How much do you need to live comfortably in Vietnam?
Well, I’ve got good news.
As someone who has lived in Vietnam and South East Asia for many years.
I know how much money you need to live comfortably in Vietnam, retire in Vietnam, or take a gap year in Vietnam.
How Much Do You Need To Live Comfortably In Vietnam As An Expat
Recently we explored the cheapest countries in South East Asia.
During that research, we found that Vietnam was one of the cheapest countries to live in.
This includes all different lifestyles.
Nevertheless, comfortability has a different definition depending on the traveler.
The total amount of money you will need to live comfortably in Vietnam is $1100 – $1400 a month, which includes accommodation, insurance, and all other significant expenses.
However, if you are a budget-friendly traveler or a retiree who has a quiet lifestyle, you will find that the total amount of money you will need to live comfortably in Vietnam will be around $1000 per month.
On the other end of the scale…
If you enjoy your comforts of life, wish to stay in a nice apartment, and enjoy your life or retirement to the fullest….
In that case, the total amount of money you will need to live comfortably in Vietnam will be $1400 – $2000.
One of the most significant considerations when looking at monthly living costs for Vietnam as an expat is the location.
Vietnam is a highly diverse country and has several lifestyle options.
If you want to live in the capital, you will naturally find the cost of living in Vietnam much more expensive than someone living in a quieter area such as Da Nang.
So let’s look at how much you will need to live comfortably in Vietnam in a little more depth.
Accommodation Costs In Vietnam For Foreigners
The accommodation costs in Vietnam will fluctuate depending on the location and type of accommodation.
Nevertheless, most accommodations fall under the budget-friendly price bracket.
If you use Airbnb, you will find apartments and condominiums for $175 – $300 a month on average.
The benefit of accommodation costs in Vietnam is that most hosts offer fantastic discounts for long-term travelers.
So if you are booking one month or longer, you will find that the prices are much lower. But naturally, this will depend on the host.
Other accommodation options are available, and there are many budget-friendly hotels within a similar price range.
Accommodations in Vietnam that are priced above $400 are typically in prime areas, large units, or brand new ones.
Thus even though accommodation is a significant expense, the cost in Vietnam is considerably less than in other South East Asian countries.
Utility Costs In Vietnam For Foreigners
The majority of utility costs in Vietnam for foreigners are insignificant.
Electric prices are usually the main focus of utilities when looking at how much money you will need to live in Vietnam.
The price of electricity is $0.080 per kWh.
Looking through the last five years of data, we see that Vietnam’s electricity prices have steadily increased.
However, the electricity costs are still on the low side.
The total cost you will need for utilities in Vietnam will depend on your usage.
Nevertheless, most foreigners living in Vietnam do not spend more than $100 a month on utility costs.
Food Costs In Vietnam For Foreigners
Food costs are another cost that fluctuates depending on the traveler.
There are many unique and delicious Vietnam foods that can be purchased all across the country.
In some cases, a small meal (including a side and a drink) can be purchased for less than a dollar.
Western food is the most significant section of a foreigner’s food budget in Vietnam.
You will find that western food can sometimes be just as expensive or, in some cases, more expensive than back home.
Therefore if you are looking to live in Vietnam on a budget, it is recommended to stick with local cuisine.
Other Costs In Vietnam For Foreigners
There are many other living costs for foreigners in Vietnam that you need to be considered when looking at how much money you will need to live comfortably.
Entertainment costs (including tours) will fluctuate depending on location and lifestyle.
Insurance costs are optional; however, health and travel insurance are recommended, which also need to be considered.
Visa costs are another category that will need to be considered; however, the cost of visas in Vietnam is meager.
Budgeting for minor expenses such as having a haircut and laundry is also recommended. Again, these are small expenses but can add up over time.
How Much Money Do I Need To Live Well In Vietnam
If you are looking to live well in Vietnam and not worry about money ever again, then you will need a budget of $1500 per month.
A budget of $1500 is much more than the average cost of an expat living or retiring in Vietnam; thus, it is highly likely that 20-30% of this budget will not be needed and can be used for other purposes or saved.
However, if you want to live well in an expensive area of Vietnam or have a more expensive lifestyle, you may wish to budget at least $2000.
However, to live comfortably in Vietnam, $1100 – $1400 is very common. Some long-term residents spend much less than this budget and can live in Vietnam on a budget of less than $1000.
How Much Do I Need To Retire In Vietnam
Unfortunately, Vietnam does not have a retirement visa, so retirees will need to gain another type of visa. But costs for visas are on the low end.
The total cost you will need to retire in Vietnam will be $1500 monthly. This total cost supports your retirement lifestyle while also having additional cash that can be used for healthcare or future retirement living costs.
As mentioned living in Vietnam is one of the cheapest countries in South East Asia.
Therefore retiring on a budget in Vietnam is absolutely possible.
I have met many retirees who have retired in Vietnam for less than $1000, And they can live a fantastic lifestyle.
After some time living in Vietnam, you will find that you can negotiate and get the best prices and lower the most significant expenses.
This is one of the reasons why many retirees can retire in Vietnam on a low budget and still live very comfortably.
Nevertheless, this is commonly not recommended without a financial safety net.
How Much Per Month To Live In Vietnam
If you are looking to live cheaply in Vietnam, the total cost you will need will be $800 – $1000.
If you are looking to live comfortably in Vietnam as a foreigner, the total cost you will need will be $1100 – $1400.
If you are looking to live well in Vietnam and not worry about money, the total cost you will need will be $1500 – $2000.
If you are looking to retire in Vietnam, the total cost you will need will be $1500.
As mentioned throughout today’s article, these prices will differ individually.
It is possible to live on a low budget in Vietnam and still live well.
However, to achieve this goal, a traveler must budget food and accommodation costs and live in a cheaper part of the country.
On the other side of the coin…
You may need as much as $2000 a month to live in Vietnam if your lifestyle requires it or you are planning to live in the capital.
Is It Cheap To Live In Vietnam, Or Is Living In Vietnam Expensive?
After carefully studying the data, looking back at my experience, and speaking to other expats, it is clear that Vietnam is a very cheap country to live in on average.
I say on average because all of us have different lifestyles and expenses.
For example, if you have a house back home or you have a financial commitment, this may mean that your total budget will be slightly more expensive than those who do not have these commitments.
Vietnam is one of the cheapest and most liveable countries in the world.
During our case study, where we compared each country in South East Asia, we found that Vietnam was one of the cheapest countries to live in for foreigners.
So is living in Vietnam expensive? In 90% of cases, the answer is no. but if your lifestyle is costly, you may find the answer is yes.
On the flipside…
Is it cheap to live in Vietnam? For most expats Vietnam is exceptionally cost-effective.
It’s always best to compare your personal budget with the prices of Vietnam to get a complete picture of your individual costs to live comfortably in Vietnam.
More Vietnam Expat Guides
- How Much Do You Need To Live Comfortably In Vietnam 2022
- How To Earn Money Online In Vietnam For Foreigners