Istanbul, Turkey is pretty affordable for a U.S person. When you convert US Dollars to Turkish Lira, you’ll notice your money goes a long way here compared to states. And I cannot hide that I have been using this money to ball out and live as a Queen should.
Rent: I have a beautiful three bedroom apartment with gorgeous city and sea views. My rent is 8,500 Tl. Since the exchange rates are constantly changing, my rent ranges to about $600-700 USD per month.
Transportation: I use public transportation here because I have no desire to drive in this chaotic city. The traffic here is nuts. No, thanks. There are plenty of other ways to get around in Istanbul. You can catch a taxi on the street (they run on a meter so you’d be aware of the cost for your ride). Next, you have the options to take a bus, train, or ferry ride with the locals, which is approximately 50-60 cents per ride.
Groceries: I buy plenty of seasonal fruits and vegetables each week. The amount I spend on groceries depends on my mood while I’m shopping. When I have some extra money in my hands, I’ll buy my essentials as well as new herbal products to try. When I’m splurging, groceries will cost me around $60USD for the week. You can compare the current rate here. My invitation link is attached, so if you use this link to transfer money abroad they’ll slash off the fee for your first transfer and give me a little bonus on my next transfer as well.
Eating out: I eat out a few times per week. The cost of a meal with a drink at a Turkish restaurant is about $5USD. You’ll find a variety types of cuisines here such as Indian, Ethiopian, Chinese, Nepalese etc… Some days I like to enjoy a fine dining experience, which usually costs around $20-30 USD per meal.
Gym and Spa: I have a membership at a hotel health club. I paid approx. USD 250 for six months of unlimited access at the time (btw the prices for things fluctuate here due to the currency exchange rate change). With this membership, I get access to the hotel’s fitness center, the pool, sauna, and steam room. Plus it includes a discount my orders at the cafes and restaurants inside the hotel.
Laundry: I have to admit I spends a lot on laundry service. My friends here think I’m crazy for not having a washing machine since everyone else has one in their house. But, let me quickly explain why I don’t have one… See, when I left the U.S.A a few years ago, I opted not to do my laundry altogether if I don’t have to. I love the ease of dropping off my laundry at the laundromat then picking up my clothes after they have been washed and folded nicely. Laundry is typically ready within a few hours. I pay about $3 per load(x3) which means my total is around $9 and I drop it off every two weeks.
Thanks for reading! I’m curious to know, where do you live? Let me know in the comments.