International Cost of Living Calculators

2020 International cost of living and hardship / quality of living data for 780 global locations.

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Sao Tome and Principe, All Areas

Sao Tome and Principe, All Areas

Cost of living in Sao Tome and Principe, prices and what it is like to live for an Expat, quality of life / hardship, and compare cost of living for Expatriates as at October 2020.

What is it like to live in Sao Tome and Principe?

Climate: The climate is tropical, hot and humid with one rainy season (October to May).

Language: The official language is Portuguese. Foreigners who cannot speak the language might find it difficult to communicate. French is commonly spoken, but English is not widely understood.

Religion: Christianity.

Economy: The economy of Sao Tome and Principe, while traditionally dependent on cocoa, is experiencing considerable changes due to investment in the development of its oil industry its territorial waters in the oil-rich waters of the Gulf of Guinea.

Inflation: 10.1% for Sao Tome and Principe as at August 2020.

Money: The currency of Sao Tome and Principe is the Sao Tome/Principe Dobra (STD). Credit cards acceptance is limited. There are no ATMs.

Tax: In Sao Tome and Principe is based on the current personal income tax rates which are progressive up to 20%.

Population: 218,600 (2020 est.)

Expat Life: Expatriate dress code is relatively informal, comprising trousers and a shirt without tie are acceptable for men, and a smart dress for women. The safety risk for expatriates in Sao Tome and Principe is low. Risks include petty crime, such as pickpocketing while violent crime is rare. Other risks include those associated with poor infrastructure, particularly the roads and rural areas.

Health Care: Health care facilities are limited. Serious or complex health care treatment may require evacuation which can be expensive. The Coronavirus COVID-19 total reported cases for Sao Tome and Principe as at 29 October 2020 is 943, with 15 deaths. The rate of deaths per 1 million population is 68.

Sao Tome and Principe covers all areas within the country other than Sao Tome.

Cost Of Living

What is the cost of living in Sao Tome and Principe?

The cost of living for expatriates in Sao Tome and Principe as at October 2020 is average in comparison to other places in the world, with an overall Cost of Living Index (COLI), for all 13 basket groups, of 66.27 (New York =100). 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 Sao Tome and Principe is as follows:

1) Alcohol and/or Tobacco: Cost is low for items such as beer, spirits, wine and tobacco related products such as cigarettes. A basket costing USD$1,000 in New York costs USD$600. Average price in a store for a midrange bottle of wine is USD$8.00, domestic/local beer (500ml) USD$1.30, imported/international beer (330ml) USD$2.15 and a pack of 20 cigarettes is USD$2.22.

2) Clothing: Cost is very low for items such as business, casual and children's clothing and footwear. A basket costing USD$1,000 in New York costs USD$540. Average price for an international brand of mens jeans is USD$40, a quality international brand of running shoes USD$49, mens leather shoes suitable for office wear USD$63 while a medium size international summer dress from a global chain store is USD$27.

3) Communication: Cost is high 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$250. Average price for a monthly standard plan internet subscription is USD$76, while the benchmark mobile tariff is USD$0.12 per minute.

4) Education: Cost is average for items such as creche / pre-school fees, primary school fees, high school fees and tertiary study fees. A basket costing USD$30,000 in New York costs USD$25200. Average annual private international school fee (excluding extras) USD$16,295 for Primary School, and USD$18,134 for High School.

5) Furniture & Appliances: Cost is low for items such as dining table and chairs, home entertainment, kitchen appliances, and sofas. A basket costing USD$2,500 in New York costs USD$1600. Average price for a 6kg front loader Washing Machine is USD$625, and USD$536 for a 46+'' LED UHD TV.

6) Groceries: Cost is average for items such as consumables, cleaning products, dairy, fresh fruit & vegetables, general food products, snacks, soft drinks. A basket costing USD$1,000 in New York costs USD$700. Average grocery prices in a major international retail store for 1 kg apples is USD$3.91, 1 kg oranges USD$4.07, 1 head lettuce USD$0.97, 1 kg potatos USD$2.26, 1 kg boneless, skinless, chicken breast USD$10.92, 1 kg cheddar cheese USD$18.76, 1 dozen large eggs USD$3.23, 500g loaf white bread USD$1.09, 1 L full cream milk USD$2.12, and 1.5 L water USD$0.92.

7) Healthcare: Cost is average for general heath care, doctor visits, hospital stays, non-prescription medicine, and medical insurance. A basket costing USD$1,000 in New York costs USD$590. Average healthcare cost for a private practice Doctor visit for an uninsured patient is USD$47, and a private hospital stay per day including nursing care, medications, diagnostic tests, food, and related costs is USD$1,458.

8) Household Accommodation: Cost is average for items such as apartment rent, house rent, property purchase, mortgage rate, and utilities. A basket costing USD$5,000 in New York costs USD$2000. Average expatriate house / apartment rent for a secure upmarket unfurnished apartment (3 bedrooms) is USD$2,028 in a central location, and USD$1,277 in a suburban location, per month, excluding utilities.

9) Miscellaneous: Cost is average for items such as dry cleaning, linen, magazines, newspapers, office supplies, and postage stamps. A basket costing USD$500 in New York costs USD$315. Average price for dry cleaning (1 mens 2 pc suit) is USD$6.13, while an international newspaper is USD$1.89.

10) Personal Care: Cost is average for items such as cosmetics, hair care, and toiletries. A basket costing USD$500 in New York costs USD$345. Average cost for a mens haircut and blow dry is USD$28, while a womens hair colour, cut and blow dry - medium length is USD$138.

11) Recreation & Culture: Cost is very low for items such as books, cinema, sport and theatre tickets. A basket costing USD$500 in New York costs USD$220. Average price for a latest release international cinema ticket (average of on and off peak where applicable) for one adult is USD$9.43, and an international fitness, recreation or sports club membership cost for one adult is USD$42 per month.

12) Restaurants Meals Out and Hotels: Cost is low for items such as hotel daily room rates, meals and beverages in a restaurant, and take away food and beverages. A basket costing USD$1,000 in New York costs USD$430. Average cappuccino price (regular, medium) is USD$1.76, coke/pepsi (330ml) USD$1.44, burger meal (international franchise or similar) USD$8.00, and a mid-range international restaurant meal for 2 USD$41.62.

13) Transport: Cost is high for items such as fuel (petrol/gasoline), car hire, public transport, vehicle purchase and maintenance. A basket costing USD$1,000 in New York costs USD$1100. Average average price over the last year for highest available octane petrol / gasoline (1L) is USD$1.11, while the benchmark car sedan purchase price including taxes/duties for a compact / small / economy vehicle (1.4 L) is USD$26,901.

How does the cost of living in Sao Tome and Principe compare?

Sao Tome and Principe is -15.3% cheaper than USA for groceries, -38.1% cheaper for household costs than UK, and 131.9% more expensive for transport costs than India.

What is the quality of life / hardship in Sao Tome and Principe?

Sao Tome and Principe is ranked as a high degree of hardship location.The hardship premium for Sao Tome and Principe for an expat from Australia, is for example 20%, i.e. host location (Sao Tome and Principe) premium of 30% minus home (Australia) location premium of 10%.

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