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Splurge or Save Is Aberdeen more expensive than Edinburgh

Splurge or Save: Is Aberdeen more expensive than Edinburgh?

When it comes to the cost of living, Aberdeen and Edinburgh vary greatly. 

You might be thinking about which city is more feasible to live in if you move out. Fret no more – in this article, we discuss the financial implications of living in each city.

Is Aberdeen more expensive than Edinburgh?

Is Aberdeen more expensive than Edinburgh
Photo by jarmoluk from Pixabay

It is 26.28% less expensive to live in Aberdeen than Edinburgh. Aberdeen’s overall cost of living is £1,074, whereas Edinburgh’s is £1,399.

Below is the table showcasing the differences in the most common aspects impacting the cost of living between Aberdeen and Edinburgh: 

Expense TypeAberdeenEdinburgh
Dining Out£1.01 – £50.00£1.12 – £60.00
Groceries£0.74 – £13.00£0.68 – £12.00
Transportation£1.37 – £91.30£1.42 – £60.00
Monthly Utilities£0.09 – £138.01£0.11 – £175.94
Sports and Leisure£7.20 – £32.42£9.25 – £31.88
Childcare£1,000.56 – £11,340.00£994.17 – £11,866.67
Clothing and Other Expenses£26.14 – £73.50£35.85 – £68.62
Rent Per Month£466.54 – £1,178.12£751.82 – £1,913.33
Price per Square Metre to Buy Apartment (One-time Cost)£2,171.43 – £2,585.71£3,293.75 – £4,471.14

Comparing the two, Edinburgh is relatively more expensive than Aberdeen in most factors except groceries and transportation.

Learn more about these aspects as we go through them individually below. 

1. Dining Out

Dining Out
Photo by Wow_Pho from Pixabay

As per dining out, Aberdeen is less expensive than Edinburgh. Here are some expenses considered in this section: 

Expense TypeAberdeen Edinburgh
Meal in Cheaper Restaurant£15.00£15.00
Meal in Mid-range Restaurant£50.00£60.00
Fast Food Meal£5.39£6.00
Domestic Beer (0.5-liter draught)£3.10£4.80 
Imported Beer (0.33-liter bottle)£3.00£4.50
Coke/Pepsi (0.33-liter bottle)£1.48£1.66
Water (0.33-liter bottle)£1.01£1.12

2. Groceries

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In terms of groceries, Edinburgh’s prices are lower compared to Aberdeen. Take a look at the cost differences between them below: 

Expense TypeAberdeen Edinburgh
Milk (1 litre)£1.14£0.97
Bread (500g)£1.08£1.08
Rice (1 kg)£1.42£1.15
Eggs (1 Dozen)£2.28£2.01
Cheese (1 kg)£5.37£5.93
Chicken Fillet (1 kg)£4.87£5.57
Beef Round (1 kg)£6.18£8.56
Apples (1 kg)£1.83£1.93
Banana (1 kg)£1.15£0.95
Oranges (1 kg)£2.08£1.97
Tomato (1 kg)£1.79£1.97
Potato (1 kg)£0.85£0.95
Onion (1 kg)£0.94£0.76
Lettuce (1 head)£0.74£0.68
Water (1.5-litre bottle)£0.87£1.06
Wine Bottle (Mid-range)£7.00£7.00
Domestic Beer (0.5-litre bottle)£1.60£1.54
Imported Beer (0.33-litre bottle)£1.83£1.87
Cigarettes 20 Pack (Marlboro)£13.00£12.00

3. Transportation

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Even in transportation, Edinburgh is more affordable than Aberdeen. Here are a few points considered under this sector:

Expense TypeAberdeen Edinburgh
One-way Ticket (Local Transport)£3.00£1.80
Monthly Pass £91.30£60.00
Taxi (Base Price)£2.60£3.00
Taxi (1 km)£1.37£1.42
Taxi (Waiting for an hour)£36.00£24.00

However, when it comes to purchasing your own car, Aberdeen and Edinburgh vary in the following aspects:

Expense TypeAberdeen Edinburgh
Volkswagen Golf 1.4 90 KW Trendline (Or Equivalent New Car)£19,900.00£20,500.00
Toyota Corolla Sedan 1.6L 97kW Comfort (Or Equivalent New Car£21,159.00£19,979.88

4. Monthly Utilities

Monthly Utilities
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In terms of monthly utilities, Aberdeen remains cheaper compared to Edinburgh. Here are a few examples:

Expense TypeAberdeen Edinburgh
Basic Utilities (Electricity, Heating, Cooling, Water, Garbage) for 85m² apartment£138.01£175.94
Prepaid Mobile Tariff per Minute (No Discounts or Plans)£0.09£0.11
Internet (60 Mbps or More, Unlimited Data, Cable/ADSL)£25.21£28.68

5. Sports and Leisure

Sports and Leisure
Photo by stevepb from Pixabay

Moving on to sports and leisure, Aberdeen is still more affordable than Edinburgh. Check out the pricing differences between them here:

Expense TypeAberdeen Edinburgh
Monthly Fee for Fitness Club (1 Adult)£32.42£31.88
Tennis Court Rent (1 Hour on Weekend)£7.20£12.33
Cinema Ticket £7.50£9.25
Swimming£2.50 – £8.80£20 – £40
Dance Classes£13/hour£20/hour
Singing Lessons£21/hour£23/hour

6. Childcare

Photo by jarmoluk from Pixabay

Both cities welcome children aged 2 and up in government-funded centres. However, if your child attends a private institution, Edinburgh is more expensive than Aberdeen. 

