×
Interested in our Partner Program for businesses or our Local Guide Program for experienced expats and digital nomads? Click here to learn more.
Expat Exchange - Cost of Living in Port Douglas 2024
Expat Exchange
Free MembershipSign In
Port Douglas Beach, Australia


Cost of Living in Port Douglas

By Betsy Burlingame

SJB Global
SJB Global

Summary: If you're moving to Port Douglas, understanding the the cost of living in Port Douglas helps you know what to expect when it comes to apartment or house hunting, grocery shopping, transportation, dining out, utilities and more.

Apartment Rentals The average rent for a one-bedroom apartment in Port Douglas is around $1,000 per month. Two-bedroom apartments can range from $1,200 to $1,500 per month. Three-bedroom apartments can range from $1,500 to $2,000 per month.
Apartment Purchases The median price for a one-bedroom apartment in Port Douglas is around $400,000. Two-bedroom apartments can range from $500,000 to $600,000. Three-bedroom apartments can range from $600,000 to $800,000.
Transportation Public transportation in Port Douglas is limited. The most common way to get around is by car. The cost of petrol is around $1.50 per litre. Taxi fares start at around $5 and can go up to $20 depending on the distance.
Groceries The cost of groceries in Port Douglas is slightly higher than the national average. A loaf of bread can cost around $3.50, a litre of milk can cost around $2.50, and a dozen eggs can cost around $4.50.
Restaurants The cost of eating out in Port Douglas can vary greatly depending on the type of restaurant. A meal at a fast food restaurant can cost around $10, while a meal at a mid-range restaurant can cost around $30.
Utilities The cost of utilities in Port Douglas is slightly higher than the national average. The average cost of electricity is around $0.30 per kilowatt hour, and the average cost of water is around $2.50 per kilolitre.
Private School Tuition The cost of private school tuition in Port Douglas can vary greatly depending on the school. Preschool tuition can range from $2,000 to $4,000 per year. Elementary school tuition can range from $4,000 to $8,000 per year. Middle school tuition can range from $8,000 to $12,000 per year. High school tuition can range from $12,000 to $20,000 per year.

Monthly Budget for Retirees in Port Douglas

"The cost of living in Port Douglas is considered to be relatively high compared to other parts of the country. Housing is the biggest expense for most people, with the cost of renting or buying a property being significantly higher than the national average. Utilities such as electricity, gas, and water are also more expensive in Port Douglas than in other parts of Australia. Groceries and food costs are also above average, with prices for fresh produce, meat, and dairy products being particularly high. Eating out at restaurants can also be quite costly, especially in the more tourist-oriented areas of the town. Transportation costs can vary, depending on whether you own a car or rely on public transport. Petrol prices are generally higher than the national average, and public transport options are limited, which can make getting around more expensive. Healthcare costs are also a consideration, with private health insurance premiums being higher than in other parts of the country. However, the quality of healthcare services in Port Douglas is generally very good. Overall, while the cost of living in Port Douglas is high, many residents feel that the town's beautiful surroundings, relaxed lifestyle, and warm climate make it worth the expense," said one expat living in Port Douglas.

Can I live in Port Douglas on $1,500 a month?

"I've been living in Port Douglas for a while now, and I can tell you that it's possible to live on $1,500 a month, but you'll have to make some sacrifices. First, you'll need to find a place to live that's affordable. I'd recommend looking for a share house or a small apartment in the suburbs, like Craiglie or Mowbray. These areas are a bit further from the beach and the main tourist attractions, but they're more affordable than living in the heart of Port Douglas.You'll also need to be mindful of your spending on groceries and eating out. Shopping at local markets and cooking at home can help you save money. There are some great local markets, like the Mossman Market, where you can find fresh produce at reasonable prices. Eating out can be expensive in Port Douglas, so try to limit that to special occasions or look for cheaper options like cafes and takeaway shops.Transportation is another area where you can save money. If you can, try to walk or bike to work and around town. Public transportation is limited in Port Douglas, so having a car can be helpful, but it will also add to your expenses. If you do need a car, consider buying a used one to save money.As for entertainment and leisure activities, there are plenty of free or low-cost options in Port Douglas. The beautiful beaches, parks, and walking trails are all free to enjoy. You can also find free or low-cost community events and activities happening throughout the year.In terms of sacrifices, you might have to give up some of the modern amenities you're used to, like a gym membership or cable TV. You'll also need to be more conscious of your spending and budgeting, which can be a bit of a challenge at first.Overall, it's possible to live comfortably in Port Douglas on $1,500 a month, but you'll need to be mindful of your spending and make some sacrifices. By finding affordable housing, being conscious of your spending on food and transportation, and enjoying the many free or low-cost activities available, you can make it work," commented an expat living in Port Douglas.

Can I live in Port Douglas on $3,500 a month?

