International cost of living and hardship / quality of living data for 780 global locations.
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Serbia is in South Eastern Europe, between Macedonia and Hungary.
The climate is continental (cold winters and hot, humid summers with well distributed rainfall) in the north and continental and Mediterranean (relatively cold winters with heavy snowfall and hot, dry summers and autumns) in other parts.
The official language is Serbian. Serbo-Croat was the official state language under socialist Yugoslavia, mainly because Serbian and Croatian are very similar and mutually comprehensible. Since the end of the federation, Serbs and Croats have emphasised the differences between the two languages and are likely to object to the term Serbo-Croat. The Cyrillic alphabet it used, but Latin script is understood by everyone and widely used. Many minority languages such as Albanian, Turkish, Romany and Hungarian are spoken. English is the most common foreign language, particularly in Belgrade; otherwise some people speak German or Italian. Interpreters are easy to find.
The main religion is Christianity.
The economy of Serbia is based mostly on services, which account for about 63% of the GDP. The economy has a high unemployment rate of 14% and a unfavourable trade deficit.
Expatriate dress code is formal comprising a jacket and tie for men and suits for women. The safety risk for expatriates in Serbia is medium. Risks include petty theft, street, and organised crime.
The currency of Serbia is the Serbian Dinar (RSD). Credit cards are accepted in most hotels and shops. ATMs are available and accept most international cards.
Health care facilities are generally below international standards. Payment in cash is normally required for treatment. Rabies is common.
The population is 7.1 Million (2019 est.), and the inflation rate (CPI) is 1.5% for Serbia as at November 2019.
The Xpatulator Hypothetical Tax for Serbia is based on the current personal income tax rate which is a flat rate of 15%. Rates are a flat rate of either 10% or 15% depending on income level. Expatriates are generally taxed at 15%.
Within Serbia we also cover Belgrade.
The cost of living for expatriates in Serbia 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 Serbia 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$460. Average price in a store for a midrange bottle of wine is USD$4.91, domestic/local beer (500ml) USD$0.83, imported/international beer (330ml) USD$1.35 and a pack of 20 cigarettes is USD$3.81.2) Clothing: for items such as business, casual and children's clothing and footwear. A basket costing USD$1000 in New York costs USD$920. Average price for an international brand of mens jeans is USD$63, a quality international brand of running shoes USD$79, mens leather shoes suitable for office wear USD$93 while a medium size international summer dress from a global chain store is USD$30.3) 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$126. Average price for a monthly standard plan internet subscription is USD$22, while the benchmark mobile tariff is USD$0.11 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$15300. Average annual private international school fee (excluding extras) USD$9,931 for Primary School, and USD$11,052 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$1375. Average price for a 6kg front loader Washing Machine is USD$591, and USD$507 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$440. Average grocery prices in a major international retail store for 1 kg apples is USD$0.96, 1 kg oranges USD$1.44, 1 head lettuce USD$0.55, 1 kg potatos USD$0.69, 1 kg boneless, skinless, chicken breast USD$5.94, 1 kg cheddar cheese USD$5.88, 1 dozen large eggs USD$1.77, 500g loaf white bread USD$0.56, 1 L full cream milk USD$1.11, and 1.5 L water USD$0.62.7) 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$470. Average healthcare cost for a private practice Doctor visit for an uninsured patient is USD$38, and a private hospital stay per day including nursing care, medications, diagnostic tests, food, and related costs is USD$1,177.8) 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$1550. Average expatriate house / apartment rent for a secure upmarket unfurnished apartment (3 bedrooms) is USD$1,687 in a central location, and USD$998 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$270. Average price for dry cleaning (1 mens 2 pc suit) is USD$5.24, while an international newspaper is USD$1.61.10) Personal Care: for items such as cosmetics, hair care, and toiletries. A basket costing USD$500 in New York costs USD$170. Average cost for a mens haircut and blow dry is USD$14, while a womens hair colour, cut and blow dry - medium length is USD$68.11) Recreation & Culture: for items such as books, cinema, sport and theatre tickets. A basket costing USD$500 in New York costs USD$190. Average price for a latest release international cinema ticket (average of on and off peak where applicable) for one adult is USD$5.53, and an international fitness, recreation or sports club membership cost for one adult is USD$31 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$360. Average cappuccino price (regular, medium) is USD$1.63, coke/pepsi (330ml) USD$1.63, burger meal (international franchise or similar) USD$6.25, and a mid-range international restaurant meal for 2 USD$28.25.13) 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$1.49, while the benchmark car sedan purchase price including taxes/duties for a compact / small / economy vehicle (1.4 L) is USD$18,892.
Serbia is -41.1% cheaper than USA for groceries, -44.2% cheaper for household costs than UK, and 57.1% more expensive for transport costs than India.
Serbia is ranked as an extreme hardship location.The hardship premium for Serbia for an expat from Australia, is for example 30%, i.e. host location (Serbia) premium of 40% minus home (Australia) location premium of 10%.