Thursday, March 30, 2006

Cost of Living

I thought you might be interested to know what I paid for basic expenses during my first year in Taiwan. It might be a little depressing for those of you living in the US! Amounts are in US dollars, not Taiwan ones ;)

Rent: $5,812 (US house payment was $8,220 annually, with another $1,300 for property taxes.)

Electric bill: $192 (average annual cost in the US, for me, was $300 [yeah, some people pay that per month but they're energy hogs, and I wasn't], which doesn't include the propane and wood I used for heat in the winter - that was expensive! I use electric heat here, when necessary.)

Water bill: $50 (average annual cost in the US was $240)

Home Phone/ADSL bill: $220 (average annual cost in the US was $216 just for the phone line plus $140 for dial-up Internet service, total $356)

Mobile Phone bill: $108 (average annual cost in US was $480, and I never used the damned phone, either)

Gas for cooking/hot water: $75 (I can't remember how much I paid for propane in the US, just that it was higher in the winter. I know it's a darned sight more than what I pay here.)

Transportation costs: $640 (I probably spent a minimum of $1,000 per year on gas in the US, if not more, plus auto insurance, car payment, maintenance, and registration. It's way cheaper to get around here, and someone else drives me!)

Tuition fee: $1800 (I think roughly the same price as the class at Chico State, but that class was only two days a week, and my class here is five days a week. So, I'm getting more for the money.)

I'm sure I spent more money on food and books than anything else here. I know I spend more on food than I should, because I keep buying overpriced imported stuff. Little by little, I'm cutting that out. This year I'm going to try to be really thrifty, but there's no way I can stop buying books.

1 comment:

Ranger Steve said...

Not only is it cheaper, but the people are nicer, too! When I go to the Phillipines next year I'll have to let you know how typical costs compare to Taiwan ;-)