The cost of living in Angola can best be described as astronomical. Most expats live in the capital, Luanda, which topped the Mercer Cost of Living Survey as the most expensive expat destination in the world in 2013, 2014 and 2015.
The destruction and devastation caused by nearly 30 years of war have left Angola with little infrastructure to produce and manufacture goods, and even less arable land to use for basic agricultural development. As a result, nearly everything is imported and costly - even the fresh fruits and vegetables that are usually reasonably priced in even the most obscure of locations.
Transport costs are readily tacked onto anything, and as the price of petrol continues to rise, so does the cost of both basic and luxury items in Angola.
Furthermore, as large companies continue to use Luanda and surrounds as a home base for operations that look to extract many of the country's natural resources, the demand for high-quality goods and services increases.
Cost of accommodation in Angola
The cost of accommodation has gone through the roof due to a glaring undersupply and overdemand. Low bed capacity and a lack of the kind of secure housing that can be used to entice expats abroad have set rental prices extraordinarily high. Nevertheless, most expats will find that their housing is provided and paid for by their company. If not, it’s important to factor this cost in and ensure that one's salary is proportionate to the high rental costs.
Cost of food in Angola
The amount of money an expat will spend on food will generally depend on their lifestyle and preferences. Fresh local produce is available at a reasonable price, however most expats shop at the bigger supermarkets where much of the products are imported and are thus more expensive that they would be other countries. Eating out is also quite expensive and not something that most people do on a regular basis.
Cost of schooling
For expats with children, the cost of living in Angola looks even more lopsided. As the standards of local public and private schools are far from adequate, outrageously priced international schools are the remaining option. Annual tuition fees in some cases can be as much as 40,000 USD, excluding costs for books, admission and extra-curricular activities
Personal transport fees must also be taken into consideration. Although hiring a driver can be done quite cheaply, depending on daily needs, this can often be an unforeseen expense for many expats moving to Angola.
Cost of living price chart for Angola (2015)
Prices may vary depending on product and service provider and the list below shows average prices for Luanda in November 2015.
Food and drink
|Milk (1 litre)
|Loaf of white bread
|Chicken breasts (1kg)
|Three-course meal in restaurant (without wine)
|Take-away meal (e.g. McDonalds)
|Bottle of wine
|Bottle of beer
|Mobile call rate (per minute – mobile to mobile)
|Internet (uncapped ADSL or Cable)
|Taxi (rate per km)
|City centre bus fare
|Petrol (per litre)