It’s no secret that living in Poland is much cheaper compared to other European countries. Affordable prices of food, rent and entertainment are usually one of the main reasons why people choose Poland to be their home. At the same time, if you are thinking of moving to Poland you should take into consideration that you may earn considerably less than you used to. To make this decision easier for you, we’ve put together a list of standard expenses making up the cost of living in Poland in 2018.

2020 cost of living Pocket guide

You can check the up to date exchange rates for Polish zloty here.

Cost of accommodation in Poland

Warsaw is by far the most expensive city when it comes to renting a flat. The average cost of a medium size flat in the capital can reach even as high as 2800 PLN per month. A bit cheaper flats can be rented in Wroclaw (2260 PLN a month) and Gdansk (1995 PLN a month). The cheapest large city in Poland is Bydgoszcz with rents as low as 1267 PLN a month for a medium size flat.

City Flat size Average monthly rent
Bydgoszcz 0-38 m2 996 PLN
38-60 m2 1267 PLN
60-90 m2 1713 PLN
Gdansk 0-38 m2 1353 PLN
38-60 m2 1995 PLN
60-90 m2 2590 PLN
Katowice 0-38 m2 1279 PLN
38-60 m2 1769 PLN
60-90 m2 2399 PLN
Krakow 0-38 m2 1445 PLN
38-60 m2 1877 PLN
60-90 m2 2585 PLN
Lublin 0-38 m2 1306 PLN
38-60 m2 1688 PLN
60-90 m2 2205 PLN
Lodz 0-38 m2 1203 PLN
38-60 m2 1645 PLN
60-90 m2 2581 PLN
Poznan 0-38 m2 1159 PLN
38-60 m2 1636 PLN
60-90 m2 2201 PLN
Szczecin 0-38 m2 1186 PLN
38-60 m2 1552 PLN
60-90 m2 2014 PLN
Warsaw 0-38 m2 1984 PLN
38-60 m2 2799 PLN
60-90 m2 4015 PLN
Wroclaw 0-38 m2 1477 PLN
38-60 m2 2260 PLN
60-90 m2 2921 PLN

On top of your rent you need to add a monthly cost of utilities. On average, bills for electricity, heating, water and garbage for a medium size flat are costing 620 PLN. Of course this price will depend on the city you live in, local council tax and your utilities usage. Internet is another additional cost you should think of which adds to another 45 PLN to your expenses.

Utilities (Monthly) Average monthly cost Range
Basic (Electricity, Heating, Water, Garbage) for 85m2 Apartment 620 PLN 400-850 PLN
Internet (10 Mbps, Unlimited Data, Cable/ADSL) 45 PLN 30-60 PLN

Cost of food

Food in Poland is fairly cheap, especially compared to countries like the UK or France. Compared to these countries, food prices in Poland are on average around 50% lower. Prices of some products may surprise as cheese for example is really expensive in comparison to meat which price is among the lowest in the whole European Union.

Product Average cost Range
Milk (regular), (1 liter) 2.37 PLN 2-3 PLN
Loaf of Fresh White Bread (500g) 2.72 PLN 2-3 PLN
Rice (white), (1kg) 3.17 PLN 2-5 PLN
Eggs (12) 7.08 PLN 4.80-8.40 PLN
Local Cheese (1kg) 21.87 PLN 18-30 PLN
Chicken Breasts (Boneless, Skinless), (1kg) 15 PLN 13-18 PLN
Beef Round (1kg) (or Equivalent Back Leg Red Meat) 31 PLN 22-40 PLN
Apples (1kg) 3 PLN 2-4 PLN
Banana (1kg) 4.28 PLN 3.50-5 PLN
Oranges (1kg) 4.50 PLN 4-6 PLN
Tomato (1kg) 5.16 PLN 4-8 PLN
Potato (1kg) 1.65 PLN 1-2.50 PLN
Onion (1kg) 2 PLN 1-3 PLN
Lettuce (1 head) 2.80 PLN 2-4 PLN
Water (1.5 liter bottle) 1.79 PLN 1.50-3 PLN
Bottle of Wine (Mid-Range) 20 PLN 15-30 PLN
Domestic Beer (0.5 liter bottle) 2.99 PLN 2.50-4.00 PLN
Imported Beer (0.33 liter bottle) 4.00 PLN 3-6 PLN

