A Guide to the Cost of Living in San Antonio

The Alamo, iStock.com/SeanPavonePhoto

Think you can’t live in a big city without always spending a lot of money? Think again. San Antonio, Texas offers a dream mix of cultural hub excitement and affordability. With a healthy job market and various colleges and universities present, San Antonio is a great place for students and young professionals. You’ll have the alluring nature, culture, history, and food to look forward to in San Antonio, and you won’t have to spend a lot to enjoy it all.

The cost of living in San Antonio, Texas is well below the national average – 14% lower to be exact. Living in San Antonio is also cheaper than in other cities in Texas and in major cities in the United States. While your cost of living will depend on your career, your salary, and the real estate market in the neighborhood you choose, you can count on finding a way to enjoy San Antonio regardless of your budget. Learn more about the overall affordability that makes this city such an attractive place to live.

Cost of Living in San Antonio: The Basics

If you’re looking for big city living on a budget, you might want to consider San Antonio. San Antonio is one of the most important cultural hubs in Texas, but it’s also quite affordable, especially when you compare it to other cities of similar population size.

San Antonio is cheaper than Detroit, Dallas, Phoenix, Philadelphia, and San Diego. In other words, even if you search across the country, you’ll be hard pressed to find a city that offers a good deal the San Antonio way. Even though San Antonio is a large city, its cost of living is still below the national average in each category. If a big city is one of your most important deciding factors when finding the perfect places to live, San Antonio offers an intriguing choice.

Maybe you’ve already narrowed down your list of places to live in Texas. San Antonio also offers an affordable option compared to other cities in Texas. The cost of living in San Antonio is lower than Austin, Corpus Christi, Dallas, Fort Worth, and Houston.

Housing and utilities

If you move to San Antonio, you will need to pay rent and keep utilities. Fortunately, as with all areas of life in San Antonio, you can expect more affordable costs compared to other major cities and the United States in general. Housing expenses are 24% lower than the national average, with the average cost of rent in San Antonio, Texas, around $ 800 to $ 900 per month. The average rent in San Antonio is just over $ 900 for a one-bedroom apartment.

Utility prices are also lower than the national average, being 12% lower here. The relatively low cost of utilities is attractive; you will have to use them to stay comfortable. Texas has unforgivable weather conditions much of the year, and you will need to run your air conditioner in the summer. Even though the winters are relatively mild, the nights can be cool. Either way, you still can’t avoid higher utility bills when the seasons change.


San Antonio’s transportation costs are 11% lower than the national average. These expenses take into account items such as gasoline prices and bus fares. You will get what you pay for in terms of transportation choices in this city.

The bus system is not the most convenient for long distance trips, but it is relatively inexpensive. However, many residents depend on a car, which comes with additional costs, such as insurance and maintenance costs.

San Antonio also offers B-Cycle, a bike share program with more than 50 stations that let you take advantage of the city’s mostly flat topography and good weather. However, San Antonio is not the best city in America when it comes to cycling routes. If you depend on walking, try looking for apartments in downtown San Antonio. This area is one of the most walkable parts of San Antonio.

Other costs

You are also lucky in other aspects of everyday life. Grocery prices here are 17% lower than the national average, while healthcare costs are 9% lower than the national average.

Does your area affect the average cost of living in San Antonio?

While you can expect affordable overall costs throughout the city, the average rent in San Antonio, Texas depends on where you live.

With average rents closer to $ 500, some of the more affordable neighborhoods in San Antonio are:

More expensive areas may come with rental prices ranging from $ 1,000 to $ 2,000 per month. Some of the more expensive neighborhoods in San Antonio are:

In other words, you can find apartments in San Antonio to suit all budgets. Keep the average rent in the desired area in mind when you factor in the cost of living to determine how much you’ll need to spend each month.

Free activities in San Antonio

Another plus with living in San Antonio is plenty of free things to do. You’ll get free entry to a wide range of locations, including the Japanese Tea Garden, Artpace, and the San Antonio Art League & Museum. Even the Alamo offers free entry. What better way to stay on a budget than by packing your schedule with fun, free experiences?

If food culture, sports, or history don’t make you want to pack your bags and head to this Texas city right away, the cost of living in San Antonio certainly will.

Ready to Relocate? Search San Antonio homes and apartments for rent on Zumper and enjoy this city’s affordability.

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