Cost to Retire in Vilnius Lithuania

Today, I will share our estimated monthly costs to retire early in Vilnius Lithuania including rent, groceries, utilities, internet, cell phone, restaurants, drinking water, laundry, and transportation if the two of us retire here on a tight budget.

Google Map

Vilnius is the capital of the country of Lithuania in Eastern Europe. I first came to Vilnuis in 2013 and fell in love with the place. So we came back here to show you and to update cost of living estimates.

I move forward through the world one country at a time without going back to the United States. I am lucky I was born in the USA or my world travel life would not have been possible.

I share what I learn in each country about what things cost. I do feet-on-the-ground research instead of gathering data from 10k miles away, like the other guys.

Many people spend more money living overseas than I do. So, I will also share more typical higher estimated costs of retiring in addition to mine.

While I talk about what things cost, I will share the video we took with our feet on the ground in Vilnius Lithuania. The beautiful woman you see in the videos with me is Qiang. Qiang has traveled the world with me since we met in Malaysia in 2017.

To learn my secrets to living this life, grab a free copy of my eBook, How I Fired My Boss and Traveled the World for 17 Years, at

After sharing what things cost, I will share my overall retirement desirability score after discussing retiree concerns such as medical, visas, walkability, weather, Internet speeds, food, real estate, things to do, social considerations, expat considerations, and a few other things.

Estimated Costs to Retire in Vilnius Lithuania

Rents: I found this furnished studio apartment with a long-term lease at 380 Euros (411 USD) per month in Vilnius. If you rent for a short term on Airbnb it would be much more expensive.

A larger flat with more space could easily cost twice as much per month. So for the middle range expenses, I estimate USD 800 per month or more depending upon area and size.

Here is the process we use to find great apartments. So, we will show you a table of all expenses in a moment. We will use 411 USD per month for our lower rent estimate and $800 per month for the middle cost of living estimate for expats who want more space.

In case these rents are too high for you, cities in Lithuania just a few hours away can be as much as 50% cheaper, and even lower in more ruler areas.

Utilities: For a place this size, the year-round average for our utilities we estimate would be about USD 130 per month. The utilities would cost more for the larger space, starting at around $200 USD per month.

Groceries: We would shop in the farmers market for fresh fruits and vegetables, and purchase nonperishable foods and other things like shampoo and detergents in the grocery stores. We estimate about $380 USD per month for groceries. Other expats are likely to spend more on imported groceries they miss from home spending $490 USD per month or more on groceries.

Restaurants: We would eat out twice per week mostly in more local-style restaurants averaging about $7 to $10 USD per meal per person and one or two splurges per month of $10 to $15 USD per meal per person. If you add all that up, we would spend around $220 per month for the two of us. We may have a beer here and there, but that is covered below in alcohol.

Other expats are likely to eat more Western-style foods in expensive expat-style restaurants and less in local-style restaurants, so they would likely spend more like $325 per month for 2 people in restaurants. It is lifestyle-dependent.

Cell Phone Data: We paid about $4 USD for a prepaid PILDYK SIM card with 33 GB of data for 30 days. My Android phone will act as a hotspot so we can both be on the internet when we are out of the house together.

Other (retired) expat couples are likely to buy two prepaid SIM cards so they would need about $8 USD per month.

Laundry: The apartments all seemed to have clothes washing machines. The above grocery estimate includes laundry detergent.

Drinking Water: We read online that the water is clean here and many people drink water from the tap but we would be more careful. We didn’t see reverse osmosis delivery in 20-liter jugs here so we would probably get a Brita water filter. The filter refills would be about $5 USD per month.

Internet: ATT Test said our Airbnb wifi router had 26 Mbps down and 34 Mbps upload speeds. We read online that these speeds cost about $18 USD per month for in-home wifi.

