The cost of living in Kuwait is similar with that of most of the European countries. If you choose to opt for locally produced products the cost of living in Kuwait will be lesser than the home country. However, the cost of living, just as is the case in any other countries or anywhere In the world, would largely depend on your personal lifestyle.
The cost of similar related items of utilities have been grouped together into several basket groups. The current cost of living for each basket is as follows:
Household Accommodation costs are very high compared to other places for items such as apartment purchase, mortgage rate, rental, and utilities. The cost of accommodation may be high at times, depending on the facilities offered and the location. Kuwait laws do not allow expatriates to buy house or other properties. Monthly rent for a single bed room flat with a hall and kitchen is about 100 to 150 KD depending on the locality. A two bed room flat with a hall and kitchen will be around 180 to 250 KD. There are many Indian families living in a shared apartment which means two families together will buy a two bedroom flat for rent.
Transport costs are very low compared to other places for items such as fuel (petrol/gasoline), public transport, vehicle purchase and maintenance. Most people have a car, especially women. However, to get a driving license the required minimum salary is KD 400. Most of the people depend entirely on public transport. Call taxis are relatively easy to find in Kuwait City. They usually charge a fixed 2 KD price for movements within the inner city. This grows up to 5-6 KD for journeys that involve crossing the whole city.
Alcohol & tobacco costs are low compared to other places for items such as beer, wine,spirits, and cigarettes. Note that the alcohol is illegal in Kuwait. Driving under the influence of alcohol is punishable to the extend of 500 KD and up to one year imprisonment.
Clothing costs are high compared to other places. if you favour designer labels this isn’t peculiar to Kuwait, although there’s little need for winter clothing. Given, the hot climate in the region, plenty of clothing is unnecessary. Office wear for men is mostly shirt and tie, with the exception of formal occasions.
Education costs are very low compared to other places for items such as creche / pre-school fees, primary school fees, high school fees . For those working in government / public sector, and who are sending kids to public schools, the cost of education for kids is free. But, if working in private sector, then you have to pay for their education.
Communication costs are high compared to other places for various communication costs such as home telephone rental, internet subscription, mobile tariff and data costs. You should also allow for the cost of international telephone calls, although these are kept low by Kuwait’s government, who wants to encourage international business and investment in the region.
Furniture & Appliance costs are high compared to other places for items such as dining table and chairs, home entertainment, kitchen appliances, and sofa.
Grocery costs are average compared to other places for items such as consumables, cleaning products, dairy, fresh fruit & vegetables, general food products, snacks, soft drinks. Cost for a family like upto 7 members and with fast growing kids, it would be about KD240 for groceries. If you are smaller family or single will definately cost much less. You can use the above to estimate your basic household expenses but like anywhere in the world, cost of food are going up in Kuwait as well.
Healthcare costs are average compared to other places for doctor visit, hospital stay, non-prescription medicine, and medical insurance. The cost of health service was increased during the recent years due to increase in the cost of labor, medical equipment and medicine, in addition to the increase of population and the increase of prices in general. The public healthcare system of kuwiat provides free or low-cost health care to all its residents.
Miscellaneous costs are high compared to other places for items such as dry cleaning, linen, magazines, newspapers, office supplies, and postage stamps. If you want to buy personal care products and services, the prices are less than other cities.
Personal Care costs are high compared to other places for items such as cosmetics, hair care, shampoo, conditioner and toiletries. Obviously, the cost of personal care items are depends on our lifestyle.
Recreation and Culture costs are high compared to other places for items such as books, cinema, sport and theatre tickets, DVD and CDs.
Restaurants and Hotel costs are very high compared to other places for items such as hotel daily room rates, meals and beverages in restaurants, and take away food and beverages. In case, you choose to purchase internationally branded food items and household goods, you have to paying higher prices than in your home country.