Living in Tbilisi as an expatriate

Caffeinate Your Tbilisi Expat Journey: Find Essential Info and Connect with Expatriates Today

Image of Tbilisi

Nestled in the foothills of the Caucasus Mountains, Tbilisi is a melting pot of European and Asian influences, steeped in ancient history. With a rich cultural heritage dating back over 1,500 years, it boasts a compelling mix of architectural styles, from towering medieval fortresses to elegant Art Nouveau buildings, and quaint Soviet-era structures. Bask in the warm Georgian sun while sipping on the fiery local elixir, chacha, and soak up the frenzied bustle of the city's bustling streets.

Tips for expats in Tbilisi

Visa requirements

Georgia allows citizens from over 100 countries to enter and stay in the country for up to one year without a visa. However, a residency permit must be secured after five days of consecutive residence. Foreigners must have a valid passport, travel insurance, and proof of income or funds covering their living expenses.

Language resources

The majority of the population in Tbilisi speaks Georgian, with Russian and English also widely spoken in the city. Language learning resources are comprehensive, and expatriates can enroll in language courses and attend language exchange events to help them adapt to their new environment.

Cost of living for expats in Tbilisi


The cost of living in Tbilisi is moderate, and finding decent accommodation is relatively easy, as the city has ample housing options available to suit every budget. Rental costs in shared apartments range from 100 to 200 Lari ($34-$70 USD) per month, depending on the location. Single-bedroom apartments start around 400 Lari ($150 USD), while two to three-bedroom apartments can run upwards of 800 Lari ($300 USD) per month. House rentals start from around 1,500 Lari ($565 USD) for a three-bedroom apartment in a good neighborhood.


Tbilisi's supermarkets are well-stocked and offer a diverse selection of local and imported products. Imported goods are relatively expensive, so it's best to buy local produce to keep costs low. Most food items are affordable, with a basic grocery list consisting of bread, milk, rice, chicken, vegetables, and fruits costing approximately 100 to 200 Lari ($38-$75 USD) per week for a single person.


Tbilisi's transportation system is comprehensive, and the cost is low compared to other European cities. A one-way trip on the metro or bus costs 0.6 Lari (around $0.25 USD), while a ten-ride ticket costs 3 Lari ($1.18 USD). Taxis are reasonably priced, and most are equipped with meters that charge from 1 to 1.8 Lari ($0.39-$0.71 USD) per km. Uber, Bolt, and Yandex are also popular choices for getting around the city, and fares usually cost 80 to 150 Lari ($30-$57 USD) for most trips.

Climate in Tbilisi

Tbilisi's climate is continental, with four distinct seasons. Summers are hot and dry, with temperatures averaging 26°C (79°F). Winters, on the other hand, can be bitterly cold, with an average temperature of 2°C (36°F), frequently dropping below freezing. Snowfall is common, and the city experiences ice-covered streets, making it essential to keep warm and savor the crisp winter atmosphere.

Job market in Tbilisi

Tbilisi's job market is thriving, with a mix of traditional and modern industries. The city is known for its burgeoning tech sector and flourishing creative hubs, drawing a young, innovative crowd. With a low unemployment rate of around 15%, and foreign companies establishing a base in Tbilisi, it's an excellent destination for skilled workers looking for employment opportunities.

Healthcare in Tbilisi

The healthcare system in Tbilisi is modern, efficient, and most importantly, affordable. The city has a solid network of hospitals, clinics, and healthcare centers throughout its various neighborhoods, with high-quality medical care readily available. Foreigners can rest easy as English is widely spoken amongst medical professionals in Tbilisi.

Transport in Tbilisi

Tbilisi's transportation system is impressive, incorporating a metro system, buses, trolleybuses, and trams. The metro is efficient and reliable, with stations located throughout the city. While car ownership is rising, your travel experience can be smooth and comfortable by using the metro and other public transport options.

Safety in Tbilisi

Tbilisi is generally a safe city for expats, although precautions are essential as in any other urban area. The city's violent crime rate is low, and people should exercise caution in crowded places, such as markets and crowded streets. Most areas are safe, and expats should be wary of pickpocketing and petty theft. Nonetheless, the police force in Tbilisi is efficient and reliable, and English is commonly spoken.

Neighborhoods in Tbilisi

  1. Vera

    Vera is a trendy neighborhood in the heart of Tbilisi, featuring chic dining hotspots, boutique shops, and art galleries. This area is particularly popular amongst young expats, artists, and students due to its hipster vibe and relatively low rent costs.

  2. Sololaki

    Sololaki is the most exclusive neighborhood in Tbilisi, boasting some of the city's most luxurious buildings, high-end restaurants, and designer stores. This high-end neighborhood is the preferred location for expats seeking an upscale lifestyle.

  3. Chugureti

    Chugureti is a lively neighborhood, renowned for its vibrant cultural scene and thriving bars and cafes. The area's proximity to the city's tech hub, Fabrika, makes it a perfect location for tech-savvy expats seeking a dynamic atmosphere. The price of accommodation in Chugureti is relatively high, although there are some affordable housing options available.

Attractions in Tbilisi

  1. Metekhi Church

    Metekhi Church, situated in the heart of the Old City, is an architectural gem that reflects the city's rich history. Built-in the 13th century, it's a stunning example of medieval Georgian architecture, standing majestically overlooking the Mtkvari River.

  2. Narikala Fortress

    Narikala Fortress located on a hilltop overlooking the city, is one of Tbilisi's most iconic landmarks. Built-in the 4th century, this impressive fortress contains winding paths, watchtowers, and breathtaking panoramic views of the city.

  3. Museum of Modern Art

    The Museum of Modern Art, located in the Vake district, is an exciting showcase of some of the most cutting-edge Georgian and international artworks. It holds a reputation for hosting contemporary exhibitions and cultural events.

International Schools in Tbilisi

  1. Tbilisi American School

    Tbilisi's American School is located in the picturesque community of Vake, in the southwestern part of the city. Established in 1996, the school provides high-quality education, attracting an international student body.

    The Tbilisi American School offers a diverse range of subjects, including language courses, math, science, and humanities. The school follows the US education model, with a strong emphasis on critical thinking, research, and creativity.

  2. British International School

    The British International School is nestled in the upmarket neighborhood of Chugureti. Founded in 2011, the school has gained a reputation for delivering quality international education in Georgia.

    The British International School follows the British National Curriculum and offers instruction in English, mathematics, science, and humanities. Its state-of-the-art facilities and experienced faculty make it an exceptional choice for international students in Tbilisi.

  3. German German International School

    The German-German International School is situated in the upmarket Vake neighborhood. It's under German international school standards and offers classes from Kindergarten to secondary school levels.

    This school offers instruction in German and English, focusing on the German National Curriculum and the International Baccalaureate Programme in secondary school. It provides great opportunities for students to learn German in addition to having a sound pedagogical foundation.

Useful expat resources in Tbilisi

Expat destinations in Georgia