What is the cost of living like in Italy you ask? Like in other places around the world, it is going to vary depending on what part of the country you live in. We live northwest of Milan 20 miles so of course it is going to be a bit cheaper compared to living IN Milan. Also take into consideration that the wages here in Italy may or may not be what you are used to. An average blue-collar may bring home anywhere from 800 to a little over one thousand euros a month. Our monthly expenses break down as follows, being a rough estimate:
100 Condo expenses
50 Phone & internet connection
45 Gas (stove, oven and hot water heater (boiler) etc.)
1015 Grand total in euros ($1,421.05 USD)
Of course this does not include as you can see any “extra” entertainment, going out to the restaurant etc. When I go to the grocery store I go to the discount chain stores like Eurospin and Lidl and avoid the big chain stores like Esselunga & GS, unless I need something exotic or ethnic. If I shopped at the big chain stores, our grocery bill would be a heck of a lot higher for about the same amount of food.
In general I have heard, no personal experience though, that in northern Italy the cost-of-living is more expensive compared to the south but then the wages are lower.