More tourists than ever are entering Colombia. Let’s examine the Cost of Living in Pereira because they aren’t here to go see beautiful forests and experience the culture yet – and if you are reading this then neither are you.
Now, more than ever, people just like YOU are here to find a way to create a long term lifestyle or a part-time escape from their home country. We are arriving from all over the world.
If you are one of these “Lifestyle Tourists” then THIS is for you!
Cost of Living in Pereira Colombia
Let’s look at rentals, food, entertainment and basic services.
Note: We are giving you some really rough figure estimates on approximately what things cost in dollars – at the time this is being written the current exchange rate is $1 USD = $4,600 COP. Exact numbers are not being used because the exchange rate is moving between 4,000 to 5,000 per dollar and could change at any time.
Renting An Apartment
Decent places to live in start around a million pesos per month for rent ($1,000,000/mo COP). If you commute in from La Virginia, Viterbo, Cartago or Santa Rosa – those costs might be a third or even half that. This is an average cost for Strata 4, 5, and a cheap 6 – or something out of date but in a nice area.
From there it rises according to location, neighborhood, strata and amenities. Good deals can still be found in unexpected places and even directly with home owners who are happy to have a foreign residents who prioritizes paying on time. We also offer a service to search these people out for you faster than on your own in a new city! We speak Spanish/English. Contact: email@example.com
If you want something extra nice with a newer kitchen, renovated bathrooms or even new construction, you should plan for the two million peso range. At $2,000,000 COP per month you can count on having onsite security 24/7, some basic amenities like a social salon, jacuzzi, sauna pool or some combination of one or two of these options. At four million your lifestyle is comfortable because you will find yourself living in a townhouse community or a large house in an old neighborhood.
This is not a stable estimate currently for this segment of the cost of living in Pereira. Due to consistently rising inflation the average food item has doubled in the last year or so. That being said, if you are earning in dollars it is still significantly cheaper than what Americans are paying in 2023 for basic items like eggs and red meat.
Plan on a minimum of $200 USD per month for food per person. If you like to eat out a couple times a week add an additional $100 USD. Executive lunch is 15,000 cop per meal in pueblos, and in the 20,000 range for Pereira and Manizales in 2023. Editors Note: This is double what I was paying 10 years ago when I arrived in February of 2013.
Buses in Pereira and Manizales are about 2,500 COP per person, per ride in 2023. Taxis are charging a minimum of 4,500 in Manizales and 5,000 (~$1.50 USD) with the planned increase for this year in Pereira. Airport pickups are 15,000 to 20,000 COP (~ $4 to $5 USD) in both Pereira and Manizales.
Taking a private car from Pereira to Manizales can cost between 150,000 and 250,000 COP (~$40 to $50 USD) one way depending on the driver. White plate (public transport) vehicles can easily fall on the upper end or even double this price. We can recommend dependable drivers who we have used in the past with positive results.
The cost of living in Pereira also includes having a good time!
Movie tickets can cost around 10 to 12,000 COP (~ $2.50 USD) per person.
Riding in a cabalgata, or horse ride party can cost 250,000 to 500,000 COP (~$50 to $100 USD) per person for the horse, guide, burroteca (music), lunch/snack and afterparty or entertainment plus additional consumption such as alcohol/beer.
Waterparks and pools charge between 6,000 to 20,000 ($2 – $5 USD) per person for entry fees, plus cost of lunch and/or additional amenities such as parking, kiosk/BBQ.
Sports equipment can still be quite expensive – especially if you buy high end brands or quality gear – but the participation costs are much lower than in the US/Canada.
Golfing is much more expensive and difficult to access than in the US. The public golf course in Pereira is a much rougher terrain and longer grass than the average. Locals call it “Paisa Golf.” The private course requires a club membership, or invitation by a member – plus caddy costs. The current buy-in for Club Campestre is 150 million COP ($40,000 USD) and around one million pesos per month for membership plus expenditures.
Dance classes vary. Private tango/milonga/valse classes cost 50,000 per hour on average, a fraction what they cost in the US where they can be $100 – 150 USD in medium to large cities. Salsa classes are much cheaper and can be learned in a group environment. Average cost for group classes can be 60,000 to 90,000 per month.
Water, electricity and gas costs are much lower. Gas can cost 25,000 to 75,000 (Less than $25 USD) cop for monthly connected main line users. A full tank is running between 70,000 and 100,000 cop for 3 to 6 months of use.
Electricity starts around 100,000 (~$30) in strata 3/4 and can be double or triple in 5 or 6. Water includes trash and can be 50,000 – 150,000 per month (~$15 to $40 USD).
In strata 6 in a neighborhood like Pinares users expect to pay up to 300,000 or 500,000 cop per month total ($75 to $150 USD) with or without internet depending on size and usage. Strata 4/5 might pay a third or even half as much. This is a hard metric to gauge because size and usage can vary wildly from house to apartment.
For most of us, Colombia is still really affordable and the cost of living in Pereira even more so compared to Medellin or Bogota. Anyone with a minimum income of at least $1,000 USD per month can live here moderately with a lot of comfort and a great lifestyle.
Your biggest hurdle is going to be the language and a little thing called “Malicia Indigena” which is a local maliciousness/trickster mentality that can cost you a lot of time and money.
We want you to be aware of what the costs are, but if you are not fluent in Spanish AND local culture, DO reach out to us for help! Our lifestyle services will help you get past the hurdles and into something that is right for you and your budget. Here are a few of the things we offer to help ensure our readers have the best experience possible:
- Lifestyle Consulting: We are really busy – but for a fee we will take the time to answer your questions and give you some insights based on 10 years of experience and two different lifestyle perspectives – that of my mom who lives on Social Security, and mine which is based on entrepreneurial pursuits.
- VIP Lifestyle Tour: We will teach you about what life is like in Pereira, and Manizales based on our personal experiences – and the experiences of the dozens of people like YOU who we have served over the last 5 years since we began offering the service. Half day or full day tour options are available. Tailored to your needs and interests.
- VIP Rental/Purchase Assistance: We will help you search for the perfect house or apartment with the amenities you want. This service includes a car and driver who doubles as security AND home inspector. We want you to be safe – and to avoid the headaches you will find but miss completely on your own.
- CONTACT US NOW: Erin Donaldson at firstname.lastname@example.org or Instagram