Cost of Living in Cuba

Cuba is the country ideal for foreigners who earn their wages in their home countries, but come to enjoy a low cost life there.

However, if you are planning to look for a job in Cuba, it would be difficult to afford comfortable living conditions due to the low salaries and expensive daily costs.

Cubans struggle daily and have to face many living difficulties, because they have to cover some basic costs that factor into the cost of living and they cannot earn enough for that, but somehow they manage to survive.



How much money you need to live in Cuba depends on how you live, and as a foreigner you can find a decent meal for as little as $5, but for a citizen of Cuba that is a luxury.

Alcohol is not expensive compared to American and European countries, as a bottle of beer is only $1.



High transportation costs and import taxes from other countries result in high prices for imported goods, and some of foodstuff are unaffordable to Cuban citizens.

Milk is very expensive, as one liter will take the whole minimum salary that a worker earns during one month.



Compared to their salaries, one of the biggest expenditures for the average Cuban is transportation as for the person who earns the minimum wage of $9, it will take $6.5 and almost nothing is left for other costs.

A foreigner would, on the other hand, consider a monthly pass a bargain.



The Internet access is unaffordable and almost impossible to possess for Cubans.

The price of it exceeds three average monthly salaries, as it is almost $80 per month.

Other expenses are high, but still possible to be paid and services take 11% of the monthly salary.

Sports and leisure


If you want to know how much money would be necessary for some entertainment, you will be satisfied to hear that entertainment is not at all expensive when compared with other countries, as fitness clubs are $16 and movie tickets do not exceed $0.3.

Clothing and shoes


How much you will spend on clothes and whether it will be one of the most expensive things here depends on whether you want to live like a tourist or a Cuban here.

Cubans do not spend money on clothes, as it is extremely expensive compared to their budgets.

Rent per month


Due to the very low salaries, the government provides housing for Cubans, so they do not have to pay taxes, rent or mortgages, but you as a newcomer, would need to cover these expenses, too.

The difference in price between the apartment in the city center and out of it is huge, exceeding $350.

Cost of Living Averages Table for Cuba

Average Restaurant Prices
Meal (Inexpensive Restaurant) $5
Domestic Beer (0.5 Liter) $1
Water (0.33 Liter) $0.73
Average Market Prices
Milk (1 Liter) $8.46
Loaf Bread (500g) $0.48
Eggs (12) $0.90
Average Transport Prices
One Way Ticket $0.10
Monthly Pass $6.50
Gasoline $4.22
Average Utilities Prices
Basic (Water, Electricity, Garbage, Heating, Cooling) $9.25
1 min. of Prepaid Mobile Tariff Local $0.34
Internet (Unlimited Data, Cable/ADSL) $77.50
Average Leisure Prices
Fitness Club, Monthly Fee for 1 Adult $16.25
Tennis Court Rent (1 Hour) $7.5
Cinema, 1 Seat, International Release $0.28
Average Clothing Prices
1 Pair of Jeans (Levis 501 Or Comparable) $37.33
1 Summer Dress in a Chain Store (Zara, etc...) $45
1 Pair of Adidas Walking Shoes (Mid-Range) $80.83
Average Rent Prices
Apartment (1 bedroom) in City Center $448.89
Apartment (1 bedroom) Outside of Center $72.26
Apartment (3 bedrooms) in City Center $537.50

How Does the Average Person Spend Their Money in Cuba?

It is very difficult to compare your future costs in Cuba with the average spendings of its citizens due to the huge difference in the monthly salaries and spending habits.

As they earn pretty low amounts, they devote the majority of it for the expenses that are of the utmost importance, such as food, transportation and utilities.

If something is left, they will spend it on entertainment and clothing, but that rarely happens.

For foreigners whose salary is high, the monthly expenses might differ.

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

Cuba: Average Salary, Minimum Wage & Mortgages

Considering the fact that the majority of Cubans receive a state salary of $20 per month, it is true that there is huge poverty and that coming there with the salary from your home country makes you so wealthy in these conditions.

What would be your cost of living in Cuba depends on your living habits, but due to the low incomes of its citizens, you can expect low prices and poor living conditions.

Buying a property here is possible, and the mortgage interest rate is 5%.

Average Salary$28.16
Minimum Wage$9
Mortgage Interest Rate5%

Cost of Living by City in Cuba

*Click the name of the city for more information.

City Cost of Living Index
Havana 49.52


  1. Lonnie Townsel

    I want to visit old Havana I just absolutely love Havana it’s people and culture I am extremely excited that now things are looking up for America and Cuban tourist travel between both Countries its way over due now America and Cuba kiss and make up because at the end of the day it’s the citizens of both Countries who suffers from discusting political views I say the hell with politics we are all human brothers and sisters we’re all child of God and politics should not come in between the relationship of man kind it’s wrong. I love everyone no matter where they may be from we’re all brothers and sisters under the eyes of god period 🙏 amen to that !!!

