When you think of Australia, it is hard not to think about Sydney, even though it is not the capital (Canberra is, in case you didn't know). Sydney is beautiful and it has all the things one would expect in a modern day metropolis while still maintaining the charm and beauty of an old world city. Unfortunately, it is extremely expensive. It is in the top 2% of most expensive cities in the world, and number 1 in Australia. Fortunately, the average salary is high as well so if you live there it won't dry out your wallet. 

Average Cost of Living

Sydney is very expensive. The average cost of living in Sydney for one month is estimated to be $2352, including rent, food, transport, personal care, and other items. Average income after tax is $4300.

Accomodation is one of the most biggest expenses people in Sydney have, so it is common for young people to live in shared houses or rooms. More on that below. 

As expensive as it is, Sydney is one of the most beautiful cities in the world and chosen by many to visit and live. The iconic opera house, the parks, wildlife, gorgeous beaches, warm climate and nice people, all add up to making Sydney must on your travel list. 

Cost of Rent in Sydney

Rent is the most expensive part of living in Sydney. The closer you are to the water the more expensive it will get. Living in the city can also be quite pricey, but moving further away can be more affordable. 

An average one bedroom apartment is around $1800 USD, and two bedrooms can go for $2500 USD, without including utilities. Electricity, gas and heating can be around $150 USD a month. Water is usually included in rent. 

Many young people decide to share houses to lower the prices of rent, and you can find rooms in expensive areas for as little as $850 USD a month.

Cost Of Groceries in Sydney

A good way to save money in Sydney is by buying groceries in the supermarkets. The main supermarkets Coles and Woolworths always have good sales so it is also recommendable to stock up on some things if you see them for half price, which is not rare to see. 

The price of fresh produce does depend on the climate, so while an avocado can be $1 USD one season, it can be $2 the next one. All fruit and vegetables are subjected to these changes so the prices vary a lot from time to time. 

Here is a list of prices of items that are less volatile and pretty steady throughout the year. 

Popular Attractions in Sydney

Sydney Opera House 

The Sydney Opera House is famous for its unique design. It was designed by Danish architect JΓΈrn Utzon and was opened in 1973. It has the shape of a shell and has three major halls: Joan Sutherland Theatre, Concert Hall, and Drama Theatre. The opera house hosts many performing arts events such as ballet, opera, drama plays, and sometimes even concerts. A tour of the theater can be $45 USD and if you want to attend the opera you can expect to pay $100 USD.

Sydney Harbour Bridge & Harbor Bridge Climb

The Sydney Harbor Bridge is one of the most recognizable bridges in all of Australia. It was opened to traffic in 1932 and was designed by John Bradfield. It has a span of 503 meters (1,650 feet) between its two pylons. The bridge can support up to 80 million kilograms (176 million pounds). You can cross the bridge walking for free, or climb it with tours that start at $80 USD.

Hop-On Hop-Off buses

The hop-on hop-off buses are a great way to get to all the tourist places without having to get taxis or public transport everywhere and risk getting lost and wasting time. Tickets start at $40 USD and can go up to $72 USD for a deluxe tour.

Sydney Aquarium & Wildlife Park

The Sydney Aquarium and Wildlife Park is located on the shores of Darling Harbour. The aquarium has over 30,000 marine animals and an amazing 7,500 different species. There are exhibits on the Great Barrier Reef as well as a shark tunnel. It also features a large collection of Australian fauna such as koalas. Prices for adults start at $27 USD.

Sydney Tower Skywalk

The Sydney Tower is a communications tower located in the central business district of Sydney. At 322 meters (1,057 feet), it is the tallest structure in Australia as well as being one of the tallest observation towers in the Southern Hemisphere. In May 2007, it became home to an observation deck known as "Skywalk". Prices for a tour there go from $25 USD for an annual pass, to $110 USD for VIP tickets.

Taronga Zoo

The Taronga Zoo is located at Mosman in New South Wales. It was founded in the year 1916. The zoo is one of the most famous zoos around the world with several animals spanning about 1400 different species. Entry fee is $32 USD and $19 USD for kids, and probably worth every penny!

Transport Costs

Transportation is expensive but it works quite well in Sydney. Trains, buses, light rail and ferries can almost certainly take you wherever you need to go.

Trains from and to the airport will cost around $12.50 USD, but around the city a ride on the bus or train will be around $2.50 USD to $3.50 USD, depending on time and distance. The good thing is that you can simply use your bank card to tap on and off, or you can buy an OPAL card, the official transport card in Sydney. It is free to get, but you have to get it with money in it. 

The daily cap with an OPAL card is $12 USD, and $36 USD weekly, so that is great news if you are planning on using public transport a lot.

Taxis are very expensive, but companies like Uber, Didi and Ola have apps that can be downloaded and you can order a taxi for a much more convenient price to take you wherever you need to go. 

About the Author James Holland

James is a certified financial planner who helps retirees and pre-retirees make the most of their money. He has more than 10 years of experience in the field, and he knows how to help people plan for retirement on a budget. James also offers advice on estate planning, long-term care, and other aspects of retirement planning.

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