Public Transportation: Single-use 30-minute public transportation tickets cost $0.36 USD for seniors and $0.40 USD for working-age people, or $0.76 USD each way for the two of us each way. We would average two round trips per week, for the two of us, which is 8 tickets per week, 32 tickets per month, or about $25 USD per month for the two of us. We would probably take another 4 Bolt Taxi App rides per month averaging about $12 USD each, or $48 USD per month. So total transportation would be about $107 per month for the two of us.

Other expats might spend more on taxis and less on public transportation, so I estimate $160 per month for them.

Alcohol (Optional): Domestic beers in grocery stores in Vilnius start at 1.00 Euros, $1.08 USD for a half-liter. That is about the size of a tall boy in the USA. In bars and restaurants, half-liter draft domestic draft beers run from about $5 to 7 USD. We estimate about $120 per month on alcohol for the two of us.

Many other expats would spend a higher amount for imported foreign or craft beers in expat bars, so about $220 USD per month for 2 people assuming they are not into imported whiskey or wine.

Entertainment (Optional): We would budget about $200 per month for entertainment for the two of us. We enjoy doing more do-it-yourself kinds of entertainment so expats would spend a little more, maybe $300 per month, for 2 of them?

Summary of Costs in Vilnius


















Cell Data






Drinking Water


















Optional Total









Optional Total



Our above lower cost estimates would be for the two of us living on a tight budget. The middle estimate is just an example of what other expats might spend for these expenses if they moved here.

To understand what it would cost you to live here, you must put your feet on the ground, see what you would choose to rent, eat, drink, and entertain yourself, and add it all up. It doesn’t matter what anyone else spends because we are all different.

Vilnius Lithuania Retirement Desirability Factors

Before you move anywhere outside your home country, create a list of things that you must have for your happy retirement. Here are my retirement desirability factors and I will rank each as high, medium, or low before assigning an overall retirement desirability score to Vilnius, Lithuania.

Walkability: High. As usual, we walked everywhere in Vilnius. We rode a Bolt Taxi to our apartment on arrival and back to the bus station when we left for Poland. We found all of our daily needs within a 3 to 25-minute walk of our apartment. So we would not need a car if we lived in Vilnius.

Internet: High. The wifi in our Airbnb was 26 Mbps down and 34 upload speeds. That is good enough for us to do Zoom calls, upload YouTube videos, and watch Netflix.

Food: High. There was a Farmers market just 2 blocks from our apartment (link below) and a great little grocery just next to the Farmers market. For fresh fruits, vegetables, and meats, we would shop in the Farmers Market. Links to everything we discuss today are at our webpage,

There are local Lithuanian restaurants with delicious lunch specials including soup and main courses and side dishes starting around $8 USD. So we would eat out mostly during lunch. There is also a large selection of foreign restaurants and eve a few Asian restaurants with prices running from $10 to $15 USD per meal. Our favorite restaurants are also listed in the full report.

Weather: Medium. Average daytime highs in Vilnius are 28F (-2C) in January but increase to 73F (23C) in July. Average daytime lows in Vilnius are 19F (-7C) in January but increase to 55F (13C) in July. The best weather runs from May through September.

The rainy season is June through September. It typically snows November through March but there seems to be less snow in recent years.

Things to Do: High. Vilnius has one of the largest most well-preserved old towns in Europe. We found ourselves walking the old town for hours with wide eyes. As a capital city, Vilnius hosts many cultural events, such as the Vilnius Light Festival, Vilnius Book Fair, Kaziukas (Spring) Fair, Museum Night, Street Music Day (1000s of Artists), Vilnius Pink Soup Fest (some sound goofy, but they are big here), Culture Night, Christopher Summer Festival (40 events), Vilnius Marathon, The Nation Fair (gourmet food paradise), Vilnius Jazz (4 Days), Christmas in Vilnius, plus beer festivals, and large live music concerts of jazz, rock, and electronic. It also has a great nightlife in the old town area. There are also coffee shops galore, shopping malls, cultural tours, and river tours.

