Budgeting Worries: Cost of Living Comparison Between Australia vs. the Philippines

If you have recently arrived in Australia, the prices of commodities might shock you. Australia is among the richest countries in the world. With the higher median income, for sure, you would expect higher prices of goods.


But I couldn’t help but gasp when I first went grocery shopping. I couldn’t stop converting the prices to pesos. Can you imagine shelling out more than PHP 85 for a half-liter bottle of water? It’s more than thrice the price in the Philippines!


In fact, the standard of living in Australia is significantly higher compared to other countries. With recent increases in rent and consumer prices, Melbourne, Perth, and Darwin are now among the most expensive cities to live in.


Whether you’re planning to migrate or have recently moved to the Land Down Under, we came up with this price comparison to help you plan your budget.


Definitely, Way Higher Cost of Living


According to Numbeo, the prices of consumer goods and services in Australia are 132.91% percent higher than in the Philippines. Rent in Australia is 401.22% percent more expensive as well.


However, it is important to note that the average monthly income in Australia is more than 800% higher than in the Philippines.


As long as you spend within your means, you’ll still be able to send money to the Philippines and put some into your savings.


Monthly Rent


Rent in Australia is EXPENSIVE. Most Pinoys allot a considerable amount of their income to their rent.

  Monthly Rent  

A one-bedroom apartment in the Philippines would normally cost between PHP 5,000 to PHP 10,000 per month.


In Australia, a one-bedroom apartment would set you back between PHP 40,000 to PHP 55,000. Many Filipinos opt to share their flat to be able to lessen their expenses.




Electricity is pricey in Australia. Coupled with additional utility bills, your expenses will definitely rack up.


This also include heating, which we normally don’t pay for. Do you like that White Christmas? Apparently, it comes with a price. You don’t want to freeze with Mr. Snowman, do you?




Groceries, fresh produce, and meat are also more costly in Australia. The only product that is more affordable in Australia is milk. This pleasantly surprised me because I really love milk! Perks of having too many cows.


Anyway, I advise buying in bulk whenever the products you regularly use go on sale. This will let you save money in the long run. Grocery Comparison:


Eating Out in Restaurants


In the Philippines, I would usually eat out whenever I’m too lazy to cook. A meal in a decent restaurant would only cost me less than PHP 200. Feeling frugal? A burger at McDonald’s would cost me even less than PHP 100.


When I came to Australia, I flushed the idea of “eating out” out of my system. It was too d*mn costly.

  Eating Out In Restaurants    

With this, not only was I able to send more money home, I was also eating healthier!  Win-win, right?




Transport fares in Australia are relatively high-priced too. But it’s good that Australian cities are built for walking.


I would only take public transportation or my car when I’m traveling a long distance. Taking the train is the cheapest form of public transportation here.


You could take buses, but that would cost you no less than PHP 120 per ride.


Clothing and Shoes


You would want to be with the latest fashion trends. Who wouldn’t be? You might want to reconsider after you see its price tag.

  Clothing and Shoes  

Your retail therapy session for you loneliness might just make you more depressed after. After all, we should curb out our impulse buying this 2018.


Luckily, there are second-hand shops where you could buy items in good condition at more reasonable prices. You might even score nice designer items for way below their price point.




Migrating to Australia might be a daunting task. With this comparison guide, I hope it helps you adapt to your new home. And hopefully, avoid those shocked faces when you visit the groceries.


Disclaimer: The prices posted are just estimates to give you an idea of Australia’s price of goods. It was taken from Numbeo on Feb 8, 2018. The prices listed here might change over time. Please be guided accordingly.

Rica J

I am a mother, a wife and a technology loving Filipina who loves reading hi-fiction books (dragons!) , good stories, dancing, laughter, lying on the grass and eating balut. I am born and raised in the Philippines and now resides in Australia but finds myself in the Philippines for at least 3 months a year. I am part of the Filipino Australian Community and have been living between Australia and the Philippines since 2007.


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