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Expat Exchange - Cost of Living in Dordogne 2024
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Bergerac, Dordogne, France


Cost of Living in Dordogne

By Joshua Wood, LPC

French Riviera House Hunting - FRH
French Riviera House Hunting - FRH

Summary: Understanding the the cost of living in Dordogne helps a newcomer what to expect when it comes to apartment or house hunting, grocery shopping, transportation, dining out, utilities and more.

Category Cost
Apartment Rentals Rental prices in Dordogne vary depending on the location and size of the property. On average, you can expect to pay around €500-€700 per month for a one-bedroom apartment in the city center, and around €400-€600 per month in the outskirts.
Apartment Purchases The price of purchasing an apartment in Dordogne also varies greatly. On average, you can expect to pay around €1,500-€2,500 per square meter in the city center, and around €1,000-€2,000 per square meter outside of the city center.
Transportation Public transportation in Dordogne is relatively affordable. A one-way ticket on local transport costs around €1.50, while a monthly pass costs around €30. If you prefer to drive, the average price of gasoline is around €1.50 per liter.
Groceries The cost of groceries in Dordogne is relatively low compared to other parts of France. On average, you can expect to spend around €200-€300 per month on groceries for a single person.
Restaurants A meal at an inexpensive restaurant in Dordogne costs around €10-€15, while a three-course meal for two at a mid-range restaurant costs around €40-€60. A regular cappuccino costs around €2.50.
Utilities Basic utilities (including electricity, heating, cooling, water, and garbage) for a 85m2 apartment cost around €150-€200 per month. Internet (60 Mbps or more, unlimited data, cable/ADSL) costs around €30-€40 per month.
Private School Tuition Private school tuition varies greatly depending on the school and the age of the student. On average, you can expect to pay around €5,000-€10,000 per year for preschool, €6,000-€12,000 per year for elementary school, €7,000-€14,000 per year for middle school, and €8,000-€16,000 per year for high school.
Please note that these are average costs and actual costs may vary. It's also important to note that the cost of living in Dordogne is generally lower than in larger cities in France like Paris or Lyon. However, it's still higher than in many other countries, so it's important to budget accordingly if you're planning to move to Dordogne.

Monthly Budget for Retirees in Dordogne

"The cost of living in Dordogne, is considered to be relatively affordable compared to other regions in France, especially major cities like Paris. Housing costs are significantly lower, with the price of property and rent being quite reasonable. The cost of groceries is also relatively low, with local markets offering fresh produce at competitive prices. Dining out can vary, with both budget-friendly and high-end options available. Utilities such as electricity, heating, cooling, and garbage are also reasonably priced. Transportation costs are relatively low, especially if you own a car, as public transportation is not as extensive as in larger cities. Health care is of high quality and is generally affordable, especially if you are covered by the French health care system. Overall, the cost of living in Dordogne is manageable and offers good value for money," said one expat living in Dordogne.

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

"I've been living in Dordogne for a few years now and I can tell you that living on $1,500 a month is possible, but it does require some careful budgeting and lifestyle adjustments. The cost of living here is relatively low compared to major cities like Paris, but it's not exactly cheap either. Firstly, housing is going to be your biggest expense. If you want to live in a popular area like Sarlat-la-Canéda, you're looking at rents of around $700-$800 for a small apartment. However, if you're willing to live a bit further out in a smaller village like Le Buisson-de-Cadouin or Saint-Cyprien, you can find places for around $500-$600. Groceries are reasonably priced, especially if you shop at local markets and buy seasonal produce. I spend around $200 a month on groceries. Eating out can be expensive, so I limit myself to one meal out a week, which costs around $20-$30. Utilities including electricity, water, and internet cost me around $150 a month. Public transportation is quite affordable, but if you want to explore the region, you might want to consider getting a car. Gas and car maintenance can add another $100-$150 to your monthly expenses. Healthcare is relatively affordable here, especially if you're covered by the French healthcare system. However, if you're not, you might need to budget for private health insurance. As for entertainment, there are plenty of free or low-cost activities to do in Dordogne, like hiking, visiting historical sites, and attending local festivals. However, if you're into high-end dining, shopping, or other expensive hobbies, you might find it challenging to stick to your budget. In terms of sacrifices, you might have to give up some of the luxuries you're used to, like eating out regularly or living in a large, modern apartment. You'll also need to be mindful of your spending and stick to a budget. Overall, living in Dordogne on $1,500 a month is doable, but it requires some adjustments and careful planning. It's a beautiful region with a lot to offer, so in my opinion, the lifestyle changes are well worth it," commented an expat living in Dordogne.

