THE CHILEAN PESO
Chile’s official currency is the Chilean Peso, denoted as CLP. The banknotes in circulation are CLP 1,000, 2,000, 5,000, 10,000, 10,000, 20,000. The coins in circulation are 1, 5, 10, 10, 50, 100 and 500 pesos. Most people in Chile call 1,000 CLPs “a luca”. 1€ varies between CLP700 and 850.
COST OF LIVING IN CHILE
The cost of living in Chile is much higher than in neighbouring countries, such as Peru or Bolivia, and is almost as high as in Western countries. This cost is often surprising for an expatriate who has just arrived in Chile. So, if you are considering moving to this country, make sure you have a sufficient budget. Santiago is by far the most expensive place in Chile, and if you live in the provinces, you can easily reduce your budget by 30%. Here is an overview of the cost of living in Santiago.
The price per square meter is US$2,300 (but can go down to US$1,600 and up to US$3000 depending on the neighbourhood).
For the rental, an apartment in Providencia (city center), will cost between CLP420,000 and CLP 720,000, an apartment in Vitacura (upscale district) CLP1,300,000 and CLP2,000,000. A house in the same neighbourhood will cost between CLP1,500,000 and CLP3,000,000.
The price of gasoline is at CLP850 per litre, and a metro trip costs about CLP800.
Food in supermarkets is quite expensive. Jumbo offers a large number of choices but at high prices. There are lower-cost chains, such as Lider or Unimarc.
Fresh produce in the markets will cost much less. You can go to Vega, the largest market in Santiago.
If you are travelling with a tourist agency, plan a fairly high budget. However, you can travel at a lower price. Low-cost aircraft lines such as JetSmart or Sky offer very low prices, starting from CLP6000. While high quality hotels exist throughout Chile, there are plenty of inns and small hotels offering cheap prices, starting at US$15 per night with breakfast included in the most popular tourist destinations in the country.
Chile has a large bus network with very attractive prices. Count about US$30 for 1,000 km.
Renting a car costs about US$56 per day.