Cost of Living in Frankfurt

According to Mercer’s 2016 Cost of Living Survey, Frankfurt is the second most expensive city in Germany, after Munich. Frankfurt was ranked 88th out of 209 expat destinations worldwide.

However, expats will find that there are a number of ways to save money while still maintaining a good quality of life in this highly industrialised city.  

Just like in any other world city, an individual expat’s cost of living is dependent on one’s lifestyle. While Frankfurt allows residents to indulge, it is also a city where one can choose to live cheaply and comfortably too.

Cost of accommodation in Frankfurt

The rule of thumb is to spend no more than 30 percent of one's salary on rent. However, after tax this accounts for the bulk of an expats budget. There is a range of accommodation in Frankfurt and the price will depend on a number of factors, including the area one chooses to live in, the size of the property and whether the property is furnished or unfurnished.

Remember that when renting property in Germany ‘warm’ rent includes certain utilities.  

Cost of transportation in Frankfurt

Getting around in Frankfurt using public transport is fairly inexpensive. There are plenty of money-saving schemes available for one to choose from. 

For expats who will use public transport to commute on a daily basis it is wise to invest in a monthly or annual travel pass. Furthermore, expats moving to Frankfurt will be pleased to know that these passes cover the cost of travelling with children in the evening or at weekends.

Generally, most people do not need a car to get around Frankfurt. However, those that do wish to drive will need to factor in the cost of parking fees and petrol.

Cost of groceries in Frankfurt

The cost of grocery shopping varies depending on where one shops. Supermarkets operated by Galeria or Karstadt tend to be more expensive. Most expats shop at Rewe. 

For those on a tighter budget, there is Lidl and Aldi. Unfortunately, it is not too common to see bulk buy offers in supermarkets in Frankfurt.

Cost of entertainment and eating out in Frankfurt

Frankfurt is a bustling, cosmopolitan city and expats will find there is a lot to keep them entertained here. Frankfurt has lots of good restaurants offering traditional German cuisine as well as international fare.

Tipping is common practice in Frankfurt; however, how an individual tips will differ from one person to another. The general practice is to give a 10 percent tip.

Cost of schooling in Frankfurt

While public schools in Germany are of an excellent standard and fees are very low, for most expats this is not a viable option. Unless expats plan on relocating to Germany in the long-term or have children who are young enough to pick up the local language, international schools are the best option, but they come at a hefty price.

Those relocating to Frankfurt for a lucrative job offer should try to negotiate an allowance to cover school fees for their children.

Cost of living chart for Frankfurt

Note that prices may vary depending on product and service provider and the list below shows average prices for July 2016


Furnished two-bedroom house

EUR 1,450 - 1,800

Unfurnished two-bedroom house

EUR 1,200 - 1500

Furnished two-bedroom apartment

EUR 1,000 - 1,300

Unfurnished two-bedroom apartment

EUR 1,000 - 1,200


Dozen eggs


Milk (1 litre)

EUR 0.95

Rice (1kg)

EUR 1.85

Loaf of white bread

EUR 1.80

Chicken (1kg)


Pack of cigarettes (Marlboro)

EUR 5.75

Eating Out

Big Mac meal

EUR 7.50

Coca Cola (500ml)

EUR 2.50



Bottle of beer (local)

EUR 4.50

Three-course meal at a mid-range restaurant

EUR 70-100

Utilities/Household (monthly)

Internet (uncapped ADSL per month)

EUR 40

Mobile call rate (per minute – mobile to mobile)

EUR 0.15

Electricity (average per month for standard household)

EUR 130


Taxi rate per km

EUR 2.50

City centre bus fare/train fare

EUR 1.75

Petrol/gasoline (per litre)

EUR 1.56