Cost of living for one month in Rome

Cost of living for one month in Rome

Now that I am living the nomad life, I have started reading more travel-type blogs. One of the blogs that I’ve stumbled across is The Ramble. Like me, Gigi moves from European country to country as a digital nomad (i.e. someone whose work is entirely based online, so they are not tied to a physical location).

She regularly posts about the costs of being a nomad in each city and, as I found it very interesting, I decided to steal her idea.

Most people assume that my kind of lifestyle is extremely expensive and that I must be rolling in dough, but I can assure you that neither is the case!

Many assume that frequent travelling is expensive, as they imagine how much money they spend on their own holidays. But, remember, I am living more as a local: I do not eat every meal out and I do not visit tourist attractions every day.

Although it would be cool to hang out here every day...

Although it would be cool to hang out here daily…

There is no reason why you would necessarily spend more money in a different country compared with your home country and, considering I’ve most recently resided in two of the most expensive cities in the world (London and Sydney), I’m actually saving a considerable amount of money.

Travelling between cities is the greatest expense, hence why I try to base myself in one city for a full month. It’s not that the cost of trains and planes throughout Europe is particularly high (in addition to that extremely cheap ticket to Naples listed below, I’ve also scored a bus from Florence to Venice for €2, a train from Venice to Trieste for €9, and a bus from Trieste to Split for €30, which is dirt cheap considering how far it is!); rather, accommodation works out much cheaper if you stay for a month or longer.

It’s also important to note that I lose a full day of working every time I travel, so I try to limit my movements. Because I am working, I do need longer to explore a city than a regular tourist, so I feel that at least two weeks is necessary in any one place.

I know people are always curious about others’ finances, so hopefully you find this interesting – maybe it will even inspire you to work on the road for a while!

Let’s start with Rome, where I spent one month (July). For the sake of comparison, I have included what I spent during my final month (June) in London. 

Rome

London

Accommodation

€572 ($632)

€1135 ($1255)

Groceries

€272 ($301)

€282 ($312)

Dining out

€177 ($196)

€305 ($337)

Public transport

€36 ($40)

€162 ($179)

Entertainment (museums, etc)

€36 ($40)

€40 ($44)

Gym membership

€55 ($61)

€57 ($63)

Dance classes

N/A

€130 ($144)

Clothing

€67 ($74)

€120 ($133)

Phone bill

€15 ($16)

€68 ($75)

Train ticket from Rome to Naples

€9 ($10)

N/A

Flight from London to Rome

N/A

€120 ($133)

Miscellaneous

€67 ($74)

€522 ($577)

TOTAL

€1306 (US$1444)

€2941 (US$3253)

Rome is considered one of the most expensive cities in Europe but, as you can see, it is nothing compared to London. I feel like I’m living like a queen in Italy.

A few notes:

  • I rented a room through Airbnb, which works out more expensive than if I had stayed for a longer period and approached a real estate agency, for example. Yet my monthly rent in London was almost the equivalent to my entire month’s expenditure in Rome.
  • Public transport is ridiculously overpriced in London. I was able to purchase a ticket between two major Italian cities for the same price as what I would pay for one return journey to work and back in London.
  • In Italy, food – both from the supermarket and eating out – is a lot cheaper, which is helpful considering the huge role food plays in my life. Even though I spent more in London, I am eating out more often here.
  • My miscellaneous expenses in London were largely moving-related costs, such as shipping boxes, a new suitcase, haircut, and a year’s supply of contact lenses and supplements, so that skews the numbers somewhat. In Rome, my miscellaneous expenses were travel insurance and language classes.

I use an app called The Birdy to keep track of my daily expenses. It is fantastic! Considering the fact that I have been self-employed for a while now, I am used to keeping track of my monthly expenditure, but this app makes it so much easier. (I am not affiliated with them in any way – I just really love the app.)

I love the life I have now, and I am kicking myself for not living like this sooner.

Are you surprised at the difference in cost of living between Rome and London?

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