Brunei is in South-eastern Asia, bordering the South China Sea and Malaysia. The climate is tropical, hot, humid, and rainy. The official language is Bahasa Melayu (Malay). English and various dialects of Chinese are also spoken. The main religions are Islam, Buddhism and Christianity. The economy of Brunei is small but wealthy with a mixture of foreign and domestic entrepreneurship, government regulation, welfare measures, and village tradition. Crude oil and natural gas production account for nearly half of its GDP. Substantial income from overseas investment supplements income from domestic production. Bruneians shake hands with a light touch of the hands and raising their hand to their chest. As in most Islamic countries, some people do not shake hands with members of the opposite sex. Expatriate business dress is formal when conducting business. Muslims in Brunei dress conservatively and many women wear a head scarf in public including offices. Non-Muslim women are not required to wear a head scarf. The working week is Sunday to Thursday. Businesses are closed on Fridays. The security risk for expatriates in Brunei is low. Risk is primarily traffic accidents. Expatriates should be aware of Islamic cultural sensitivities. The currency of Brunei is the Brunei Dollar (BND). Singapore dollars may also be used and are of the same value as the Brunei Dollar. Credit cards are generally accepted. Medical facilities are generally acceptable. The population of Brunei is 417,200 (2019 est.), while the inflation rate (CPI) is -0.8% for Brunei as at August 2019. Xpatulator Hypothetical Tax for Brunei is based on the current personal income tax rate of 0% as there is currently no personal income tax.
Cost Of Living
The cost of living for expatriates / professional migrants in 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 Brunei is as follows: Brunei as at 1 November 2019 is low in comparison to other places in the world. 1) Alcohol and/or Tobacco: for tobacco related products such as cigarettes. A basket costing USD$1000 in New York costs USD$990. 2) Clothing: for items such as business, casual and children's clothing and footwear. A basket costing USD$1000 in New York costs USD$870. Average price for an international brand of mens jeans is USD$67, a quality international brand of running shoes USD$78, mens leather shoes suitable for office wear USD$58 while a medium size international summer dress from a global chain store is USD$29. 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$266. Average price for a monthly standard plan internet subscription is USD$108, while the benchmark mobile tariff is USD$0.12 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$20400. Average annual private international school fee (excluding extras) USD$13,249 for Primary School, and USD$14,743 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$2325. Average price for a 6kg front loader Washing Machine is USD$736, and USD$632 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$820. Average grocery prices in a major international retail store for 1 kg apples is USD$1.97, 1 kg oranges USD$2.14, 1 head lettuce USD$2.13, 1 kg potatos USD$1.52, 1 kg boneless, skinless, chicken breast USD$2.96, 1 kg cheddar cheese USD$5.35, 1 dozen large eggs USD$2.13, 500g loaf white bread USD$1.46, 1 L full cream milk USD$2.02, and 1.5 L water USD$0.84. 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$560. Average healthcare cost for a private practice Doctor visit for an uninsured patient is USD$45, and a private hospital stay per day including nursing care, medications, diagnostic tests, food, and related costs is USD$1,394. 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$2250. Average expatriate house / apartment rent for a secure upmarket unfurnished apartment (3 bedrooms) is USD$2,160 in a central location, and USD$1,348 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$440. Average price for dry cleaning (1 mens 2 pc suit) is USD$8.54, while an international newspaper is USD$2.63. 10) Personal Care: for items such as cosmetics, hair care, and toiletries. A basket costing USD$500 in New York costs USD$200. Average cost for a mens haircut and blow dry is USD$16, while a womens hair colour, cut and blow dry - medium length is USD$79. 11) Recreation & Culture: for items such as books, cinema, sport and theatre tickets. A basket costing USD$500 in New York costs USD$340. Average price for a latest release international cinema ticket (average of on and off peak where applicable) for one adult is USD$5.09, and an international fitness, recreation or sports club membership cost for one adult is USD$48 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$460. Average cappuccino price (regular, medium) is USD$3.30, coke/pepsi (330ml) USD$0.80, burger meal (international franchise or similar) USD$5.32, and a mid-range international restaurant meal for 2 USD$29.08. 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$620. Average average price over the last year for highest available octane petrol / gasoline (1L) is USD$0.38, while the benchmark car sedan purchase price including taxes/duties for a compact / small / economy vehicle (1.4 L) is USD$21,083. Brunei is 10.3% more expensive than USA for groceries, -15.1% cheaper for household costs than UK, and 56.2% more expensive for transport costs than India. The hardship premium for Brunei for an expat from Australia, is for example 20%, i.e. host location (Brunei) premium of 30% minus home (Australia) location premium of 10%. Brunei is ranked as a high degree of hardship location. Want to know more about cost of living, hardship (quality of living) or expat salary in Brunei? Register subscribe to your home location and Brunei and run your personalised reports.