Europe’s least visited country, Moldova is an unconventional expat destination. Be that as it may, expats may be surprised by the low cost of living and rich cultural experience on offer in the small eastern European country.

Most expats work for NGOs, embassies or multinational corporations in the capital city and earn relatively high salaries, meaning they enjoy an excellent quality of life in Moldova. That said, landing a job in the country can be difficult, so expats are encouraged to secure a role before moving to Moldova.

Cost of accommodation in Moldova

Renting or buying a home in Moldova is relatively affordable. As is usually the case in most cities, accommodation in the city centres will be slightly pricier and decrease in the outskirts. The standard of modern housing in the country’s capital, Chișinău, is also generally of exceptional quality. Utilities and internet costs in Moldova are also cheaper than in other European countries, such as the UK or Romania.

Cost of food and eating out in Moldova

Moldova has a thriving agriculture industry, meaning most of its food is locally produced and largely inexpensive.

The country is also world-renowned for its fantastic and affordable wines, which pair well with the reasonably priced three-course meals served in fine dining restaurants.

Cost of transport in Moldova

Given Moldova’s small size, getting around in the country is fairly straightforward. Public transport in Chișinău is well-developed, efficient and low-cost, but rural areas lack road infrastructure. Regular commuters can purchase a monthly ticket to receive fare discounts and reduce expenses.

Taxis are also readily available in the capital, with decreased prices if expats pre-book rather than hailing one off the street. Walking is another healthy and free way to travel in Chișinău, as the city is situated on seven hills.

Cost of schooling in Moldova

Expats relocating to Moldova with children may have to budget for the cost of international schools, as public institutions teach in Romanian and have varying standards. International schools tend to be eye-wateringly expensive and typically have space limitations, so expats should begin the application process well in advance.

Cost of healthcare in Moldova

Moldova is a developing country, and the standard of public healthcare reflects this. Expats from Western European countries or North America may be disappointed by the facilities available in the country's hospitals, therefore, purchasing comprehensive health insurance with medical evacuation is essential.

Cost of living in Moldova chart

Prices may vary depending on product and service provider. The list below shows average prices for Chișinău in September 2022.

Accommodation (monthly)

One-bedroom apartment in city centre

MDL 5,819

One-bedroom apartment outside of city centre

MDL 4,377

Three-bedroom apartment in city centre

MDL 10,278

Three-bedroom apartment outside of city centre

MDL 7,527


Eggs (dozen)

MDL 33.37 

Milk (1 litre)

MDL 17.34 

Rice (1kg)

MDL 23.04

Loaf of white bread 

MDL 7.42

Chicken breasts (1kg)

MDL 78.10

Pack of cigarettes (Marlboro)

MDL 40

Eating out

Big Mac Meal

MDL 85

Coca-Cola (330ml)

MDL 13.82


MDL 27.86

Bottle of beer (local)

MDL 25

Three-course meal for two at a mid-range restaurant

MDL 500


Mobile-to-mobile call rate (per minute)

MDL 1.71

Internet (uncapped ADSL or cable – average per month)

MDL 172.33

Basic utilities (per month for small apartment)

MDL 2,881


Taxi rate (per kilometre)

MDL 4.50

Bus/train fare in the city centre


Petrol/gasoline (per litre)

MDL 29.56