The cost of life in Georgia – Developing company Redco

Chesnokov Georgii 2021-03-11

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The cost of life in Georgia

Every year Georgia attracts more and more foreigners, not only tourists but also people seriously considering the possibility of permanently residing there. Unlike its neighbour Caucasus countries, Georgia has been named number one economic reformer in the world and has one of the most developed economies in the region. This article will review how much it actually costs to live in the country.

Main living expenses in Georgia

Georgia is considered a relatively budget-friendly country for life in comparison to European countries; however, with the economic and investment attractiveness of the country, prices keep rising. Of course, similarly to other countries, Georgia has cities that are more or less expensive. Usually, the highest prices are on the coast or in the capital city, and the lowest – in small towns in the province.

Property rent

Let's review the cost of living in a rental property in Georgia on the example of its capital. Renting an apartment in Tbilisi is simple. Foreigners prefer choosing the central areas - Mtatsminda, Sololaki, Vera, Vake, Saburtalo, located along the main subway line. Less favourable areas are - Isani-Samgori, Didube-Chugureti, Gldani, Nadzaladevi. Foreigners are also advised to conclude a rental agreement. The prices for renting an apartment in Tbilisi are:


•      one-room apartment in the city centre - 945 lari;

•      one-room apartment outside the centre - 580 lari;

•      three-room apartment in the city centre - 1800 lari;

•      three-room apartment outside the centre - 1100 lari.


The price is usually indicated in US dollars; however payment is only carried out in lari based on a current exchange rate.


Public transport in Georgia is cheap, reliable and effective. It is possible to stay there without owning a car and only use the subway or bus. The subway was built during Soviet times and might seem a bit outdated, but still, it is a convenient way of moving around the city. The table below shows the costs of the main types of transport:

From Tbilisi to





Price, lari

23,50 – 59,50








Distance, km












Ticket prices for passenger (commuter) trains are very low. Due to the low cost of gasoline, getting around the country by bus is also relatively inexpensive:   

From Tbilisi to





Price, lari









Distance, km










The prices for public transport in Georgia are relatively low as well. For example, one-way subway ride costs 50 tetri. The payment is only taken with a special prepayment card, which is available for purchase right on a subway station. The card costs 2 lari. A ride on a public bus will cost 0,5 lari, a minibus within the city – tetri. The average price of a taxi ride for a distance of 3-4 km will cost about 5.50 lari.


You can buy petrol, diesel fuel and gas in Georgia at local stations. Approximate prices are:


•      gas –1.05-1.20 lari per cubic meter;

•      gasoline 95 - 1.84 lari per litre;

•      diesel fuel - 2.40 lari per litre.


The most popular gas stations in Georgia are Gulf, Wissol, Rompetrol, Socar.

Food and household goods

There are large supermarket chains in Georgia such as Carrefour, Fresco, Universam, Goodwill, Smart, as well as as well as small chains such as Nikora, Ori Nabiji, Spar and small shops.


The average prices for food and goods in Georgia:


Different products

Milk products

Cosmetics and household products

Fruits and Vegetables


Price, lari


Price, lari


Price, lari


Price, lari



Milk 0,5% 1 litre


Shower gel


Bananas 1 kg


Mineral water 2 litres


Cottage cheese 0% 170g


Face cream


Apples 1 kg


Juices, lemonades


Cheese, 150g


Hair shampoo


Tomatoes 1 kg


Packaged wine


Kefir 950g,1,5%




Cucumbers 1 kg


Instant coffee


Suluguni cheese 1 kg




Nectarine 1 kg






Washing powder


Peaches 1 kg




Soft cheese, 150g


Baby diapers 94 pc


Grape 1 kg


Meat, beef 1 kg

40-70 lari

Eggs 10


dishwashing detergent


Potato 1 kg




The prices for food and household products might differ depending on a region, city, store, or market where they are being sold.

Mobile Internet and Network

This type of expenses includes SIM-card payment and Internet. A monthly mobile Internet package (4G in most cities) costs 15 lari for 5 GB or 35 lari for 20 GB. Also, there is a package of unlimited Internet for 180 lari. The price for one minute of a call on a local operator's mobile network without a discount will cost 0.20 lari. Wired Internet from 60 Mbps with unlimited traffic will cost 45 lari per month.

Healthcare services

All Georgian citizens have access to free state medical insurance, which covers:


•      emergency medical care and transportation to the hospital by ambulance;

•      family doctor services at the clinic;

•      vaccination;

•      assistance to the disabled;

•      surgeries with a limit of 15,000 lari per year for children under 6 years old and pensioners (60 years old women and 65 years old men).


Other than that, surgeries and cure of cancer-ill patients, including medicines, are free of charge. The government program covers only the citizens of Georgia. Foreigners, who are officially living in the country, can apply for voluntary health insurance for 150 lari per month, covering essential medical services. Insurance packages do not cover dentist services; hence it should be paid separately. The average cost of filling one tooth in a private clinic is about 50 lari, teeth whitening - from 500 lari, veneers - from 300 lari per one tooth and higher.


Education in Georgia is mandatory for children from 6 to 16 years old. There are three stages of education. Primary school covers 1-4 forms and 5-6, followed by the secondary school - 7-9 forms. After the completion of their education, students are obliged to pass an exam, the results of which determine their acceptance into a university. There are both state and private schools in the country. State schools are free for citizens. The cost of a private primary school starts at 120 lari and depends on the location.


