Are you planning an extended stay in Essaouira Morocco? Wondering how much a month in Essaouira might cost? One of Morocco’s most chilled out beach towns has lots to offer in the way of beautiful views and affordable living. It’s also a common destination for travellers, retired people, surfers and digital nomads. Here we’ll share with you our cost of living for one month in Essaouira.
When we decided to travel the world full-time, we set a monthly budget for ourselves of $2000 Canadian dollars (about $1,600 USD) per month. We know that it will vary depending on where we are in the world, but we plan to stick to it as best we can and hope it all evens out in the end.
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All figures below will be in US dollars and we’ll also convert to Euros in the conclusion. All costs are for both of us combined as a couple, not per person.
Let’s see how our cost of living compared to our budget:
We use AirBnb for most of our accommodation for a few reasons. First, hosts tend to give substantial discounts when booking for at least 28 days. Our plan is slow travel so this AirBnb discount works great with our plans. Second, when you use AirBnb, your internet, electricity, gas etc. are included in the total cost paid, so there are no surprises. Finally, booking with AirBnb allows us to earn credit card reward points (we love free travel points! learn more here. We can also book in our home currency on AirBnb.ca to avoid paying foreign transaction fees.
We couldn’t believe our luck with our AirBnb in Essaouira. It was absolutely our favourite Airbnb to date (and we’ve lived exclusively in Airbnb’s for 8 months now.) It was a gorgeous 3 bedroom 2.5 bathroom classic Moroccan home with a gorgeous rooftop terrace. We had an equipped kitchen, washing machine, ok wifi (by Moroccan standards), everything we needed. The only negative to mention is that the terrace got really dusty, really fast (Essaouria is known as the windy city, after all.) The home was in the north end of the Essaouira medina near the Bab Doukkala gate. We were surrounded by all the wonderful medina vendors, cafes, restaurants and shops galore, and really enjoyed the local feel of the area. Click here to see the AirBnb listing.
Total cost for accommodation for the month: $686 USD
Looking for short term accommodations in Essaouira? Here are some great deals
- $200+ Nightly – La Maison des Artistes – At the heart of the Old Medina, La Maison des Artistes is within walking distance to the souks, fishing port and beach.
- $100-200 Nightly – Ryad Watier – Ryad Watier is set in a typical Moroccan house renovated to offer the greatest comfort while preserving traditional features. Free Breakfast
- $0-$50 Nightly- Dar El Paco – Located in central Essaouira, this traditional Moroccan bed and breakfast is 300 m from the beach. Free Breakfast
All properties listed above are located within the heart of the medina in Essauoira. Many properties are available outside of the medina with great quality as well. You can check them out here
Essaouira is a quiet place and we mostly went there to relax after a few hectic days exploring the hustle that is the Marrakech medina. Walks through the Essaouira medina and on the long beach are absolutely free of course, so we didn’t spend a lot on activities. The one thing we did pay for was a horse ride on the beach. We were absolutely, hilariously bad at it, but our host was wonderful and it was a lovely way to spend a day out.
Total Cost for Activities for the month: $40 USD
Dining and Groceries
During our month in Essaouira our dining experiences covered a wide range of price points. From cheap street food to really nice restaurants. The vast majority of the food we ate, was absolutely delicious with only a few just “meh” experiences. Check out our Essaouira food tour video below for some of our top picks!
Total Cost for Dining out for One Month: $273 USD
While we love the dining out experience, we also have work to do. Therefore, we did a good amount of cooking for ourselves in our AirBnb. Having a fully equipped kitchen helps tremendously on these days. We made simple dishes like pasta, sandwiches, salads, eggs, etc.
Total Cost for Groceries for the Month: $320 USD
Cell Phone Plans in Morocco
Before arriving in Morocco we did a lot of research on local sim cards. For longer term travel, local sim cards are the best option. You’ll save loads of money on the roaming charges and high rates charged by your home carrier.
We chose Maroc Telecom as our provider because we would be travelling throughout Morocco and heard that they have the best coverage available. Each sim card cost less than $3 USD then we topped up by buying cards in 10 dirham increments.
Total Cost for Phone and Data for one Month: $12 USD
Looking for things to do in Essaouira?
- 1 hour horse ride on the beach
- Beachside Quad Bike Tour with Transfer
- 3 Hour Dromedary Ride and Overnight in a Berber Tent
Essaouira is a small place and is extremely walkable, so we didn’t spend a lot on getting around in that month. Essaouira’s taxis run on a flat rate system, so any ride within the city limits is 7 dirham, per person. We used the taxis only to haul groceries back home from the large Carrefour grocery store on the far south end of town.
To reach Essaouira from Morocco we shared a private transfer with another couple. It was a bit more expensive than the bus (which is about $8 USD per person), but was more comfortable and we could make stops whenever we chose.
Total cost for Transportation for One Month: $46 USD
Morocco doesn’t require a paid entry Visa for either Canadian or American citizens so we didn’t spend anything on that this month!
Total Cost for Visa for one month: $0
This category covers pretty much everything that’s not included above. We choose to include alcohol in miscellaneous, because we do enjoy a beer or a bottle of wine from time to time while hanging around the Airbnb. You might not drink and if you are planning a budget you can easily omit this cost. For us, alcohol makes up about 65% of this category.
Other miscellaneous expenses this month included haircuts for each of us (about $20 each), and a few dollars to take some photos of those adorable goats in trees you see in this area.
Total Miscellaneous Costs for one month: $148
One thing we can’t live without while on the road full time – Saves us lots of money too!
Cost of Living for One Month in Essaouira, Morocco
Looking at the table above, you can see that we came in almost $75 USD under budget. We are extremely pleased with this outcome. It feels great to confirm what we always expected – living abroad can be much cheaper than in your home country. These numbers were about 1/3 of what our typical expenses would have been in Canada for one month.
Have you lived in Morocco for any length of time? Were your numbers similar to our cost of living for one month in Essaouira? Do you have any other tips for potential travellers? Leave a comment and let us know. We would love to hear from you.