What is the Monthly Cost of Living in Svalbard?
Have you ever wondered what it would be like to live in one of the northernmost inhabited places on earth? Svalbard, a Norwegian archipelago located in the Arctic Ocean, just might be the place for you. Before you pack your bags, though, it’s important to know what the monthly cost of living in Svalbard is like. Keep reading to learn more!
Cost of Housing in Svalbard
Housing in Svalbard can be quite expensive, but it’s important to keep in mind that most residences come fully furnished and equipped with utilities, such as electricity and water. The average monthly cost for an apartment is around 9000 – 12,000 NOK (Norwegian krone), which is roughly $950 – $1300 USD.
Another housing option in Svalbard is student housing, which can be a more affordable alternative. The rates for student accommodation vary depending on the education institution and the level of education. As a rule of thumb, the average cost of student housing in Svalbard is about 4500 NOK, or $475 USD, per month.
Food and Drink Expenses in Svalbard
As a remote location, Svalbard does not offer extensive shopping options. Most products are imported, which makes prices for food and drink on the island quite high. A regular lunchtime meal can cost around 150 NOK, or $16 USD. Groceries for a week will come out to an average of around 1500 – 2000 NOK, or $160 – $215 USD.
If you enjoy cooking and love seafood, though, you’re in luck! Svalbard has a fishing tradition, which means it’s possible to fish for your own meals. Keep in mind, though, that fishing in Svalbard has some restrictions and it’s necessary to have a license.
Transportation Costs in Svalbard
Most places in Svalbard are accessible only by snowmobile or boat, especially during the winter season when the roads are often covered with snow. Depending on the length and nature of the journey, the monthly transportation cost for an adult can range from 1000 – 4000 NOK, or $105 – $425 USD.
Another option for transportation in Svalbard is the King’s Bay Company bus, which operates within the town of Ny-Ålesund. The bus fares are included in the King’s Bay Company rent, which means that residents of the company flats do not have to pay extra for transportation.
Other Monthly Expenses in Svalbard
In addition to housing, food, and transportation, there are other expenses to keep in mind when considering the monthly cost of living in Svalbard. For example, most inhabitants belong to the Norwegian National Insurance Scheme and pay around 500 NOK, or $53 USD, per month for health care coverage.
Other monthly expenses include mobile phone plans, internet, and social activities. A mobile phone plan can cost around 300 NOK, or $32 USD, per month for 1GB of data. High-speed internet can range from 500 – 1000 NOK, or $53 – $105 USD, per month. Social activities, such as cinema visits, can cost around 80 – 120 NOK, or $8 – $12 USD.