Living Wage Series - Poland - September 2019 - In Zloty, per Month

The Living Wage is based on the concept that work should provide an adequate income to cover the necessary living costs of a family. WageIndicator uses prices from the Cost of Living Survey to calculate Living Wage in more than 70 countries. The Living Wage is an approximate income needed to meet a family’s basic needs including food, housing, transport, health, education, tax deductions and other necessities.

The following table summarises the varying expenditure and income needs for the three commonly occurring family household compositions.

Expenditure and Living Wage calculation (monthly rates in PLN)

  Typical family Standard family Single-adult
  from-to from-to from-to
Food expenses 1010-1280 1220-1560 305-390
Housing expenses 545-935 545-935 325-560
Transport expenses 180-200 180-200 90-100
Healthcare expenses 185-665 185-665 46-165
Education expenses 225-560 225-560 0
Other expenses 105-180 120-195 38-61
Total Expenditure 2250-3820 2475-4115 804-1277
Net Living Wage 1406-2388 1375-2286 804-1277
Gross Living Wage 1940-3300 1900-3160 1110-1770

Note: For more details see Living Wage FAQ.


Family Living Wages (monthly rates in PLN)

There is not a single answer to what is the adequate cost of living. The result is complex, as the cost of living varies by household composition, location, and employment pattern. The following table presents the Living Wage estimates for a set of most common family household compositions and under different assumptions about working hours.

Typical family (two parents + 1.3 children, 1.6 working) 1940-3300
Standard family (two parents + 2 children, 1.8 working) 1900-3160
Two parents and two children, 2 working 1710-2840
Two parents and two children, 1.5 working 2280-3790
Two parents and two children, 1 working 3420-5680
Two parents and three children, 1.6 working 2420-3900
Two parents and four children, 1.6 working 2690-4250
Single-adult without children, 1 working 1110-1770

Note: Results in the table are rounded.


Living Wages in Context (monthly rates in PLN)

The Minimum Wage is a national legally binding obligation on employers which often make no reference to a living standard. Living Wage describes the adequate living standard. The common goal of the many living wage campaigns currently taking place all over the world is to lift Minimum Wages levels to those of the Living Wages. WageIndicator presents Living Wages jointly with Minimum Wages, aiming to raise awareness concerning the remaining differences in levels. Living Wages are presented in context with other wage indicators including prevailing wages of workers over recent years.

  2016 2017 2018 2019
Minimum wage 1850 2000 2100 2250
Living Wage - Single Adult 1000-1590 1060-1670 1070-1700 1110-1760
Living Wage - Typical Family 1820-3100 1880-3180 1890-3230 1940-3300
Real wage of low-skilled worker - - 2380-2930 2840-3450
Real wage of medium-skilled worker - - 2470-3110 2890-3620
Real wage of high-skilled worker - - 3700-5230 4320-6060

Note: Table shows the lowest monthly Minimum Wage in a country, when available. Reported monthly earnings of workers in low-, medium-, and high-skilled occupations are obtained from the voluntary WageIndicator web survey on work and wages. Results in the table are rounded.


Food basket and food prices in PLN

The food expenditure is the main component of Living Wage and it is determined by the price of food basket. The food prices are taken from WageIndicator Cost of Living Survey which collects the actual prices of all items necessary to calculate the Living Wage. The composition of the food basket is taken from the national food balance sheets published by the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO). The food basket is scaled to 2,100 calories per person per day that is the nutritional requirement for good health proposed by World Bank (Handbook on poverty and inequality, 2009).

Food item Grams per day Energy (kcal) Price per kilo
Wheat, barley and cereals products 259 740 4-5.6
Rice 2 9 2.9-3
Meat (beef, pork, poultry) 451 802 15-17
Oils (soyabean, olive, palm) 22 186 -
Sugar (Raw Equivalent) 75 265 -
Milk - Excluding Butter 1176 520 2-2.4
Vegetables, Other 172 38 2-3
Potatoes and products 178 119 1-1
Butter, Ghee 16 112 14-15
Groundnuts (Shelled Eq) 5 14 15-20
Pulses, Other and products 0 1 4-4
Egg (price per 10 eggs) 18 26 60-80
Sunflowerseed Oil 3 27 -
Fish products 26 31 -
Beer (0.5 liter/pint) 239 117 -
Sweeteners, Other 1 3 2.3-2.3
Beans 1 4 1-3
Bananas 11 6 4-4
Soyabeans 0 1 -
Apples and products 99 48 2-3
Tomatoes and products 44 9 4-4
Onions 28 11 1.5-2
Oranges, Mandarines 22 7 4-5
Plantains 1 1 -
Peas 2 6 3-3
Roots, Other 0 0 2-2
Wine (bottle) 5 4 24-27
Pineapples and products 2 1 -
Cream 18 35 20-25
Olives (including preserved) 1 1 12-16
Honey 0 1 -
Citrus, Other 1 0 2.5-4.3
Lemons, Limes and products 4 1 5-5
Tea (including mate) 1 0 30-30
Grapefruit and products 3 1 3-4
Coffee and products 3 1 50-50


WageIndicator Living Wage background:

The WageIndicator Living Wage is set to provide acceptable living standard to a family of a particular size. WageIndicator presents Living Wages for several household types and working hours which reflect the most frequently found real situations in which people have to make a living: 1. Typical family Living Wage is a baseline estimate that respects the country specific conditions. Typical family is comprised of two adults and the number of children is given by country specific fertility rate (the average number of children a woman is expected to have during her lifespan). One adult is working full-time and the working hours of second adult are approximated by national employment rate. The total income earned by two adults paid living wage is sufficient to reach adequate living standard. 2. Standard family Living Wage is estimated for a family composed of two adults and two children (referred to as family 2+2). Living wage is calculated under different assumptions about working hours. These include that both adults work full-time (family employment rate is 2), or at least one adult works part-time or half-time (family employment rate is 1.8 and 1.5), or one adult does not work at all (i.e. patriarchal model with family employment 1). Alternatives refer to trade-offs between leisure and work and define what living wage represents. In every case the total income earned by two adults paid living wage is sufficient to reach adequate living standard. 3. Extended family Living Wage includes family with three or four children. One adult works full-time and the work intensity of second parent is approximated by national employment rate. 4. Individual Living Wage represents an acceptable standard of living for a single individual working full-time.

Data sources: WageIndicator Cost of Living Survey, World Bank Databank Fertility rate 2010-2014, ILO Estimated participation rate in 2017, FAO Food balance sheet in 2013.

WageIndicator useful links:

Publication Guzi, M., & Kahanec, M. (2019). Estimating Living Wage Globally. Amsterdam, WageIndicator Foundation
WageIndicator Wages in Context Map with the latest updates
All You Always wanted to Know about Living Wages