Australian spending habits

What do you really spend your money on?

Check out our infographic below to see how Australians spent their money in 2016. You can also find out what you spend your money on, by using the TrackMySPEND mobile app.

View the accessible text version of the infographic

Australias spending habits infographic

What do Australians really spend their money on? (accessible text version)

General living expenses

In 2016, Australian households spent $666 billion on general living costs, including:

  • $12.6 billion a year on meat versus $2.6 billion a year on seafood
  • $14.9 billion a year on alcohol versus $1.6 billion a year on tea and coffee
  • $65.8 billion a year on cars versus $2.7 billion a year on public transport
  • $20.5 billion a year on brains versus $7.1 billion a year on beauty
  • $80.3 billion a year on recreation versus $38.5 billion a year on medical
  • $20.4 billion a year on fashion versus $2.7 billion a year on gadgets
  • $13.4 billion a year on personal care versus $0.45 billion a year on pet pampering.

The average household is estimated to have spent $74,301 on general household living costs in 2016.

Weekly spending - state versus state:

  • NT - $1,700 average weekly total
  • ACT - $1,670 average weekly total
  • NSW - $1,525 average weekly total
  • VIC - $1,430 average weekly total
  • WA - $1,429 average weekly total
  • QLD - $1,359 average weekly total
  • SA - $1,192 average weekly total
  • TAS - $1,141 average weekly total.

State by state spending on individual items:

  • Chocolate: TAS spends nearly double what the NT spends on chocolate each week ($5.57 vs $2.81)
  • Dental: ACT spend most on dental ($13.73 each week)
  • Greens: The NSW Blues need to eat more greens, spending just $5.21 per week
  • Overseas holidays: ACT spend the most on overseas holidays ($59.49 per week)
  • Crash repairs: Are South Aussies better drivers? They spend the least on crash repairs (61c each week)
  • ACT ($3.11) is mad for movies each week, whereas WA ($1.38) has flicked the flicks.

Weekly spending on perfume in each state and territory:

  • ACT - $1.56
  • VIC - $1.27
  • NSW - $1.01
  • QLD - 92c
  • SA - 82c
  • TAS - 75c
  • NT - 59c
  • WA - 52c

WA and NT spend drastically less per week on perfume. 

Average weekly Australian household costs

  • $20 - bakery products
  • $44 - meals in restarants
  • $8 - shoes
  • $15 - household appliances
  • $17 - mobile phone
  • $18 - child care
  • $8 - audio visual equipment
  • $6 - books and newspapers
  • $77 - holidays
  • $13 - animal expenses
  • $29 - personal care
  • $24 - health practitioners.

Weekly spend by life stage

  Lone person aged under 35 Couple only
(At least one person aged under 35)
Couple with kids
(youngest child under 5)
Couple with kids
(youngest child between 5-14)
Couple with kids
(youngest child 15 and above)
Housing $284 $381 $458 $355 $359
Fuel & power $24 $35 $48 $54 $53
Food & drink $122 $239 $282 $336 $332
Clothing & footwear $18 $54 $62 $64 $61
Medical & health expenses $23 $69 $85 $104 $110
Alcohol $22 $39 $28 $35 $47
Transport $97 $243 $247 $309 $292
Recreation $83 $176 $158 $263 $243
TOTAL $849 $1,572 $1,833 $2,085 $1,990

In the 3 minutes it took you to explore this infographic, Australian households spent $3,799,910. Be the boss of your money. Download the TrackMySPEND app.

Source

Australian Bureau of Statistics Household Expenditure Survey, 2015-16.

Note:  The items listed in the 'Weekly spend by life stage' table do not add up to the totals because some categories were not included.The categories not included were household furnishings and equipment, household services and operation, personal care, miscellaneous goods and services and tobacco products.


Related links


Last updated: 15 Mar 2018