Cost of Living in The Gambia 2015 is far better than most countries

I reside in the Greater Banjul area which is not far from Banjul or the airport. The global down turn has affected many world economies and The Gambia is not left out. The outbreak of Ebola last year made matters worse and many tourists bound to The Gambia cancelled their flights. In recent times the Gambian Dalasi has depreciated against the dollar. The official exchange rate as of the month of May 2015 is GMD40 =US$1
It is still affordable to live comfortable with 2-bedroom apartment asking for between GMD3, 000 -5,000 for a month in clean and densely populated area. Full compounds with 3-4 bedroom flats are rented for between GMD8, 000-15,000 monthly in quite, high brow areas called Tourist destination areas. A bag of rice of 50KG, depending on type, range from GMD 1, 500-1,800. There are restaurants one can get food like, fried rice or “Fufu” for GMD60-100 a plate. The local bread”Tapalapa” or “Senfu” are sold for GMD7 each. Eggs are sold for GMD8 each or a crate for GMD180. For an average spender, GMD10, 000 or US$250 will be enough to make you live comfortably for a month including transportation cost to most parts of the greater Banjul. The taxis are available for GMD8 for short distances. The commercial buses also charge GMD8 for a trip between West Field and Latrikunda. Brikama to W/Field cost GMD18. Internal travels between Banjul and Basse can be GMD300 or less depending on the mode of transportation. Health prices are affordable. It is advisable for tourists or first time visitors to have health insurance as the rates charged differs between citizens and visitors.US$200 budget for health is not a bad idea especially if the person has to be hospitalized. Schools are many with public schools being free to citizens and a little fee is charged from foreigners. Upper basic schools within Banjul and Greater Banjul are less than GMD1000 for a term. However, tertiary institutions like, University of The Gambia, cost between US$3,000-5,000 for non- Gambians depending on the choice of courses. Energy price costs between GMD300-500 monthly with separate meters for each apartment. Similarly, the water bill usually shared between apartments in a whole compound. Individual water bills can be from GMD50-200 depending on location and usage. There many restaurants with varying high taste especially for visitors with free Wi-Fi internet services located around the major tourist destinations like Kairaba Avenue, Kololi, Senegambia and beach areas .Their prices range from GMD200-600 per meal and choice of menu. Internet facilities are all over the major areas at affordable rates depending on the choice of connection. The data sticks are popular and are available for GMD2,000 only and units can be purchased for as low as GMD100 for 500Meg by Gamtel or GMD 275 for 1Gb by Africell network. Most importantly, the people of The Gambia are very friendly and always welcoming visitors with a smile. I still think The Gambia is a preferred destination than most other countries in the sub region for one major fact; peace.

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