Cuánto cuesta vivir en la República Dominicana

How much it cost to live in the Dominican Republic in 2024 Guide – Updated

  • By:Vianela Morillo

“With a budget of US$1,500.00 to US$2,000 you can live in the Dominican Republic more or less comfortably with access to all necessary goods and services.”

The Dominican Republic, with its white sand beaches, rich culture and tropical climate, attracts expatriates from all over the world. So many people thinking about making our country their permanent place of residence ask themselves questions such as How much it cost to live in the Dominican Republic or the cost of living in general.

In social networks as well as in casual conversations, some of the questions asked by foreigners thinking about moving to the Dominican Republic are:

– What is expensive, cheap or in between in the DR, ?

– How much does one live with in the Dominican Republic, ?

– What do I have access to with little or a lot of money?

– How will I be able to live in the Dominican Republic with my pension or retirement income?

This last one is very recurrent, because an indisputable reality is that many foreigners are thinking or have decided to retire to live in the Dominican Republic and their way of support will be their Pension Retirement or the income they receive, therefore, it is very important to know if with what they receive, they will be able to live in the Dominican Republic in a dignified way.

The opinions are very varied since this is a very subjective subject that depends on each one, according to:

  1. The place of the country where you are: As in all countries, there are cities and areas where everything is much cheaper and others that have higher prices (tourist places in general, as well as the capital of the country).
  • Example: Bavaro Punta Cana is a city that is 100% focused on tourism. Services and products are adapted to the purchasing level of the average tourist. For a national these prices can be very expensive, while a foreigner can perceive it as cheap if he compares it with the prices of a tourist area in his own country.
  1. From their country of origin: The perception of prices can change completely depending on what the person, in this case the new resident, is used to in their country of origin.
  • Example: A person of Swiss nationality might find everything extremely cheap compared to the prices he is used to in his home country, while a person from Peru might find some goods and services even more expensive than in his home country.
  1. Lifestyle (what access to goods, products and services you want or can have): As is the case in many parts of the world, basic services tend to be more affordable for all households, while luxury goods and imported products are radically more expensive. Therefore, your level of spending will be closely linked to your lifestyle and habits.
  • Example: Piantini is one of the sectors where rents or real estate prices (apartments / houses) in Santo Domingo are higher. If a person lives there, he/she will not have the same perception as someone who lives in the Alma Rosa sector, which is an average socio-economic sector.

If you ask one or the other, they will surely give you different information on the subject.

Among many other factors that can establish an opinion about the cost of living in a given country.

In short, the cost of living in the Dominican Republic will necessarily depend on your economic condition and what you are looking for.

That is why in this article we try to offer a guide on how much it costs to live in the Dominican Republic today in general terms as well as some recommendations to optimize your finances.

Considering a complete family (father, mother and children), with US$1,500.00 to US$2,000.00 you could have a more or less comfortable life in the Dominican Republic, having access to all the necessary goods and services such as:

  • Apartment rent (normally including basic services: water, garbage, security).
  • Electricity
  • Telecommunication services (telephone, cable TV, cellular).
  • Entertainment (movies, restaurants).
  • Concierge service.
  • Among other things.

It is worth mentioning that the Dominican Republic has the cheapest basic food basket in Central America and the Caribbean and one of the cheapest in Latin America according to several studies, for example this comparison of prices per unit of 35 basic foods in Latin American countries.

The family basket in the Dominican Republic includes several areas ranging from Food, Clothes, Medicines, Transportation, Medical consultations among others and has different prices depending on the income quintile (which is a classification of the central bank) and in 2023 the price of the family basket from the lowest to the highest income quintile fluctuates between: $26,542. 79 DOP (465 USD Approximately) for quintile 1 to $72,555.32 DOP ($1272 USD Approximately) for the highest income quintile according to the Dominican Central Bank reports.

Some Examples of Prices of Goods/Services

As we know that you surely want more concrete data, here we leave you these statistics that are from the city of Santo Domingo, the capital (one of the most expensive areas of the country) and are average prices.


