CARNETS DESCARTES

Cost of living

As we are students, it's always interesting to get a destination where the prices are as low as possible because you're living thanks to your parents money or thanks to a loan. So anyways, the cheaper the better when you are student. And I was quite satisfied about that when I arrived to Tallinn because as Estonia is a developing country still, prices in a lot of fields are lower than in France. But as we will see it's not valid for every products and some here are even more expensive than in my home country.

  • Food: Food is the point which is really remarkably different between these two countries. Indeed, we all know that in France it's not so cheap to feed your family and the price is often around 100€. But here when I arrived and I went to the supermaket for the first time, I was just amazed because, as it was the first time and I didn't have anything, I took a quite big amount of product and I was expecting then to pay a lot. But surprisingly, I paid around 40€ for two full bags. And since that, I'm going once or twice per week to the supermarket and I never pay more than 25€ for the food for about one week. So this is really convenient because you don't have to spend all your monthly budget to the food, you can save some extra money for trips or parties for example. To give some examples of the most striking figures, I compared the price of the kilogram of carot: around 1.30 € in France, and 0.39€ in Estonia. This is just an example to illustrate that lots of product are really cheaper here. However, some supermaket products have the same price or are even more expensive in Estonia as for example the wine of the cheese, easily explainable by the fact that Estonia is not really a huge producer of these products. 

 

  • Products which are more expensive in Estonia: In my opinion, most of the products related to clothes or sport are a bit more expensive here than in France. And I was really surprised by that, and I'm still actually wondering how can people afford clothes here as the average salary is just a bit more than 1000€ but the answer is just simply that as they have cheaper food they can spend more money in this kind of products. 

 

  • Extra point, Salaries in Estonia: I didn't plan to talk about that in this article, but while I was writting about these clothes and sport products, I just remembered that I haven't talked about the average salary in Estonia yet. And I think it is a quite important point in my general introduction of Estonia through this blog. So I will display you right now this very interesting table that I found on Internet (source: www.stat.ee) and which will show you the evolution of the average gross salary in Estonia from the 1st quarter of 2010 until the last quarter of 2014. We can see that there is a real increase in salaries a steady one which demonstrate us that this country is developing more and more.

 

  Year 1st Quarter 2nd Quarter 3rd Quarter 4th Quarter
2010 792 758 822 759 814
2011 839 792 857 809 865
2012 887 847 900 855 916
2013 949 900 976 930 986
2014   966 1023 977 1039