Cost of transport

Transportation Average cost Range
One-way Ticket (Local Transport) 3.40 PLN 3-4.40 PLN
Monthly Pass (Regular Price) 100 PLN 89-100 PLN
Taxi Start (Normal Tariff) 6.50 PLN 5-8 PLN
Taxi 1km (Normal Tariff) 2.40 PLN 2.00-2.80 PLN
Gasoline (1 liter) 4.60 PLN 4.30-5 PLN

Cost of eating out in Poland

Eating and drinking Average cost Range
Meal, Inexpensive Restaurant 20 PLN 15-30 PLN
Meal for 2 People, Mid-range Restaurant, Three-course 100 PLN 70-120 PLN
McMeal at McDonalds (or Equivalent Combo Meal) 17 PLN 15-20 PLN
Cappuccino (regular) 7.40 PLN 6-10 PLN
Domestic Beer (0.5 liter draught) in a pub 7 PLN 4-10 PLN

Cost of going out and entertainment in Poland

Activity Average cost Range
Concerts & music gigs 30 PLN 10-50 PLN
Cinema ticket 20 PLN 18-35 PLN
Theater ticket 70 PLN 50-200 PLN
Club entry 15 PLN 10-30 PLN

Above data is based on over 28,164 entries.

The most affordable and most expensive cities in Poland

Similarly to any other country, Poland has its cheap and expensive regions. Choosing one city over another will have a significant impact on your salary, monthly spendings and possible savings. Here is the list of the main Polish cities ranked from the most affordable to the most expensive place to live (taking into consideration rent cost, bills and public transport costs):

#1 Bialystok
#2 Torun
#3 Bydgoszcz
#4 Szczecin
#5 Lodz
#6 Poznan
#7 Gdansk
#8 Wroclaw
#9 Krakow
#10 Warsaw

Avarage salary in Poland

In 2018 the average salary in Poland is heading towards 4900 PLN a month, which is around 3530 PLN after tax (shy of 830 Euro). Of course, income depends on many factors like industry, city, skills and education of the candidate, to name just a few. Here is the full report on average salaries in Poland.

You can check the up to date exchange rates for Polish zloty here.

Do you want more?

Check out 7 the best cities to live and work in Poland.

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Probably every person thinking of moving to Poland wonders about the salaries in Poland. How much money can I earn in Poland? Is it going to be enough for a good life? What is my standard of living in Poland going to be? These question are more than understandable and looking at average salaries in Poland can help answering some of them. However, keep in mind that the average salary doesn't mean the salary you are going to get. Income in Poland varies greatly between the cities (as everywhere else the capital and bigger cities offer much higher wages), the industry you will work in and the company that hires you, just to name a few. The below data should be treated just an indication.

What is the average salary in Poland? - based on 2018 data

2018 numbers from GUS (Polish Central Statistical Office) are much more positive than previous years but they may still be a bit disappointing for West-European citizens. The average income before tax in Poland is heading towards 4900 PLN a month, which is around 3530 PLN after tax (shy of 830 Euro). If that number sounds disappointing to you, then it's good to take into consideration that the average living cost in Poland is substantially lower compared to most west-European countries. Have a quick look at the cost of living in Poland and find out yourself that your flat, food and entertainment are much cheaper in Poland compared to West-European countries so at the end of the day you may not be worse off.

