Cost of Living in Tijuana, Mexico

Tijuana is one of the most diverse, fun and also – expensive cities in Mexico.

Many say that the best places to live in Tijuana are the so-called “Playas de Tijuana” – something resembling a middle-high class town on the beach, where the prices are reasonable, the streets are cleat and it offers very good places to eat.

Tijuana is also very rich in culture, and its citizens are proud of its gorgeous food.

The wages here are better than Southern Mexico but they are still miles away from the US wages, even though they are right on the border with San Diego.



Citizens of Tijuana are extremely proud of their gorgeous street food that is known far and wide. Their food icon is the street tacos and as they say – you can find street tacos all through Mexico, but none like Tijuana’s street tacos. These cost only a couple of dollars, while a dinner at an inexpensive restaurant will cost you 6$ tops.



Shopping for groceries in markets is always recommended if you’re looking to save a couple of dollars. One of the plus sides is that you’ll know exactly what you’re eating. The groceries in markets are very cheap and you can always find fresh fruits and veggies in open “mercados” as they’re called in Mexico, where these fresh products are even cheaper than in supermarkets.



Public transport is not very reliable though it is pretty cheap. A one-way ticket for a bus or other form of public transport will cost you less than a dollar, while a monthly pass costs 27$. Driving a private car or renting isn’t the smartest option anywhere in Mexico because you won’t be able to beat the traffic and it only costs more than necessary.



Utilities are generally cheap in Mexico though in Tijuana they cost more than in many other Mexican cities! Of course, depending on the size of your apartment and the amount of electricity you spend, your bills could be higher or lower, but all in all – for an apartment of around 85m2, all basic utilities including electricity, gas, water, heating, cooling and garbage services, will cost you around 40$.

Sports and leisure


Indulging in sports definitely takes a considerable toll on your wallet, and this is true in Tijuana too. For example, getting a membership in a gym or a fitness club will cost you only about 25$. Cinema tickets are much cheaper, however, costing only about 3$ each. If you want to rent a tennis court it will cost you around 10$ an hour.

Clothing and shoes


Shopping for clothes in Tijuana should be very fun – it’s filled with shopping malls and the prices are actually pretty low. For example, shopping for quality jeans like Levi’s will cost you around 35$, while a pair of quality running shoes of brands like Nike will cost you around 70$ which is a low price, even for the shopper’s paradise – Mexico.

Rent per month


Rent is very reasonable in Tijuana, which is expected to be one of the more expensive cities of Mexico. It all depends on where you want to live. If you’ve got your mind set on the center of the city, the average price will be around 300$. However, there are many charming little apartments that are a bit further away from the centers, and they cost considerably less – 200$ a month.

Cost of Living Averages Table for Tijuana

Average Restaurant Prices
Meal (Inexpensive Restaurant) $6.28
Domestic Beer (0.5 Liter) $2.09
Water (0.33 Liter) $0.85
Average Market Prices
Milk (1 Liter) $0.96
Loaf Bread (500g) $1.75
Eggs (12) $1.62
Average Transport Prices
One Way Ticket $0.79
Monthly Pass $27.48
Gasoline $0.97
Average Utilities Prices
Basic (Water, Electricity, Garbage, Heating, Cooling) $45.71
1 min. of Prepaid Mobile Tariff Local $0.10
Internet (Unlimited Data, Cable/ADSL) $24.25
Average Leisure Prices
Fitness Club, Monthly Fee for 1 Adult $25.47
Tennis Court Rent (1 Hour) $9.60
Cinema, 1 Seat, International Release $3.14
Average Clothing Prices
1 Pair of Jeans (Levis 501 Or Comparable) $35.16
1 Summer Dress in a Chain Store (Zara, etc...) $30.17
1 Pair of Adidas Walking Shoes (Mid-Range) $62.17
Average Rent Prices
Apartment (1 bedroom) in City Center $309.52
Apartment (1 bedroom) Outside of Center $208.01
Apartment (3 bedrooms) in City Center $699.00

How Does the Average Person Spend Their Money in Tijuana?

Of course – food, like in most Mexican (and world) cities.

An average person living in Tijuana, and having to feed his/her family, spends the largest amount of their money in supermarkets and open “mercados”.

After food, rent is the biggest expense for people living in Tijuana.

The rent isn’t the biggest problem financially for the people living in Tijuana, but it is a bit high and you have to set aside a large portion of your salary for it.

Restaurants and transportation are also significant expenses for an average person living in this city.

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

Tijuana: Average Salary, Minimum Wage & Mortgages

People living in Tijuana can find a way to manage their expenses with the salaries they get, though it probably isn’t easy with a minimum wage of 116$ as of December 2018.

This means that many people have to work overtime or find another job to make ends meet.

Average monthly net salary is considerably higher and allows for people to pay for most of their necessities and not have to worry about the next day.

However, if you’re wondering how much money to bring for a month in Tijuana, around 1000$ would probably suffice.

Average Salary$544.46
Minimum Wage$166.16
Mortgage Interest Rate9.65%

Cost of Living by City in Mexico

*Click the name of the city for more information.

City Cost of Living Index
Cancun 31.35
Guadalajara 31.46
Merida 29.39
Mexico City 34.18
Monterrey 34.12
Puebla 28.89
Puerto Vallarta 29.82
Queretaro 31.01
Tijuana 32.7

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