Today’s post was inspired by a question from a potential future student who took the time to leave a comment asking for a description of Norway’s cost of living. (Thanks for those questions about student life, everybody. Keep it up!) So, here we go, specific to Bergen, a bit of an idea of what you might expect to spend on your daily life here in Norge. Keep in mind, these are just rough ideas of different common costs, you may have to think through other expenses – such as if you’re bringing clothes, bedding, and other household items or if you’ll have to buy them here.
Sadly, Norway is not a cheap place to live. Image: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2015/01/21/map-expensive-countries_n_6510018.html
The University of Bergen (UiB) offers a page that details the cost of living, that helps give an idea of expenses. While Norway does have a high cost of living, the UiB page estimates NOK 9,785 per month (2014) would cover most expenses including books, study materials, food, housing, clothing, transport and social activities.
The UiB page also offers examples of Norwegian prices, I’ve updated some of the estimates given on their page for 2014 and added a few additions:
- Monthly rent at Fantoft for a single student room: between NOK 2605-3990 for an individual (including electricity and internet)/month
- Student seasonal transit pass for 1 month(Skyss): NOK 460+ (students under 32), NOK 765+ (students over 32).
- Groceries NOK 300-400 per week, NOK 1500 – 2000/mo.
- Textbooks (1 semester): approx. NOK 1,600–3,500 (from UiB’s 2014 information).
- Dinner at the student cafeteria: the UiB page estimated NOK 55-100 for 2014
- Dinner at an inexpensive restaurant: UiB estimated NOK 100-130 in 2014 (Keep in mind, it costs extra to eat at the restaurant rather than take food to go). I personally think those prices are more descriptive of fast take-out food, and dinner in a restaurant, even an inexpensive one is more likely to be around nok 170, give or take.
- Ingredients for making an inexpensive dinner for one person at home: approx. NOK 30–60 (UiB 2010/2011 estimate).
- Cinema ticket: NOK ~115-130.
- Semester fee: NOK 590
- Student membership at SiB training (the gym): NOK 990
Some possible expenses that the UiB page didn’t address include:
- Wine and Beer (but remember, with restaurants and bars, tips are not large and generally not expected): average around NOK 70-120 per drink (sometimes there are cheap options ranging from NOK 35-60)
- Concerts: NOK 50-600
Reggie Watts at Nattjazz, Photo: Stand Hiestand
- Cell phone, you can prepay: 0,99 per minute for calls (Telenor), NOK 10 per MB data (max per day is also NOK 10), 0,69 per SMS (there are some discounts if you spend more up front).
- Or you can get a Cell phone plan: ~ NOK 249-799/mo
- Haircut: starting at ~ NOK 200 (men), 300 (women). Click here for more information about haircuts.
- Doctor visit copays: starting at ~190 for a consultation
- Portable internet: NOK 199 (7GB/mo) – NOK 799 (200GB/mo)… a reasonable amount of internet is probably 30 – 50 GB (NOK 399-499). This is the fastest way to get wifi, but you also have to buy a router. Cheaper options may exist for in-home internet, I think my flatmates and I pay around nok 460/month.
For another resource that gives estimates of typical costs in Norway, click here.