Manchester is UK’s sporting city and attracts international students throughout the year. Apart from being the most liveable city in the UK, life in Manchester offers a unique living experience. Moreover, the city has contributed much to the global culture, which means that it is the hub of cultural diversity. Of the city’s many achievements, some include the railway, canals, British dance music, vegetarianism, Coronation Street, modern computer science, a great football league, and the first-ever English Language library. The average monthly cost of living in Manchester for a single person is around $2,504, while a family of four can expect to spend around $4,448. Let us look at the average cost of living in Manchester in detail.
Manchester is a cosmopolitan city that offers a thriving local culture. Students who move here as students choose to stay and live in Manchester. With a high student retention rate of 51.5 percent, Manchester has the highest graduate retention in the UK.
Apart from the vibrant culture and career opportunities that Manchester offers, the cost of living in Manchester is also quite reasonable. This makes the city great in all aspects! Since Manchester is located in the northern UK, the cost of living around this area is much less as compared to the southern UK. As stated at Numbeo, the average monthly rent in central Manchester is 53.49 percent cheaper as compared to similar properties in central London.
Similarly, other costs of living in Manchester are significantly cheaper than that of London. For example, the average cost of transportation in Manchester is about 57% lower than that in London. Although the average salaries in London are much higher, maintaining a good standard of living in Manchester is much easier than in London.
Average Housing Rent
While the housing prices, both renting and buying, are cheaper in Manchester than they are in London, they are still higher than in other cities in the UK. People living in Manchester usually pay a monthly rent of $2,283 for an 85 m2 accommodation in the central area. At the same time, the cost goes for a similar property in other areas to $1,397.
Similarly, a studio apartment in central Manchester costs a monthly $1,073 and, on the outskirts, it costs about $846.this type of accommodation is usually 45 m2 and ideal for a single person. If you wish to purchase property in Manchester, you can expect to pay upwards of $2832 per square metre when looking in the City Centre. However, the purchase price comes down significantly when you buy property outside the city to as low as $413 per square metre.
As compared to Manchester, London is 20.67% more expensive while New York is a whopping 265.74% more expensive when it comes to renting a decent accommodation. While Manchester is a lot cheaper than other big cities that offer a similar lifestyle, you can still save on housing in several ways.
Consider sharing a house or a flat in Manchester by looking at offers listed on Easyroommate, Gumtree and SpareRoom. It will be a challenge to meet many people, find someone you like, and share these housing costs. Moreover, keep in mind that different areas offer different prices. Look for accommodation in cheaper areas like Saddleworth, Bramhall, Stalybridge and Prestwich. Other popular areas with lower average housing rent include the Heatons, Worsley, Didsbury, Sale and Chorlton.
Average cost of transportation
Life in Manchester offers a top-quality public transport system, including trains, trams and buses. The Metro Shuttle Bus in the city centre area allows passengers a free hop-on, hop-off service. This service links all the major places around the city together. Areas like the business districts, railway stations and shopping centres are all accessible through this hop-on, hop-off service.
The bus services, however, operate across the whole of Greater Manchester. While the tram takes passengers to the surrounding suburbs of Manchester, no one ever waits for transport. Metrolink is the tram service that connects Manchester to other major cities around the UK.
Moreover, in Manchester, locals also occasionally enjoy water taxis that take passengers from the city centre to surrounding areas like Old Trafford. A single ticket for an adult costs $3.38, while a day’s ticket for a train, bus and tram costs $11.
Locals save money by investing in the monthly season tickets for train, bus and tram for $70. The public transport also offers a yearly season ticket, which costs around $652. Buying a System 1 card will allow you to travel in any mode of transport of your choice.
If you wish to buy a car and drive around the city, it can add a burden to your average monthly expenses of life in Manchester. The parking charges are high, and the traffic delays are noticeably long, which is why locals do not prefer owning a car. Nevertheless, if you are moving within the UK and bringing your car with you to Manchester, you will not need a new license. However, you will be expected to update your contact details and new residential address.