Changes in the average income in Poland since 2000
Changes in the average income in Poland since 2000, source: wynagrodzenia.pl/gus

Average salaries in different industries

In Poland, similarly to other countries, the average income depends very much on the industry and the discrepancies can be quite significant. Here are the average salaries in different sectors based on the data from February 2018:

Business sector - 4600 PLN
Construction industry - 4482 PLN
IT sector - 8379 PLN
Trade industry - 4392 PLN
Hospitality - 3414 PLN
Administration sector - 3342 PLN
Real estate sector - 4734 PLN

Average salaries in different regions of Poland

The highest wages can normally be found in big cities and it shouldn’t come as a surprise that city of Warsaw and the surrounding region offer the highest average income in Poland. A useful rule of thumb is that the east side of Poland earns less than the west side. The below illustration clearly show this difference in average wages between the different regions of Poland.

Average salaries in different regions of Poland
Average salary in different regions of Poland, source: wynagrodzenia.pl/gus

What is the minimum wage in Poland?

The minimum salary has increased in 2018 to 2100 PLN before tax which is around 1598 PLN after tax (380 Euro). This is the lowest wage that a full-time employee must be paid per month of work.

Increase of the minimum wage in Poland
Increase of the minimum wage in Poland since 2000, source: wynagrodzenia.pl/gus

The minimum hourly rate is 13.70 PLN and this is the amount that must be paid to a person hired based on a contract.

How much can expats earn in Poland?

Everything depends on your skills and the languages you can speak. Native speakers can make really good money in teaching English, German or Spanish (average hourly rate is around 50 PLN, but can be much higher). That’s almost 4 times more than the minimum hourly rate!

If you work in the IT sector you can earn very decent money that, even comparing to west-European income standards, won’t be disappointing. The same goes for your own business.

At the same time, if you are planning to work in a pub or restaurant, you need to take into consideration that you will earn 13.70 PLN per hour plus some tips. Is that enough? It can be, but of course, everything depends on what life you are planning to have.

You can check the up to date exchange rates for Polish zloty here.

Do you want more?

Check out 7 the best cities to live and work in Poland.

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When deciding where to live in Poland, many factors are in the eye of the beholder. What about affordable housing, low cost of living, access to well-paying jobs, good schools for your children, and quality healthcare. Other aspects may include proximity to family, climate, politics and opportunities.

Poland is quite a large country with a lot of diversity in scenery, opportunities and quality of life. There are many unique regions that could make your Polish experience really different depending on where you decide to live. To help you with your decision (or if you haven’t settled in permanently yet, perhaps help you to change your mind) we’ve prepared our ranking of the top 7 best Polish cities to live and work in.

#7 Słupsk


Population: 95,274
Voivodeship: Pomeranian Voivodeship

Słupsk, probably the most open-minded and tolerant city in Poland is governed by Robert Biedroń, a Polish LGBT activist. Biedroń won the mayoral elections in 2014 and secured 57% of the vote, becoming the first openly gay mayor ever in Poland. His attitude, ideas and initiatives gained him a huge number of fans and help Słupsk to become a modern and great city to live in.

If the environment, tolerance and equality are close to your heart, Słupsk is a great choice for you. Proximity and easy access to Tricity means that you won’t have problems with finding a job and can enjoy big city life whenever you feel like it. And when you are done with making money and going out, you can relax in Słupsk which offers tranquillity and access to nature. What more could anyone ask for?

#6 Warsaw


Population: 1.711 million
Voivodeship: Masovian Voivodeship

Fusing tradition and desire to remember its history with modernity and innovation, in recent years Warsaw has become one of European’s prime cities. It is also known as the Phoenix city as it was almost completely destroyed during WWII and with the help of the nation, was rebuilt from scratch. The spirit and energy of those times are still present and admired by millions of tourists who visit the city every year.

As with any capital, Warsaw offers well-paid jobs and access to all sorts of opportunities. The job market is especially attractive for foreigners, with lots of international companies looking for English and German speakers. Thanks to the abundance of theatres, museums, galleries, bars, restaurants and vibrant nightlife, you will never be bored.

Loads of opportunities and possibilities, obviously come with a price tag. The high cost of living, expensive housing (in comparison to other Polish cities) and constant busyness. In the end, Warsaw is no different to any other European capital and if you don’t like big city life you are not going to enjoy living in Warsaw.

