Research suggests that Manila is the third most expensive city to live in Southeast Asia despite having the lowest estimated net salary.
According to database platform Numbeo, the average cost of living in Manila is P50,800. This figure is slightly lower than Thailand’s P51,500, but 33 per cent higher than Kuala Lumpur, 28 percent higher than Ho Chi Minh, and 24 per cent higher than Jakarta.
Not including rent, the total cost of living in the Philippine capital is still about P28,800 per month.
Despite this, according to commerce aggregator iPrice, the average salary of Filipino workers in the city is only about P18,900 per month – making the average cost of living 167% higher than the average salary.
“It comes as no surprise that about 35 percent of Metro Manila’s population is reported to live in unstable, badly constructed shelters in the slums, and 11 percent of these reside near railroads or garbage dumps,” Iprice said.