Cost of living in Malawi

Summary of cost of living in Malawi

  • Family of four estimated monthly costs: 2,193,890 Kwacha
  • Single person estimated monthly costs: 868,653 Kwacha
  • WARNING!  These estimates are based on only a few data points. At the moment, you should treat them only as a best guess.
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Food
Basic lunchtime menu (including a drink) in the business district 5,885 Kwacha
Combo meal in fast food restaurant (big mac meal or similar) 3,836 Kwacha
500 gr (1 lb.) of boneless chicken breast 1,926 Kwacha
1 liter (1 qt.) of whole fat milk 986 Kwacha
12 eggs, large 1,787 Kwacha
1 kg (2 lb.) of tomatoes 743 Kwacha
500 gr (16 oz.) of local cheese 3,946 Kwacha
1 kg (2 lb.) of apples 1,602 Kwacha
1 kg (2 lb.) of potatoes 935 Kwacha
0.5 l (16 oz) domestic beer in the supermarket 571 Kwacha
1 bottle of red table wine, good quality 8,470 Kwacha
2 liters of coca-cola 1,301 Kwacha
Bread for 2 people for 1 day 506 Kwacha
Housing
Monthly rent for 85 m2 (900 sqft) furnished accommodation in expensive area 556,180 Kwacha
Monthly rent for 85 m2 (900 sqft) furnished accommodation in normal area 309,557 Kwacha
Utilities 1 month (heating, electricity, gas ...) for 2 people in 85m2 flat 56,093 Kwacha
Monthly rent for a 45 m2 (480 sqft) furnished studio in expensive area 350,000 Kwacha
Monthly rent for a 45 m2 (480 sqft) furnished studio in normal area -
Utilities 1 month (heating, electricity, gas ...) for 1 person in 45 m2 (480 sqft) studio 20,000 Kwacha
Internet 8 mbps (1 month) 50,000 Kwacha
40” flat screen tv 257,156 Kwacha
Microwave 800/900 watt (bosch, panasonic, lg, sharp, or equivalent brands) 350,000 Kwacha
Laundry detergent (3 l. ~ 100 oz.) 3,012 Kwacha
Hourly rate for cleaning help -
Clothes
1 pair of jeans (levis 501 or similar) 30,000 Kwacha
1 summer dress in a high street store (zara, h&m or similar retailers) 260,000 Kwacha
1 pair of sport shoes (nike, adidas, or equivalent brands) 40,000 Kwacha
1 pair of men’s leather business shoes 70,660 Kwacha
Transportation
Volkswagen golf 1.4 tsi 150 cv (or equivalent), with no extras, new 9,759,340 Kwacha
1 liter (1/4 gallon) of gas 858 Kwacha
Monthly ticket public transport 35,497 Kwacha
Personal Care
Cold medicine for 6 days (tylenol, frenadol, coldrex, or equivalent brands) 2,000 Kwacha
1 box of antibiotics (12 doses) -
Short visit to private doctor (15 minutes) 20,191 Kwacha
1 box of 32 tampons (tampax, ob, ...) -
Deodorant, roll-on (50ml ~ 1.5 oz.) 1,125 Kwacha
Hair shampoo 2-in-1 (400 ml ~ 12 oz.) 1,000 Kwacha
4 rolls of toilet paper 1,066 Kwacha
Tube of toothpaste 1,329 Kwacha
Standard men's haircut in expat area of the city 4,000 Kwacha
Entertainment
Basic dinner out for two in neighborhood pub 19,039 Kwacha
2 tickets to the movies 4,000 Kwacha
2 tickets to the theater (best available seats) -
Dinner for two at an italian restaurant in the expat area including appetisers, main course, wine and dessert 22,778 Kwacha
1 cocktail drink in downtown club 3,072 Kwacha
Cappuccino in expat area of the city 1,527 Kwacha
1 beer in neighbourhood pub (500ml or 1pt.) 1,203 Kwacha
Ipad wi-fi 128gb 300,000 Kwacha
1 min. of prepaid mobile tariff (no discounts or plans) 80 Kwacha
1 month of gym membership in business district 24,563 Kwacha
1 package of marlboro cigarettes 2,032 Kwacha

Map of Cost of Living in Malawi

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This map shows only the top cities in Malawi. We also have on this page a list of all the cities available in Expatistan:
List of all the cities available in Expatistan

The color of each marker corresponds with the cost of living in the city red markers show more expensive cities green ones show cheaper cities
Moving the mouse on top of a city will show its name and the Cost of Living Index of that city.

What is the Cost of Living Index? To calculate each city's Price Index value, we start by assigning a value of 100 to a central reference city (that happens to be Prague). Once the reference point has been established, the Price Index value of every other city in the database is calculated by comparing their cost of living to the cost of living in Prague.
Therefore, if a city has a Price Index of 134, that means that living there is 34% more expensive than living in Prague.

List of all cities available in Malawi

Blantyre Lilongwe Zomba

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