Romania is extremely attractive for people looking for a cheap country to live in. While it is in the European Union, it has one of the lowest costs of living in Europe, making it an amazing choice for people who wish to retire here, as well as digital nomads or those who get their income from outside the country.
UPDATE: This article was published in Janaury 2017, but it has been rewritten and updated with 2018 numbers in February 2018.
But what about those looking to move to Romania and work here? In today’s article, we’ll cover that aspect by looking at the minimum wage in Romania, as well as the average salary in Romania.
In my opinion, this paints a better and clearer picture of the country as a whole: by knowing the minimum and average salary in a country, you won’t just know where your level of income would place you if you were to live here, but you also what to expect from the jobs market itself. So let’s get it started!
What is the minimum wage in Romania in 2018?
At the moment of writing this article, the minimum salary in Romania is 1,162 RON (which is around 250 Euros or $310). We’re talking about the net salary / take-home salary, so this is actually what an employee brings home after taxes and all contributions (like health insurance and pension contribution) is paid.
If you’re interested in the gross salary, that is 1,900 RON (so this is before tax). It has increased to this value starting January 1st 2018, following contact increases in 2017. For example, in January 2017 the gross minimum wage was 1,250 RON then it was increased to 1,450 RON before getting to today’s value.
Conclusion: The Take Home minimum wage in Romania is 1,162 RON (250 Eur or $310).
What is the average wage in Romania in 2018?
A funny thing about the average salary in Romania in 2018 is this: even though the minimum wages have seen spectacular gains recently, the average wages didn’t follow the same trend. On the contrary, some people are earning less money in 2018 because of heavy changes in the tax system, but overall the average wage increased a bit compared to previous years.
Back to actual values, the average take-home salary in Romania in 2018 is around 2,360 RON per month (510 Euros or $630). You can check out the National Institute of statistics for updated monthly values of the average wage in the country.
An interesting thing to note about the average salary in Romania is that it kept growing – slowly but steadily – over the past few years. Compared to 2013, for example, the average wage increased by about 100 Euros. This is a 25% increase and things could keep going up in the near future as well.
Another thing to consider when thinking about average wages is that the numbers are usually bigger in larger cities (Bucharest, Brasov, Cluj, Constanta, Timisoara etc) and get closer to the minimum in the smaller cities. In other words, you the potential to earn more in the larger cities but the cost of living there is also higher.
Cost of living
Back in 2014, I wrote an article detailing how you can live in the country on $1,000 per month. Despite the increase in the minimum and average wages in Romania since writing that article, the cost of living did not increase too much so I think that might still be doable.
The increased revenue in the country was met by tax cuts and lower prices for food, resulting in a slightly better standard of living and not being a result of excessive inflation or increased prices. So the cost of living has remained pretty much the same over the years and there are no signs that it should increase drastically in the near future – although you never know.
If you want to read a more in-depth look at the cost of living in Romania, you can check out my latest article on this matter. I plan to update it as well to 2018 numbers – and it might be already updated when you’ll check it out.
Best paid jobs in Romania
Finding a job in Romania – especially if you don’t speak the language – could prove difficult to say the least. The bureaucracy and employment systems are old and outdated and plain stupid. I remember reading an article a while ago about Noble prize winners who would not be allowed to become University teachers in Romania because they would not meet the silly criteria (not that any Noble prize winner wanted to start teaching in Romania…)
However, there are some areas where it’s easier to find jobs in the country and fortunately these are also the best paying jobs in Romania. Think about large corporations and IT and you have a clear picture!
These were the best paying jobs in the country in 2016, with the mention that 2018 data will follow a similar trend (take-home average salary per month):
1. IT: 5,340 RON (1,185 Euros per month)
2. Oil extraction: 4,829 RON (1,070 Euros per month)
3. Heavy industry: 4,450 RON (985 Euros per month)
4. Insurance and private pensions: 4,309 RON (955 Euros per month)
5. Banks: 4,280 RON (950 Euros per month)
Hopefully knowing the minimum and average salary in Romania will paint a clearer picture on the actual cost of living, the job prospects you’d have and how far your money would take you in case you’re living on income from a different country.