Are you craving white sand beaches, lagoons, and volcanic mountains? Well, if you are, there is no better place than Tahiti. Located in French Polynesia, it is the largest island in the region.
Surprisingly, its cost of living is much lower than most famous tourist destinations. Interested to find out more? This complete guide will give you the basic information of what to expect, and cost, after you land on the Tahitian paradise.
Overview of cost of living in Tahiti
You might think that as Tahiti has great beaches and nightlife – it must be expensive. Well, hold your horses because it is not like that!
Living comfortably in Tahiti will cost you between $2100 and $3200 a month. Yes, it may increase or decrease depending on how you manage your affairs, but that’s the rough average.
Also, affordable housing is available in a variety of expat-friendly areas.
As with most places, spending on things like drinks and entertainment could be higher for a person who prefers to go out less frequently than someone who likes to stay in, so it’s important to factor your personal preferences into your budget. However, between you and us, why stay in?
Luckily, travellers on a tight budget will find Tahiti a great destination. Also, it is the ideal destination for vacationers and permanent residents alike.
Let’s dig deeper and see how much it will cost you in each of the key areas:
Counting Costs of Necessities in Tahiti
If you are a regular tourist, then you may have a decent idea of what to expect in a place like Tahiti. Also, because of the relatively low cost of living, if you are coming from a place that has a relatively high cost of living, the costs should all be fairly bearable for you.
Let’s look at some of the key costs you are likely to encounter when visiting or relocating to Tahiti.
Cost of Food
Food is the primary need of a person when visiting or settling in a new place. Also, for some foodies, it is like an ultimate form of entertainment. So, what does it cost?
If you’re on a budget when visiting Tahiti, your best bet is to dine at a middle-of-the-road eatery or a local island market. There are plenty of local restaurants on the island that offer good food at low prices.
So, how much should you set aside for food? To cover your food costs while in Tahiti, consider setting aside between $450 and $810 per month.
Furthermore, restaurants, weekly markets, and supermarkets can all be found in Tahiti. Meals cost between $6 and $20 at restaurants and food trucks. However, they only cost $5 at the supermarket. Additionally, the food at the local markets is both delicious and economical.
Even more money can be saved if you buy food in bulk and prepare meals at home. Last but not least, Tahiti is a gorgeous island paradise with many affordable possibilities. So, once you are here, it’s a good idea to start exploring all the new and exciting food options.
Generally speaking, a tourist wishes to dine out and have fun. Still, it is wise to remember that in Tahiti, as with anywhere, restaurant meals can add up quickly, so if you’re watching your budget, try to eat at home as much as possible.
So, if you wish to save money on food, the easiest method is to cook your own food.
Finally, seafood from the region and dishes from around the world are just two examples of the delicious dining options available. This means that Tahiti can satisfy any and all of your gastronomic needs – you just need to know where to look.
Cost of Housing/Rent
The costliest part of your trip to Tahiti, the cost of housing, is likely to be the largest monthly expenditure for most people. Comparatively, a large private Luxury villa can cost $5100 or more per month, while a small studio apartment costs between $1,000 and $2,200. The monthly rent will depend on the house you pick.
First, you’ll need to decide if you want to live in a flat, a villa, with roommates, or on your own (if you can find a decent roommate, then a lot of your money is saved).
Second, search for an apartment near grocery stores and restaurants if you want to eat cheaply and sustainably.
Finally, remember Tahiti has various inexpensive lodging options, including hotels, guesthouses, Airbnb, and bed & breakfasts – if you are only planning on staying for a relatively short period.
Moreover, if you’re seeking additional space and can afford to reside on the island, you may rent a house with two bedrooms or more for roughly $2200 per month.
Whichever is the case, before settling on a rental, it’s best to look into various possibilities. Note that fees and taxes can add up quickly and that homes can be found throughout the island nation.
Finally, if you compare the rent or housing cost in Tahiti with the capital Papeete, you will see that they are a bit expensive here (Papeete is located on the Island of Tahiti).
How about using remote booking options?
The most efficient way to find an apartment is through online tools or by contacting local agencies directly. The rent in Tahiti can be high, but it’s well worth being in such a beautiful setting.
If you’re looking for a place to stay in Tahiti, your best bet is to rent an apartment on a month-to-month basis, either directly from the landlord or through a service like Airbnb. This is to avoid paying commissions to real estate agents and similar people.
Most people don’t know this, but if you start looking for accommodation locally, you will have to pay an upfront deposit. You don’t want that. So, instead, log in to your Airbnb account and start browsing various options.
An estimated amount is $1000 to $2200 per month on Airbnb for an apartment.
The most expensive vacation rentals in Tahiti may be found on hotel booking websites for around $700 per night.
