Depending on the type of lifestyle an expat maintains, the cost of living in Cambodia is relatively affordable. Expats will find that certain things can be relatively cheap – including street food, entertainment and public transport – however, the cost is usually higher if living in Phnom Penh. Other things, like internet, toiletries and eating out, can be incredibly expensive. For expats who choose to 'live like a local', Cambodia is the ideal destination to do so.

Over the last couple of years, Cambodia has been affected by inflation, which has pushed up the prices of everyday items. This can be seen in Mercer's Cost of Living Chart for 2019, where Phnom Penh ranked 108th out of 209 countries. 

Cost of accommodation in Cambodia

Expats living in the capital will find that the cost of accommodation varies. In Phnom Penh, the closer an apartment is to the river, the more expensive it is. Another place popular with expats is Siem Reap, which is generally cheaper than the capital. Housing will most likely be the biggest expense for expats in Cambodia.

Cost of public transport in Cambodia

Getting around Cambodia is relatively cheap. Local transport like tuk-tuks and motos are inexpensive and easy to use. Expats should negotiate a price with the driver beforehand, in order to make sure they are not paying too much. Expats that can speak basic Khmer may find that they get a better deal than those who try to negotiate in English. 

Cost of education in Cambodia

For expats with children in Cambodia, sending their child to a public school is not a likely choice. While public schools are free, the language of instruction is Khmer, and the standard of education is below par. Expats have a number of private and international schools to choose from, bearing in mind that space is limited and fees are high. Private schools are generally less costly than international schools. 

Cost of food in Cambodia

Phnom Penh is home to a number of fine-dining restaurants that come with a price tag. For those with a more conservative budget, eating out can be a cheap and tasty experience, depending on where one goes. Local street vendors sell Cambodian cuisine that is inexpensive and authentic. For expats looking to find home comforts, a number of supermarkets stock imported products at a price.

Cost of living in Cambodia chart 

Prices may vary depending on product and service provider as well as the city. The list below shows average prices for Phnom Penh in September 2019.

Accommodation (monthly rent in good area)

Furnished two-bedroom apartment

KHR 3,000,000

Unfurnished two-bedroom apartment

KHR 2,000,000


Eggs (dozen)

KHR 6,335

Milk (1 litre)

KHR 8,670

Rice (1kg)

KHR 3,770

Loaf of white bread

KHR 5,790

Chicken breasts (1kg)

KHR 15,670

Pack of cigarettes 

KHR 5,600

Eating out

Big Mac Meal

KHR 20,380

Coca-Cola (330ml)

KHR 3,050


KHR 8,215

Bottle of local beer

KHR 4,075

Three-course meal for two at a mid-range restaurant

KHR 81,500


Mobile-to-mobile call rate (per minute)

KHR 260

Internet (uncapped – average per month)

KHR 190,000

Basic utilities (per month for a small apartment)

KHR 350,000


Taxi rate (per kilometre)

KHR 3,055

Bus/train fare in the city centre

KHR 8,115

Petrol/gasoline (per litre)

KHR 4,000

Expat Health Insurance


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