Adelaide sits on the Gulf of St Vincent and is the capital of South Australia. The city has grown into one of the most liveable cities in the world, with a relaxed and friendly lifestyle. It has a vibrant food and wine scene, with over 200 wineries close by. It also has a beach, water sports, national parks and hills for hiking. Adelaide boasts a Mediterranean climate, making outdoor living possible for most of the year.
If you are considering moving to Adelaide, the various costs listed below will help you make an informed decision on what costs are involved if you decide to live in the City of Churches.
Quick Adelaide Facts:
- Population: 1.38 million (2021 estimate).
- Official Language: English (de facto) with many more languages being spoken including Mandarin, Cantonese, Arabic, Korean, Italian, Greek, Spanish, Hindi and Vietnamese.
- GDP Per Capita: $71,180 USD (2021 estimate).
- Giant Pandas: The only giant pandas in the southern hemisphere are at Adelaide Zoo.
- Currency: Australian Dollar ($, AUD). As of early 2023, £1 = $ 1.78 AUD, $1 USD = $1.48 AUD, €1 EUR = $1.57 AUD, $1 CAD = $1.09 AUD.
1. Moving and Shipping Costs to Adelaide
Below are sample international container shipping rates to Australia from various countries around the world.
2. Adelaide Housing Costs
Property prices in Adelaide are very affordable, especially when compared with Sydney and Melbourne. Prices vary from area to area, but the figures below will give you an indication of what’s available at what price.
Monthly Rental Prices in Adelaide:
- 1 bedroom flat (apartment) in City Centre: A$2,000+
- 1 bedroom flat outside the City Centre: A$1,500+
- 3 bedroom flat in City Centre: A$3,900+
- 3 bedroom flat outside the City Centre: A$2,400+
Adelaide Home Purchase Prices:
- Price per square metre (10.7 square feet) to buy in City Centre: A$9,400+
- Price per square metre (10.7 square feet) to buy outside City: A$5,300+
Adelaide Housing Cost Comparison:
This is how rent in Adelaide compare with other cities around the globe.
- London is 40.4% more expensive
- New York is 60.6% more expensive
- Los Angeles is 46.6% more expensive
- Sydney is 31.2% more expensive
- Melbourne is 0.07% more expensive
- Toronto is 19.3% more expensive
- Paris is 8.6% more expensive
- Dubai is 19% more expensive
How to Save on Housing Costs:
- Share a Flat or House: There’s a large selection of flat and house shares in Adelaide. With a house share, you will have your own room, or, for a cheaper option, you can share a room, where the bathroom/s will be shared with other people in the house. Have a look at the following sites to search for your perfect roomie – Flatmates, Gumtree, Flatshare, Easyroommate and Sharehouses.
- Different Areas – Different Prices: Adelaide is frequently called “the 20-minute city” because you can travel to most areas within 20 minutes. If you want to live on the beach, have a look at Glenelg and Brighton which sit to the west of Adelaide. Prices are high in these areas but there’s a variety of housing, and the public transport system is good. Other areas which demand a high price are Hyde Park, with its grand, older properties; Unley, with its reputation for fine dining, upmarket shops and lovely parks; and Burnside, which has high-priced housing close to the CBD. More affordable areas include Highbury and North Plympton. Both areas have a mix of old and new housing and are close to schools, shops and other amenities. Stirling is another affordable suburb which is peaceful and green and situated in the beautiful Adelaide Hills.
3. Adelaide Food, Grocery and Restaurant Costs
Adelaide has some good restaurants right in the middle of the wine country.
- Inexpensive Restaurant: A$20 – A$25
- Takeout Coffee: A$5 – A$6
- Bottle of Coke: A$4 – A$4.50
- 1L of Milk: A$2 – A$2.30
- Loaf of Bread: A$3 – A$3.70
- 12 Eggs: A$6 – A$6.50
- 1kg Chicken: A$12 – A$13
- 1kg Beef: A$27 – A$30
- 1kg Apples: A$4.60 – A$5
- 1kg White Rice: A$3.90 – A$4
This is how restaurants and food prices compare with other major cities in the world.
- New York restaurants are 7.8% more expensive and groceries are 14.4% more expensive than Adelaide.
- Los Angeles restaurants are 3.9% cheaper and groceries are 12.7% cheaper than Adelaide.
- London restaurants are 19.8% cheaper and groceries are 59.4% cheaper than Adelaide.
- Toronto restaurants are 20.8% cheaper and groceries are 27.1% cheaper than Adelaide.
- Sydney restaurants are 15.5% cheaper and groceries are 9.7% more expensive than Adelaide.
- Melbourne restaurants are 21.8% cheaper and groceries are 9.1% cheaper than Adelaide.
- Paris restaurants are 33.9% cheaper and groceries are 17% cheaper than Adelaide.