    I just love Cuba 😍😍😍

  2. William Layton

    It is a very good article how about marriage can I leave the country if they’re married to an American

  3. Jaime Real

    This article lacks in depth knowledge. having lived in Santiago de Cuba for 3 years I know you can survive on a dollar a day or live very well for 10 to 20 a day. More and you can live like a king. Cigars 1 CUP ( Peso ) Milk 1 CUC ( Dollar ) a litre High strength lager 5.5 proof 1 dollar a can or local bottle high strength 15 Pesos. ( 25 Peso to U S dollar or CUC . I could go on but do not want to as I miss the place very much but had to leave because of COVID 19 in march.


    Time end embargo,I see lots of health care there,,Canadians should flock their ,take as many things there as people there need and give out free,Canadians have gone ther for years,because they ate cheap and Americans wherr banned.its is known as little Canada,so lets make it more warm to Canada.not just in weather but inour hearts?

  5. Camaguey

    House prices

  6. RoseAnn A.

    How about crime or violence? I am Cuban descendent but we are speaking of my grand parents who came to America late 1890’s and I was raised in a Cuban/Italian place in Tampa called Ybor City. Those days are gone and a hand full are left in area. Now I always wanted to go to Cuba and for one thing or the others years passed, didn’t go, I am in my mid 70’s and want to go and spend time there but am worried about crime. I have not heard of anything negative just curious and since I would be going alone and being female, I worry.
    Your view and knowledge would be immensely appreciated. Thanks, RoseAnn

  7. Ax

    Hi, I’m Cuban, and I have lived all my life here in Cuba. I have never been abroad. First, my appreciation for the warm treatment of the Cuban people and the good intentions of the article. It is an useful article, except for one datum that makes a world of difference. IT IS NOT TRUE that the Cuban government provides housing for Cubans. It troubles me that most of the info that is published abroad is taken from the Marxist propaganda machine disguised with beautiful pictures and smiling children. And I wonder how many have been misled by reading the housing datum. All private property was confiscated in ~1959-1965. Since then, Cubans have lived in the house they had before 1959 (if it was a mansion, it was confiscated at gun-point, and given a poor apartment or the like in a compulsory exchange; if you had more than one house, you got to keep only one). After that, children and grand children have been living under the same roof. Only in the late 1970’s and 80’s when Cuban was living on the Soviet Union and other communists countries, younger generations were given the chance of BUILDING A HOUSE BY YOURSELVE, or with the help of neighbours. Ugly, dangerous, hardly functional concrete “cases” were built during those years. AND THAT WAS IT!!! You had to organize with other dozens of people, very few of who had some knowledge of just putting bricks together, work for years during your free hours until all of the “brigade” completed one of those blocks. Hence the name of many neighborhoods in Cuba. Micro (microbrigade) 1, micro 2, micro 3, etc. AND THAT WAS IT!!! Those were my parents’ generation. I’m 34 years now (2020), and I have not been able to buy anything, nor the government gives me any house, nor anything else “for free” as they said. If you have a house and a hurricane destroyes it, you have to spent years leaving a concentration space sharing the place with other families, for years. Until they put you to work also and maybe give you something that is not much better than you had. All te while you and all your family have been working for decades as slaves. It’s critical that people understand that there has been nothing free in Cuba, on the contrary it is one of the most expensive countries and disfunctional countries in the world, built and sustain on slavery.

  8. Yasin

    29$ salary monthly then how can enjoy and how can he manage for me impossible

  9. Bethany

    Thank you AX for your honesty. I was wondering the same as I know the family that I love there does not have anything for free. I was just today questioning if they own their house as I know the grandparents had bought it before the takeover but I do not know that answer. I wish to travel back in October and help as much as I can from the inside but idk how to do that or what I can offer that does the most. I am an American citizen and it very much on my heart to lend a hand because right now Cuba is being destroyed further and I can’t just sit and watch it happen.

  10. Sam

    Confused reading all people story trying to find out how much cost live one person a month ever ago

  11. Edgar Sanchez

    I have a friend that has an aunt that came to Florida, while they were in the family gathering, he was watching his aunt taking a BITE of an APPLE and hiding it! He keeps telling her that it was ok she didn’t have to HIDE to eat a fruit cause she wasn’t in CUBA!! How traumatized is the people from Cuba when their mentality of being watched on what to eat in their country, another friend that his dad was put in JAIL 180 TIMES!!because he was growing vegetables secretly in his basement because the food wasn’t enough!! Anybody 🤔🤔🤔🤔

  12. Rudy James

    Anything you bring to Cuba is subject to import duties including personal items. I was charged $1080 usd for two suitcases by customs in Camaguey. I was told that failure to pay would result in sezsure of everything including my hand luggage. Donations are subjected to the same (taxes).


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