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Currency and Cost of Living

Belize - Currency and Cost of Living

The currency in Belize is the Belize Dollar (BZ$). The country has a relatively low cost of living when compared with other countries around the world but is considered to be expensive for a Central American country. A couple are considered to be able to live very comfortably for one month on the equivalent of 1000 US Dollars. This is the equivalent of almost BZ$2000.

The cost of using public transport is relatively low and you can take a long bus journey from one side of the country to the other for around BZ$10. Even using one of the aircraft taxis to take you to another part of the country to one of the islands will set you back less than BZ$70.

It is relatively expensive to have utilities connected to your home if you are a foreign national, simply because the companies ask for high deposits, but telephone line rental monthly charges are around half of a similar charge in the UK and the US, though the charges for calls are on a par with these countries. It also depends upon the area you live in as to whether or not you will be expected to pay to have your household waste removed.

The cost of groceries varies in similarity to other countries. The cost of fruit which is grown locally is very cheap but imported goods such as tinned items can be quite high due to importation costs. Household appliances and furniture are relatively expensive, so it may be worth considering importing your own from home, especially if you move to Belize on the retirement programme which allows you to bring items in without paying import taxes.

Eating out is relatively inexpensive, especially if you choose one of the local seafood specialities. A visit to the cinema or a drink in a bar is approximately the same as in the UK or the US. Renting a house will cost only around half of similar charges in the UK and if you choose to build your own home it will also cost you less than it would in the US or Europe. It should be noted that rents vary depending upon the area you choose to live in.

If you choose to use private medical and dental facilities then you will find the charges are on a par as those in the US and UK, but there is a free public medical service which is more than adequate.

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