Social Considerations: High. About 31% of the population in Vilnius speaks English. People in Vilnius who work at hotels, restaurants, retail stores, and other public-facing occupations often speak English. In general, if someone is under age 35, there is a pretty good chance they will speak English. But English is less widely spoken as you move towards more rural areas.

Safety Considerations: High. Lithuania renewed its independence and international recognition quickly followed in 1990. When I last checked, the US State Department webpage for Lithuania published the lowest level 1 risk for Lithuania–“Exercise normal precaution.”  Numbeo surveys report that life feels safer in Vilnius Lithuania than in Beverly Hills, California, for example. But, you can compare Vilnius to other cities in the World at that link to see if it feels safer than your hometown. You can also review my report, How to Travel the World Safely, which is how I have remained safe traveling the world for 17 years. We went out late in Vilnius walking and never felt a hint of trouble.

Expat Community: High. Here are a few Facebook pages that cater to English-speaking expats living in Vilnius Lithuania: 1, 2, 3, 4. These online expat communities are great for learning all about things that expats want to learn when they first move overseas. They are more likely to answer questions they have not answered recently. So, make sure to scroll down and/or search for previous questions asked and answered before posting any questions to the group.

Medical: High. This healthcare international comparison index ranks Lithuania 61st in the world, eight spots better than the United States which ranks 69th. There are different ways healthcare is rated, but this one seems to be considering quality of care in relation to what patients are charged.


So, make sure to ask around for referrals and establish relationships with doctors based on the feedback you have gotten from others who have used their services. The above Expats Facebook pages may be a good source for that information.

Tourist Visa: High. Lithuania is a member of the Schengen Visa countries. Citizens of many countries such as the UK, Australia, New Zealand, Canada, Malaysia, USA, and many many others, are given 90 days of visa-free entry upon arrival. Plus, we can stay in any Schengen member countries cumulatively for no more than 90 days of any 180-day period.

Lithuania Residence Permits: Medium. Non-EU citizens must apply for a temporary residence permit in order to stay longer than the 90-day Schengen period. There is presently no retirement visa per se for Lithuania. However, I read online that some visa agents can help foreigners obtain temporary residency permits by showing bank statements proving sufficient funds to sustain living in Lithuania, health insurance, and a valid passport along with the standard application forms. The temporary residence permit must be renewed after 2 years. You must hold a temporary residence permit for at least 5 years before applying for a permanent residence card.

Rather than promoting any one visa agency, I would recommend that you request a referral to an agent on one of the Facebook pages I shared above. Ask the expats there for an agent (or better yet, an immigration lawyer) who they have already successfully used to get residence permits.

Real Estate: High. When I read about it today, foreigners are allowed to purchase a house or apartments in Lithuania but there are restrictions on raw land. Today, I saw small apartments for sale in Vilnius starting for about $100k USD. However, I do not recommend buying real estate in a foreign country until you have lived there for an extended period of time making sure you love it. If you decide to buy real estate, you should also get your own lawyer who has no conflict of interest with you. For example, do not use a lawyer recommended by your real estate broker or your local lover.

Vilnius Lithuania Retirement Desirability Score: Medium. The winters are a little too cold for me. I like warmer year-round weather. It is not terrible weather but it is cool enough in the winter to make me want to fly south to warmer weather for 5 months of the year. But if you like city life and are comfortable with 4 seasons, and are attracted to the cultural aspects of being in one of the most beautiful capital cities in Eastern Europe then Vilnius would likely be highly desirable for you. It may also be highly desirable for you if you want to split your year, living summers in Vilinuis and flying south during the wontes.

What would it cost you to live in Vilnius Lithuania?

To get a better understanding of things you should add to our estimated cost of living watch this video: 9 Reasons You Can’t Retire on $1000 Month Overseas.

