Living cost in Shanghai.

Living budget.

You’ve heard the mantra over and over: budget, budget, budget. This is money management rule number one as you graduate. But if you’ve never had to pay for life’s essentials yourself, coming up with a realistic spending plan can feel like wandering in the dark.

This is just to help you have an idea how to create your monthly budget.

So let’s get started:

First you have to make a list of all your expenses and dived them in to categories.

  1. Inevitable expenses (this include all the monthly expenses that you cannot get out of.)
    • Food
    • Hygiene
    • Transportation
    • Phone credit
    • Water
  2. Extra expenses (this includes the extra expenses that shows up some times is the middle of the month like a visit to the doctor, a gift to an important friend or a new charger for your phone)
  3. Fun expenses (We all need that one or two weekend to take off the work load of our back or to celebrate a friend’s birthday)

Note: You can always adjust the amounts according to your habits and your need.

This is the approximate price in Shanghai for the main things you will need just for you to have an idea.

**Note: The Chinese Yuan (CNY) is the primary currency and all other currency payments will be measured against the Chinese Yuan on the date when the applicant confirms their enrollment.

Living Cost – Shanghai

RMBUSDEuro
Cooking
500g Chicken121.751.60
500g Pork172.502.30
500g Beef375.405
1L Milk121.751.60
10 eggs50.750.70
500g Vegetables3 - 70.45 - 1.200.40 - 0.95
Cheese253.653.40
500g Seasonal fruits5 - 100.75 - 1.450.70 - 1.40
Bread5 - 200.75 - 2.900.70 - 2.70
500g Rice3 - 50.45 - 0.750.40 - 0.70
1L Olive oil304.354
1L Vegetable oil152.202
Meals (restaurant)
Basic lunch in business district608.758.10
Basic lunch in normal district304.354
Basic fast-food meal405.855.50
Drinks (shop)
Beer3-60.45 - 0.900.40 - 0.80
Wine152.202
1 can of Coca-Cola2.50.350.30
1 cup of coffee202.902.70
1L Water2.50.400.30
Transportation
Bus ride1 - 20.15 - 0.300.15 - 0.30
Metro ride2 - 60.30 - 0.900.30 - 0.80
1km Taxi fare2.40.350.30
1L Gas60.900.80
Accommodation
Small apartment (Business district) p/month7000 - 80001020 - 1165675 - 810
Small apartment (Normal district) p/month5000 - 6000730 - 875675 - 810
Water and Gas p/ month507.306.75
Electricity p/ month3004540
Internet connection p/month100-20015 - 3014 - 27
Apartment Maintenance p/ month4006055

The best way to economize is to cook at least most of your meal at home, and use “normal ingredients”. Vegetables, eggs, rice, chicken and pork are very cheap in China. If you can make them yourself, it would be a great plus on your budget. Things like Cheese and beef are a bit expensive so u have to think twice if you want to save money.

For breakfast, if you can get used to the Chinese style you can save a lot by eating baozi, shawarma and small street foods.

  • Other items are things that you can find a vast amount of choices from ridiculously cheap to pretty expensive. So it’s all on you.
  • Transportation in China is fairly cheap. Each bus ride costs 0.8 RMB if you have a bus card. Taxi fare starts in 14 RMB and then 2.4 RMB p/km.
  • For the phone credit, 40 RMB should cover one month of calls and data.
  • For Shopping (clothes, electronic etc.), there is always a market nearby where you can find anything you need for a fair price. And there is always taobao to help you save more money.

In conclusion, it will all depend on your lifestyle choices. In China you can find anything, things you didn’t even know you needed, again for ridiculously cheap to pretty expensive.