Colombia is increasingly becoming one of the most favorite destinations for international students. The warm climate, beautiful landscape and the cultural diversity are Colombia’s main draws. Add to that the cheap cost of living and friendly locals, Colombia surely provides an optimal combination of factors for a great experience.
While preparing for your trip to Colombia, it is important that you take into consideration the total cost of living there.
The guide below is going to give you a rough estimate of the costs of living in Colombia.
Cost of Student Accommodation
Neighborhoods in Colombia are divided according to estratos, starting from 1 to 6. The higher the number of estrato, the higher the cost of the utilities in that neighborhood. The most upscale neighborhood in Medellin is El Poblado, in Bogota it is Rosales, in Cartagena it is Bocagrande and in Cali it is El Peñon.
All these neighborhoods are primarily of estrato 5-6, thus, the cost of living in these areas are going to be higher than other neighborhoods. Depending on the type of apartment and the facilities provided, the rent can be anywhere from €250-€1000 per month in these neighborhoods. If you rent an apartment outside these neighborhoods, the prices would be significantly lower.
We got your back when you’re trying to figure out where to live as a student.
These neighborhoods are also more interesting for international students. Each week there’s a great event organized, the nightlife is booming and the restaurants and bars are all located in in these areas.
Cost of Colombian Food
Menu del dia, a popular lunch combo in Colombia, costs about €3 – €4. Menu del dia consists of rice, meat, soup, salad, and juice and is regularly served at local restaurants throughout Colombia. In Colombian mid-range restaurants, you can find 3 course meals costing around €15-€20 for two people.
Fresh fruits and vegetables are available in abundance in Colombia, so they are really cheap, making it easier for you to eat healthy food more often. Shopping in local markets as opposed to supermarkets can cut down your grocery costs to a large extent.
When you’re in Colombia you should also not forget to try the delicious Bandeja Paisa, as shown on the image below.
Cost of Transportation in Colombia
Buses and taxis are the most common mode of public transportation in Colombia. In Medellin, you also have the option of traveling through metro which costs around €0.80 per ride. The rechargeable metro card, called the Civica, brings down the cost to around €0.70 per ride.
Taxi fare would obviously depend on the distance you cover, but the minimum fare is typically around €2. Bus rides usually cost around half a dollar in major Colombian cities like Bogota, Medellin, Cali, and Cartagena.
We all know the best reasons to come study in Colombia. If you have to travel to your university or internship then you can easily take the Uber for a quick and cheap ride. A normal taxi is generally more expensive than an Uber, except for when it rains or you’re at a busy time finding an Uber.
Cost of Entertainment
Parque Lleras in El Poblado is the center of nightlife in Medellin. In Bogota, most of the bars, nightclubs, and restaurants are concentrated in Zona T. Avenida Sexta is the popular nightlife spot in Cali. Whereas, in Cartagena, the neighborhood Getsemani is popular for its nightlife options.
The cost of the nightlife really depends on where you go. You can get a beer for under €2, but if you go to a fancy club you would pay around €4 for a beer or more.
There is a wide range of nightclubs, bars, and restaurants present in these areas. You can enjoy a good dining experience at a fine restaurant at approximately €20-€40 for two people. Movie tickets typically cost around €4 per person.
Sounds pretty good for students, doesn’t it?
Gym expenses in Colombia
A standard gym membership in Colombia typically costs around €30 per month. You can also find high-end gym chains like Bodytech which typically cost more than €40 per month. Going to a gym is relatively expensive compared the the salary of a Colombian.
Living in Colombia is a great way to learn Spanish, meet people from diverse backgrounds and learn more about different cultures. This country is really famous for its low cost of living. You will find pretty much all the necessary amenities for a much lesser price than most western countries. You can live comfortably in Colombia and also save money while having a pleasant experience.
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