So…what is the cost of living in Honolulu, Hawaii?
When moving to Hawaii in 2007, I did experience sticker shock. I was renting a room for $600/month. Groceries were/are crazy expensive and I never, ever bought milk (until my son was born).
In 2008, Hawaii was the first state to average $4 a gallon, for gasoline, but I was riding a moped and a gallon went a loooong way!
Salaries, in Hawaii, are low when measured against those on the mainland. Case in point: As a Chemist, my wife’s annual salary was $25,000 under the national average. As a Civil Engineer, she still makes $25K less than the national norm.
I found a “cost of living calculator”, on CNN Money’s website, to compare the cost of living in Hawaii with that of other cities/towns. The cities I chose for the comparison were:
- Cheyenne, Wyoming
- San Jose, California
- Anchorage, Alaska
- Orlando, Florida
- Ames, Iowa
I used a $35K salary, in Hawaii, as a baseline.
Comparable salary $30,120
Wyoming was ranked the number one state to retire in, by CNN, so I was curious as to the cost of living. All commodities were considerably less except for health care which is out-of-control nationwide! I went fly fishing, in Jackson Hole, Wyoming, in 1978.
|Health Care||15% less|
Comparable salary $43,029
Wow, salaries are high in the Bay Area! I grew up in San Jose and lived my first 24 years there. I remember the cost of housing being pretty comparable to Honolulu. When gas hit $4 a gallon in Hawaii, San Jose was right behind.
|Health Care||4% more|
Comparable salary $25,722
In a recent Gallup Poll, Alaska was named the happiest state in America (don’t know how you measure wellbeing). I was “happy” to see Hawaii came in second place. My grand-father and mother lived in Seward, Alaska for a short time in the late 1940’s.
|Health Care||25% more (Ho! Dat's lots)|
Comparable salary $20,040
When my family and I visited Orlando, for our Disneyworld vacation, we loved the weather. It was 70 degrees in December! Of course, my wife was checking out the real estate scene and found plenty of nice homes at $200K and under.
|Health Care||17% less|
Comparable salary $19,417
I always thought it would be cool to live in a collage town. Of course, a great college football tradition would definitely be a plus for me. According to livability.com, Ames, Iowa is the best college town to live in (Home to the Iowa State Cyclones).
|Health Care||13% less|
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