The cost of living in Ho Chi Minh City is relatively cheap when compared to many countries in the West. Ho Chi Minh City placed 143rd out of 209 cities in the Mercer Cost of Living Survey for 2021, slightly below the country's capital, Hanoi, which ranked 139th.

Expats from North America or Western Europe, in particular, will be able to maintain their standard of living here, if not increase some luxuries. That said, an expat's lifestyle will highly influence their monthly expenditure. 


Cost of accommodation in Ho Chi Minh City

The cost of accommodation in Ho Chi Minh City is a fraction of what it is in the United States or Europe, although housing does tend to be less spacious in Vietnam. There are several budget-friendly options, but those earning high expat salaries will be able to afford the most elite accommodation which often takes the form of luxury apartment complexes.


Cost of food and eating out in Ho Chi Minh City

When grocery shopping, the most expensive goods are those that are imported. To save money, try to buy local produce from street vendors. This tends to be fresher than what is available at supermarkets and is a great way to support the local economy.

Many expats dine out often as it isn't expensive, provided they are eating at local restaurants. In fact, some would say it's cheaper to eat out than cook at home in Ho Chi Minh City. Those looking to splash out can try the upmarket bars, restaurants and shops of the city centre or District 1. 


Cost of education in Ho Chi Minh City

Expat parents planning to send their children to a local school won't have a lot of school-related expenses. Public schooling in Vietnam is either for free or for a small fee. Extra costs such as uniforms, school transport, lunches and stationery should also be taken into account, but these are minor costs compared to the ones paid by those sending their children to international schools. These schools command extremely high fees along with numerous extra costs, contributions and charges.


Cost of living in Ho Chi Minh City chart

Note that prices may vary depending on location and service provider and the table below is based on average prices for February 2022.

Accommodation (monthly rent)

Three-bedroom apartment in city centre

VND 26,500,000

Three-bedroom apartment outside of city centre

VND 15,700,000

One-bedroom apartment in city centre

VND 12,700,000

One-bedroom apartment outside city centre

VND 7,700,000

Groceries

Milk (1 litre)

VND 35,400

Dozen eggs

VND 33,800

Loaf of white bread

VND 24,900

Chicken breasts (1kg)

VND 75,000

Pack of cigarettes 

VND 30,000

Eating out

Big Mac Meal

VND 100,000

Cappuccino

VND 46,400

Local beer (500ml)

VND 20,000

Three-course meal for two at a mid-range restaurant

VND 600,000

Utilities 

Mobile call rate (per minute – mobile to mobile) 

VND 1,500

Internet (uncapped – average per month) 

VND 256,000

Utilities (average per month for standard household)

VND 1,724,000

Transport and driving

City-centre bus fare

VND 7,000

Taxi (rate per km)

VND 15,000

Petrol (per litre) 

VND 21,400