January 2024 Beforepay Cost of Living Index

Australians tighten their belts after the holidays with 10.2% spending decline in January

Consumer spending in January declined 10.2% from December, according to the latest Beforepay Cost of Living Index. Australians reduced their average daily spending to $58.12 in the month, down from $64.69 in December 2023.

The month-on-month decline was greater than that seen between December 2022 and January 2023, when spending fell 8.4%, indicating slightly higher holiday spending this year and correspondingly greater cutbacks. The January figures are up 2.3% year-on-year from $56.83 in January 2023.

The Beforepay Cost of Living Index for January 2024 is $58.12.

Beforepay released the January 2024 Cost of Living Index today, showing a 10.20% decrease in average daily spending to $58.12, up from $64.69 in December 2023.

Consumers decreased their spending in all categories tracked by the index with the exception of utilities, which saw a slight increase of 1.3%, rising to $6.10 from $6.02, driven in part by the warmer weather. Groceries experienced a slight dip of 1.7%, from $15.43 to $15.17, with more people eating at work than over the holidays.

Spending on food and drink, petrol and auto, along with durable goods shopping, entertainment, and fitness and health, all fell. The fitness and health sector observed a 12.5% decline, dropping to $2.45 from $2.80, while entertainment and durable goods shopping fell by 10.4% and 14.4%, respectively. The most significant drop was in general shopping, which plummeted by 33.3% to $6.80 from $10.19, following a spike over the holiday.

The January 2024 Beforepay Cost of Living Index provides a comprehensive view of consumer spending trends during a key period of the year, offering valuable insights into the behaviours and preferences of Australian consumers.

Below is a full month-by-month breakdown over the last 12 months. See sub-category descriptions here

Beforepay released the January 2024 Cost of Living Index today, showing a 10.20% decrease in average daily spending to $58.12, up from $64.69 in December 2023.

Cost Of Living Sub-Category Descriptions

Below are brief descriptions that outline the type of expenses applicable to each spending category.  


Grocery stores where raw vegetables and meat are sold. 

Food & Drink

Any restaurant, pub or vendor that sells food that is not prepared or processed, i.e. not groceries.

Petrol & Auto

Any spending on petrol, car maintenance and car accessories.


Spending on non-edible, non-durable goods, i.e. clothing, shoes, consumer packaged goods. 


Spending on electricity, gas (home) and phone. 

Entertainment & Leisure

Movie streaming, tickets, mobile and console gaming, hobbies, bookshops and other recreation expenses.

Durable Shopping

Spending on long lasting products, such as white goods.

Fitness & Health

Any expenses on gyms, health insurance and chemists


Have questions? Reach out to mediaenquiries@beforepay.com.au for more information.

About the Beforepay Cost of Living Index

The Beforepay Cost of Living Index shows the average daily spend of Beforepay registered users across multiple household expense categories. This article contains selected summary information only and is provided for general information purposes only. The Cost of Living Index data is derived from a Beforepay user’s average daily spend in selected household expense categories per person. The data may vary depending on the main bank account linked with Beforepay. The numbers have not been adjusted for seasonality. To the maximum extent permitted by law, Beforepay and the related bodies corporate of Beforepay, make no representation or warranty, express or implied, as to the accuracy, completeness, timeliness or reliability of the contents of this article. To the maximum extent permitted by law, Beforepay does not accept any liability for any loss whatsoever arising from the use of this article or its contents or otherwise arising in connection with it.