Japan vs South Korea - Cost of Living Comparison

Japan South Korea
🚶 Cost of living one person
$1171
$1062
👨‍👩‍👧‍👦 Cost of living Family
$2988
$2839
🏠 One person rent
$531
$457
🏘️ Family rent
$1043
$948
🍽️ Food expenses
$394
$416
🚐 Transport expenses
$143
$100
💳 Monthly salary after tax
$2440
$2022
💸 GDP per capita
$40193
$31598
😃 Human freedom index
8.73
8.39
❤️ Life expectancy
84.6
83.4
👮 Corruption perceptions index
73
62
🌐 English speaking %
15%
20%
🎓 Higher education
99
88
😀 Quality of life
79
77
🏙️ Population
126M
51.5M

The average cost of living in Japan ($1171) is 10% more expensive than in South Korea ($1062). Japan ranked 43rd vs 53rd for South Korea in the list of the most expensive countries in the world.

The average after-tax salary is enough to cover living expenses for 2.1 months in Japan compared to 1.9 months in South Korea. Ranked 18th and 20th best countries to live in the world.

Salary adjustment calculator
the estimated difference in money purchasing power

Cost of living in Japan vs South Korea infographic

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Prices in Japan vs South Korea

We calculate prices for Japan and South Korea as a population-weighted mean of 907 and 87 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.

Japan South Korea
Eating Out
🍱 Lunch Menu
$6.34
$5.59
🥂 Dinner in a Restaurant, for 2
$31.9
$29.1
🥪 Fast food meal, equiv. McDonald's
$5.35
$5.02
🍻 Beer in a Pub, 0.5 L or 16 fl oz
$3.39
$2.84
 Cappuccino
$3.03
$3.5
🥤 Pepsi / Coke, 0.5 L or 16.9 fl oz
$1.08
$1.33
Rent & Utilities
🏙️ 1 bedroom apartment in Downtown, 40 m2 or 430 ft2
$558
$458
🏡 Cheap 1 bedroom apartment, 40 m2 or 430 ft2
$359
$331
🏙️ 3 bedroom apartment in Downtown, 80 m2 or 860 ft2
$1157
$1094
🏡 Cheap 3 bedroom apartment, 80 m2 or 860 ft2
$783
$733
🔌 Utility Bill one person, electricity, heating, water, etc.
$98.6
$79.7
🔌 Utility Bill for a Family, electricity, heating, water, etc.
$152
$122
🌐 Internet plan, 50 Mbps+ 1 month unlimited
$34.2
$21
🏦 Mortgage Interest Rate for 20 Years
1.48%
3.64%
🏙️ Apartment price to Buy in city Center, 1 m2 or 10 ft2
$4765
$7604
🏡 House price to Buy in Suburbs, 1 m2 or 10 ft2
$2789
$5485
Transportation
🚌 Local transport ticket
$1.84
$1.02
🎟️ Monthly ticket local transport
$67
$42.5
🚕 Taxi Ride, 8 km or 5 mi
$26
$9.67
 Gas / Petrol, 1 L or 0.26 gal
$1.18
$1.3
Groceries
🥛 Milk, 1 L or 1 qt
$1.4
$1.93
🍞 Bread, 0.5 kg or 1.1 lb
$1.6
$2.34
🍚 Rice, 1 kg or 2.2 lb
$3.3
$3.02
🥚 Eggs, x12
$1.84
$3.25
🧀 Cheese, 1 kg or 2.2 lb
$13
$14
🐔 Chicken Breast, 1 kg or 2.2 lb
$6.87
$8.29
🥩 Round Steak, 1 kg or 2.2 lb
$18.1
$28.5
🍏 Apples, 1 kg or 2.2 lb
$4.91
$5.55
🍌 Banana, 1 kg or 2.2 lb
$2.5
$3.31
🍊 Oranges, 1 kg or 2.2 lb
$4.16
$4.48
🍅 Tomato, 1 kg or 2.2 lb
$4.29
$4.69
🥔 Potato, 1 kg or 2.2 lb
$2.93
$2.96
🧅 Onion, 1 kg or 2.2 lb
$2.28
$2.36
🌊 Water, 1 L or 1 qt
$0.6
$0.64
🍹 Coca-Cola / Pepsi, 2 L or 67.6 fl oz
$1.59
$2.33
🍾 Wine (mid-priced), 750 mL bottle
$8.76
$13.5
🍺 Beer, 0.5 L or 16 fl oz
$2.01
$1.93
🚬 Cigarette pack
$3.97
$3.37
💊 Cold medicince, 1 week
$10.5
$4.98
🧴 Hair Shampoo
$3.65
$5.13
🧻 Toilet paper, 4 rolls
$1.52
$2.47
👄 Toothpaste, 1 tube
$1.82
$1.86
Other
🏋️ Gym Membership, 1 month
$56
$42.5
🎫 Cinema Ticket, 1 person
$12.5
$8.6
👩‍⚕️ Doctor's visit
$34.4
$29.8
💇 Haircut, simple
$17
$8.47
👖 Brand Jeans
$47.5
$58.1
👟 Brand Sneakers
$59.8
$72.6
👶 Daycare or Preschool, 1 month
$331
$352
🏫 International Primary School, 1 year
$11700
$18313

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Cities Comparison in Japan vs South Korea

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Cost of Living in Popular cities

In Japan

City Cost of living Population
Tokyo
$1698
14M
Yokohama
$1653
3.76M
Osaka
$1295
2.75M
Nagoya
$1337
2.33M
Kawasaki
$1133
1.54M
Kobe
$1305
1.51M
Sapporo
$1140
1.96M
Kyoto
$1163
1.46M
Hiroshima
$1227
1.2M
Fukuoka
$1234
1.6M
Sendai
$1128
1.06M
Yokosuka
$1133
390K
Kitakyushu
$1049
935K
Sakai
$1220
824K
Chiba
$1395
982K
Saitama
$1179
1.32M
Kumamoto
$1200
738K
Okayama
$1155
720K
Sagamihara
$1153
726K
Shizuoka
$1057
686K
Kagoshima
$1170
594K
Funabashi
$1170
641K
Kashiwa
$999
434K
Kawaguchi
$1085
593K
Hachioji
$1234
576K
Utsunomiya
$1136
518K
Niigata
$1034
791K
Hamamatsu
$1232
788K
Himeji
$1164
528K
Kanazawa
$924
462K

In South Korea

City Cost of living Population
Seoul
$1460
9.67M
Busan
$1031
3.45M
Incheon
$1002
2.91M
Daegu
$918
2.46M
Gwangju
$902
1.49M
Daejeon
$944
1.48M
Seongnam
$1022
949K
Suwon
$977
1.23M
Ulsan
$1066
1.17M
Changwon
$955
1.05M
Goyang
$1002
1.06M
Yongin
$1049
971K
Bucheon
$1121
868K
Cheongju
$880
833K
Namyangju
$970
713K
Jeju Island
$968
696K
Pohang
$775
520K
Jeju
$1542
435K
Hwaseong
$965
655K
Ansan
$921
653K
Anyang
$1102
573K
Jeonju
$791
653K
Cheonan
$930
652K
Gimhae
$839
534K
Pyeongtaek
$809
458K
Masan
$945
430K
Siheung
$945
425K
Uijeongbu
$998
422K
Paju
$941
415K
Gumi
$951
421K