Cost of Living in Liechtenstein

Expenses of living in Liechtenstein
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Liechtenstein is a German-speaking country nestled in the Alps between Switzerland and Austria. The country’s area is just over 62 square miles, making it one of the smallest countries in the world. The official currency is the Swiss Franc.

In terms of economics, however, Liechtenstein’s gross domestic product (GDP) per person is one of the highest in the world, even when adjusted for purchasing power parity. This is mainly due to its strong financial sector and winter tourism. The average wage in Liechtenstein is around 85000.00 Swiss Francs or 67000.00 GBP. The country does not have a government-set minimum wage. 

One peculiar fact about this small landlocked country is that it has more registered companies than citizens. Liechtenstein has cultivated a prosperous, successful, and highly industrialized economy, which has provided those in the country with a living standard comparable to that in urbanised areas in the much larger European countries.

Opening a bank account in Liechtenstein

Liechtenstein used to be a tax haven for the extremely wealthy who wanted to avoid paying taxes in their home country, however, in recent years the country has agreed to cooperate with both the British government and the European Union in order to clear its reputation. That being said, applying for a bank account as a foreigner is welcomed in Liechtenstein. Approval, however, varies depending on the applicant and the bank. Some banking institutions might require a high volume deposit in order to set up an account for you. 

You can apply both online or in-person or even hire an authorised agent to set up a bank account for you. The process usually takes about 3 weeks.

There are certain limitations in place for non-residents who generate their income from one of the following activities: financial services, online gambling, cryptocurrency trading, legal arms trade and others. In these cases, a private bank account is unlikely to be allowed.

Accommodation cost in Liechtenstein

Renting in Liechtenstein can cost you around 1,400.00 CHF (1,100.00 GBP) monthly for a 1-bedroom apartment in the centre of Vaduz and around 1,000.00 CHF (800.00 GBP) outside of the city centre. A 3-bed apartment can range anywhere between 2,000.00 CHF (1,600.00 GBP) and 3,000.00 CHF (2,400.00 GBP), depending on its location

If you are looking to purchase a property in Liechtenstein, you should arm yourself with patience, because the purchase of real estate by foreigners is highly regulated and requires a minimum of 3 years of residency first. These measures are in place because Liechtenstein is incredibly small in size and the number of properties available is limited.

Many sources point out that house prices in Liechtenstein increase by around 4% to 5% annually. The prices can vary largely, depending on the location, type of property, and size. They can range from about 600,000.00 CHF (~481,000.00 GBP) up to millions of francs/pounds. There are a lot of luxury boutique properties that are available on the market that can definitely break the bank.

If you purchase a property in Liechtenstein, you should keep in mind that when you decide to sell there are hefty progressive property gains taxes in place, which are paid by the seller. Your profits from rent are also taxed.

Check also:

Best Places to Live in Liechtenstein

Moving From the UK to Liechtenstein

Cost of utility bills

Utilities for 1 month for 2 people in a 1-bedroom flat usually come to about 300.00 CHF (240.00 GBP), inclusive of heating, gas, electricity. If you live alone in a studio flat, your monthly utility bills will probably be in the range of 100.00 CHF, or 80.00 GBP.

Fast internet for the home costs about 40.00 CHF (32.00 GBP) per month. The monthly cost of mobile services is similar.

Transportation expenses

Liechtenstein’s public transport is mainly based on buses. Single fare prices are between 3.00 and 6.00 CHF (2.40 – 4.80 GBP), depending on how many zones are included in your journey. A daily pass costs between 5.00 and 10.00 CHF (4.00 – 8.00 GBP). If you want to get a monthly pass, that will cost you 100.00 CHF (80.00 GBP)

There are also trains that run from Switzerland and Austria. Since the country has only three train stations, you will probably need another mode of transportation to get around, when you get off the train.

Liechtenstein has excellent roads, which connect all parts of this small country. Keep in mind that while Liechtenstein does not impose any toll taxes on its roads, if you plan to use the motorways in Switzerland, and Austria, you have to purchase and display a vignette.

In the western part of Liechtenstein there are a lot of bike lanes, but not so many around the River Rhine plain.

Liechtenstein’s public transport is mainly based on buses. Single fare prices are between 3.00 and 6.00 CHF (2.40 – 4.80 GBP), depending on how many zones are included in your journey. A daily pass costs between 5.00 and 10.00 CHF (4.00 – 8.00 GBP). If you want to get a monthly pass, that will cost you 100.00 CHF (80.00 GBP)

The starting rate for a cab is 1.60 CHF (1.28 GBP). The rates are 1.00 CHF (0.80 GBP) per km and 7.00 CHF (5.60 GBP) for 1 hour waiting.

Cost of necessities

There are some goods and services we just can’t live without. Let’s take a look at what they cost in Liechtenstein.

Food costs in Liechtenstein

The table below presents the prices of some common fridge items in Liechtenstein. The data was collected and provided from Expatistan.

Product Unit Price in CHF Price in GBP
Eggs 12 10.00 8
Bread 1 loaf 1.75 1.40
Milk 1 litre 3.50 2.80
Beer 1 litre 2.90 2.32
Chicken 1 kg 26.00 20.83

If you decide to treat yourself to lunch in a nice restaurant near your office, that will set you back 29.00 CHF, or 23.00 GBP. A combo meal at a fast food joint works out to about 19.00 CHF (15.00 GBP). A three-course meal for 2 people in a mid-range restaurant works out to about 100.00 CHF, or 80.00 GBP.

Attire and personal care

The cost of items of clothing and cosmetics in Liechtenstein is of course dependent on many variables, such as brand, ingredients, origin, etc. But generally speaking, it is similar to that in the big European metropolises like London, Madrid, Berlin, etc.

According to Numbeo, the average price of 1 pair of name-brand running shoes is around 100.00 CHF (80.00 GBP), while that of a pair of men’s leather business shoes is roughly 142.00 CHF, or 114.00 GBP. A summer dress from a clothing chain store is usually around 42.00 CHF (34.00 GBP). If you are looking to get a pair of jeans from Levis, that will cost you about 90.00 CHF (72.00GBP).

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