costs to live in many caribbean countriesBe it the picturesque natural landscapes, warm tropical climate, white sand beaches, slower-paced lifestyle, advanced infrastructure, or stable government and economy, the Caribbean islands have it all.

Additionally, the cost of living in the Caribbean islands is also relatively economical compared to other parts of the world, making it one of the most attractive regions to live and work in.

So, if you are planning to move to a Caribbean island, then it is very important to consider the cost of living in the Caribbean.

In this article, we will take you through the cost of living in the Caribbean, the benefits of island life, and the most affordable Caribbean islands to live in. We’ll also guide you through the best citizenship by investment programs available in the Caribbean, so you can make a smooth transition to your new life.

Cost of Real Estate in the Caribbean

In order to obtain citizenship in the Caribbean islands, foreign investors often resort to purchasing property. As per Numbeo, places like St Vincent and the Grenadines, and the Dominican Republic have the most affordable real estate prices in the Caribbean, offering an average price between $1,095 and $1,426 per square meter. On the other hand, other Caribbean islands like Jamaica and Barbados have the most expensive properties in the region. The average price per square meter in these places varies from $2,230 to $3,100.

Here is the average cost per square meter of properties in the Caribbean islands:

  • St Vincent and the Grenadines – $1,095
  • Dominican Republic – $1,426
  • Trinidad and Tobago – $1,804
  • Grenada – $1,911
  • The Bahamas – $1,968
  • Jamaica – $2,230
  • Barbados – $3,087

caribban relatively low costPlease note that these prices don’t include additional expenses that foreign investors need to pay, such as taxes and fees.

Certain Caribbean islands offer citizenship in return for investment in real estate in the country. They include:

Foreign investors buying properties in these countries to obtain citizenship must note that the real estate they choose to purchase must meet all the criteria provided by the citizenship by investment program of the particular country. Generally speaking, the real estate must be a government-approved project that mainly includes shares in luxury hotels and premium villas.

The cost of real estate in such projects varies from $150,000 for cottages with two bedrooms to $2,000,000 for luxurious villas with pools. Interested buyers can also purchase residential property for $200,000 or more.

The minimum real estate investment threshold under the citizenship by investment program varies from country to country. For example, the minimum real estate investment required for the Dominica Citizenship by Investment Program is $20,000, while in the rest of the Caribbean islands, it is $200,000 to $800,000.

In addition to the minimum real estate investment requirement, most Caribbean economic investment programs also imply that these properties can be rented out to tourists to garner more profit. Generally, property owners don’t stay in these properties for more than a week or two in the entire year. But in Antigua and Barbuda, foreign investors can purchase real estate for personal use. Interested buyers can make a minimum investment of $400,000 in a private dwelling house or a family condominium. In this case, the property can only be sold or converted into apartments or condominiums after five to seven years of obtaining citizenship in the country.

Cost of Living in Caribbean Countries

Various countries on the Caribbean coast offer citizenship in return for investment. Among them, the cost of living in Grenada and Dominica is the most affordable. An individual can live comfortably in these places within a budget of $650 a month. So that you know, this amount covers only daily costs and doesn’t account for rent and other utilities.

In addition to Grenada and Dominica, most Caribbean islands have an economic cost of living. Even Caribbean living costs – excluding rent and utilities – in places like St Lucia and Antigua and Barbuda are around $700 for an individual.

Cost of living in Grenada

average prices for a single person in the caribbeanOut of the Caribbean countries that offer Citizenship by Investment Programs to foreign nationals, Grenada has the most economical standard of living. An individual living in Grenada can survive in the country with less than $650 per month. Do note that this amount covers daily expenditures but excludes rent and utilities.

For a single person living in Grenada, the rent for a one-bedroom apartment outside the city center and utilities amount to around $600 monthly. A meal in an affordable restaurant will cost less than $8 and a three-course meal for two people in a mid-range restaurant costs around $80. The cost of monthly transportation in Grenada amounts to under $38, whereas Gasoline costs around $1.37.

When it comes to real estate, the price per square meter of an apartment in the city center is $1,415.


Take a look at our Grenada Citizenship by Investment Ultimate Guide by Experts

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Cost of living in Dominica

cheapest places in the caribbean

For a single person living in the country, the average rent for a one-bedroom apartment is estimated to be around $285 per month. For those considering a low cost of living in the Caribbean vs the USA, the monthly expenditure for an individual in Dominica comes to around $620 compared to $1,170 in the United States.