There are five private primary schools in Tbilisi:


•      QSI -  25,000 lari per year;

•      Buckswood International School - 7,000 lari per year;

•      "Newton" - 5,000 lari per year;

•      European School - 18 lari per year.


Higher education also has three levels – bachelors, masters and doctoral studies. Universities, similarly to primary and middle schools, can be state or private. Foreigners may attend both private and state institutions. State universities cost approximately 2,250 lari per year. There are different prices in private universities - from 2250 lari to 10,000 lari per year. Tuition fees at the main universities in Tbilisi are the following:


•      Grigol Robakidze University - from 10,000 lari per year;

•      Caucasus University - from 2,250 to 10,000 lari per year;

•      Civil Aviation University - from 8 800 lari per year;

•      Free University of Business Administration - 7,000 lari per year;

•      International Black Sea University - 5,500 lari per year.


A foreigner can apply for scholarship programs prior to the bachelor's degree, which covers between 30% and 100% of the tuition fees for all 4 years.


The cost of utilities depends mainly on the location. The average cost of electricity is:


•      up to 101 kW / h –14.5 tetri per 1 kW / h;

•      from 101 kW / h and more - 18.6 tetri per 1 kW / h.


Typically, stores, hotels, bars and restaurants that operate around the clock would consume more than 101 kW / h. whereas in a two-room apartment, even during warm summer days with two air conditioners, refrigerator and TV switched on, the monthly cost of electricity consumption is about 70-90 lari. In autumn and winter, the price of electricity does not exceed 40 lari per month.


The average cost of a cubic meter of gas in a large city in Georgia is 0.46 tetri. The approximate price for heating during the cold months is 150-180 lari per month. This fee also includes water heating and cooking. During summertime, the cost of gas is around 20-30 lari per month.


The cost of water bills and rubbish collection depends on a number of registered household members. The rubbish collection price is 5 lari per person monthly. At the same time, garbage trucks drive through the streets of Tbilisi and empty containers up to 3 times per day.

Taxes in Georgia

Georgia applies a territory-based tax system for individuals. Non-residents are taxed on income derived from Georgian sources. Married couples are taxed separately. Every registered individual taxpayer must file a separate tax return, but families and couples can file joint property tax returns at their discretion. Currently, the following tax rates are applied in Georgia:


1.     Income tax. Non-resident individuals are taxed at a fixed rate of 20%.

2.     Rent tax. Non-residents who receive income from renting a commercial property in the country are taxed at 20%. Non-residents that rent out the residential property are taxed at a fixed rate of 5% from the total rent.

3.     Capital gains tax. Capital gains from the sale of a residential apartment or house with adjoining land are taxed at a fixed rate of 5%. Capital gains on the sale of property related to commercial activities are taxed at a fixed rate of 20%.

4.     Land tax. The rated for this tax differ depending on the type of land and its location. For land, which is being used for economic activities, the land tax is levied at a flat rate of 0.24 lari per hectare. The rate is additionally adjusted by territorial coefficients by a maximum of 1.5 points. For agricultural lands rates of land, tax vary depending on administrative unit and quality of ground - from 1.50 to 100 lari per hectare. Land tax is only derived from Georgian citizens. Foreigners are not permitted to acquire agricultural lands.

5.     Property tax. This is a local tax that is derived depending on the market price of a property, excluding land around it. The tax rate varies in relation to the annual income of a family. The exact rate within the range is set by the local government at the district of the property and looks the following way:

•      up to 40,000 lari - 0%;

•      40 000 100 000 lari - 0.05% - 0.20%;

•      from 100,000 lari - 0.80% - 1.00%.


The rate is not progressive and applied to all properties subject to property tax.


There is a separate taxation system on the territory of Georgia for corporate entities.

Prices for documents granting permission to live in Georgia

There are different types of documents that grant permission to reside in Georgia permanently. A residence permit allows foreigners to stay in the country for over a year legally. A foreign citizen can obtain a temporary, indefinite residence permit. A temporary residency is granted for work, study, family reunification (if a foreigner has a spouse or a parent who is a Georgian citizen) purposes.


There is also an option for investment temporary residence permit for individuals who invested more than 300,000 US dollars into the Georgian economy. A temporary residence permit is also available for individuals that invested more than 10,000 US dollars into a property in Georgia. For the first time, a foreign citizen can receive a temporary residence permit for a period from 6 months to one year with the right to extend it up to 5 years. The investment residence permit is only possible for 5 years. The cost of obtaining a temporary residence permit is:


•      180 lari - 30 days;

•      300 lari - 20 days.


An infinite residence permit can be granted for foreign citizens who have close relatives in Georgia or in case of large investments with high annual turnover.


When talking about renting a property in an attractive location, the cost of living in Georgia can be compared to inexpensive European capital. Imported food, electronics and food from local restaurants in Georgia are more expensive than in Europe; however, utilities and local food are cheaper. For a comfortable life of a foreigner living in Georgia, it is desirable to have at least $ 1000 per month, which will not only satisfy basic needs but also travel around Georgia and neighbouring countries.