So, what should you do? You should rent an Airbnb for 3 days, walk around until you locate a place that suits you, and talk to digital nomads and expatriates to get their recommendations on where to stay.
Naturally, everyone has a friend or family member they can rely on to help them out in a tough spot. Many renters opt for monthly payments because it’s the most cost-effective option.
Additionally, there are several Facebook groups for people living in French Polynesia. Facebook communities are a great tool for you to use. Perhaps it would serve as a great jumping-off point. Some Westerners are in control of these apartments. Going straight to the source or using a service like Airbnb will save you the most money.
It is vital to remember that, before committing to a rental, it’s important to do background checks to ensure the place is safe and meets your needs.
Lastly, the cost of relocation to Tahiti may seem high at first, but any visitor or resident will quickly realize that the island paradise is well worth the investment.
Cost of Health and Fitness
All-around medical care is cheap, including doctor visits, hospital stays, over-the-counter medications, and health insurance.
In New York City, a doctor’s visit with meds will cost you around $1,000, but in Tahiti, it will only set you back $420.
The Typical Expenses of a private healthcare facility costs $34 for an uninsured person to see a doctor and $1,045 per day to stay in a private hospital. When in the facility, you will receive nursing care, medication, diagnostic testing, and a private room.
Cost of Groceries
Groceries are not cheap here. You can expect to pay $2.3 for a liter of milk. Similarly, a loaf of bread will cost you around $2.3. Likewise, eggs, local cheese, and water are $4.8, $11, and $1.4, respectively.
Most foods have to be shipped and delivered by ship or plane, which drives up their cost. (they are imported) In our opinion, locals should be allocating at least half of their money toward purchasing food items.
Cost of transportation
Papeete, the capital of Tahiti, is not far from Faa’a International Airport. This island serves as the arrival point for all international planes.
Also, you can catch a flight on the national airline, Air Tahiti, to any other island in French Polynesia.
On the island, driving is the primary mode of transportation. Getting into the heart of Papeete is easy and affordable, thanks to the city bus system.
Finally, to get around the island, you can rent a bike, a scooter, or a car. These are the cheapest options.
How is Tahiti if you are on a budget?
Visiting the infamously pricey French Polynesian islands may seem out of reach, but with careful planning and budgeting, you can have a wonderful time there without going into debt.
Some of the tips to save money are to rent near markets for cheaper food options. Also, cooking your own food is a good choice for most people on a budget.
Another great tip for people on a budget would be to rent through online services like Airbnb to avoid paying upfront deposits and commissions.
Finally, if you can avoid the nightlife, high-end accommodations, and lavish dining expenses, Tahiti will still reward you with a great experience despite your tight budget.
What is Entertainment like in Tahiti?
Surfers from all over the world flock to Tahiti for its crystal-clear waters, dramatic over-the-water bungalows, abundance of waterfalls, and, of course, its world-famous waves.
The cost of living in Tahiti lets you enjoy life at its peak. Given its main source of income is tourism, naturally, it offers you thousands of options for entertainment. Some of them are:
Don’t leave Tahiti without trying some of the local delicacies. Tahitian cuisine is well-known for its exceptional flavor and distinctive presentation.
We recommend trying the combination of raw fish with lemon sauce and coco milk – it is one of the most popular and tasty dishes in Tahitian cuisine.
In Tahiti, surfing is one of the most popular and exciting hobbies available. The ideal months to go surfing in this area are April and October.
Go to “pointe Venus” if you’re a beginner trying surfboarding for the first time, and then progress to more advanced surfing at other beautiful beaches with the help of local pros.
Did you know that there is a yearly competition for surfers of all skill levels held in May at Teahupoo, Tahiti? So, enter this surfing tournament if you’re a pro surfer.
You might be thinking, what is so special about diving here? Well, my friends, these are some of the clearest waters in the world.
It is only obvious that some of the world’s best scuba diving may be found off the coast of Tahiti.
Also, the warm temperature of the water makes it an ideal location for scuba diving. Tahiti’s lagoon is an excellent place to see colorful corals and jellyfish, so you should certainly plan to explore it of you are spending any time here.
Finally, have fun diving in the open ocean with massive turtles, but do it under the supervision of a trained professional.
Be the fish
Do dolphins capture your heart?
If you go to Tahiti, you can go swimming with dolphins, which is an amazing experience. Yes, you can swim with human-friendly and intelligent Dolphins.
Moorea, located 17 kilometers (km) to the northwest of Tahiti, is an excellent place to go dolphin swimming because it has pools specifically built for this purpose. Swimming with dolphins is possible with the help of guides, and the gentle marine mammals are not dangerous in any way.
How can you save money in Tahiti?
Being one of the most remote islands on the planet, it is only natural that Tahiti has the potential to put a serious dent in your bank account. Fear not though; we are here to help.