Keep in mind that the cost of 1 litre of petrol costs about $1.43 and you will have to pay a one-time registration fee of $71.60 in Manchester. Consider saving money by choosing to carpool with fellow residents of the city. You can find plenty of options that fit your needs on BlaBlaCar, easyCar Club and Liftshare.
Additionally, you can always opt for a healthier choice of cycling or walking around the city. Manchester is home to some excellent and beautiful cycle lanes, which will save your hard-earned money while keeping you fit. You can also save money on tickets and time by choosing to walk around Manchester.
Average food and entertainment expenditure
Manchester offers great diversity when it comes to dining out. The supermarkets and restaurants offer varieties ranging from Chinese, Oriental, Indian, Japanese, Italian, and more. On average, a basic lunch at a business district costs $18, while a combo meal at any fast-food joint is around $8.
However, when it comes to a simple dinner at a pub for two people, it will cost $37. A sophisticated, three-course dinner at an Italian restaurant will go upwards of $74. A cup of decent coffee in any expat area in Manchester costs $4.03, while a pint of beer at a local pub is $5.21.
When it comes to movies and theatre, two tickets to the cinema cost $19, and for the best theatre seats, you can expect to spend $88. Moreover, a membership at a good gym in the business district costs $36. If we compare the prices of groceries and restaurants in Manchester to that of New York, the latter is much more expensive. The groceries alone are 89.25% more expensive than in Manchester, while the restaurants are 30.10% more expensive in New York.
The best way to save a decent amount of money on groceries is to look for local shops. Since the population of Manchester is ethnically diverse, you can find some great privately owned shops selling fresh produce. What’s more? You can find shops that meet your ethical and religious choice of eating. Moreover, if you are in the mood for eating out, Manchester offers a great variety of food stalls! These choices are easy on the pocket and filling!
Average medical and healthcare costs
Manchester falls under the UK law of healthcare system where the residents of England are offered great healthcare facilities. Moreover, when it comes to Manchester, it is slightly cheaper than London but still more expensive than other cities.
A box of cold medicine for six days costs around $4.09 and can be obtained over-the-counter without a prescription. However, a box of antibiotics containing twelve doses will cost about $11. The most expensive thing when it comes to healthcare in Manchester is a short visit to a private doctor. You can expect to pay around $132 for a 15-minute consultation.
Average phone and internet bills
The internet is much cheaper in the UK than in other countries like the US, Australia and Canada. The phone bills too are cheaper in Manchester. One minute of talk-time on a prepaid mobile will cost around $0.12 when no plans or discounts are applied.
Moreover, broadband internet prices have risen slightly in the recent years, and you can expect to pay an average of $25 using Sky, or $27 using TalkTalk, $31.88 using BT, and Virgin Media will cost you $42. These prices may vary according to your choice of package. Usually, a yearly package costs a lot less.
Average utility costs
The monthly utilities of two people in Manchester add up to $210. This includes heating, electricity, gas and water in an 85 m2 flat. The area of location does not matter when it comes to utility expenses. However, the utility cost for a single person is as low as $115 per month for a studio apartment that is 45 m2.
Average costs of childcare
The childcare costs have gone up all over the UK since last year and are expected to rise by the end of 2022. In Manchester, childcare cost is slightly lower than in London but still a big expense to consider. If you opt for a registered childminder, you can expect to pay somewhere around $375 per week.
Moreover, choosing a private school instead of a public school can be very expensive. Private schools in Manchester are world famous and a popular foreign student attraction. However, the annual fee of a private preschool is around $19,500.
Public schools in Manchester offer top-notch courses with a great curriculum that is accepted worldwide. You can expect your child to get a quality education in any public school in Manchester. This also saves you a lot of monthly expenses.
Life in Manchester is filled with art and is the perfect example of what modern cities are like. You can expect to maintain a high standard of living in Manchester while working at your dream job. Additionally, great business opportunities can take your income to new heights when you live in Manchester. Moreover, your children will enjoy a quality life in this culturally diverse city. The cost of living in Manchester is definitely worth the life it offers to its residents!
Feeling ready to make the big move?
Head over here to begin your journey
Or start ticking off your relocation checklist here