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Living in Kyrgyzstan: Cost of Living, Healthcare and What to Know About Living in Kyrgyzstan | Expat Exchange
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Living in Kyrgyzstan

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By Betsy Burlingame

Last updated on Feb 02, 2024

Summary: The approximate population of Kyrgyzstan is 6.2 million people. The largest cities in Kyrgyzstan are Bishkek (the capital), Osh, Jalal-Abad, and Karakol. Expats love living in Kyrgyzstan for its stunning mountain scenery, friendly people, and low cost of living. People describe life in Kyrgyzstan as laid-back and relaxed, with a strong sense of community. Foods popular in Kyrgyzstan include manty (dumplings), beshbarmak (boiled noodles with meat), and lagman (noodles with vegetables and meat). The cons of living in Kyrgyzstan include the lack of infrastructure, limited job opportunities, and the language barrier. The average cost of living for an expat is around $1,000-$1,500 per month. This includes rent, utilities, food, and other expenses.

What do I need to know about living in Kyrgyzstan?

When we asked people what advice they would give someone preparing to move to Kyrgyzstan, they said:

"Because of lingering Soviet-style centralization and unease with western entrepreneurship, as well as a lot of official barriers to foreigners doing much, try to set up something before you go. People are friendly and relaxed, compared to Almaty for example, so you should be able to do some networking. Rent is rising fast but still cheap, and most other things (except imports) are very cheap by the standards of any western country," remarked one expat living in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan.

"Before retiring in Kyrgyzstan, expats should be aware of the language barrier as the official language is Kyrgyz. It is recommended to learn some basic phrases in the language to make daily life easier. Expats should also be aware of the cost of living in Kyrgyzstan, which is generally lower than in other countries. Additionally, expats should research the healthcare system in Kyrgyzstan and consider taking out private health insurance. It is also important to research the visa requirements for expats, as well as the process for obtaining residency. Finally, expats should be aware of the cultural differences in Kyrgyzstan and be respectful of local customs and traditions," wrote one member in Kyrgyzstan.

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The TEFL Institute of IrelandThe TEFL Institute of Ireland

The TEFL Institute of Ireland operates under European standards of education, which are renowned and respected worldwide. Once you complete the course, you will receive a globally recognised certificate, which is a passport to teaching English worldwide and online. Teach English Online In Less Than 3 Weeks - Ditch the 9-5 job and start living life on your terms by teaching English online. Whether you want to travel the world or crave the flexibility of working from home, teaching online gives you the freedom you need.
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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.

The TEFL Institute of Ireland
The TEFL Institute of Ireland

Ranked The No. 1 TEFL Provider in Ireland. The TEFL Institute of Ireland operates under European standards of education, which are renowned and respected worldwide. Once you complete the course, you will receive a globally recognised certificate, which is a passport to teaching English worldwide and online.
Learn More

The TEFL Institute of IrelandThe TEFL Institute of Ireland

Ranked The No. 1 TEFL Provider in Ireland. The TEFL Institute of Ireland operates under European standards of education, which are renowned and respected worldwide. Once you complete the course, you will receive a globally recognised certificate, which is a passport to teaching English worldwide and online.
Learn More

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