Milk (normal), (1 liter) 69,57 RD$
Daily loaf of white bread 101,05 RD$
Rice (white), (1kg) 70,15 RD$
Eggs (normal) (12) 96,38 RD$
Local cheese (1kg) 418,15 RD$
Chicken fillets (1kg) 299,29 RD$
Beef (1kg) (or equivalent red meat) 498,52 RD$
Apples (1kg) 152,64 RD$
Bananas (1kg) 47,33 RD$
Oranges (1kg) 128,71 RD$
Tomatoes (1kg) 78,96 RD$
Potatoes (1kg) 83,42 RD$
Onions (1kg) 122,82 RD$
Lettuce (1 piece) 47,97 RD$
Water (1.5 liter bottle) 44,32 RD$
Bottle of Wine (Medium Quality) 600,00 RD$
Local Beer (0.5 liter bottle) 132,76 RD$
Imported Beer (0.33 liter bottle) 190,55 RD$
Pack of 20 cigarettes (Marlboro) 250,00 RD$


Meal, Cheap Restaurant 400,00 RD$
Meal for 2 Persons, Medium Restaurant, Three courses 2.600,00 RD$
McDonald’s McMenu (or equivalent Combo Menu) 400,00 RD$
Local Beer (0.5 liter glass or pint) 150,00 RD$
Imported Beer (0.33 liter bottle) 250,00 RD$
Cappuccino (regular) 123,67 RD$
Coca-Cola/Pepsi (0.33 liter bottle) 54,12 RD$
Water (0.33 liter bottle) 39,36 RD$

House (Rent or Mortgage)

Prices for either renting or buying a house in the Dominican Republic are usually cheaper than in other regions such as North America and Europe in general. So if you move to the Dominican Republic from one of these countries you could find great savings on the cost of renting or renting and even if you decide to buy.

For example, according to the comparison site Numbeo the price of rent is 298% cheaper in the Dominican Republic than in the USA in general or 109% lower than in Spain when it comes to renting a property.

It is worth mentioning that this comparison is at a country level, so in each place there will be cities as well as areas where it is cheaper to rent or buy. Below is a table with the approximate rental prices of an apartment inside and outside the center of Santo Domingo, which is the capital city. However, it is worth mentioning that in Santo Domingo there are different areas further away from the center of the city where you can find opportunities to rent more economically.

Apartment (1 bedroom) in Downtown 47.983,39 RD$
Apartment (1 bedroom) Outside Downtown 21.215,88 RD$
Apartment (3 bedrooms) in Downtown 86.015,29 RD$
Apartment (3 bedrooms) Outside Downtown 48.804,78 RD$


According to information from the Registro de Oferta de Edificaciones (ROE) in the year 2022 the price per square meter in the National District was $96,005 DOP while in other areas of the capital such as Santo Domingo East it was $47,835 DOP, in Santo Domingo West $38,750 DOP while in Santo Domingo North it was $45,948.2 DOP for new housing projects. These prices apply to Santo Domingo which is the capital of the country but you can also find other prices and options usually lower in different parts of the country depending on certain conditions.

If you need a mortgage. Interest rates in the Dominican Republic are significantly higher than in countries such as the United States and Canada. Mortgage interest rates are usually around 8% to 13% in 2024 on local currency loans but some banks may have more favorable rates for dollar denominated mortgages. Mortgages usually range up to 30 years. Some banks can finance between 80% to 90% of the property value depending on certain conditions.

On this loan comparison website you can get an idea of the different banks’ offerings on both mortgages and credit cards, this information is for guidance only and is not necessarily the official terms of the different banks.

Essential Services (Electric Power, Water, Internet, Communications)

For the purposes of this article, essential services are defined as the supply of electricity, water, internet, and communications in general. In the Dominican Republic, the cost of essential services varies. For example, the price for the sale of energy to residences fluctuates approximately between US$0.12 per kilowatt-hour (KWh) to US$0.21, that is, around RD$6.001 to RD$11.79 depending on the consumption here you can see the tariff of one of the electricity distribution companies to get an idea. As for water, the basic cubic meter for residential, commercial, official and special users is RD$6.00 pesos, and the basic industrial cubic meter is RD$7.00 and RD$10.00 pesos, depending if the water is used as raw material.

As for Internet, prices may vary depending on the service provider and the plan selected. In the Dominican Republic there are high speed Internet services through Fiber Optics as well as 5G mobile technology in many of the central areas of the country in terms of prices as follows For example, Altice offers home internet plans ranging from 5 mbps for RD$999 each month and 100 mbps for RD$2,299. As for cell phone service the cost per mobile GB in Dominican Republic is US$0.94 per GB on average, costs can also vary depending on the provider and the selected plan. For example, Claro offers plans starting at RD$675 per month.

