Expats moving to Azerbaijan can enjoy a relatively low cost of living – particularly in terms of transport. Even Baku, the country's capital and business hub which draws in the most foreigners, is relatively affordable. In fact, Mercer's 2020 Cost of Living survey ranks Baku 172nd out of 209 cities.

However, the cost of living in Azerbaijan is high compared to neighbouring countries such as Georgia and Armenia. Of course, expenses will vary depending on the area where an expat lives as well as lifestyle preferences. Accommodation and other living expenses are much higher in Baku than in other cities and areas. 

Salaries tend to be relatively high. Given the conflict and tensions in the region, Azerbaijan is often considered a hardship destination and many expats are well compensated to make the move.


Cost of accommodation in Azerbaijan

Accommodation in Azerbaijan is likely to be an expat’s greatest expense if not included as part of a corporate relocation package. Expats can expect to pay more for a furnished flat or serviced apartment in the capital city compared to unfurnished accommodation of a lower standard.

Fortunately, many companies, particularly in the energy sector, will provide accommodation or an accommodation allowance (including for utilities) for their expat staff, so it’s important to confirm this prior to arriving in the country.


Cost of food and eating out in Azerbaijan

Imported food can easily cost a few times more than local produce. Expats who favour certain international brands may find the prices to be high. Thanks to Azerbaijan’s favourable climate, there is always local fresh produce available, so it’s unnecessary for expats to buy expensive imported foods.

Eating out in Baku will prove more expensive than in other cities, but expats can save by looking out for local cuisine.


Cost of transport in Azerbaijan

The cost of transport in Azerbaijan is very affordable thanks to the country’s low fuel prices. The petrol price in Azerbaijan is much lower than the global average and driving a car in Azerbaijan is cost effective. For expats with children, it’s often more practical to have a private vehicle for getting around. Some companies will provide their foreign staff with a car as well as a driver.

Expats in Azerbaijan for a short-term stay often find that getting around by public transport is easy and affordable. From buses to the Baku Metro, ticket costs are low, especially compared to major European countries.


Cost of education in Azerbaijan

Expats don’t usually send their children to public schools in Azerbaijan, choosing to rather enrol them at international schools. These schools offer top-quality educational facilities and well-experienced teachers, and allow expat children to continue their learning in a familiar language and curriculum. Fees at these schools, as with elsewhere in the world, can be prohibitively expensive. We advise expats with children to ensure that their relocation package caters for this.


Cost of living in Azerbaijan chart 

Prices may vary depending on product and service provider. The list below shows average prices for Baku in December 2020.

Accommodation (monthly rent)

One-bedroom apartment in city centre

AZN 550

Three-bedroom apartment in the city centre

AZN 1,200

One-bedroom apartment outside the city centre

AZN 315

Three-bedroom apartment outside the city centre

AZN 400

Shopping

Eggs (dozen)

AZN 2.25

Milk (1 litre)

AZN 1.75

Rice (1kg)

AZN 2.60

Loaf of white bread

AZN 0.50

Chicken breasts (1kg)

AZN 6

Pack of cigarettes (Marlboro)

AZN 5

Eating out

Big Mac Meal

AZN 8

Coca-Cola (330ml)

AZN 0.75

Cappuccino

AZN 4

Bottle of local beer

AZN 2

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

AZN 50

Utilities

Mobile to mobile call rate (per minute)

AZN 0.05

Internet (uncapped ADSL or cable – average per month)

AZN 30

Basic utilities (per month for a small apartment)

AZN 75

Transport

Taxi rate (per kilometre)

AZN 0.70

Bus/train fare in the city centre

AZN 0.30

Petrol/Gasoline (per litre)

AZN 0.80