What budget do I need to live in Algarve? – Moving to Portugal – Expats Portugal Community Forum

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What budget do I need to live in Algarve?  

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Posts: 17
Community Member
(@anahawkins)
Active Member
Joined: 2 months ago

Hi all - 

Looking to move to Algarve with my daughter and husband in a few years and trying to understand what a realistic budget would be (we have never been!) but I do have a cousin who lives in Lisbon (single). 

In Algarve, we'd be looking to probably get private health insurance on top of the nationwide one available, and put my daughter in a school. We'd ideally like a 3-4bedroom condo/apartment near good school/safe area/good amenities (pool), and maybe have just 1 car. 

I know this is a hard question but is 6K USD a month realistic for this move in this area and with school and healthcare? We like to eat out a few times a week, my daughter is in piano/dance/sports and we'd ideally like to travel back to visit family in the US 1x a year and plus travel around Europe maybe another 1 trip a year.

Don't laugh at my question 🙂 Just looking for some local input and advice! Thanks all!

Ana

12 Replies

Posts: 340
Admin
(@astridff)
Active Member
Joined: 9 months ago

This a really good question and we are currently working on a "Cost of Living" survey to put out to our members so we can give everyone a clearer idea of what to budget for living.

In my opinion, $6K will be more than enough to live a very comfortable lifestyle. Will you be buying or renting? Depending on exactly where you live will determine real estate prices.

Public schools are free (of course), Portuguese private schools around €400-€600 a month per student. International schools are between €12,000 to €20,000 a year.

I pay €56 a month for private health insurance for myself and two daughters (my husband gets a good plan through his employer).

Sporting/dance/music again depends on where you are living. When we lived rurally, both our girls did ballet 2 times a week and it cost us €20 each per month. 2 x swimming lessons per week at the local pool was €10 a month. School lunches were €1.20 a day. The school bus was free.

Now we live in the city and the girls do these activities via the school. The fees are much bigger of course.

Hope this helps a bit.

Astrid

 

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4 Replies
Community Member
(@anahawkins)
Joined: 2 months ago

Active Member
Posts: 17

@astridff thank you that is so helpful! I debate if we should we buy or rent to be honest - sometimes I think rent because it is "Easier" but then you don't control the cost as much. One other factor I haven't considered is that our "funds" will all be in US accounts and we need to pay transfer fees (I think?) for getting our money out every month or every year. Do you have any advice for that in these forums or also estimate of how much people end up spending transferring money from international accounts? 

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 MaxG
Premium Member
(@maxgravy)
Joined: 3 months ago

Eminent Member
Posts: 33

@anahawkins I set up a transferwise account and have used it once. It was very easy and the fees were very low. $11.57 to transfer $1309 US and we got the bank rate shown online. I'll be using it again soon to move a large sum into our Portuguese bank account. 

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Community Member
(@anahawkins)
Joined: 2 months ago

Active Member
Posts: 17

@maxgravy thank you that's not bad at all! are there any minimums or frequency of transfer required?

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 MaxG
Premium Member
(@maxgravy)
Joined: 3 months ago

Eminent Member
Posts: 33

@anahawkins I don't think there's a minimum or a required frequency. The terms are pretty easy to understand. They do seem to get good reviews. 

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Posts: 340
Admin
(@astridff)
Active Member
Joined: 9 months ago

At Expats Portugal, we have two money transfer companies we work with.

Transferwise for simple transfers or OFX who have a more personalised service. OFX also offer our members an additional discount off money transfers - let me know if you are interested in finding out more.

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3 Replies
Community Member
(@anahawkins)
Joined: 2 months ago

Active Member
Posts: 17

@astridff thank you I am sure I will as we get closer to moving. Also can I ask what region/city are you in and what school are your girls in now?

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Community Member
(@anahawkins)
Joined: 2 months ago

Active Member
Posts: 17
hi @astridff! What area of Portugal did you say you live in with your girls? We contacted a realtor that said she thought our daughter could transition to public school after a year - are your girls in public school? Do you know any other expats that we’re able to have their kids go to public school around 10yrs old from an English speaking country? Thank you!

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Admin
(@astridff)
Joined: 9 months ago

Active Member
Posts: 340

@anahawkins hi Ana, 

My girls go to a Private Portuguguese school. They have a lot of foreign kids and take extra learning for kids without the language to learn as quickly as possible. 

I live just outside of Lisbon. My girls did already speak some Portuguese their whole lives though as their dad/my husband is Portuguese.

There are some schools that are both English and Portuguese friendly, and as I recall, you are looking at the Algarve so I am sure you will find schools that will be English friendly without being international.

Did you see the post I did recently with the public and private Portuguese school 2019 ranking for academic achievement? May be a good place to start if you are keen to look in your area. You will find the listing on this thread.

 

https://expatsportugal.com/community/parents-children-portugal/2019-school-rankings-public-and-private-portuguese-schools/#post-179414

 

 

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Posts: 17
Community Member
(@anahawkins)
Active Member
Joined: 2 months ago

@astridff thank you I had not seen it!

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Posts: 17
Community Member
(@anahawkins)
Active Member
Joined: 2 months ago

@astridff as I educate myself - what am I looking for in the link you sent? The secondary school is like middle school?

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