Costa Rica vs El Salvador - Cost of Living Comparison

Costa Rica El Salvador
🚶 Cost of living one person
$893
$853
👨‍👩‍👧‍👦 Cost of living Family
$2140
$1917
🏠 One person rent
$406
$408
🏘️ Family rent
$639
$614
🍽️ Food expenses
$337
$285
🚐 Transport expenses
$47.8
$80.5
💳 Monthly salary after tax
$733
$386
💸 GDP per capita
$12141
$3799
😃 Human freedom index
8.25
7.39
❤️ Life expectancy
80.5
73.5
👮 Corruption perceptions index
58
34
🌐 English speaking %
8.2%
1%
🎓 Higher education
75
41
😀 Quality of life
58
31
🏙️ Population
5.21M
6.42M

The average cost of living in Costa Rica ($893) is 5% more expensive than in El Salvador ($853). Costa Rica ranked 80th vs 89th for El Salvador in the list of the most expensive countries in the world.

The average after-tax salary is enough to cover living expenses for 0.8 months in Costa Rica compared to 0.5 months in El Salvador. Ranked 62nd and 154th best countries to live in the world.

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the estimated difference in money purchasing power

Cost of living in Costa Rica vs El Salvador infographic

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Prices in Costa Rica vs El Salvador

We calculate prices for Costa Rica and El Salvador as a population-weighted mean of 9 and 10 cities, respectively. Since large cities tend to have a higher cost of living, it's better to visit specific city pages below for more relevant information.

Costa Rica El Salvador
Eating Out
🍱 Lunch Menu
$6.87
$4.81
🥂 Dinner in a Restaurant, for 2
$32
$26.6
🥪 Fast food meal, equiv. McDonald's
$6.47
$5.67
🍻 Beer in a Pub, 0.5 L or 16 fl oz
$2.02
$1.55
 Cappuccino
$2.59
$2.69
🥤 Pepsi / Coke, 0.5 L or 16.9 fl oz
$1.35
$0.66
Rent & Utilities
🏙️ 1 bedroom apartment in Downtown, 40 m2 or 430 ft2
$494
$466
🏡 Cheap 1 bedroom apartment, 40 m2 or 430 ft2
$286
$290
🏙️ 3 bedroom apartment in Downtown, 80 m2 or 860 ft2
$749
$644
🏡 Cheap 3 bedroom apartment, 80 m2 or 860 ft2
$485
$475
🔌 Utility Bill one person, electricity, heating, water, etc.
$41.5
$41.1
🔌 Utility Bill for a Family, electricity, heating, water, etc.
$63.8
$63.3
🌐 Internet plan, 50 Mbps+ 1 month unlimited
$37.2
$41.4
🏦 Mortgage Interest Rate for 20 Years
9.09%
11.12%
🏙️ Apartment price to Buy in city Center, 1 m2 or 10 ft2
$1476
$1117
🏡 House price to Buy in Suburbs, 1 m2 or 10 ft2
$1212
$875
Transportation
🚌 Local transport ticket
$0.78
$0.29
🎟️ Monthly ticket local transport
$46.5
$27.3
🚕 Taxi Ride, 8 km or 5 mi
$9.52
$25.4
 Gas / Petrol, 1 L or 0.26 gal
$1.16
$1
Groceries
🥛 Milk, 1 L or 1 qt
$1.38
$1.72
🍞 Bread, 0.5 kg or 1.1 lb
$1.4
$1.24
🍚 Rice, 1 kg or 2.2 lb
$1.46
$1.31
🥚 Eggs, x12
$2.32
$2.04
🧀 Cheese, 1 kg or 2.2 lb
$7.89
$7.15
🐔 Chicken Breast, 1 kg or 2.2 lb
$6.42
$5.57
🥩 Round Steak, 1 kg or 2.2 lb
$8.82
$8.8
🍏 Apples, 1 kg or 2.2 lb
$3.24
$2.84
🍌 Banana, 1 kg or 2.2 lb
$1.07
$1.12
🍊 Oranges, 1 kg or 2.2 lb
$1.87
$2.22
🍅 Tomato, 1 kg or 2.2 lb
$1.94
$2.21
🥔 Potato, 1 kg or 2.2 lb
$1.75
$1.45
🧅 Onion, 1 kg or 2.2 lb
$1.89
$1.45
🌊 Water, 1 L or 1 qt
$1.15
$0.55
🍹 Coca-Cola / Pepsi, 2 L or 67.6 fl oz
$2.46
$1.92
🍾 Wine (mid-priced), 750 mL bottle
$11.9
$9.8
🍺 Beer, 0.5 L or 16 fl oz
$1.59
$1.19
🚬 Cigarette pack
$3.67
$3.75
💊 Cold medicince, 1 week
$8.08
$6.05
🧴 Hair Shampoo
$5.99
$6.97
🧻 Toilet paper, 4 rolls
$2.24
$2.73
👄 Toothpaste, 1 tube
$2.86
$2.21
Other
🏋️ Gym Membership, 1 month
$42.1
$26.1
🎫 Cinema Ticket, 1 person
$5.57
$4.8
👩‍⚕️ Doctor's visit
$56.5
$29.8
💇 Haircut, simple
$13.2
$10.3
👖 Brand Jeans
$52
$47.3
👟 Brand Sneakers
$88.1
$82.8
👶 Daycare or Preschool, 1 month
$296
$86
🏫 International Primary School, 1 year
$7083
$3858

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Cities Comparison in Costa Rica vs El Salvador

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Cost of Living in Popular cities

In Costa Rica

City Cost of living Population
San Jose
$1001
288K
Limon
$846
60.7K
Liberia
$661
67.1K
Alajuela
$834
48.3K
Puntarenas
$735
41.5K
Cartago
$823
22.8K
Heredia
$723
19K
Tamarindo
$1132
8.14K
Santa Teresa
$837
3K

In El Salvador

City Cost of living Population
San Salvador
$965
568K
Usulutan
$836
379K
Soyapango
$816
241K
San Miguel
$645
218K
Santa Ana
$909
270K
Mejicanos
$750
141K
Santa Tecla
$865
135K
Apopa
$830
131K
Ahuachapan
$870
111K
Sonsonate
$794
71.5K