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Expat Exchange - Cost of Living in Harbour Island 2024
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Cost of Living in Harbour Island

By Betsy Burlingame

Atlantis Bahamas
Atlantis Bahamas

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

Category Cost
Apartment Rentals
  • 1-bedroom apartment in the city center: $1,200 - $1,800 per month
  • 1-bedroom apartment outside the city center: $800 - $1,200 per month
  • 3-bedroom apartment in the city center: $2,500 - $4,000 per month
  • 3-bedroom apartment outside the city center: $1,500 - $2,500 per month
Apartment Purchases
  • Price per square meter in the city center: $2,500 - $4,000
  • Price per square meter outside the city center: $1,500 - $2,500
Transportation
  • One-way local transport ticket: $2.50
  • Monthly local transport pass: $60
  • Taxi starting tariff: $3.50
  • Taxi 1km tariff: $2.00
  • Gasoline (1 liter): $1.20
Groceries
  • Milk (1 liter): $1.50
  • Bread (500g): $2.50
  • Rice (1kg): $3.00
  • Eggs (12): $2.50
  • Cheese (1kg): $12.00
  • Chicken breasts (1kg): $8.00
  • Beef round (1kg): $12.00
  • Apples (1kg): $3.50
  • Bananas (1kg): $1.50
  • Oranges (1kg): $3.00
  • Tomatoes (1kg): $2.50
  • Potatoes (1kg): $2.00
  • Onions (1kg): $1.50
  • Lettuce (1 head): $1.50
  • Water (1.5-liter bottle): $1.00
  • Bottle of wine (mid-range): $12.00
  • Domestic beer (0.5-liter bottle): $2.50
  • Imported beer (0.33-liter bottle): $3.00
  • Cigarettes (20-pack): $6.00
Restaurants
  • Meal at an inexpensive restaurant: $12.00
  • Meal for two at a mid-range restaurant (three courses): $60.00
  • Combo meal at a fast-food restaurant: $8.00
  • Domestic beer (0.5-liter draught): $3.50
  • Imported beer (0.33-liter bottle): $4.00
  • Cappuccino: $3.50
  • Coke/Pepsi (0.33-liter bottle): $1.50
  • Water (0.33-liter bottle): $1.00
Utilities
  • Basic utilities (electricity, heating, cooling, water, garbage) for an 85m2 apartment: $150 - $250 per month
  • 1 minute of prepaid mobile tariff (no discounts or plans): $0.25
  • Internet (60 Mbps or more, unlimited data, cable/ADSL): $60 - $100 per month
Private School Tuition
  • Preschool (or Kindergarten) tuition, full day, private: $4,000 - $6,000 per year
  • Elementary school tuition, private: $6,000 - $10,000 per year
  • Middle school tuition, private: $8,000 - $12,000 per year
  • High school tuition, private: $10,000 - $15,000 per year
Please note that these costs are approximate and can vary depending on the specific location within Harbour Island and individual preferences. It is always a good idea to research and compare prices before making any decisions.

Monthly Budget for Retirees in Harbour Island

"The cost of living in Harbour Island is considered to be relatively high compared to other regions. This is largely due to the fact that most goods and services have to be imported, which increases their cost. Housing is also quite expensive, especially for waterfront properties or homes with ocean views. Groceries are also more costly than in many other places due to import costs. Eating out in restaurants can also be quite pricey, especially in high-end establishments. Utilities such as electricity and water are also more expensive than in many other regions. Despite these costs, many people find the island's natural beauty and relaxed lifestyle to be worth the expense," said one expat living in Harbour Island.

Can I live in Harbour Island on $1,500 a month?