If you’re interested in Warsaw check out what to do and see in Warsaw.

#5 Toruń


Population: 204,847
Voivodeship: Kuyavian-Pomeranian Voivodeship

Medieval and charming Toruń ranks high on almost every urban quality of life list and it’s not a surprise as this architectural treasure escaped destruction during the World Wars and is recognised as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It’s the hometown of Nicolas Copernicus who had a great influence on his city – Toruń’s university is one of the best, especially in science subjects like physics and chemistry.

If you like smaller cities with unique architecture and relaxing vibe Toruń is the one for you. Perfect place to have a family and settle down or just to slow down a little bit. And if you are not ready for a calmer life you should definitely visit Toruń just to experience its beauty and charms. Don’t forget to try famous gingerbread which is the local speciality.

If you’re interested in Toruń check out what to do and see in Toruń.

#4 Gdańsk


Population: 460,354
Voivodeship: Pomeranian Voivodeship

Situated in the North of Poland, on the coast of the Baltic Sea, Gdańsk is one of Poland’s most modern cities. A thriving centre of culture, science, sports and entertainment, the city has a unique feel that sets it apart from the other Polish destinations. Created by centuries of maritime ebb and flow as a port city, Gdańsk played a very important role in the collapse of communism and often is referred to as the “city of freedom”.

Every year Gdańsk wins in rankings for the happiest place to live in, with 79,2% of its population feeling content with their life. Beautiful beaches, good weather and lively city centre must contribute to this impressive result. If you’re interested in Gdańsk check out what to do and see not only in Gdańsk but also in Gdynia and Sopot (Trojmiasto).

#3 Kraków


Population: 759,131
Voivodeship: Lesser Poland

City of legends and magical places, Kraków is Poland’s old capital and a perfect place to settle down. The old market square is breathtaking and often is voted to be the best one in the world (last time in 2013 by Lonely Planet). The city centre is full of historical attractions, museum, bars, restaurants and shops tucked away down the old narrow streets.

Kraków is probably the most touristic of all Polish cities and locals are used to foreigners who they really like and make an effort for. Proximity to the Tatra Mountains means that you can go skiing or hiking every weekend without any hassle. And of course, finding a job as a foreigner is quite easy as Kraków is a big city with the vibrant job market.

If you’re interested in Kraków check out what to do and see in Kraków.

#2 Poznań

Poznan (source: wikimedia.org)

Population: 552,393
Voivodeship: Greater Poland Voivodeship

City of business, trade and huge student population, Poznań has a distinctive vibe, quite independent of tourism. Buzzing any time of the day and night, Poznań is full of restaurants, pubs and clubs. Do to the entrepreneurial spirit Poznań citizens, the city has one of the lowest unemployment rates in Poland (around 2% at the moment) and therefore a great place to look for a job, even if you don’t speak Polish yet.

Poznań is situated only a 2.5h drive away from Berlin which makes it a great spot to travel from and explore. Thanks to its vibrant job market the city is very attractive for foreigners and next to Wrocław, one of the most favourite destinations for expats to settle down.

If you’re interested in Poznań check out what to do and see in Poznań.

#1 Wrocław


Population: 631,377
Voivodeship: Lower Silesian Voivodeship

Full of life and character, with magnificent architecture and vibrant colours, Wrocław is one of expats most favourite cities in Poland to live and work. Because of the presence of many rivers, islands and over 200 bridges, the city has a growing reputation as the Venice of the North. European Capital of Culture 2016 and one of the host cities during Euro 2012, has over 100 bars and clubs, open often almost 24h a day. Wrocław is definitely a city of action, events and fun and it appeals to people looking for those qualities.

Wrocław attracts not only people but also big companies that are looking for skilled employees who speak multiple languages. Lots of them are looking for native speakers which makes Wroclaw the perfect place to live for expats. And a big community of foreigners is always a bonus if you are looking for friendly people in a similar situation.

If you’re interested in Wrocław check out what to do and see in Wrocław.

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