Utrecht is the fourth-largest city and a municipality of the Netherlands, and the capital and most populous city of the province of Utrecht.
Cost of living in this city is within the normal price range for this country, with some aspects more expensive than the average, and some that are less.
The amount of money you spend depends on a lot of factors, like whether you’re a student, or going there with a family, whether you want to live in the city center or somewhere a bit outside of it.
Eating out is about average for European standards, as is getting a drink, so if you’re coming to Utrecht from Europe, you won’t be surprised at the somewhat high prices. You can expect to spend around 17$ per meal per person plus something like 3$ for a very small bottle of Cola which means that you’ll probably spend around 20$ per person.
Purchasing in a grocery store or a market is the best way to enjoy a variety of food and healthy groceries. Fresh veggies and fruit are always available at relatively low prices. If your grocery shopping experience turns out expensive, you can reduce its general price by shopping at cheaper alternatives like the market or stores such as ALDI. Count on spending around 60-80$ per week on groceries.
Public transport is very good in Utrecht and the city is very bicycle-friendly, so it’s easy to save some money by not getting a car. If you do need a car, there are various car sharing services spread all over the city. Public transport also works great and it allows you to move around easily. You can use the so-called “OV chipkaart” which is a very expensive, unique card for all public transport. There are also many discounts you can get.
Utilities are rather expensive in Utrecht. All the basic ones, including water, cooling, heating and garbage services, including taxes for water and trash (which are different in every district and even city) amount up to 200$ a month. Internet isn’t cheap either, costing around 40$ a month – including TV cable and phone (or you can get slow internet which will then cost you about 15$ a month).
SPORTS & LEISURE
Sports and fitness are not as pricey in Utrecht as you would expect! A membership at a fitness club for one adult costs around 35$ a month. Keep in mind that most gyms in the Netherlands work on a yearly or a 6-month contract. Cinema tickets, in turn, are very expensive: going to the movies will cost you around whopping 13$ per person. Prices of cinema tickets very much depends on the venue, though.
CLOTHING & SHOES
Brand-name clothes usually have the same prices as in the rest of Europe which are generally higher than in the US, while Utrecht has even higher prices for clothes than other European cities. For example, Levi’s jeans cost almost 100$ while quality running sneakers of brands like Nike cost more than 100$. Light pieces of clothing in chain stores like Zara cost around 35$.
RENT PER MONTH
Rent per month in Utrecht is fairly high for Netherlands’ standards and a typical rental contract requires you to sign up for a year with your owner and allows you to terminate on a month’s notice afterwards. For an apartment in the city center, you’ll have to cash out around unbelievable 1200$. There are, however, some decent options for around 900$ for a one bedroom apartment, here and there, but that’s not the norm.
Cost of Living Averages Table for Utrecht
|Average Restaurant Prices|
|Meal (Inexpensive Restaurant)||$ 17.20|
|Domestic Beer (0.5 Liter)||$ 5.73|
|Water (0.33 Liter)||$ 2.13||Average Market Prices|
|Milk (1 Liter)||$ 1.09|
|Loaf Bread (500g)||$ 1.25|
|Eggs (12)||$ 2.89||Average Transport Prices|
|One Way Ticket||$ 2.87|
|Monthly Pass||$ 100.93|
|Gasoline||$ 1.84||Average Utilities Prices|
|Basic (Water, Electricity, Garbage, Heating, Cooling)||$ 199.81|
|1 min. of Prepaid Mobile Tariff Local||$ 0.16|
|Internet (Unlimited Data, Cable/ADSL)||$ 40.58||Average Leisure Prices|
|Fitness Club, Monthly Fee for 1 Adult||$ 32.40|
|Tennis Court Rent (1 Hour)||$ 18.92|
|Cinema, 1 Seat, International Release||$ 12.62||Average Clothing Prices|
|1 Pair of Jeans (Levis 501 Or Comparable)||$ 99.54|
|1 Summer Dress in a Chain Store (Zara, etc...)||$ 36.32|
|1 Pair of Adidas Walking Shoes (Mid-Range)||$ 104.37||Average Rent Prices|
|Apartment (1 bedroom) in City Center||$ 1229.92|
|Apartment (1 bedroom) Outside of Center||$ 805.14|
|Apartment (3 bedrooms) in City Center||$ 2088.07|
How Does the Average Person Spend Their Money in Utrecht?
In Utrecht, without a doubt, the biggest chunk of an average paycheck gets spent on rent which is ridiculously expensive in this city.
The next huge expense is the food and a large portion of people’s salaries gets spent in markets or grocery stores.
Restaurants take up the next spot on the list, since food can get pretty pricey, and those who are well-off eat in restaurants practically every day.
Transportation is very expensive too, while also being an everyday necessity for everyone.
As usual, the smallest amount of money is spent on clothes and accessories, while sports and leisure take up almost 5% of all expenses.
Utrecht: Average Salary, Minimum Wage & Mortgages
Those that get a minimum wage of about 1500$ might have some hard time covering all expenses, especially if they’re renting an apartment in such an expensive country.
Still, the minimum wage in Netherlands is the third best in the EU.
However, average monthly net salary is pretty high, and though their expenses are high too, an average citizen of Utrecht can live comfortably and have no problem earning for a living.
Of course, those renting an apartment will always have a harder time paying off their bills and rent, but generally speaking, Utrecht has a high living standard.
Cost of Living by City in Netherlands
*Click the name of the city for more information.
|City||Cost of Living Index|
|The Hague (Den Haag)||76.75|