Cost of living in Paraguay

Hi everybody,

It would be very useful to talk about the cost of living in Paraguay.

Don't forget to mention where in Paraguay you are living.

How much does it cost to live in Paraguay?

> accommodation prices

> public transportation fares (tube, bus etc ...)

> food prices(per month, how much does it cost you?)

> health prices (for those who need medical insurance)

> eduction prices (if you need to pay)

> energy prices (oil, electricity)

> common bills (Internet, television, telephone, mobile phone)

> prices of a good menu in a traditional restaurant

> prices of a beer and or a coffee in a regular pub

> price of the cinema

Do not hesitate to add items to this list!

Thanks in advance for your participation!!

I live in Asuncion with my wife and we have a dog. We own a car and rent our house. the house has got 2 bed, 3 bathrooms, 3 living rooms, a garden with covered bbq area, a garage, a dinning room and kitchen.  Currently the USD rate to Guarani is 4,660 per 1 USD

rent:           1,200,000 (257 USD)
electricity        90,000 (20 USD )
water              50,000  (12USD)
land line          50,000  (12 USD)
mobile phone x2    120,000 (25 USD)
health insurnc x2  215,000  (46 USD)
internet           130,000  (28USD)
groceries          600,000  (130USD)
we don't buy meat though has we bring it from our cattle ranch
petrol             400,000  (85USD)

appart from that:
cinema ticket normal price 20,000 (3USD)
discount price             10,000
a meal for 1 on a restaurant 60,000 to 120,000 (13 to 26 USD) depending upon what you choose
bus fare                 2,300 (50 cents)
1 lt of diesel           4,725  (bit over 1 usd)
1 lt of gas              6,000  (1.30 USD)
an average hotel room   70,000  (15 USD) 2*
beer 750cc on a pub     12,000   (2.5 USD)
same in supermarket      5,500   (1.20 usd)

Thanks for that info.
Is there any food that you can't really find there?

Is it hard to find a place to rent temporally (a month).

There are some foods you can't find (or that are "rare" and thus expensive), but there are good substitutes.  For example, if you like normal peanut butter, you're really only going to find the natural crushed peanuts here, like you'd eat from the organic section of your grocery store.  Turkey isn't easy to find and costs if you do, but ham is plentiful, and chicken is inexpensive, as well.  Most other meats are available.  Convenience foods (pop-tarts, freezer dinners, box meals, etc.) are harder or impossible to locate, depending on where you live.  There are only a few types of cold cereals, and milk isn't quite the same here.  Other hard to find foods:  Chocolate chips, marshmallows, brown sugar, normal flour, canned vegetables (except corn, which is everywhere).  Any foods you're thinking of in specific?

The current exchange rate is about Gs. 5,100 to the dollar. I am currently living in Villa Morra, Asunción.

Bus prices are now Gs. 2,100 per trip within Asunción.

Health insurance:

There are several private health insurance companies in Asuncion that offer countrywide coverage. Depending on your age and coverage needs prices can range between USD $60 to $120 per month. It is important to note though that most insurance policies do NOT cover large operations. Some companies offer additional major surgery coverage for a hefty price.

Energy prices:
Itaipu means cheap electricity for Paraguay. During the summer with the AC running on a regular basis and 2 computers on all day our electric bill was still less than US$ 70 per month.

Supposedly the internet monopoly in Paraguay is about to be dismantled. In theory this will lead to cheaper and hopefully faster internet service but... who knows what will actually happen. Cell phone companies (Personal and TIGO)offer plans for about $55 for 512 kbps (speeds are rarely as fast as advertised though).

Cell phone:
All cell phone companies offer the option of a fixed price per month cell phone plan or a pay as you go plan. The only way to ensure keeping your phone number is by having a plan though. Most start at 15$ per month and come with lower rates.


Going to the movies costs Gs. 20,000 every day except Wednesdays which is half price day at all movie theaters. Pirated DVDs cost anywhere between Gs. 5,000 and 20,000, depending on how foreign you look and how good your bargaining skills are.

Onto the food:

Prices for fresh produce are very low. If you are willing to go to the outdoor markets (Mercado 4 and Mercado de Abasto) they are even lower. Prices and quality are higher at the weekly Agroshopping in Mscl. Lopez Shopping on Tuesdays but are still very reasonable. Examples of Agroshopping prices:

Bunches of fresh herbs: Gs. 1,000
a half kilo of cherry tomatoes: Gs. 5,000
500 grms of artesanal boursin cheese: Gs. 7,000
A 10 piece roll of fresh vegetarian sushi: Gs. 5,000

Some of the large dairy producers like Gloria and Trebol have large distribution centers where you can buy ricotta cheese, 20 pack boxes of milk and bars of butter for much less than at the supermarkets.

