Living Costs in Moscow
It is obviously somewhat difficult to estimate how much it might take to cover one’s living expenses, as it depends on many things, including needs and habits. The average cost of living in Moscow also varies on the district one resides in, as this will significantly affect the rent, use of transport, types of local shops and supermarkets, cafes and restaurants.
To help you understand Moscow prices we have outlined the average costs of goods and services in Russia’s capital.
|Housing||Transport||Leisure activities and entertainment|
|Mobile tariffs||Motoring costs||Clothing and footwear|
Private rented accommodation costs are likely to be the main expense and will vary considerably depending on the district and the type, size and standard of accommodation. The city centre is generally more expensive in all respects including apartments. Flats are usually leased fully furnished.
Average monthly rent for a furnished apartment is as follows: (As of January 2015)
|Type of apartment||Price per month|
|One-room apartment||35 000 – 50 000 RUB|
|Two-room apartment||45 000 – 70 000 RUB|
|Three-room apartment||55 000 – 85 000 RUB|
One will normally have to pay a deposit of one month’s rent which will be refunded at the end of the tenancy.
Utilities (water, electricity, gas, heating, etc.)
Payment for utilities may be included in the rental price, by agreement with the landlord. If you pay separately, the average cost of utilities per month is 4000 RUB – 8000 RUB.
Almost all rental apartments have Internet accesses and Wi-Fi. The average fee for an internet service is 350 RUB – 500 RUBper month.
Tariffs offered by them are pretty similar and cost about 500 to 800 RUB per month.
More information here.
In addition to local stores there are a few supermarket chains in Moscow, from low- and mid-budget Pyaterochka, Perekrestok, Sedmoy Kontinent and the international chain Auchan to upscale Azbuka Vkusa and Globus Gourmet specialising in high-quality food and alcohol. Depending on the type of products, the price discrepancy may be considerable, however these supermarkets chains have many locations so one can almost always find an affordable option.
Here is a price list of some of the most frequently used foodstuff
|Food||Price in RUB|
|Beef (1 kg)||450 – 600 RUB|
|Pork (1 kg)||300 – 500 RUB|
|Chicken (1 kg)||150 – 300 RUB|
|Salmon (1 kg)||600 – 1000 RUB|
|Milk (1liter)||57 – 70 RUB|
|Eggs (12)||70 – 100 RUB|
|Potato (1 kg)||30 – 60 RUB|
|Tomato (1 kg)||100 – 130 RUB|
|Water (1,5 liter bottle)||40 – 50 RUB|
|500 gr of local cheese||250 – 400 RUB|
|Apples (1 kg)||55 – 90 RUB|
|Orange (1 kg)||60 – 80 RUB|
|Rice (1 kg)||30 – 50 RUB|
Food prices in Moscow are quite moderate, particularly for domestic products, whereas imported brands are more expensive.
More information here.
Transport in Moscow can be considered quite reasonable as there is no zoning and no time limits for a trip.
As of January 2017 the price for tickets in Moscow Metro (also valid for ground transport):
|1-trip ticket (valid 5 days)||20 trips (valid 90 days)||60 trips (valid 90 days)|
|55 RUB||720 RUB||1700 RUB|
Prices for overground transport:
Note that the minimum number of rides you can purchase is 60 so it's better to buy a card valid on all means of public transport (60 rides for 1700 RUB).
There is also an option of purchasing a 1-month ticket for unlimited number of rides on any type of public transport (2000 RUB). For more options, please, visit the webpage (in Russian).
There are both registered and unlicensed taxis in Moscow. The average tariff for registered taxis is 250 RUB - 800 RUB. The prices of unlicensed taxis may vary greatly, so it is highly recommended to avoid using their services. There are several taxi aggregator services, which you can use, for instance Uber, Yandex.Taxi, Gettaxi. You can download the necessary app for your smartphone in AppStore or Google Play.
There are currently 5 car-sharing operators in Moscow. Typically, you have to be over 21 and have at least 2.5 years of driver's experience. The rates vary from 8 to 11 roubles / per minute. More information available on Moscow transport website (in Russian).
Nowadays Moscow offers shops to suit every budget and taste. Several shopping malls like Mega, Evropeyskiy, Metropolis, Atrium contain such popular mass market international brands as H&M, Marks & Spencer, Zara, Levi’s, Adidas, Mexx, New Look.
The average price in these shops:
- a pair of jeans – 2000-5000 RUB
- a shirt – 1500-4000 RUB
- a jumper – 1500-4000 RUB
- a jacket – 3000-9000 RUB
- a pair of shoes – 2500-8000 RUB
Alongside them, you can also find such recognised brands as Michael Kors, Tommy Hilfiger, Calvin Klein, and Banana Republic.
As well as these, luxury and premium shops and boutiques as D&G, Burberry, Chanel, and Armani also have a presence in the Moscow retail market. They can be found in central locations and prestigious shopping centres (TSUM, Petrovsky Passage). However the price in their Moscow stores may be higher than that in most European countries. Thus a pair of Armani jeans in Moscow TSUM is 25000 RUB, and a leather handbag by Yves Saint Laurent is 150000 RUB.
More information here.
Moscow is the major cultural centre of Russia and offers a wide choice of places and events to attend.
|Ticket price in RUB|
Café and Restaurants
More information here.
The average cost of a business lunch in a café or a combomeal in a fast food restaurant costs about 250 to 500 RUB.
The average total bill in Mid-range restaurant for one person is 800 RUB – 1300 RUB.
Owning a car in Russia is no longer considered a privilege. Unfortunately, because of constant traffic jams it is often more convenient to use the Metro. However, driving a car still has its benefits. Here is a typical list of car related expenses (as of 2016):
- Average car insurance Kasko+Osago (per year) – 79000 + 4650 RUB
- Planned maintenance – 5500 – 8500 RUB
- Vehicle inspection – 720 RUB
- Parking fees (per hour) – 40-80 RUB (depending on a Moscow district)
- Petrol 92 (per 1 litre) – 29-35 RUB, 95 (per 1 litre) – 34-38 RUB
- Taxes and duties – 840-10000 RUB (depending on car power) and 2850 RUB (applies to any car)
Russian citizens mostly send their children to state nurseries and kindergartens which charge fees of 2500-4000 RUB per month. However, recently there has been a rise in the number of private day-care centres, including those offering English speaking staff, which are more expensive. The average monthly fee for a private kindergarten is 35000 RUB.
Russian state comprehensive schools provide free of charge, high quality education, although the curriculum is different from the Western model. Also the language of instruction there is Russian.
Besides state schools, Moscow nowadays has a wide selection of private international schools offering British and American style education with a worldwide reputation for quality. For example, the International School of Moscow offers education for children aged from 3 to 15. Annual tuition fees as of academic year 2014-2015:
|Nursery (full day)||16 815.00 EUR|
|Year 1-3||21 290.00 EUR|
|Year 4-6||21 980.00 EUR|
|Year 7-9||22 970.00 EUR|
|Year 10-11||24 255.00 EUR|
The cost of education in other top international schools in Moscow such as the Anglo-American School of Moscow and the British International School depends on the grade level, the time of enrolment, and whether or not a child requires any additional support programmes. The exact fees charged by these schools can be found out by filling out an online application form on the relevant websites.