- Dubai restaurants are 28% cheaper and groceries are 76.9% cheaper than Adelaide.
Bonus Tips for Cheaper Food, Restaurants and Groceries
- Know Your Supermarkets: Coles, Woolworths and Harris Farm Market are the major supermarket chains in Adelaide. There are some good health shops around the city, selling organic and whole foods for the ever-increasing vegetarian and vegan population. There are also some good, independent old-fashioned grocers that sell excellent, if expensive, produce. Enjoy the farmers’ markets at Adelaide Farmers Market Showground, Adelaide Hills Farmers Markets and Willunga Farmers Market.
- Find Cheap Eats: Trip Adviser, Zomato, Adelaide Now and Smudge Eats all have their own guides to cheap eats in Adelaide, which include everything from Sunday carveries to fine dining.
4. Adelaide Alcohol Costs
Adelaide has bars, pubs and clubs to suit everyone’s taste and pocket.
- Pint (0.6L) domestic beer at a restaurant/pub: A$11
- Bottle of imported beer at a restaurant/pub: A$11 – A$12
- Pint (0.6L) domestic beer at a supermarket: A$2.20 – A$7.00
- Bottle of imported beer at a supermarket: A$7.50
- Mid-range bottle of wine at a supermarket: A$20
How To Drink For Less in Adelaide:
- Keep an eye on the local papers and websites for specials
- There are many pubs, bars and clubs that offer specials every day. Have a look at the following sites to find one which takes your fancy – The Happiest Hour, Yelp, Pubscene, Drinking Buddy and Timeout.
- Scour the areas around the universities to find the best alcohol deals.
5. Adelaide Transportation Fares
Adelaide’s public transportation system consists of buses, trams and trains which are run by Adelaide Metro. It’s an efficient system, but doesn’t cover all areas equally.
Here are some example ticket costs:
- Adult Single – A$4.50
- One day ticket for all transport – A$30
- Monthly season ticket for bus, tram and train – A$107
How To Save Money on Public Transport:
- Buy a Visitor’s Pass – 3 days unlimited travel for A$26
- Concession Card Holders and Students – 28-day pass for A$53.50 and A$26.50 respectively
- Buy a Bike – Adelaide is a bike-friendly city with lots of cycle lanes
- Walk – Adelaide is a small city, so walking is a viable and healthy option
6. Cost of Internet in Adelaide
Internet in Australia is expensive. Here are some sample broadband internet prices from early 2023, based on a 24-month contract:
7. Cost of Clothing, Personal Items, Gym and Leisure
Adelaide enjoys a Mediterranean climate with mild winters and warm, dry summers. It doesn’t suffer from the humidity which exists in other Australian coastal cities. The average summer temperature is 29°C and the average winter temperature is 15°C, with the occasional frost in the Adelaide Hills. June is the wettest month with an average rainfall of 80mm.
Here are some clothing prices, together with other useful prices.
- Pair of Jeans: A$130
- Summer Dress: A$100
- Running Shoes (Trainers): A$195
- Business Shoes: A$205
- Short Doctor’s Visit (15 mins): A$67
- Deodorant: A$5
- Shampoo: A$6
- Toilet Paper (4 rolls): A$3.25
- Gym Membership: A$80 per month
- Movie (cinema) Ticket: A$22
Source: Numbeo and Expatistan
8. Cost of Owning a Car and Driving a Car in Adelaide
Everyone in Australia drives on the left. Driving in Adelaide is a pleasure compared with most major cities around the world. However, parking is limited and expensive.
If you’re moving to Adelaide from within Australia, you’ll be able to use your existing license for 90 days and then you will need to get a South Australia license.
If you are relocating to Adelaide from another country, you can drive on your existing license for 90 days and then you will need to replace it with a South Australia license. You may need to take a written test and a driving test before you can be issued a license. This depends on a number of factors such as how long you have been driving and the nationality of your license.
You can also get an International Driving Permit before you leave your home country and this will allow you to drive in Australia for 12 months.
Here are some other sample costs of owning and operating a car in Adelaide:
- Volkswagen Golf: A$34,700
- 1 Litre (¼ gallon) of Gas (petrol): A$2
- Stamp Duty: The cost is calculated on the value of the vehicle
- Other Fees (if any): A Registration Transfer Fee is also payable – A$31
Source: Expatistan, SAGov
Ways To Save Money on Driving in Adelaide:
- Car sharing or pooling is one way to save money. Try Go Get, Adelaide Carpool and Shareuride.
- Taxis can sometimes be a cheaper option, especially if you are going to have to park all day. Try Uber.
9. Taxes in Adelaide
No matter where you live in Australia, you will pay the same rate of tax. To learn more about the different taxes in Australia, go to this site – the Australian Taxation Office.
Sales Tax in Australia is 10% and is added to most goods and services throughout the country. Unlike in some countries, it is always included in the marked price.