You can expect to pay much more for processed foods, especially imported goods. Ingredients for some ethnic cuisines such as Mexican (flour tortillas, black beans, cilantro) and Asian (soy sauce, fresh ginger, rice noodles) are readily available. Casa Rica (corner of España and San Martin)can be a good source for hard to find (and unfortunately pricey) imported goods from Europe. Nuts such as walnuts and almonds are ridiculously expensive and pine nuts are impossible to find.

Michael Boch is a German bakery downtown that offers specialty breads made with hard to find whole wheat and rye flours.

Are electronics such as televisions, computers and telephones expensive? How would you rate the selection of these products?

Paraguay is one of the best places in Latin America to buy electronics. It is not as cheap as the US and the selection is not quite as extensive. However in comparison to the rest of Latin America the selection is good and the prices are good.

Some people like to go to Ciudad del Este to buy big ticket items. Not worth an exclusive trip unless you plan to buy a lot of stuff. In Asunción there are several shopping galleries (they are safe and brightly lit) that offer electronics. I have bought laptops, cell phones, computer parts there all without any issues.

If you want to bring electronics in from another country you need to consider the following:

- depending on how you bring it in (via an official move, suitcase, in a car) it might be subject to import tax.

- it is really hot here. I have seen some tvs for sale here that are specifically rated for use in the tropics. Not sure what exactly that means but it is probably looking into.

- Paraguay runs on 220 voltage which leads to a choice if you are coming from a 110 country: new appliances or expensive and heavy transformers. Also the outlets are not standardized so you´ll need to go to a local hardware store and buy adaptors.


Thought this might be an interesting reference point for food prices in Asunción. This lists the prices of a wide variety of foods found at the Mercado Abasto in Fernando de la Mora. If you are planning on buying a lot of something (say 100 oranges for juice or produce for a large party or dinner) it is worth bypassing the supermarket and going to either the Abasto or Mercado 4. … to_31.html

La respuesta y la lista de Capelo es muy interesantes.;)
Mientras tanto, las respuestas de el 5# 7# 8# son muy profesionales y detallados.:cool:

¿What about schools? Do you know if the french Marcel Pungyol is a good school, but not very elitist? Is that district good to live around? We are planning on moving into Paraguay soon, but we have no idea of how the city of Asuncion is in what security, commodities, well placed-centered... refers to. Do you recomend any special street or district to live with three small kids and no car to use? A place close to schools, playgrounds, swimmingpool...
Thank you for all the information posted, it really helps to get an idea of what it is overthere.

It is a good choice that school.  I would consider that one for my kids given some things (french language, view of graduate studies in France).

Regarding neighbourhoods, I would recommend you Mburucuya, Villa Morra, Barrio Jara, Barrio Herrera.

you can look for houses in,,, or   clasificados

It is quite a nightmare to find good accommodation.  I am looking for a 3 bed house with swimming pool, two floors, garden, garage in a good neigbhourhood.  Price starts at 750 USD.  If you could afford 1,000 USD you will find it quickly.

There's lots of quotes for rental properties in this "Cost of living in P/guay" forum thread.Please tell me - are they per week or per month????



All those messages are quite outdated!

For all those looking for an accomodation, please check the Classifieds section (on the left hand of the page) and you may even post an ad there yourself.

Best regards


MY SELF nakul, i live in dubai(uae), i want visit paraguay, and i want to buy a house, in the capital of paraguay.
what will be the cost of 3 bedroom house,with good features.
and please friends tell me, i can buy a house or not? because i am not a resident of paraguay.

Hi everyone browsing this forum,

I recently returned home to Massachusetts (USA) from a 15 day trip to Paraguay. My friend lives in the capital, Asuncion and I stayed at their apartment. I can not give you all the detail some have given because of my short stay, and the fact that I speak very little Spanish. Very few people in Asuncion spoke English, so I relied on my friend almost completely.

As far as cost of living goes: My friends 1 bedroom, 4 room apartment cost approx $385 per month, no utilities included. This is a bit cheaper than my area in Massachusetts (I am a landlord) My area for this apartment would be approx $550 per month. Let me add here; this is important if you have not visited Paraguay. This typical apartment is not like you get in the United States, this is a much less developed country. The propane tank for the stove was sitting a foot from the stove, connected with a rubber hose (never allowed here.) If you touched her Blue Ray player or touched the microwave oven.. you would sometimes get a shock! The electrical is wired wrong and/or not grounded.
There are many things like this that you need to consider when factoring the "Cost of Living"

Yes the food was.. slightly cheaper, but not by that much.
I saw someone throw trash on the ground as they walked by a policeman, and saw 2 people urinate next to a main road, during the day while not caring who saw them. The laws are quite different there...
Not bashing Paraguay, but if you are moving from a developed, stable country; you might want to visit before making the plunge. My friend just bought a new Toyota Corolla $34,000.. basic model, this car is $19,000 in the USA. Electronics are much more expensive, as are many other items. My friend had me buy a stethascope here in the US and bring it with me on my visit.. $200 US $350 Paraguay.
I'm not sure why Paraguay is said to be such a cheap place to live? Maybe taxes are low ?  But they better be.. there are barely any street lights, painted lines in the road. Drive at your own risk LoL... We were harrassed every time we left or arrived at there apartment by people "Helping" us park her car. They basically want money or they may damage your car.. her best friend had there car keyed then a week later her radio stolen because she refused to pay the beggers.
Anyways.. take a trip before moving so you "Know" before you Go. Comparing "Cost of Living" doesn't necessarily mean you are comparing "Apples to Apples" from what you are used to.

