The cost of living in Ghana is higher than new arrivals may expect. Ghana's capital city, Accra, ranked as the 63rd most expensive expat destination out of the 209 cities analysed in the 2019 Mercer Cost of Living Survey. 

Accommodation in Ghana is particularly expensive and will take up most of an expat's budget. Household utilities and communication technology are also costly. Transport expenses in Ghana are fairly low, however, even for those who choose to drive.

As the standard of public healthcare in Ghana is poor, foreigners moving to Ghana opt for private healthcare and will need to invest in a comprehensive international health insurance policy. Luckily, many expats in Ghana have this expense covered by their employer.


Cost of accommodation in Ghana

Accommodation is expensive in Ghana and rent will account for a large proportion of an expat’s budget, especially in Accra. As the country is developing and more international companies are setting up offices in the Ghanaian capital of Accra, the foreign population is growing quite rapidly. The demand for accommodation is high but there is a short supply of quality and secure housing for expats. This pushes up prices.

Due to the relatively undeveloped nature of communications technology in Ghana the costs of telephone line rental, monthly internet and mobile-phone tariffs are fairly high and free Wi-Fi is only rarely available.


Cost of transport in Ghana

Most modes of public transport in Ghana, including trains, buses and tro-tros (informal minibus taxis), can be erratic and unreliable. For this reason, most expats living in Ghana opt to drive or hire a driver to transport them daily. The cost of renting a car and hiring a driver depends on the rental company.

Compared to rental prices, the cost of purchasing a reliable car is fairly high and petrol prices are constantly flutuating. That said, these costs are still relatively low when compared with other countries. 


Cost of entertainment and eating out in Ghana

The cost of entertainment and eating out in Ghana vary according to an individual expat's tastes and preferences. Dinner for two at a restaurant which serves local cuisine is highly affordable, while international fare is more expensive. 

However, Ghana is quite expensive when it comes to entertainment such as cinema and theatre tickets, although there are often promotions and deals as well as discounts offered by some telecommunications service providers.


Cost of healthcare in Ghana

The cost of public healthcare in Ghana is low, especially since the introduction of the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS).

However, the quality of treatment offered by public hospitals in Ghana is unlikely to meet the standard that most expats are accustomed to. Therefore, those moving to Ghana for work should try to negotiate some kind of allowance towards the cost of health insurance into their employment contracts.

Private healthcare in Ghana is often the best option for expats. New arrivals should ensure that the health insurance policy they purchase covers them emergency or necessary transport and treatment outside of Ghana.


Cost of education in Ghana

While English is the official language in Ghana, most schools – especially those outside of Accra – teach in local languages. This, as well as the general standard of education at public schools, means that most foreigners living in Ghana opt to send their children to an international school. Although the fees at these schools vary, they tend to be expensive and expats should try to negotiate an allowance for school fees from their employer.


Cost of living in Ghana chart

Prices may vary depending on product and service provider. The list below shows average prices in Accra for April 2020.

Accommodation (average monthly rent)

One-bedroom apartment in the city centre

GHS 2,200 - 5,000

One-bedroom apartment outside of the city centre

GHS 1,000 - 2,800

Three-bedroom apartment in the city centre

GHS 7,500 - 12,000

Three-bedroom apartment outside of the city centre

GHS 3,000 - 4,500

Food and drink

Milk (1 litre)

GHS 11.50

Dozen eggs

GHS 12

White bread 

GHS 6.30

Chicken breasts (1kg)

GHS 30

Pack of cigarettes (Marlboro)

GHS 12

Public transport

City centre bus/train fare

GHS 5

Taxi rate per km

GHS 5.50

Petrol/gasoline per litre

GHS 5.20

Eating out

Big Mac Meal

GHS 35

Coca-Cola (500 ml)   

GHS 3.70

Cappuccino

GHS 15

Bottle of local beer

GHS 7

Three-course meal at a mid-range restaurant

GHS 75

Utilities

Internet (uncapped ADSL or cable – average per month)

GHS 300

Mobile call rate (per minute – mobile to mobile)

GHS 0.40

Utilities (average per month for standard household)

GHS 400

Hourly rate for domestic help

GHS 48

Expat Health Insurance

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