Cost of Living in Rotterdam: What you can expect (2022)


Updated on Sep 28 • 5 minute read

Rotterdam is the second-largest city in the Netherlands when it comes to population, with 650 thousand residents. Being home to the largest European port, and being the heart of the Dutch industrial complex, Rotterdam attracts Dutch natives and internationals seeking employment.

If you’re one of those who are eyeing Rotterdam out as their potential new home, you’re most probably wondering what it costs to live in the city on the Maas river.

In this article, we’ll walk you through the cost of living in Rotterdam with consideration of the following living expenses:

  • Rent expenses
  • Food prices
  • Public transportation
  • Leisure activities

Is it expensive to live in Rotterdam?

Being a business city, the average cost of living in Rotterdam mirrors that in other big cities across western Europe.

The average rental prices in Rotterdam are 5.24 % lower than those in Amsterdam. Considering the fact that the median salary in the port city is € 2,200, you can rest assured that you’d be able to afford the living standard if you’re employed in one of the many companies in the city.

So, is it expensive to live in Rotterdam? There is no definite answer since it depends on the lifestyle you lead. A fair estimate would be that you should be ready to spare an estimated € 700 (excl. rent) in order to live comfortably.

What is the cost of living in Rotterdam?

Ranking as the 3rd most expensive city in the Netherlands, Rotterdam is your ideal choice if you can’t afford the more expensive Amsterdam and Utrecht.

Rental prices

As reported by HousingAnywhere’s Rent Index, despite going through a drop to an average of €884 in Q1 2022, the average rental prices in Rotterdam are expected to rise to €910 toward the end of Q2.

As of March 2022, you can expect the following rent expenses in Rotterdam:

Type of AccommodationRental price in €
Apartment€ 1334
Studio€ 837
Private Room€ 550

You can expect to find cheaper rentals in the southern and western parts of Rotterdam since the northern and eastern ones are more desired.

Food prices

Despite Rotterdam being a port city, the food prices are 2% higher than those in Amsterdam.

Stopping by the outdoor markets will help you save quite a bit since the prices there are lower than those in supermarkets.

The following list should give you a good idea of what to expect to pay for food in Rotterdam:

Food / Beverage ProductPrices in €
Water (1.5-litre bottle)€ 0.66
Wine (1 bottle, mid-range)€ 5.99
Local Beer (0,.5 litre bottle)€ 4.00
Imported beer(0.33-litre bottle)€ 4.00
Milk (1 litre, generic)€ 0.98
White bread (500 g)€ 1.96
Rice (white, 1 kg)€ 1.90
Eggs (medium, 12 pieces)€ 1.93
Local cheese (1 kg)€ 11.13
Beef (1 kg)€ 22.84
Bananas (1 kg)€ 1.19
Oranges (1 kg)€ 1.35
Tomatoes (1 kg)€ 2.08
Potatoes (1 kg)€ 1.16

Prices for leisure time

Besides job opportunities, leisure activities are another thing Rotterdam is not lacking.

Feel like clubbing? Rotterdam has upwards of ten venues for you to choose from! Bars? Don’t even get us started! Besides all the rowdy activities, you can also make a visit to, what seems like, the infinite food trucks or restaurants offering cuisine from all over the world. Not that much into fine dining or partying? Rotterdam’s cultural scene is rich in museums, alternative spaces and even amateur theatres.

The cost of leisure activities in Rotterdam is lower than that in Amsterdam, so breaking the bank is less of a risk here!

Want to know more about what to expect with regards to pricing? The following should give you a good impression of the cost of leisure activities in Rotterdam:

Leisure ActivityPrice in €
A meal in an inexpensive restaurant€ 15.00
Three course meal for two in a middle-class restaurant€ 60.00
Cinema ticket, Hollywood production or comparable€ 12.00
Gym membership fee (monthly)€ 34.39
Rental fee for a tennis court (1 hour on weekends)€ 19.71

Hot tip! The water taxis in Rotterdam are an experience that shouldn't be missed!

Public transport

You can rest assured that you can count on the punctuality of abundant public transport in Rotterdam. Although the main means of transport in Rotterdam is bikes, the tram, metro and bus lines are always clean and can get you from one side of the city to the other in a breeze.

The table below should give you a good idea of what to expect when it comes to the pricing of public transport in Rotterdam_:

Mean of TransportPrice in €
A one-way trip on public transport€ 4.00
Monthly subscription (regular price)€ 75.00
Starting taxi fare (regular fare)€ 4.00
1 kilometre in a taxi (standard fare)€ 2.02
Petrol (1 litre)€1.70

Now that you have a better idea of what you can expect your monthly spending in Rotterdam to be like, you’re all set to focus on discovering the nighbourhoods in the city and look for accommodation that’ll fit your budget.

Related Articles

Moving to Rotterdam?

Search for accommodation now!

Search now