A meal in an inexpensive restaurant in the country is $7.40 and a three-course meal for two people will cost you around $60. A regular cappuccino coffee in Dominica is under $3. The monthly pass for local transport in the country costs under $15 and the fuel price is $1.19.

The price per square meter for apartments in Dominica ranges between $500 and $5,000, depending on the location and property type.

Cost of living in St Lucia

how much to live in the caribbeanSt Lucia is one of the most economical places to live in the Caribbean. The rental expenses and cost of utilities for an individual in the country is around $376. In addition to this food and transportation costs comes to around $645 on a monthly basis.

If you are planning to have dinner with another individual, mid-range restaurant prices in St Lucia are around $63. Whereas, a meal in a fast-food chain is around $9 and a cup of cappuccino will cost you around $3.

When it comes to public transportation, a monthly pass in St Lucia is approximately $36 and a taxi journey below 8Kms will be priced at $39. Petrol expenses in the country are around $1.51 per liter.

According to Realty St Lucia, average property per square meter in St Lucia range from $1,207 to $2,649.

Cost of living in Antigua and Barbuda

country with the lowest cost in the caribbeanThe cost of rent and utilities in Antigua and Barbuda is around $882 for individuals. Daily expenses excluding rent and other basic utilities amount to $670 per month in the country.

A meal for two people in a mid-range restaurant in the country will cost around $92, whereas a single meal in a fast food joint will cost around $8 per person. The approximate cost for a cup of cappuccino is around $5 in the country,

To obtain a monthly pass that will allow you to use public transport in the country, you have to pay around $57. On the other hand, a taxi ride below 8km will cost below $33. The petrol cost is around $1.34 per liter approximately.

Rent is relatively affordable in Antigua and Barbuda, with one-bedroom apartments outside the city center available for as live as $370 monthly on average compared to $1,740 in the US.

Cost of living in St Kitts and Nevis

living costs of caribbean countries

For people living alone in St Kitts and Nevis, the average expenditure for rent and utilities comes down to $1,190 per month. On top of this, individuals need to spend around $667 for everyday expenses.

A dinner for two-people in a mid-range restaurant in St Kitts and Nevis will cost around $92. The cost of a meal from a fast food chain will cost $14 and a cappuccino will cost around $3.70.

In regards to transportation, a monthly pass for public transport will cost around $42 in St Kitts and Nevis, whereas a taxi ride below 8km will cost around $38. Petrol costs around $1.76 per litre in the country.

While a one-bedroom apartment in the US costs $1,750 per month on average, the rent cost in St Kitts and Nevis is much lower at $850. According to Numbeo, the average price per square meter for an apartment in Basseterre city center costs $5,000 and $4,000 outside the center.

Cost of Caribbean Citizenship

Grenada: Under the Grenada Citizenship By Investment Program, foreign investors can obtain citizenship in return for a contribution of $150,000 to the government fund or $220,000 in approved real estate shares.

Dominica: The Dominica Citizenship by Investment Program is among the most attractive Caribbean CBI programs. Foreign investors can obtain a Dominica passport in return for a minimum investment of $100,000 in the country’s state fund or $200,000 in approved real estate.

St Lucia: The St Lucia Citizenship by Investment Program allows foreign investors to obtain citizenship in the country in return for investing $100,000 in its economy. The economic investment can be in the form of donating to fund or investing an additional $100,000 and purchasing real estate in government-approved projects. In addition to this, you can also purchase government bonds or start a business in the country in order to obtain citizenship.

Antigua and Barbuda: By donating $100,000 to the National Development Fund or $150,000 to the West Indies Fund, foreign investors can obtain citizenship in Antigua and Barbuda. There’s also the option to purchase real estate for at least $200,000 or invest $400,000 in a joint business investment.

St Kitts and Nevis: Foreign investors looking to obtain citizenship in exchange for an economic investment that is used to develop the country can do so in St Kitts and Nevis Citizenship by Investment Program by contributing $250,000 to the government fund or purchasing real estate for at least $400,000.

Check out our Caribbean Citizenship by Investment Comparison Guide

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Advantages of Living in a Caribbean Country

Great weather and landscape: Expats from all over the world love the Caribbean islands owing to their picturesque and pristine beaches, lush green rainforests, and overall pleasant climate.