"I've been living in Port Douglas for a while now, and I can tell you that it's possible to live comfortably on $3,000 a month, but you'll have to make some sacrifices. The cost of living here is relatively high compared to other parts of Australia, but it's still manageable if you're smart about your spending.First, you'll want to find an affordable place to live. The more central neighborhoods like Macrossan Street and Four Mile Beach can be quite expensive, so I'd recommend looking for a rental in areas like Craiglie or Mowbray, which are a bit further from the town center but still within a reasonable distance. You can find a decent one or two-bedroom apartment in these areas for around $1,200 to $1,500 a month.Next, you'll need to be mindful of your utility bills. Electricity can be quite expensive in Port Douglas, especially during the summer months when you'll likely be using air conditioning. To save on electricity, try to use fans instead of air conditioning whenever possible and turn off lights and appliances when not in use. Water is also expensive, so be conscious of your usage by taking shorter showers and not leaving the tap running.Groceries can be a bit pricey in Port Douglas, but you can save money by shopping at local markets and buying in-season produce. Also, consider cooking at home more often instead of eating out, as dining out can quickly add up. If you do want to treat yourself to a meal out, there are some more affordable options like the local RSL club or the Court House Hotel, which offer reasonably priced meals.Transportation costs can also add up, so consider using public transport or cycling instead of driving. If you do need a car, try to find a fuel-efficient one and carpool whenever possible.As for entertainment and leisure activities, there are plenty of free or low-cost options in Port Douglas. You can enjoy the beautiful beaches, go for walks in the Daintree Rainforest, or visit the local parks and gardens. If you're into sports, consider joining a local sports club or gym, which can be more affordable than paying for individual classes or sessions.In summary, living comfortably on $3,000 a month in Port Douglas is possible, but you'll need to be mindful of your spending and make some sacrifices. By choosing an affordable neighborhood, being conscious of your utility usage, cooking at home, and enjoying low-cost leisure activities, you can make it work," said one expat living in Port Douglas.

Can I live in Port Douglas on $5,000 a month?

"I've been living in Port Douglas for a few years now, and I can tell you that it's definitely possible to live comfortably on $5,000 a month, especially if you're used to modern amenities. However, there might be a few sacrifices you'll have to make to ensure you stay within your budget.Firstly, you'll want to avoid the more expensive neighborhoods like the Marina and the beachfront areas. These places are beautiful, but the cost of living there can be quite high. Instead, consider looking for a place in the more affordable neighborhoods like Craiglie or Mowbray. These areas are still close to the town center and have all the necessary amenities, but the rent and overall cost of living are much more reasonable.One of the sacrifices you might have to make is cutting back on dining out. Port Douglas has some fantastic restaurants, but eating out regularly can quickly eat into your budget. Instead, try to cook at home more often and take advantage of the local markets for fresh produce. This will not only save you money but also allow you to enjoy some of the amazing local ingredients.Another thing to consider is transportation. Owning a car in Port Douglas can be quite expensive, especially when you factor in insurance, registration, and fuel costs. Instead, consider using public transportation or even cycling around town. The town is quite small, so getting around without a car is definitely doable.Lastly, you might have to be more mindful of your entertainment expenses. While there are plenty of free or low-cost activities in Port Douglas, such as visiting the beautiful beaches or exploring the Daintree Rainforest, other activities like scuba diving or taking a trip to the Great Barrier Reef can be quite pricey. To make your budget work, you'll need to prioritize which activities are most important to you and plan accordingly.Overall, living in Port Douglas on $5,000 a month is definitely possible, but it will require some careful budgeting and a willingness to make a few sacrifices. By choosing a more affordable neighborhood, cutting back on dining out, using public transportation, and being mindful of your entertainment expenses, you should be able to enjoy a comfortable lifestyle in this beautiful part of Australia," commented an expat living in Port Douglas.

About the Author

Betsy Burlingame Betsy Burlingame is the Founder and President of Expat Exchange and is one of the Founders of Digital Nomad Exchange. She launched Expat Exchange in 1997 as her Master's thesis project at NYU. Prior to Expat Exchange, Betsy worked at AT&T in International and Mass Market Marketing. She graduated from Ohio Wesleyan University with a BA in International Business and German.

Some of Betsy's articles include 12 Best Places to Live in Portugal, 7 Best Places to Live in Panama and 12 Things to Know Before Moving to the Dominican Republic. Betsy loves to travel and spend time with her family. Connect with Betsy on LinkedIn.


SJB Global
SJB Global

SJB Global
SJB Global

Port Douglas Beach, Australia

SJB Global
SJB Global

SJB Global is a top-rated financial advisory firm specializing in expat financial advice worldwide, offering retirement planning & tax-efficient solutions with a regressive fee model.
Learn More

SJB GlobalSJB Global

SJB Global is a top-rated financial advisory firm specializing in expat financial advice worldwide, offering retirement planning & tax-efficient solutions with a regressive fee model.
Learn More

Contribute to Australia Network Contribute
Help others in Australia by answering questions about the challenges and adventures of living in Australia.

SJB Global
SJB Global

Copyright 1997-2024 Burlingame Interactive, Inc.

Privacy Policy Legal Partners & Local Guides