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How To Live In Portugal On Just $24 A Day

These days Portugal is on many travel wish lists, and for some, it’s considered an ideal place to relocate or retire permanently. But many also people assume that Portugal will be too expensive to live in, similar to many of its European counterparts.

But that’s simply not the case! Enjoying a high quality of life in this beautiful country doesn't have to be expensive. In fact, it’s possible to live in Portugal for just $24 a day or less. Before you start reading this guide on inexpensive living in Portugal, here are some ground rules.

  • These costs are calculated based on a single person's expenses.

  • These numbers are based on the assumption that you won’t be living in one of the major cities, such as Lisbon or Porto, which are more expensive (but don’t let that worry you - there are countless beautiful cities and towns around the country!).

  • This is also based on a moderate lifestyle. If you like to live extravagantly, these costs may not work for you.

The criteria covered below will include housing, food, transportation, utilities, entertainment, clothing, healthcare, and cellphone. Let’s get started!


First, housing. This tends to be the most expensive part of any person's budget. But if you’re looking outside of Porto, Lisbon, and other touristy areas, it’s easy to find accommodation at an affordable price in Portugal. For example, if you were looking to stay in Coimbra you could find a studio apartment for just 275 euros per month, or $325 USD. You can find comparable units for a similar price around the country, depending on the area.

But what about utilities like water, gas, and electricity? For utilities, you should expect to pay $20 a month for water and $50 for gas and electricity. That leaves the grand total for affordable housing for a single person at $395 a month.


Everyone’s gotta eat, right? Food is a tricky one since spending can be all over the place depending on your preferences. Based on an average diet, it’s reasonable to spend around $20 to $25 per week for a single individual - $80-$100 a month - though this number can definitely fluctuate depending on what you eat and how much you eat. This is also based on a typical grocery shopping bill - it doesn’t take into account dining out, so if you like to go to restaurants and cafes regularly, your monthly costs will be much higher.


By far the most affordable way to get around in Portugal is via public transport. Regardless of where you live in this country, you can get a monthly public transport pass for just $45 a month. Of course, the best way to get effective use out of this pass is to liv