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

"I've been living in Dordogne for a few years now and I can tell you that it's definitely possible to live comfortably on $3,000 a month, but it does require some careful budgeting and lifestyle adjustments. The cost of living here is generally lower than in major cities like Paris, but it's still France, so certain things can be pricey. For housing, I'd recommend looking at smaller towns like Bergerac or Sarlat-la-Canéda. You can find a decent apartment or small house for around $800 to $1,000 a month. Avoid areas like Perigueux or the more touristy parts of the Dordogne River Valley, as prices there can be significantly higher. Groceries are relatively affordable, especially if you shop at local markets and buy seasonal produce. I spend about $300 a month on groceries. Eating out can be expensive, so I limit myself to one or two meals out a week, which costs me about $200 a month. Utilities, including internet, electricity, and water, cost me around $200 a month. Public transportation is pretty good and affordable, but if you want to have a car, you'll need to budget for that as well. I spend about $150 a month on transportation. Healthcare is excellent and affordable in France, especially if you're a legal resident and qualify for the French healthcare system. I pay about $100 a month for my healthcare coverage. That leaves me with about $1,000 to $1,500 a month for other expenses like entertainment, travel, clothing, and personal care. It's not a luxurious lifestyle, but it's comfortable and I'm able to save a bit each month. The biggest sacrifice I've had to make is limiting my dining out and travel. I also had to adjust to living in a smaller space and not having certain amenities that I was used to back home. But overall, I've found the quality of life in Dordogne to be excellent and the cost of living to be reasonable. It's a beautiful region with a lot to offer, and I've been able to live comfortably on $3,000 a month," said one expat living in Dordogne.

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

"I've been living in Dordogne for a few years now and I can tell you that it's definitely possible to live comfortably on $5,000 a month, even if you're used to modern amenities. However, you might have to make a few sacrifices. For instance, you might not be able to dine out at high-end restaurants every night or live in the most luxurious neighborhoods. But, if you're smart about your spending, you can definitely make it work. The cost of living in Dordogne is relatively low compared to other parts of France. For example, you can rent a nice two-bedroom apartment in a decent neighborhood for around $1,000 a month. If you're looking for more affordable neighborhoods, I would recommend places like Bergerac or Sarlat-la-Canéda. These are beautiful towns with a lot of history and charm, and the cost of living is quite reasonable. On the other hand, if you're considering more expensive neighborhoods, you might want to avoid places like Périgueux or Brantôme. These are some of the most sought-after areas in Dordogne, and the cost of living can be quite high. In terms of other expenses, groceries will probably cost you around $300 a month, and utilities are usually around $200 a month. So, all in all, you're looking at around $1,500 a month for basic living expenses. This leaves you with plenty of money for other things like entertainment, travel, and savings. However, keep in mind that healthcare can be quite expensive if you're not covered by the French social security system. So, you might want to consider getting private health insurance, which can cost anywhere from $100 to $500 a month, depending on your age and health condition. In terms of transportation, owning a car can be quite expensive due to the high cost of gas and maintenance. But, the public transportation system in Dordogne is quite good, and a monthly pass will only cost you around $50. So, while you might have to make a few sacrifices, I believe it's definitely possible to live comfortably in Dordogne on $5,000 a month. You just need to be smart about your spending and avoid unnecessary expenses," commented an expat living in Dordogne.

About the Author

Joshua Wood Joshua Wood, LPC joined Expat Exchange in 2000 and serves as one of its Co-Presidents. He is also one of the Founders of Digital Nomad Exchange. Prior to Expat Exchange, Joshua worked for NBC Cable (MSNBC and CNBC Primetime). Joshua has a BA from Syracuse and a Master's in Clinical and Counseling Psychology from Fairleigh Dickinson University. Mr. Wood is also a licensed counselor and psychotherapist.

Some of Joshua's articles include Pros and Cons of Living in Portugal, 10 Best Places to Live in Ireland and Pros and Cons of Living in Uruguay. Connect with Joshua on LinkedIn.


French Riviera House Hunting - FRH
French Riviera House Hunting - FRH

French Riviera House Hunting - FRH
French Riviera House Hunting - FRH

Bergerac, Dordogne, France

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