Most people will likely be unable to retire for the lower range estimate above. I give example reasons why in this report. Plus, this other report explains how to avoid coming home early with your tail between your legs.

Also, if you are going to try to retire cheap offshore, make sure to read my report, the Two Biggest Risks of Retiring Early for Cheap Offshore, which explains why you should have emergency funds available for unexpectedly large expenses.

You should also add anything to the above table that you spend money on in your home country that is not listed in the above table. Presumably, you find those things necessary in life. To do that, visit the Numbeo Vilnius and add anything not mentioned in the above table.

Never move anywhere until you have visited first personally to verify the living costs for your lifestyle and needs. I am not guaranteeing these prices. These are just my notes and estimates from the time of my visit and this post. Your costs will likely be drastically different depending on your lifestyle and the time since this post.

Many of the expats we meet living overseas are self-insured for medical care. That means that not everyone buys health insurance when they move overseas. That probably sounds crazy to many of you.

I didn’t carry medical insurance for most of my first 17 years living overseas. But last year I bought medical insurance. If you are wondering what it costs and what it covers, watch my medical insurance video at this link. This is not an affiliate link.

More typical expat living costs in Vilnius range from about $1800 to $3000 USD per month. But people spending that much often have higher savings, incomes, or pensions. They often report spending more on accommodations, entertainment, eating out more, traveling, and alcohol. Many also have more expensive cars, houses, or apartments.

Make sure to grab a free copy of my eBook, How I Fired My Boss and Traveled the World for 17 years, and how I pay for it all.

Short History of Vilnius

Vilnius is the capital and largest city in Lithuania with about 700k people living in the area.

Vilnius has the largest and best-preserved old towns in Europe and the Eastern most Baroque Architecture, a highly decorative style that developed in Italy in the 17th Century.

Legend has it, that Vilnius was established in the 14th century when the Grand Duke Gediminas of Lithuania, had a dream about a huge Iron Wolf standing on top of a hill howling loudly.

After a pagan priest interpreted the dream to mean the Grand Duke would build a city here, the Grand Duke built the castle and this city called Vilnius. The nearby Trakai Castle had formerly been the seat of the Grand Duke’s court.

At the time, Lithuania was known as the Grand Duchy. The Grand Duchy expanded its borders to include modern-day areas of Belarus, Ukraine, Poland, Moldova, and Russia.

Until 1569, the original Duke Gediminas’ hat was placed on each monarch’s head by the Bishop of Vilnius in Vilnius Cathedral during each inauguration.

In 1548, the reconstruction of the Palace of the Grand Duke of Lithuania was completed in the Renaissance style.

In the 17th century. Lithuania went through a terrible period of time called the Deluge. Russians invaded, then the Swedes invaded, and the Bubonic Plague invaded, and then fires burned much of the city to the ground and then the Russian Empire took over.

In the 18th century, Napoleon took over on his way to Russia, but the Russians eventually took it back.

In World War I, Lithuania was occupied by the German Army, but taken back again by the Russians at the end of WWI.

Between WWI and II, Poland took over Lithuania and was doing something akin to ethnic cleansing of Lithuanians which they called cultural assimilation.

When Germany invaded Poland in WWII, Lithuanians refused Hitler’s offer to free Lithuanians of Poland. Later, Russia and Germany agreed that Germany would get Poland and Russia would take Lithuania. But Germany took Lithuania back a year later.

Then the Germans gathered up almost all of the Jews in Lithuania and killed them before the end of WW2. When WWII ended, the Soviets occupied Lithuania again.

During WWII and the first 5 years of Russian occupation of Lithuania, Vilnius lost 90% of its population through murder, deportation, and exile. The Russian occupation of Lithuania ended in 1991.

After Lithuanians took control of their own country, they transformed it into one of the most beautiful and vibrant places in the world.

Vilnius Old Town Walking Tour

Google Map

Hall Market: The largest Food Market in Vilnius, try the bagels which were invented here by a Jewish person.