Starlink satellite Internet service is also available in the country for a one-time installation fee of RD$27,000 and a monthly cost of RD$2900 per month.

Below you will also find a table with estimated expenses for these items:

Services (Monthly)
Basic (Electricity, Heating, Cooling, Water, Garbage) for an 85m2 apartment 3.150,13 RD$
Monthly Mobile Plan with Calls and 10GB+ Data 1.042,50 RD$
Internet (60 Mbps or more, unlimited data, Cable/ADSL) 2.641,98 RD$

Insurance (Health, Life, Auto)

In the Dominican Republic it is generally recommended to be insured for different types of situations such as health, a car accident and even death.

The prices of these insurances vary depending on the provider, the characteristics of the insurance as well as the personal situation of each person i.e. age, among other things. In the country there are international health plans which could be an option for foreigners who want to settle in the country and at the same time have protection outside the country.

Since the prices of this type of insurance vary depending on personal conditions, we recommend contacting the different health insurance companies directly to obtain an offer based on your personal situation. However, in the case of health insurance, the prices for various treatments are much cheaper in the Dominican Republic than in other countries such as the United States and Canada, which has had a favorable impact on health tourism to the country.


In the country there are several means of transportation such as the Metro (in the capital), cabs both basic and applications such as Uber and Indrive, the so-called public cars and of course private cars. Here we leave a box with some costs related to transportation in the country:

One Way Ticket (Local Transportation) 45,00 RD$
Monthly Transport Ticket 2.608,70 RD$
Cab on departure (Normal Rate) 200,00 RD$
Cab 1km (Normal Rate) 150,00 RD$
Cab 1 hour waiting time (Normal Rate) 325,00 RD$
Gasoline (1 liter) 72,49 RD$
Volkswagen Golf 1.4 90 KW – Recent Model (or equivalent new car) 1.840.000,00 RD$


In the Dominican Republic there are different types of taxes such as income tax, ITBIS (similar to VAT in Europe) among others, however foreigners who decide to make the country their home could access important tax benefits to the point of living tax free potentially depending always on the personal situation of each one.

This if you obtain a Pensionado or Retired Residency for which you must prove that you receive a fixed monthly income above US$1500 in this article we detail more about the tax benefits as well as other types of retirement in the Dominican Republic.

Other Expenses   

Depending on your family situation and personal life you might have other expenses such as tuition payments for your children, leisure expenses, membership fees or payments for memberships such as gymnasium, social club and almost like loans. Below are some figures of these costs in broad strokes


The average cost of tuition per student in the Dominican Republic varies depending on the type of educational institution:

In a public school, the average cost is RD$2,0001.

In a middle-class school, the average cost is RD$35,0001.

In a bilingual educational institution, the cost can reach RD$339,1501.

These amounts correspond to ten months of classes. On the other hand, in schools for low-income families located in lower class sectors, the monthly fees range from RD$1,900 to RD$3,5002.

It is important to mention that these costs may vary depending on location and other factors. Also, these costs are comparable to what is paid monthly to study a university degree at the University of the Caribbean (Unicaribe) in the semi-attendance mode.


Gym, Monthly Fee for 1 Adult 1.453,46 RD$
Tennis court rental (1 hour on weekends) 756,50 RD$
Movie Theater, International Premiere, 1 Seat 350,00 RD$


Benchmark rates for personal loans vary, however in 2024 they can range from 11% to 36% depending on various factors. You can use Rexi’s comparison tool to get an idea of the rates at any time however these rates can vary and we recommend always contacting the financial institutions directly to get more accurate and updated information.

Finally we want to emphasize that the cost of living that each person or each family may have varies according to the standards of living to which they are accustomed and can access however in this article we wanted to provide a guide on various costs that each person could have to establish an idea of how much it costs to live in the Dominican Republic today in 2024. It is worth noting that the average minimum wage in the country was around $375.97 USD in 2023 and the nation ranks 83rd out of 140 countries in the numbeo website’s country cost of living index.

We are available


Posted in: Foreigners in the Dominican Republic