2020 International cost of living and hardship / quality of living data for 780 global locations.
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Venezuela is in Northern South America, bordering the Caribbean Sea and the North Atlantic Ocean, between Colombia and Guyana.
The climate is tropical, hot and humid, but more moderate in the highlands.
The official language is Spanish. Many local professionals speak English, knowledge of Spanish is appreciated and particularly useful.
The main religion is Christianity.
The economy of Venezuela is dominated by the petroleum sector accounting for roughly a third of GDP, around 80% of exports and more than half of government revenues. Gold, diamonds and iron ore are mined as well. Venezuela contains some of the largest oil and natural gas reserves in the world. It consistently ranks among the top ten crude oil producers in the world. Food shortages, violence and political crisis have escalated to new extremes. Venezuela’s economy in 2018 is collapsing with hyperinflation at levels unmatched anywhere else in the world. The IMF projects inflation will reach 13,000% this year and the economy will shrink 15%. Cost of living reports for Venezuela should be used with caution until the current hyperinflation and currency collapse is resolved.
Expatriate dress code is conservative and formal. Venezuelans are very fashionable. Nice suits are respected. The safety risk for expatriates in Venezuela is medium but high in Caracas and near the Colombian border. Risks include opportunistic street and petty crime, violent crime (kidnapping, carjacking and armed robberies), and high risk of express kidnapping in the main urban areas, such as Caracas and Maracaibo, and in areas close to the Colombian border. Other risks include very high inflation, tight government controls on foreign exchange, the poor state of the economy and infrastructure, regular protest action, and shortages of basic items.
The currency of Venezuela is the Venezuelan Bolivar Fuerte (VEF). Strict currency exchange controls are in place. There are two official exchange rates. Only use official currency exchange. It is illegal to exchange money on the black market. It is difficult to change Bolivars to US dollars. ATMs have low limits for cash withdrawals using international cards. Credit card fraud and cards being cloned is common.
Health care facilities vary in quality. In large cities, private clinics are generally good for routine treatment but often experience shortages of medicine. Serious or complex health care treatment may require evacuation which can be expensive. Dengue fever and malaria are present. Cases of Chikungunya virus and Zika virus have been reported.
The population is 31.6 Million (2019 est.), and the inflation rate (CPI) is 9585.5% for Venezuela as at December 2019.
The Xpatulator Hypothetical Tax for Venezuela is based on the current personal income tax rates which are progressive up to 34%.
Within Venezuela we also cover Caracas.
The cost of living for expatriates in Venezuela as at January 2020 is very low in comparison to other places in the world. We have collected prices for the same items, world wide, based on Expat spending norms, in or closest to the location, and converted them to $USD so that we can compare the cost of 13 different baskets in 780 global locations. For each basket, compared to New York, the equivalent cost in Venezuela is as follows:1) Alcohol and/or Tobacco: for items such as beer, spirits, wine and tobacco related products such as cigarettes. A basket costing USD$1000 in New York costs USD$470. Average price in a store for a midrange bottle of wine is USD$14.30, domestic/local beer (500ml) USD$1.43, imported/international beer (330ml) USD$3.61 and a pack of 20 cigarettes is USD$6.50.2) Clothing: for items such as business, casual and children's clothing and footwear. A basket costing USD$1000 in New York costs USD$580. Average price for an international brand of mens jeans is USD$46, a quality international brand of running shoes USD$83, mens leather shoes suitable for office wear USD$70 while a medium size international summer dress from a global chain store is USD$42.3) Communication: for various communication costs such as home telephone rental, internet subscription, mobile service provider tariff and data costs. A basket costing USD$200 in New York costs USD$60. Average price for a monthly standard plan internet subscription is USD$6, while the benchmark mobile tariff is USD$0.04 per minute.4) Education: for items such as creche / pre-school fees, primary school fees, high school fees and tertiary study fees. A basket costing USD$30000 in New York costs USD$6000. Average annual private international school fee (excluding extras) USD$3,966 for Primary School, and USD$4,414 for High School.5) Furniture & Appliances: for items such as dining table and chairs, home entertainment, kitchen appliances, and sofas. A basket costing USD$2500 in New York costs USD$750. Average price for a 6kg front loader Washing Machine is USD$495, and USD$425 for a 46+'' LED UHD TV.6) Groceries: for items such as consumables, cleaning products, dairy, fresh fruit & vegetables, general food products, snacks, soft drinks. A basket costing USD$1000 in New York costs USD$160. Average grocery prices in a major international retail store for 1 kg apples is USD$4.85, 1 kg oranges USD$1.31, 1 head lettuce USD$1.00, 1 kg potatos USD$1.94, 1 kg boneless, skinless, chicken breast USD$3.42, 1 kg cheddar cheese USD$3.64, 1 dozen large eggs USD$1.56, 500g loaf white bread USD$0.96, 1 L full cream milk USD$1.44, and 1.5 L water USD$0.95.7) Healthcare: for general heath care, doctor visits, hospital stays, non-prescription medicine, and medical insurance. A basket costing USD$1000 in New York costs USD$520. Average healthcare cost for a private practice Doctor visit for an uninsured patient is USD$42, and a private hospital stay per day including nursing care, medications, diagnostic tests, food, and related costs is USD$1,297.8) Household Accommodation: for items such as apartment rent, house rent, property purchase, mortgage rate, and utilities. A basket costing USD$5000 in New York costs USD$1700. Average expatriate house / apartment rent for a secure upmarket unfurnished apartment (3 bedrooms) is USD$1,663 in a central location, and USD$1,052 in a suburban location, per month, excluding utilities.9) Miscellaneous: for items such as dry cleaning, linen, magazines, newspapers, office supplies, and postage stamps. A basket costing USD$500 in New York costs USD$140. Average price for dry cleaning (1 mens 2 pc suit) is USD$2.75, while an international newspaper is USD$0.85.10) Personal Care: for items such as cosmetics, hair care, and toiletries. A basket costing USD$500 in New York costs USD$155. Average cost for a mens haircut and blow dry is USD$12, while a womens hair colour, cut and blow dry - medium length is USD$62.11) Recreation & Culture: for items such as books, cinema, sport and theatre tickets. A basket costing USD$500 in New York costs USD$115. Average price for a latest release international cinema ticket (average of on and off peak where applicable) for one adult is USD$6.50, and an international fitness, recreation or sports club membership cost for one adult is USD$9 per month.12) Restaurants Meals Out and Hotels: for items such as hotel daily room rates, meals and beverages in a restaurant, and take away food and beverages. A basket costing USD$1000 in New York costs USD$290. Average cappuccino price (regular, medium) is USD$0.94, coke/pepsi (330ml) USD$1.21, burger meal (international franchise or similar) USD$2.93, and a mid-range international restaurant meal for 2 USD$32.50.13) Transport: for items such as fuel (petrol/gasoline), car hire, public transport, vehicle purchase and maintenance. A basket costing USD$1000 in New York costs USD$230. Average average price over the last year for highest available octane petrol / gasoline (1L) is USD$0.80, while the benchmark car sedan purchase price including taxes/duties for a compact / small / economy vehicle (1.4 L) is USD$20,000.
Venezuela is -78.1% cheaper than USA for groceries, -38.7% cheaper for household costs than UK, and -41.8% cheaper for transport costs than India.
Venezuela is ranked as an extreme hardship location.The hardship premium for Venezuela for an expat from Australia, is for example 30%, i.e. host location (Venezuela) premium of 40% minus home (Australia) location premium of 10%.