For one, you can save a lot by bringing snacks from home instead of buying them in Tahiti. Believe it or not, this saves a lot of money.
Another tip to save money is to avoid buffets and if you happen to buy one, skip the lunch.
Also, please note that tip is already included in the total price, so there is no need to spend on extra tips.
This one is the most vital tip to save money, and it is to book your tickets and services in advance. It is because you will end up paying more if you book them on the spot.
Furthermore, for refreshments and snacks, try and use local markets instead of cafes and restaurants. At a glance, it may seem you are saving only a few bucks, but when you calculate your whole trip, the snacks and drinks can eat up a big chunk of your budget.
Finally, if you are on a budget and don’t mind a bit of extra temperature and humidity – go on low season. It is because everything from rent to groceries to entertainment is 20 to 30% off.
How much does Tahiti cost to visit?
This one is a tricky and fundamental question for a tourist. So, how much does it cost to visit Tahiti?
A 7-day trip to Tahiti will set you back an average of $1,932 for a solo traveler, $3,470 for a couple, and $6,505 for a family of 4.
Next is hotels, but if you are on a budget and plan to reside longer, it is best to stay away from them. Hotels in Tahiti cost, on average, $73 per night, ranging from $41 to $188, while weekly stays in a private residence would run you $200 to $300.
Furthermore, Depending on where you live in the world, you can expect to pay anything from $1,303 – $2,103 for the economy and $4,089 – $6,599 for first class to fly to Nadi International Airport (NAN).
Lastly, for transport alone, you need to Budget between $27 to $73 per person per day for transportation and eating at local restaurants. So, the cost of living in Tahiti can add up significantly for average-earning people.
Does Tahiti have an Airport?
Yes, it has. Faa’a International Airport (PPT), on the island of Tahiti, is the primary airport for flights to and from The Islands of Tahiti.
Faa’a International Airport is also the departure point for flights to Bora Bora, Moorea, and other inter-island destinations.
Which is the best time to visit Tahiti?
The best time to visit Tahiti depends on your tastes and bank balance.
Tahiti is a tropical island; thus, the weather is always pleasant, but the two seasons are still clearly outlined.
The “dry” period (March to November) has average temperatures of roughly 80 degrees and very little precipitation, making it the peak season. Naturally, during this season, rates are high, and if you are on a tight budget, it is not recommended to come.
On the other hand, during the “rainy” season (December–late February), temperatures are slightly higher (the high 80s), and humidity levels are higher, with occasional 30-minute or shorter showers. This is a low season for business, and people on a tight budget often visit it during this period.
Hotel rates typically drop by 25-40% in January and February, making it the greatest time to visit if you want to save money on your trip.
Best things to do in Tahiti
Tahiti is an excellent entry point to French Polynesia, but it is especially wonderful for first-timers.
So, are you an adventurous soul or perhaps you like to walk on white sand beaches? Whatever your taste is, there is a high probability that you will find it in Tahiti.
You can take a hike to the world-famous Fautaua Waterfall. In fact, a lot of folks, when visiting Tahiti, take in this hike. It will take you 5 to 6 hours to reach the waterfall.
You may also explore Tahiti on a bicycle. This one may seem like a bit of work, but it is simply a once-in-a-lifetime experience. In addition, this one is cheaper, environmentally friendly, and boosts your fitness.
Another way to explore the island is on a scooter. You can get rent them across the island. Again, if you are on a tight budget, make sure to check a few spots and their rates.
Another fun activity is surfing.
What are Locals like?
Historically, Tahitian culture has rarely seen violence, anger, or antagonism. The natives treat outsiders and each other with kindness and rarely show any signs of hostility.
Also, there is an interesting fact about Tahitians they don’t judge you or even try to influence you or change you.
In short, they are a great bunch of folks that you will love once you move here.
Tahitians have a great love for tattoos. They think they make them beautiful. So, if you have a few, rest assured you will get their attention.
Finally, they are the ultimate definition of how a nation whose economy depends on tourism should be.
What are some things you should avoid when in Tahiti?
You will have a great time in Tahiti if you are in great health. So, try to take care of yourself and eat healthy food.
In Tahiti, you could get sick from the water or the food. Some examples of such pathogens are scabies and conjunctivitis.
Likewise, drinking bottled water is advised in the countryside, and the same goes for avoiding raw or undercooked meals like salad greens.
Finally, if you are pregnant, it is best not to travel to Tahiti because of the Zika virus.
On a tight budget coming in a low season is a great idea. Also, the cost of living in Tahiti is much lower than most other French Polynesian Islands like Bora Bora.
So, when are you planning to visit this piece of paradise? Also, what are your thoughts on the cost of living in Tahiti? How does it compare to other tourist destinations in the world that you have visited? Let us know in the comment below. Thanks for reading.