"I've been living in Harbour Island 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 more affordable neighborhood to live in. The more expensive areas like Dunmore Town and the beachfront properties are definitely out of the question. Instead, consider looking for a rental in the more residential areas, like the southern part of the island or near the government dock. You can find some decent apartments or small houses for rent in these areas, but they might not have all the modern amenities you're used to.One of the sacrifices you'll have to make is cutting back on dining out. Eating out in Harbour Island can be quite expensive, especially in the more touristy areas. Instead, you'll need to cook most of your meals at home. Groceries can also be pricey, so you'll have to be smart about your shopping and meal planning. Look for local markets and shops where you can buy fresh produce and seafood at a lower cost.Another thing to consider is transportation. Owning a car on the island can be expensive, so you might want to rely on walking, biking, or using a golf cart to get around. Golf cart rentals can be more affordable if you rent long-term, but it's still an added expense to factor into your budget.You'll also need to cut back on entertainment and leisure activities. Going out for drinks, attending events, or participating in water sports can quickly add up. Instead, look for free or low-cost activities like exploring the island's beaches, hiking, or joining community events.Lastly, you'll need to be mindful of your utility usage. Electricity and water can be expensive on the island, so you'll want to conserve as much as possible. This might mean using fans instead of air conditioning, taking shorter showers, and being conscious of your overall consumption.Overall, living on $1,500 a month in Harbour Island is doable, but it requires some sacrifices and adjustments to your lifestyle. By being mindful of your spending and finding ways to cut costs, you can make it work and still enjoy the beauty and charm of the island," commented an expat living in Harbour Island.

Can I live in Harbour Island on $3,500 a month?

"I've been living in Harbour Island for a while now, and I can tell you that it's possible to live comfortably on $3,000 a month, but you'll need to make some sacrifices and be smart about your spending. First, you'll want to avoid the more expensive neighborhoods like the ones near the marina or the beachfront properties. Instead, look for more affordable areas like the southern part of the island or the neighborhoods near the center of town. Rent will be your biggest expense, so try to find a smaller apartment or a shared living situation to save money. You can expect to pay around $1,000 to $1,500 a month for a one-bedroom apartment in a more affordable area. Utilities and internet can add another $200 to $300 a month, so keep that in mind when budgeting.Groceries can be expensive on the island, so you'll need to be mindful of your food spending. Shop at local markets for fresh produce and seafood, and try to cook at home as much as possible. Eating out can add up quickly, so save that for special occasions or when you have visitors. Transportation on the island is relatively affordable, as most people get around on golf carts or bicycles. You can rent a golf cart for around $200 a month, or buy a used one for a few thousand dollars if you plan to stay long-term. Healthcare is another expense to consider, especially if you need regular prescriptions or medical care. There's a small clinic on the island, but for more serious issues, you'll need to travel to Nassau or the United States. Make sure you have a good health insurance plan that covers you while living abroad.As for entertainment and socializing, there are plenty of free or low-cost activities to enjoy on the island, like beach days, snorkeling, and exploring the beautiful natural surroundings. However, if you're used to a more cosmopolitan lifestyle with high-end shopping, fine dining, and nightlife, you may need to adjust your expectations and find new ways to enjoy your leisure time.In conclusion, living on $3,000 a month in Harbour Island is doable, but you'll need to be mindful of your spending and make some sacrifices in terms of housing, dining, and entertainment. By choosing an affordable neighborhood, cooking at home, and enjoying the natural beauty of the island, you can make it work and enjoy a comfortable life in this beautiful Bahamian paradise," said one expat living in Harbour Island.

Can I live in Harbour Island on $5,000 a month?

"I've been living in Harbour Island for a while 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 are some sacrifices you might have to make to ensure you stay within your budget. First, you'll want to consider where you're going to live. Some of the more expensive neighborhoods, like the ones near the marina or the beachfront, might be out of your price range. Instead, look for more affordable areas, such as the ones further inland or on the outskirts of town. These neighborhoods still offer a good quality of life, but at a more reasonable cost.Another thing to consider is transportation. Owning a car in Harbour Island can be expensive, so you might want to rely on public transportation or even consider getting a bicycle to get around. This will not only save you money on gas and maintenance, but it's also a great way to stay active and explore the island.When it comes to dining out, you'll find that there are plenty of affordable options in Harbour Island. However, you might have to skip some of the more upscale restaurants and stick to local eateries or cook at home more often to save money. The same goes for entertainment – while there are plenty of things to do on the island, you might have to be more selective about which activities you choose to participate in, especially if they come with a high price tag.One more thing to keep in mind is that while Harbour Island does have modern amenities, they might not be as readily available or as high-quality as you're used to. For example, internet service can be spotty and slower than what you might be used to, and you might have to pay more for a reliable connection. Additionally, some imported goods, like electronics or certain food items, can be more expensive due to import taxes and shipping costs.Overall, living in Harbour Island on $5,000 a month is doable, but it will require some adjustments and sacrifices. By being mindful of your spending and prioritizing your needs, you can enjoy a comfortable life on this beautiful island," commented an expat living in Harbour Island.

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.


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