Cost of Living in Shenzhen, China

Living in Shenzhen is not too expensive, as you will be enjoying the perfect lifestyle that cheap prices can give you.

Before the most important move in your life, it is advised do your own research as a preparation for the possible outcomes of your movement.

Do not get deceived by the fact that high standard of living is available to each and every person here, so it is important to match your salary with the expenses and see if you can manage living there.



Eating out daily would not be reasonable, even though the prices of meals are not high as in American or Canadian cities.

When compared to other Chinese cities, both food and beverages in restaurants and bars are more expensive in Shenzhen.

It is suggested to avoid frequent visits to restaurants if your budget is below the average.



Buying imported goods here would cost you more, but if you purchase mostly Chinese ingredients and locally grown food you will find cooking meals very affordable in Shenzhen.

If you purchase fruit and vegetables at the local market, then your food will be even more inexpensive.



You can choose from various options available for commuting here, as driving is not advisable.

The metro, buses and bikes are common means of transportation, and monthly passes are extremely affordable here, especially when compared to the efficient service they provide.



Water, electricity, garbage and heating are billed separately from your rent and they are all very inexpensive, but when compared to Beijing, the prices are almost equal.

The mobile phone calls are a bargain, and the Internet access is also inexpensive.

Sports and leisure


In Shenzhen, enjoying the latest international release in the movies would vary in price depending on the cinema itself, but it can be said that the prices are not pricey.

Doing exercises in the gym would cost you around $40 per month, while one hour of tennis is $10.

Clothing and shoes


Imported goods are very expensive in China and the branded clothing items belong to these category, thus reaching very high prices.

if you do not mind wearing much less expensive clothes, you should avoid buying designer clothing and save some money for other joys, such as traveling and entertainment.

Rent per month


The price of rent is considerably based on proximity to the city center, neighborhood and closeness to some important sights in the city.

That is why you will need to pay $300 more for the same size apartment in the city center than out of it.

The larger it is, the higher is the rent, as well as other expenses that go with it.

Cost of Living Averages Table for Shenzhen

Average Restaurant Prices
Meal (Inexpensive Restaurant) $4.17
Domestic Beer (0.5 Liter) $2.25
Water (0.33 Liter) $0.31
Average Market Prices
Milk (1 Liter) $7.47
Loaf Bread (500g) $1.44
Eggs (12) $1.69
Average Transport Prices
One Way Ticket $0.40
Monthly Pass $22.36
Gasoline $3.96
Average Utilities Prices
Basic (Water, Electricity, Garbage, Heating, Cooling) $68.44
1 min. of Prepaid Mobile Tariff Local $0.04
Internet (Unlimited Data, Cable/ADSL) $17.37
Average Leisure Prices
Fitness Club, Monthly Fee for 1 Adult $43.18
Tennis Court Rent (1 Hour) $10.22
Cinema, 1 Seat, International Release $6.34
Average Clothing Prices
1 Pair of Jeans (Levis 501 Or Comparable) $62.70
1 Summer Dress in a Chain Store (Zara, etc...) $38.76
1 Pair of Adidas Walking Shoes (Mid-Range) $77.85
Average Rent Prices
Apartment (1 bedroom) in City Center $706.03
Apartment (1 bedroom) Outside of Center $442
Apartment (3 bedrooms) in City Center $1523.77

How Does the Average Person Spend Their Money in Shenzhen?

The great idea before setting on a journey to Shenzhen is to seardh the Internet to find the spending habits of its citizens and see if your budget is high enough to afford living there.

Shenzhen is expensive in terms of rent and food prices, and that is the reason why these are the greatest monthly expenses here.

All the other categories are rather affordable and do not take as much money.

Utilities are so inexpensive that the equal amount is spent on them as on clothing.

Utilities (Monthly)
Sports & Leisure
Clothing & Shoes
Rent Per Month

Shenzhen: Average Salary, Minimum Wage & Mortgages

If you are savvy person who knows how to organize his/her spending well, it would be definitely possible to live comfortably in Shenzhen.

All this depends on your lifestyle and preferences and if you are earning above the average income, you will be able to put away some money each month for savings.

On the other hand, people with the minimum wage would not be able to cover all the basic expenses here, especially if they need to pay the rent.

So, Shenzhen is ideal only for professionals whose salaries would be high.

Average Salary$1215.86
Minimum Wage$224.7
Mortgage Interest Rate5.04%

Cost of Living by City in China

*Click the name of the city for more information.

City Cost of Living Index
Beijing 43.88
Chengdu 36.16
Guangzhou 40.29
Shanghai 50.41
Shenzhen 42.21
Suzhou 37.95


  1. James Collins

    Wow, the difference between the minimum wage and the average salary is huge! I wonder how someone survives on just $224 a month? Looks like it doesn’t cover rent anywhere. Maybe China has a good social security system in place, who knows. Fascinating stuff. I really want to visit China in the future.

  2. Suzie Webster

    For 4 years, I lived in Shenzhen. This was a working opportunity and nothing was holding me back. I had a good experience but something to note! Definitely live outside of the city center, you’ll save so much money and traveling around Shenzhen is really cheap and easy. Shop around for food to get the best prices and stay away from restaurants, you’ll save a lot!

  3. Saskia

    What are the job prospects like in Shenzhen? I need to start a new life and want something completely different. I’m a qualified computer engineer, will the salary for my position allow for a comfortable life here? I’ve always been intrigued by China and Japan, definitely want to live in one of them.


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