WAGES VS COST OF LIVING
Customer Service wages are good depending on where you work.
Where and how to choose a job?
When you are considering a customer service position abroad, obviously it is good to do some research. What will you earn and what are your expected cost? This article is meant to give you an idea on Wage vs Cost of Living in Europe. Of course, we use a comparison between the EU countries.
Wages are different in each country, because wages are always reflected to national standards. In some countries salaries will be lower, but in other countries a wage can be a lot of money. The key question is how you should interpret a salary. Because a low salary is not necessarily a bad thing. Although we understand that, if you are used to paying € 6,00 for a pint in your home town, a wage proposal of € 925/month is hard to imagine.
For this overview we looked at the minimum wage compared to the average customer service wage in a country. In many countries the CS wage is above the minimum wage, but bear in mind that a lot of people only earn minimum wage, while having the same expenses as everybody else. Or in other words, some countries offer a really good situation comparing minimum and CS wage.
Wages for CS vary in each countries. Some countries have embraced the industry more than others. In these countries the CS wage will rise further above the national minimum wage. Otherwise, wage differences in the same country also exist and can depend on the language you work with and/or your nationality. Officially – according the EU Labor Right equal pay for equal work – every customer service agent in the same company, should receive the same wage. Unfortunately this is not always the case, especially in Eastern Europe. Different languages receive different wages. (And often local nationals receive less than mother tongue speakers for the same job.)
On the bright side, in many outsource destination countries there is a growing shortage of people resulting in higher wages over the past years. Our advice: before you set out to work somewhere, inform yourself of the wages, cost of living and ask to receive your offer via email and not just over the phone.
A very important aspect of living abroad are the cost of living. How much will you spend every month? Cost of living are your monthly spending on groceries, rent, internet, traveling etc? Here it is important to distinguish between how much you earn and what you can do with your money. The difference is that a salary might seem low, but if you have more financial possibilities, simply said you have a better situation.
The question to ask yourself is what can you do with a minimum wage in cities like Paris, Rome, Amsterdam? In these cities, most likely if you need a new pair of jeans you need to save money for a couple of months before you can afford it. Would you be able to eat out in restaurants a lot? Compare this to for example Sofia, Warsaw or Prague, where the cost of living are much lower. With the wages there you will not experience these financial restrictions that much. The wages are far less, but that pint will cost you only € 1,50 or less.
In the last column you find the Cost of Living Index taken from Numbeo. This website indexes all sorts of user expenses in many countries. The index basically means that if something cost € 100 on average, then the indexation tells you what that same item will cost on average in the respective country. Be careful interpreting this index, because for example designer clothes, domestic appliances and international foods will cost similar in all countries. The main differences you will experience in expenses such as rent, groceries, transportation and going out.
|Country||Net Minimum Wage||Net CS Wage||%||Cost of Living Index|
|€ 1.500||€ 1.755||+17%||81.74|
|€ 1.563||€ 1.833||+17%||83.35|
|€ 286||€ 1.000||+249%||41.21|
|€ 505||€ 703||+39%||55.06|
|€ 514||€ 888||+73%||50.09|
|€ 540||€ 961||+80%||57.65|
|€ 1.541||€ 2.117||+37%||83.86|
|€ 1.599||€ 1.634||+2%||74.35|
|€ 546||€ 844||+55%||63.15|
|€ 309||€ 628||+103%||48.60|
|€ 2.130||€ 2.503||+18%||123.96|
|€ 1.509||€ 1.801||+19%||85.45|
|€ 352||€ 634||+80%||53.42|
|€ 396||€ 446||+13%||53.24|
|€ 1.430||€ 1.832||+28%||82.69|
|€ 379||€ 647||+71%||45.20|
|€ 623||€ 748||+20%||55.86|
|€ 273||€ 442||+62%||39.71|
|€ 454||€ 819||+80%||50.41|
|€ 625||€ 729||+17%||59.65|
|€ 824||€ 1.514||+84%||61.75|
|€ 2.709||€ 2.774||+2%||131.39|
|€ 1.300||€ 1.457||+12%||75.85|
As promised the Top 10 best countries for working in Customer Service in Europe, as per spending possibilities. According to these statistics the best countries to live with a position working in Customer Service are:
|Top 10 Countries||% Advantage||Cost of Living Index||Advantage|
National minimum wages are set for residents to be able to live and pay all their bills and cost of living. We have no comment whether these amounts or cost are fair. What you can understand is that the better your financial position in a country, the more financial freedom you will enjoy with the price levels in that country. In other words, the easier it is to pay your monthly obligations, the more money you have left for extra’s.
Bulgaria offers the most financial freedom of all countries in Europe at the moment. Keep in mind that this freedom only exists living and working in Bulgaria. And not to underestimate, traveling abroad with a Bulgarian wage is harder, because the Bulgarian currency Leva is worth 50% of a Euro. These numbers also do not say anything about the quality of life in any of these countries.
For a complete comparison we invite you to also read our articles on Customer Service Wage vs Rent. By comparing articles you will get an even better overview to make a well informed decision on working abroad.
We hope you enjoyed this article and that it was useful to you. For comments join us on Facebook or write us.