Cost of Living in Denmark


Rent will most likely be the largest item in your budget. How much you will spend depends on both the type of housing and the city that you are staying in. Generally speaking, rent is higher in the larger university cities (Copenhagen and, though to a lesser extent, Aarhus) than in smaller cities (such as Odense and Aalborg). Below is a comparison of Copenhagen and Odense for reference.

Food and groceries

Take-out is expensive in Denmark and Danes typically cook most meals at home. If you shop for groceries and cook your own meals, you can get by on approx. 250 USD/person/month, less if you are economical. You should expect to double that if you eat a lot of take-out.

Here are some examples to give you an idea of the price range in supermarkets.

1 liter (¼ gallon) of milk: $1.50 / 10 kr.
1 loaf of bread: $3 / 20 kr.
1 banana: $0.60 / 4 kr.
1 lb of dried pasta: $0.75 / 5 kr.
1 bottle of shampoo: $3 / 20 kr.

Restaurants and cafés

Below is an estimate of price levels if you’re looking to cosy up at a café with a cup of coffee or maybe eating a meal at a restaurant. Tips are appreciated but not expected, except at up-scale restaurants where a 10% tip will do. The estimates are for Copenhagen/Aarhus and you can expect to pay less in most other cities.

Main course at a mid-scale restaurant: $20-$30 / 150-200 kr. excluding drinks
Coffee at a café: $4-$7 / 25-45 kr.
Draft beer (0.5 liter) at a bar/café: $7-$9 / 45-60 kr

School and Day Care

Most international schools and daycare institutions in Copenhagen cost $4600-$8300 in annual fees per child (though some institutions offer sibling discounts). Public daycare is cheaper, and you can sign up as soon as you and your child have received your Danish social security numbers.


Public transportation is convenient and widely used in all of Denmark. You can buy single tickets, but it is cheaper to get a travel card if traveling often. If you’re traveling by train between different parts of the country, you can get heavily discounted tickets if you buy them well in advance.

One-way metro or bus ticket (staying within city limits): $2.30 / 15 kr.
DSB one-way ticket Aarhus-Copenhagen (bought well in advance): $23 / 150 kr.


Jeans: $60 / 400 kr.
Winter coat: $120 / 800 kr.
Movie ticket: $15 / 100 kr.
Gym membership (monthly): $40 / 250 kr.
Dentist (cleaning/check-up): $90 / 600 kr.