German Fountain: I just wanted you to see this lovely cafe-lined park so I put this fountain on the Google Map

Town Hall Square: The original town hall was built here in the 15th century of wood. It was burned to the ground by fire and then rebuilt in the 18th century as were most of the other buildings surrounding the square.

Užupio: This bohemian and laissez-faire neighborhood of Vilnius declared itself an independent nation with its constitution on April 1, 1997. The neighborhood’s Jewish population was killed during the Holocaust and the cemetery was destroyed by the Soviets.

When the Jews were killed, their abandoned homes here were occupied by squatters, the homeless, and prostitutes. It was one of the most neglected parts of Vilnius by the Soviets until Lithuania won its independence from the Soviets.

St. Anne’s Church: This Catholic Church was constructed in Gothic Brick style at the end of the 15th Century. Uncharistically, during the Soviet era, the church remained open and was even reinforced with steel.

Saint John’s Church: The church was built in the 14th century. The tower was built in the 16th century. After the 1737 fire, the Church was reconstructed in the Baroque style. Again, later in the 19th century, the Baroque style was removed and the original style was restored.

Pilies Street: is Old Town’s first main artery, walking street, and has since remained a mecca for cafes, restaurants, and markets.

The Palace of the Grand Duchy: Originally constructed in the 15th century for the rulers of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania it was the political, administrative, and cultural center of the Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth. The old palace was demolished and the palace you see now was rebuilt in renaissance style and completed in 2018.

Vilnius Cathedral Square: This is the main square of Vilnius. The original cathedral was built in 1251, the second cathedral burnt down in 1419, and the third was rebuilt in 1534. The coronations of the eight Lithuanian monarchs were conducted here by the Bishop of Lithuania during the 15th and 16th Centuries. The monument is of the Grand Duke who dreamed of the Iron Wolf and then built Vilnius.

Lucky Belly: This belly gives good luck to anyone who rubs it.

Where we stayed in Vilnius

We stayed at this Airbnb for $31 USD per night with the weekly discount before adding Airbnb fees, cleaning fees, and taxes which added another $13 per night. It was a great location. Everything we needed was within walking distance and I have listed all of that below under restaurants, shopping, and services. But if we moved here we would move further out to save money.

How we got to Vilnius Lithuania from Riga Latvia

From the Riga Bus Station, we took the bus to the Vilnius Bus Station. We bought our bus tickets to go to Vilnius Lithuania online at Lux Express for 8 Euros per person. The ride was about 5 hours including a bathroom break. We used the Bolt Taxi (APP) to get to and from both bus stations to our Airbnb apartments in both locations.

Restaurants, Bars, Services

Restaurants (prices in Euros)

Turgaus Bistro : Grandma food – 7.50 euro for lunch – soup + main course

Chačapuri @ Sodų gatvė: Georgian food – soup is delicious. bean soup 6.5, beef soup 6.9, beer 4.5

Boulangerie Vilnius: croissant 2 euro

Casa La Familia: Margarita 32cm pizza 11.50, with free drinking water

Confetti Canteen: Canteen – lunch set – 6.50euro . Soup + main course

Bernelių Užeiga Restaurant: National dishes potato dumpling cheese 8.50, potato pancake 7.9, beer 0.5L-4

Etno dvaras: Menu

Bars, Lounges (prices in Euros)

Devyniasdešimt aštunti: 0.5L – 5euro

Gringo pub: 0.5L – 5euro

Plus Plus Plus One: 0.5L 3euro

Plus Plus Plus Two: 0.5L 3euro


Luxe Express: Online tickets. Best bus service with toilet and free water and coffee

Maxima: Decent local supermarket

Farmers Market (Hall Market): Fresh fruits, vegetables, and meats.

Make sure to grab a free copy of my eBook, How I Fired My Boss and Traveled the World for 17 years, and how I pay for it all.