Expense TypeAberdeen Edinburgh
Monthly Fee for Full Day Preschool in Private£1,000.56£994.17
International Primary School (Yearly)£11,340.00£11,866.67

Childcare in Aberdeen

Early learning and childcare for 1,140 hours are provided to children aged 3 and beyond in Aberdeen. However, those aged 2 are also accepted if they are children of parents who meet the following criteria:

  • Receives income support
  • Receives jobseeker’s allowance
  • Gets employment and support allowance
  • Gets severe disablement and incapacity allowance
  • Has state pension credit
  • Has non-work child tax credit with an annual income of £17,005 or below
  • Has child and work tax credit with a yearly household income of £7,920 or less
  • Received support under part V1 of the Immigration and Asylum Act 1999
  • Has universal credit with a monthly pay of £660 or below

The child can be eligible if they are: 

  • Under a guardianship order
  • Under a kinship care order
  • Child of a care experienced parent
  • Taken care of a local council

The government-funded hours are available in full days, part days, term time, split placements, and for up to 50 weeks each year.

Childcare in Edinburgh

Similar to Aberdeen, children aged 3 and above are the preferred ages set by Edinburgh’s city council. However, a child can be eligible for early learning even at the age of 2 if parents satisfy the following criteria:

  • Has income support
  • Has income-based jobseeker’s allowance
  • Has income-based employment support allowance, incapacity benefit or severe disablement allowance
  • Has state pension credit
  • Has child tax credit with an annual household income below £17,005 
  • Has child tax and working tax credit with an annual household income of £7,920 or below
  • Receives support under part IV of the Immigration and Asylum Act 1999
  • Has universal credit with a monthly household income of £660 or less

The child is also eligible if he/she is: 

  • Under a kinship care order
  • Taken care of or has a risked to be looked after
  • Living in temporary accommodation 
  • Homeless
  • Living with a parent-appointed guardian
  • Care experienced or his/her parent also received care during childhood

According to the city council, your child can also be admitted if your family graduated from the Family Nurse Partnership (FNP).

Meanwhile, the early childcare learning hours for 3 to 4-year-olds vary depending on their start date. It ranges from 300, 642 to 1,140 hours per year.

Cowgare Centre, Craigentinny Early Years Centre, and Craigmillar Early Years Centre are among the many childcare centres for 2-year-old children. 

7. Clothing and Other Expenses

Clothing and Other Expenses
Photo by Couleur from Pixabay

Even in terms of clothing and other expenses, Aberdeen proves to be cheaper than Edinburgh. Check the table below for the cost differences: 

Expense TypeAberdeen Edinburgh
Branded Jeans£43.75£63.12
Dress in a Chain Store£26.14£35.85
Running Shoes (Mid-range Brand)£53.89£68.33
Business Leather Shoes£73.50£68.62
Doctor’s Visit£62.10£90.50

8. Rent Per Month

Rent Per Month
Photo by ErikaWittlieb from Pixabay

As for rent per month, Aberdeen is cheaper compared to Edinburgh. Here’s a breakdown of the average apartment price in the city centre and outside between the two:

Expense TypeAberdeen Edinburgh
1 Bedroom Apartment in City Centre £555.60£972.29
1 Bedroom Apartment in Outside Centre£466.54£751.82
3 Bedroom Apartment in City Centre£1,178.12£1,913.33
3 Bedroom Apartment in Outside Centre£826.50£1,187.65

9. Purchasing Own Apartment

Purchasing Own Apartment
Photo by mastersenaiper from Pixabay

Edinburgh is still costlier than Aberdeen in terms of purchasing your own apartment. Check the differences in price per square metre between them below: 

Expense TypeAberdeen Edinburgh
Price per Square Meter to Buy Apartment in City Centre (One-time Cost)£2,585.71£4,471.14
Price per Square Meter to Buy Apartment Outside City Centre (One-time Cost)£2,171.43£3,293.75

Is it good to work in Aberdeen or Edinburgh?

Is it good to work in Aberdeen or Edinburgh
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Both Aberdeen and Edinburgh offer great job opportunities, so working in either city can be a good decision – it just depends on your expertise and what each cirty needs. 

However, Aberdeen has a lower unemployment rate than Edinburgh. Aberdeen has a 3.9% unemployment rate, while Edinburgh is at 7.2%. 

The only key to determining which fits you best is the industry which these cities are most well-known for. 

Aberdeen’s expertise is in oil and gas, tourism, and bioscience, while Edinburgh has thriving sectors in human health and surgery, software and digital technology, and renewable energy and engineering.

The average monthly salary in Aberdeen is £2,384.63 and £2,216.26 in Edinburgh after-tax deduction.

How much is the tax in Aberdeen and Edinburgh?

How much is the tax in Aberdeen and Edinburgh
Photo by stevepb from Pixabay

The total amount of tax to be paid in Aberdeen for the 2022-2023 year falls at £1,264.71-£4432.50, while Edinburgh is at £1,238.13-£4,334.82.

FAQS about living in Aberdeen and Edinburgh

We hope we’ve helped make your decision easier! If you have more time, you can also check things to do in Aberdeen and Edinburgh in case you plan to visit in the future. 

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