Cost of Living in Cebu, Philippines

Cebu City is known as the “Queen City of the South” – located on Cebu Island in the Philippines.

It is one of the most popular areas in all of the Philippines for foreign visitors, and the busiest sea port in the Philippines and the second largest air hub are also located here.

Cebu is strategically located at the center of the Philippines, so getting here from anywhere in the country is relatively easy.

Generally, it is a nice place to visit and to live in, since it’s not too expensive, but it’s mainly a tourist destination since it’s filled with many attraction sites for tourists.



Restaurants are lined up in Cebu, so you can really choose – Chinese restaurants, Korean, American, Italian and even Japanese. Eating out is definitely cheaper compared to Manila. You can have a complete meal for only 0.57$. Then there are karenderyas that can help you survive and eat “healthier” with veggies and fresh home-cooked (sort of) food.



Food is varied and quite affordable in Cebu, and te cost of fresh food is comparable to the US. You can shop at many supermarkets or the Robinsons mall and if you really want to splurge, you’ll need around 500$ a month. Don’t forget the small bakeries in the neighborhood that sell cheap breads and the sari-sari stores (variety stores).



In order for you to travel from one location to another in Cebu, you can take any of the various means of transport here: jeepney, bus, taxi, motorcycle or even a bike. Traffic is one of the major disadvantages if you’re living in Cebu. The jeepney’s minimum fare is 0.13$, while a monthly fee for public transport is around 16$.



Utilities are just ridiculously expensive in the Philippines, and this applies to Cebu, too. You can easily spend around 100$ per month. That would include using air conditioner around eight hours per day. Purely lights, gadget charging, TV and hot water in an apartment of around 85m2 will cost you over 100$. Water bill is around 5$ per month.

Sports and leisure


Cebu is filled with cinemas, theaters and other leisure opportunities, and a ticket for a movie in a cinema will cost you around 4$. Indulging in sports and fitness is more expensive, like in most countries. If you want a gym or a fitness club membership, it will amount up to almost 40$.

Clothing and shoes


There are many malls in Cebu, like E-Mall, Robinsons and Gaisano – those are just some of the major malls. These malls offer great shopping opportunities since the prices are pretty low. For example, you can buy Levi’s jeans for around 40$, while a pair of running shoes of brands like Nike cost around 70$.

Rent per month


Rent is, surprisingly, more expensive than the country’s average. If you are alone, you might prefer to stay in a boarding house or lodging house. Depending on the part of the city, you can find an apartment costing around 250$ – if you don’t mind living outside of the city. However, if you have your mind set on living in the city center you’ll have to pay at least 400$.

Cost of Living Averages Table for Cebu

Average Restaurant Prices
Meal (Inexpensive Restaurant) $ 2.85
Domestic Beer (0.5 Liter) $ 0.95
Water (0.33 Liter) $ 0.29
Average Market Prices
Milk (1 Liter) $ 1.48
Loaf Bread (500g) $ 1.16
Eggs (12) $ 1.42
Average Transport Prices
One Way Ticket $ 0.13
Monthly Pass $ 15.99
Gasoline $ 0.91
Average Utilities Prices
Basic (Water, Electricity, Garbage, Heating, Cooling) $ 94.30
1 min. of Prepaid Mobile Tariff Local $ 0.15
Internet (Unlimited Data, Cable/ADSL) $ 45.27
Average Leisure Prices
Fitness Club, Monthly Fee for 1 Adult $ 37.32
Tennis Court Rent (1 Hour) $ 4.12
Cinema, 1 Seat, International Release $ 4.19
Average Clothing Prices
1 Pair of Jeans (Levis 501 Or Comparable) $ 40.51
1 Summer Dress in a Chain Store (Zara, etc...) $ 20.17
1 Pair of Adidas Walking Shoes (Mid-Range) $ 72.05
Average Rent Prices
Apartment (1 bedroom) in City Center $ 436.58
Apartment (1 bedroom) Outside of Center $ 222.77
Apartment (3 bedrooms) in City Center $ 626.51

How Does the Average Person Spend Their Money in Cebu?

An average person in Cebu definitely spends the biggest amount of money on food – which is no wonder, considering that most world cities follow that pattern.

The next biggest expense is definitely rent, though rent isn’t really that expensive in Cebu (it is, however, more expensive than what is considered the country’s average).

Interestingly enough, Cebu is rare in the sense that utilities draw more money from the people than eating in restaurants, which is not common at all.

Clothes are the least important of all expenses, according to these numbers.

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

Cebu: Average Salary, Minimum Wage & Mortgages

The good thing about Cebu is that it’s the second most popular city in the Philippines so you can find jobs in every industry you like especially in BPO (Business Process Outsourcing), IT and others.

That being said, don’t expect a high paycheck because of this: salaries aren’t the highest in Cebu – far from it!

What testifies to that is the minimum wage in Cebu which, although higher than in most other cities, is only around 220$.

Average monthly net salary in Cebu is around 300$, but it is still not enough to live a comfortable life in this country.

Average Salary$ 289.29
Minimum Wage$ 220.2
Mortgage Interest Rate8.67%

Cost of Living by City in Philippines

*Click the name of the city for more information.

City Cost of Living Index
Cebu 36.41
Davao 33.57
Dumaguete 33.21
Makati 51.07
Manila 37.95
Quezon City 31.66

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