Tax-friendly infrastructure: Most Caribbean countries have attractive tax benefits. For instance, some Caribbean island countries don’t charge taxation on capital gains, payments of interest, dividends, donations, and inheritance

Business-conducive ecosystem: Since the governments of the Caribbean countries encourage foreign investors to register their business in the islands, investors find it extremely easy to conduct business in the Caribbean. This also results in reduced tax deposits and avoids restrictions pertaining to currency control.

Comfortable life: Since island life is far away from the hustle-bustle of the cities, many foreigners prefer to settle in the Caribbean, post-retirement to enjoy and relax.

Interested in moving to the Caribbean for a comfortable retirement surrounded by natural beauty, beautiful beaches, clear waterfalls, delicious food, modern comforts, marine life, water sports, as well as saving money?

Key Takeaways about Caribbean Islands’ Cost of Living

  1. Most affordable Caribbean countries: The Dominican Republic, Cuba, Haiti, and Dominica in the Eastern Caribbean are extremely affordable, offering the lowest cost of living in the Caribbean, including the lowest monthly costs for an individual and family of four. While Costa Rica is relatively expensive, it offers one of the most affordable Caribbean residency visas, with a pensioners residence permit available from a monthly income of just $1,000.
  2. Cheapest Caribbean CBI countries: Dominica and St Lucia are the most affordable Caribbean nations that offer second citizenship. Both countries provide citizenship starting at $100,000 and low-cost monthly expenses to live an affordable lifestyle.
  3. Most affordable housing in the Caribbean: The Dominican Republic and Dominica have the lowest monthly rent and real estate prices in the Caribbean. Options for Dominica real estate include luxury eco-friendly villas for as little as $255,000, whereas monthly rent for a one-bedroom apartment in the Dominican Republic costs $300 to $500.

Frequently Asked Questions about the Cost of Living in the Caribbean

Which is the cheapest Caribbean country to live in?

Considering the cheapest safe Caribbean island to live, the Dominica Republic has the cheapest cost of living in the Caribbean vs the US and many Caribbean islands.

Which is the easiest Caribbean country to move to?

Antigua and Barbuda, Dominica, Grenada, and St Lucia are some of the most accessible countries to most to as they offer foreigners the opportunity to obtain citizenship by investing in their economies.

Which Caribbean country has the cheapest CBI program?

Antigua and Barbuda, St Lucia, and Dominica have the cheapest citizenship by investment programs with investments starting at $100,000 for a single applicant.

Is it expensive to live in the Caribbean?

The Caribbean islands have one of the most economic costs of living in the world. Compared to the others, the Bahamas is the most expensive place in the Caribbean with an approximate monthly cost amounting to $900 for a person. Caribbean living costs are also high in British Overseas Territories like the British Virgin Islands, Anguilla, the Turks and Caicos Islands, and independent Caribbean countries like Barbados.

What are some of the affordable islands in the Western Caribbean?

Some of the most affordable places to live in the Western Caribbean are Santiago de Cuba, Kingston, Jamaica, and Belize City.

Which Caribbean country has the highest cost of living?

The Cayman Islands is generally considered to have the highest cost of living in the Caribbean. The country has the highest monthly rental prices in the Caribbean, with a one-bedroom apartment in Grand Cayman city center costing $2,670 on average compared to $1,770 in the United States.

The cost of living in the Cayman Islands, excluding rent, is notably high compared to other Caribbean countries. For instance, an affordable meal can set you back around $30, while dining for two at a mid-range restaurant averages $145, considerably higher than the $75 average in the US.

The Turks and Caicos Islands also has high living costs compared to many Caribbean countries; however, both the Cayman Islands and the Turks and Caicos Islands lower overall costs for residents through imposing no local or worldwide income tax, wealth tax, or capital gains tax.

What is the most expensive city in the Caribbean?

According to travel brand Florida Panhandle, Gustavia in St Barts stood out as the Caribbean’s most expensive destination, with an average daily expenditure for travelers reaching $1,852. Road Town in the British Virgin Islands is also one of the Caribbean’s most expensive cities.

What is the cheapest English-speaking Caribbean island to live?

While the Dominican Republic is widely regarded as the cheapest Caribbean island, Dominica is one of the most affordable Caribbean states and the cheapest English-speaking Caribbean island to live in due to the lowest property prices and estimated monthly costs in the Caribbean for everyday expenses.

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