmly. In Sydney the centre prices are very high and so are the incomes. Outside the big cities in Australia the costs are lower and the average salaries are also lower. So there are many variables that influence the price, just like in the Netherlands, where you live cheaper in Groningen, then in Amsterdam.

Budget tip

The advice I would like to give you, when you go on holiday to a country with a different currency: take into account the conversion factor (exchange rate) and also look closely at how much you get for your money!

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