Movies theater was a little cheaper, but they didn't offer butter for popcorn and the serving sizes were smaller and the theater was nothing like what I was used to.. small and overall viewing / listening pleasure was not as good.

My friend is a doctor in Paraguay and work 2 jobs. They have just an ok life in Asuncion. I told them move to USA, 2 years of college so she could practice medicine in the states and they would be very rich in comparison. The "fancy" homes in Asuncion are average Joe homes here.. $250,000 can get you a newer, larger house, with larger yard, and a pool here in Massachusetts.

It was very humbing and sad to see so many homeless and poor people.. not to mention the large population of stray animals. I was warned about crime all the time, but I didn't see any. No complaints there. Police and private security were everywhere.. guns and machine guns were visable quite often.

I know this was poorly written.. I just typed as I was thinking back on my "Vacation" To sum up.. I don't think it is cheaper there when you factor everything in. Then add it up with the crazy streets, lack of many "Basic services/laws" you would hopefully expect and.. the fact that unless you are very educated and have a degree in something you are in demand for.. you won't make enough money to keep you out of the gutter in Asuncion.

Ines Gimeno :

¿What about schools? Do you know if the french Marcel Pungyol is a good school, but not very elitist? Is that district good to live around? We are planning on moving into Paraguay soon, but we have no idea of how the city of Asuncion is in what security, commodities, well placed-centered... refers to. Do you recomend any special street or district to live with three small kids and no car to use? A place close to schools, playgrounds, swimmingpool...
Thank you for all the information posted, it really helps to get an idea of what it is overthere.

It is not an elitist school, nor is between the best ones. Some of the best schools in Asuncion are Saint Anne's School (about 6000$/year), the american school of asuncion and PAIS (both around 8000 a year), the LUMEN and the Saint Andrew's School (both around 5.000/year) but those are very elitist, so if you're not in a good economic position, avoid those. Some cheaper and non-elitist school are Las Almenas, Campoalto, Santa Clara, Los Laureles, Las Teresas and San Jose. Living in a safe nice neighborhood is NOT cheap in Paraguay. Nice houses in the safest neighborhoods (such as Manora, San Cristobal, Villa Morra) range from about 350.000$, if you're lucky you might found some nice small 1 story houses from about 200.000. If you buy a car then you can still find some really nice houses in cities that are close to Asuncion like San Lorenzo, Fernando de la Mora and Luque in developing neighborhoods from about 150.000. There are basically no playgrounds or public pools in Paraguay's neighborhoods, there are two downtown (although there are many parks), So you'd have to build your own in your house. Living without a car in Asuncion is really not recommendable. I'm sorry, but living comfortably in Paraguay is not as cheap as it seems.

Food is cheap compared to the USA. Nice restaurants are about 20-25$ per person.

The costs are rather outdated. Could we have something newer.

Well, those prices are discouraging.  Costs are rising here in the USA and I believe the dollar will collapse.  Our taxes are going up to pay for all the social programs that the government will mismanage along with the funds.  Anyway, enough said about that....

I was wondering about the availability of quality furniture there and the costs? Also, about the quality, would it be well made there or made with wood that will rot because it is not aged? We plan to move to S.A. before the end of this year and am wondering if it would be less expensive to buy all new furniture there instead of shipping what we have.

hi sharpie,
i'd go for the shipping option.  there are quality furniture here but it is much more expensive than the US eg: sofas, etc

Bed, tables are ok here but sofas and other items are better brought in... that is my opinion

In order to get some comparables for living situations, can someone provide me with the link that gets me to some classifieds? Is there a useful site to look at when considering what kind of homes we'll have to choose from to rent?

Above are two of the better classified listings.  Keep in mind many rentals do not include kitchen appliances (stoves, refrigerators).

majbjb :

Above are two of the better classified listings.  Keep in mind many rentals do not include kitchen appliances (stoves, refrigerators).

Just to add the most popular classified site over there..


Hello Everyone! I am planning a visit to Asuncion this year sometime. If I enjoy it as much as I hope, I may move there. I have a pension of about 2000 usd per month. Will that still allow me to live comfortable? Thanks!

Hi, everyone
I want to settle in Paraguay,  please help  me guiding what business would be suitable and easiest to do with minimum  investment for me in order to earn my bread and butter.
Thank  you very  much.

Thank you for the information.

I want to know all the details of living in Paraguay Asunción. Especially send me the rates of laptops

hi brother
how are you?
i hope
are you good

i need some information
do you can help me?

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