A to Z Challenge

C is for Cost of living


C is for Cost of Living.

When people find out we live In Germany they ask me for the cost of living difference between here and the US.

Cost of living is quite comparable but slightly higher in Germany, especially right now with the euro being so low. Here is a price comparison with Kaiserslautern and Monterrey, Mexico. You can take this information and see for yourself.

...in Kaiserslautern, Germany

...in Monterrey, Mexico


They vary a lot depending on the city and area but right now we're paying 700€ ($757.97 USD) for a 2 bedroom, 1 bathroom, unfurnished but with an einbauk├╝chen (built in kitchen) apartment.
Rent is currently $4500 pesos ($298.28 usd) per month for a 2 bedroom, 1 full bathroom apartment including cable/internet/water and furniture.

public transportation fares (train, bus etc.)

Single bus ride costs 2 €, if you have the bahncard you can get a lower rate. tageskarte (day ticket): 6 € and Monthly tickets cost €50 - 250, depending on the zones you need it for.
The bus is around $12.00 pesos ($0.80 usd) one way (usually per bus too).

food prices (your monthly budget)

We have a 60€ budget per week (240 € monthly), since I make lunch for two and dinner for three.
Monthly budget is $1400 pesos (92.84 usd) for two people.

price for a good menu in a traditional restaurant 

most "good menu" styled restaurants have plates that range from €10-€15. (10.86 to 16.28 usd) the majority of restaurants are in the affordable side.
$300-$500 (19.87 to 33 usd) per couple

health prices

Student Health insurance: 70 €/month.  Public Health Insurance we currently have: 400 €/month

education prices

Kindergartens are free in Hamburg if the child attends 5 hours, if you need more than five hours per day then you would pay an amount that depends on your income.
As for universities, the public ones are free, you just have to pay a small semester fee, and this usually covers the semester ticket for public transport.
For college at UANL around $4000-$5000 (265-331 usd) per semester


From what I've heard, electricity is expensive regardless of the supplier; but for us it's included in the rent.
Around $500-600 (33-39 usd) every two months

Internet, television, telephone, mobile phone

heating, internet, TV and phone are included in our rent, so we don't have to worry about it. Although, our internet is limited to 200 GB per month. 
Cell phone - We have a pay as you go with blau.de and have two options:
Smart-option -  9.90€     Smart-Option 1000 - 14.90€
Cell phone $200 pesos (13.25 usd)  gas $120 (7.95 usd) every 3 months

price for a coffee or a drink

at a kiosk, €1.25-€3.00  
Around $11.00 pesos ($0.73 usd) in a kiosk

price for cinema tickets

Normal price is €10,40 (11.32 usd) around 13 for 3D.
Around $60 (3.75 usd) pesos per person, and above $100.00 pesos (6.63 usd) for VIP etc.

Conversion rates April 2nd:              15.09 MXN to 1 USD         1 EUR to 1.08 USD 

How does this compare to prices where you live?

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