How much does it cost to spend a month in Riga, Latvia?

by gigigriffis
Riga market

If you’re looking for a cheap city in Europe to hang your hat for awhile, you can’t do much better than Riga. I’m normally not a city person, but the relaxed pace here worked for me. I really liked all the charming little boutiques. I loved going down to the coast. And there’s definitely some good food to be found here.

So, how much does a month in Riga cost? 

Here’s one digital nomad’s real spending:


 

Category Local currency Dollars
Accommodations 369.00 $406.21
Transportation (local) 59.43 $65.44
Groceries 291.34 $320.72
Eating/drinking out 163.82 $180.34
Health & wellness 308.76 $339.89
Totals 1192.35 $1312.59

Notes on my spending in Riga

For accommodations, we found our fantastic little apartment (and great host, who owns multiple places in the property) on Airbnb. The above pricing is my half of a month’s rent. Chad and I split rent right down the middle. 

(Psst…If you’re new to Airbnb, you can use my sign-up link and we both get a credit!)

Transportation costs include a monthly tram pass, a couple individual tram tickets (before we figured out the monthly pass thing), and several taxi/rideshare rides. This line item does not include international train and bus tickets to get us from Tallinn to Riga. But for reference, that cost was around $35. 

For groceries, I shopped at both the big central market and a closer grocery store. And our eating out costs include a meal at fancy restaurant during Riga’s restaurant week (when restaurants around town discount multi-course meals), as well as a number of evenings of Indian and Nepali takeout. I also got my fair share of to-go coffees, as the weather was turning cold and I was jonesing for hot drinks. 

Health and wellness is larger than usual because in addition to my monthly insurance payment, I also got weekly head massages at a hotel spa. 100% worth it. 

Now, finally, you may have noticed that my normal line item for my traveling pooch is not up there. The reason for this is that she had an extremely pricey month and most people probably won’t be factoring that into their travel budgets. Here’s Luna’s line item if you’re interested:

Luna (vet bills, supplies) 186.12 $204.89

So, why so high? Luna had a second bout with pancreatitis – a potentially life-threatening condition of the pancreas. She’d been off meds for over two years, but something triggered a relapse and I spent a very unpleasant Thursday rushing her across town to three different vets while she was vomiting blood. A blood test, three vet visits, seven shots, a pile of meds, and several taxi rides across town later, she was doing much better. And now, many weeks later, she seems perfectly normal. But that late-month scare definitely came with a set of costs. 

Finally, it’s important to note a few things about the above budget:

1) It is slightly less than a month. We actually left Riga a few days early. So staying might have meant a little jump in grocery or eating out budget

2) Chad and I work while traveling, so my budgets are probably less than a tourist would spend.

3) The above numbers are my spending, not our shared spending. We split groceries 60/40 (Chad eats more), meals out 50/50, and rent 50/50. Most other expenses are individual. And Luna’s expenses are all mine. 

Looking for more European budgets? Here they all are

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