Whether you own or rent your home, you will be subject to the payment of rates based on the area in which you live and the size of the property you live in. Learn more about rates in Adelaide at the City of Adelaide.
If you decide to buy a flat or house in Adelaide you’ll have to pay stamp duty, Lands Titles Office lodgement and transaction fees. Go to SAGov to see the costs involved for various types and prices of property.
10. Flight Costs from Adelaide
If you do make the move to Adelaide, here’s approximately how much it will cost to fly to other major world cities based on the lowest, one-way fares from Skyscanner as of early 2023:
- New York: A$1,992
- Los Angeles: A$1,120
- Toronto: A$1,157
- Vancouver: A$1,106
- Dubai: A$1,211
- London: A$1,068
- Sydney: A$111
- Melbourne: A$66
- Cape Town: A$1,096
- Hong Kong: A$511
Other Tips on Moving to Adelaide:
The costs and pricing above should give you a good idea of the cost of living in Adelaide but perhaps the following extra tips will make your move go smoothly.
11. Moving to Adelaide Alone
Moving anywhere can be a lonely experience, but moving to a new city can be rather daunting. Here are a few tips about settling in Adelaide.
- Meetups: Adelaide has lots of free meetup groups you can find on Meetup. Find groups such as Adelaide Walkers and Joggers, Dinner With Friends, Lover of Music and Theatre, WordPress and many more.
- Attend Local Events: There’s always a lot going on in Adelaide. Find out what’s going on from Trip Adviser, Australia, Lonely Planet, Adelaide Sightseeing and Experience Oz.
12. Moving to Adelaide with a Family
Adelaide has a lot to attract families. It has good schools, family-friendly neighbourhoods, plus the beach, parks, countryside, good food and wine, museums and the arts.
- New Parents (or parents to be): Check out WCH and Calvary Babies.
- Live in a Family-friendly Area: Many expats choose to live in Medindie and Walkerville, which are both in Adelaide’s northern suburbs. These suburbs are close to excellent schools, both public and private, and have a variety of upmarket housing to choose from. On the east side of Adelaide are the suburbs of Burnside and Kensington Gardens which are full of parks and community centres which have many activities available for families with young children. Golden Grove is in the northeast of Adelaide and is popular with people from all walks of life. It has modern, affordable housing and lots of green space. The only drawback with this area is that you will need a car as the public transport system isn’t so good in this neighbourhood. Athelstone, Evandale and O’Halloran Hill are all areas with good schools, pleasant houses and green spaces that draw families to them.
- Find Things To Do With The Kids: Kids Spot, Kids in Adelaide, South Australia and Play and Go all have great ideas for activities and events your kids will love.
13. Moving to Adelaide for Work
People move to Adelaide for work or to join their family. If you want to work in Australia, you need to ensure you have the right visa. Visa conditions are changing in March 2018, making it more difficult for people to live and work in Australia.
Adelaide is attracting investment from mining companies and defence, so people with experience in these fields should consider Adelaide an option. Other working possibilities are healthcare, education, IT, retail, finance and tourism.
Here are a few things to consider when moving for work:
- Salary: The costs we outlined above should give you a rough idea, how much more you’ll want to be making to make the move worthwhile. You can also check salary ranges on sites such as Glassdoor and Payscale.
- How To Find Work: If you want to have a job lined up before you move to Adelaide, but aren’t sure where to begin, the following sites are good places to start: Apply Direct, Career One and Indeed. You may also want to Google recruiters in your industry, as they can often help land you some initial interviews as well.
14. Moving to Adelaide from the United Kingdom
A large group of Brits have chosen Adelaide as their home. If you are thinking of joining them, here are a few things to consider.
- Size Comparison: If you compare the population size of Adelaide with a city in the UK, you would be looking at a city a little larger than Birmingham.
- Join Expat Groups: Internations and Poms in Adelaide offer ways of meeting up with other Brits in Adelaide.
15. Moving to Adelaide from Canada
There’s a small group of Canadians living in Adelaide. If you’re considering making the move from Canada here are a few things to consider.
- Size: If you compare the size of the population of Adelaide with a city in Canada, then you would be looking at a city slightly larger than Ottawa.
- Expat Groups: If you want to find fellow Canadians in Adelaide, have a look at Internations.
16. Moving to Adelaide from the United States
There’s a small group of Americans living in Adelaide. If you’re considering making the move from the States to Adelaide, here are a few bonus tips:
- Size: If you compare the population size of Adelaide with a city in the States, you would be looking at San Diego.
- Expat Groups: Meeting up with fellow Americans who have been living in Adelaide for a while can greatly assist the integration process. Sites such as Internations and Expats Blog will help you connect with people from back home.
Hopefully, the tips and costs above are helpful. If want to get started pricing out how much it will cost you to move to Adelaide you can start by comparing moving quotes here.