The REAL cost of living in Dublin, REVEALED (rent, transportation, utilities, and more)

We have all heard stories about how expensive it is to live in Dublin. Have you ever wondered how expensive it really is? Well here is the real cost of living in Dublin.

Year after year, we continuously hear stories that Dublin is climbing the ranks of being one of the most expensive cities in the world. Living expenses are always among the top concerns for those hoping to move to a new country. 

According to the 2020 Worldwide Cost of Living report, Dublin is 46th most expensive city in the world, falling just one place behind London. This report places Dublin as the sixth most expensive city in Europe behind Zurich, Bern, Geneva, London, and Copenhagen. 

Here we look at the real cost of living in Dublin and also take a quick look at wages in Ireland.

Ireland Before You Die’s interesting facts and tips about the cost of living in Dublin:

  • In recent years, Dublin has become one of the most expensive cities to live in Europe.
  • House prices and rent, in particular, have soared since the Covid-19 pandemic.
  • In 2023, Dublin is experiencing a housing crisis. There are not enough houses to accommodate the population, and prices are insurmountable.
  • If you’re moving to Dublin, set out a budget of what you can afford for rent, utilities, and personal luxuries before you go looking.
  • Consider living in the city outskirts or further. Prices will be much more affordable.

Rent – the most costly factor

Rent is very expensive in Dublin.
Credit: geograph.ie / Joseph Mischyshyn

Dublin’s high cost of living is primarily accredited to its high rents.

Dublin City Centre and Dublin South City are the most expensive locations to rent in, with the average property costing €2,044 to rent per month. This is in comparison with the national average of €1,391 per month.

The average cost of a one-bedroom apartment in Dublin in 2023 is just under €2,000 in the city centre and around €1,673 outside the city, according to Numbeo.

If you are looking to rent your own private bedroom in a shared house, prices start at around €650 per month. If you are happy with sharing a room with someone, then the cost of rent can be as low as €400 per month.

RELATED: Research finds that the average rent in Dublin is €2,000 per month

Transportation – expensive journeys

Transportation is a part of the cost of living in Dublin.
Credit: commons.wikimedia.org

The public transport system in Dublin, while extensive, can be a silent expense.

A Leap Card can be used on most of Dublin’s public transport system, which has a weekly cap of €40 for those who use public transport extensively. Using a Leap Card is cheaper than paying in cash – in some cases up to 31% cheaper, so it is worth getting.

A litre of petrol or diesel is around the €1.51 – €1.59 mark, which is the lowest it has been since 2021. One thing to consider if using a car in Dublin is the cost of parking, with some on-street parking as high as €3.20 per hour.

READ: IB4UD’s guide to Dublin on a budget: save money in the capital

Utilities – a variable expense

The cost of utilities.
Credit: commons.wikimedia.org

Utilities vary greatly depending on the amount of time one spends at home, and what kind of services are linked to your accommodation.

The average annual electricity bill for a one or two-bedroom apartment is €680; however, if there are no gas appliances, this can be upwards of €1,200. The average gas bill in Ireland is €805 per annum. 

On average, high-speed or fibre internet in Dublin costs on average €50 per month. However, this can vary as some companies offer discounts for the first year.

Pre-pay phone bills that offer unlimited data, unlimited texts, and 60 minutes of calls cost between €20 and €30. 

READ: For more on this, check out IB4UD’s article on Living in Dublin: the pros and cons about living here, explained

Entertainment – enjoyment is expensive

Gyms are part of the cost of living in Dublin.
Credit: pixnio.org

For those with interest in keeping fit, gyms in Dublin vary in price.

The average cost of a monthly gym membership, including access to a swimming pool, is €40. However, rates can be less if you go during off-peak hours.

Some chain gyms have cheaper rates, but these are usually busier.

A cinema ticket to see an international release is €12, while a medium-sized popcorn on average costs €5.50. 

Guinness in Dublin is expensive.
Credit: commons.wikimedia.org

No analysis of the real cost of living in Dublin would be complete without a look at the cost of a pint of Guinness.

In Dublin, the average price of a pint in 2023 is €6. However, if you are in Dublin City Centre, you can expect to pay upwards of €6.50 – €7.50 in some places and even more in Temple Bar.

READ MORE: the price of a pint in Dublin over the last 50 years, revealed

The price of a coffee varies across Dublin; however, it can be a dealbreaker for those coffee connoisseurs.

Most independent cafés in Dublin price their flat whites at, or just under, €3. A flat white in Starbucks costs a whopping €3.25, making it the most expensive place to get your caffeine fix. 

A three-course meal for two at a mid-range restaurant, without any drinks, costs on average €65. In comparison, the cost of a cocktail is approximately €12.

If you are looking to splash out, fear not, for Dublin offers plenty of options to splash the cash. You can check out our article on the best restaurants in Dublin here.

Overall – how much do I need to live in Dublin?

The overall cost of living in Dublin.
Credit: commons.wikimedia.org

According to Numbeo, the average cost of living for a single person living in Dublin is €1,056.9, excluding rent.

Depending on how budget savvy you may be, your cost of living may be lower, especially if you shop around for the best deal. The high rent costs are what drive up the cost of living in Dublin.

Since January 2023, the minimum wage in Ireland is €11.30 per hour before tax, while the living wage in Ireland is €13.10.

The average salary of a person working in Dublin is €36,430 per annum. However, this varies greatly depending on the industry.

Your questions answered about the cost of living in Dublin

If you still have questions, we have you covered! In this section, we’ve compiled some of our readers’ most frequently asked questions and popular questions that have been asked online about this topic.

Is it expensive to live in Dublin?

The very short answer is yes. As rent prices and the general cost of living continues to rise in Ireland, Dublin has become one of the most expensive cities to live in Europe.

What salary do you need to live in Dublin?

For a single adult living in Dublin, considering high rent prices and the general price of goods these days, a 40 – 50k a year salary is essential to living in Dublin.

Is 70k a good salary in Dublin?

It’s all relative. For a single person living in Dublin, this is a great wage. People with larger families and dependents need an average salary of between 60 and 80k a year to live comfortably.

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