Budget holidays in Europe: does it exist?

6 the cheapest countries in Europe

Countries where it is cheaper to live

Europe is not always prohibitively expensive. Read about Europe’s cheapest countries to travel to in 2022 – we’ve compiled prices and calculated how much it costs to live 1 day in each country per person.

Really want to go to Europe, but it’s scary to imagine how much money you need? Travelling to Europe is not always ruinous – we offer a budget alternative to an expensive vacation somewhere in Scandinavia. Pay attention to Eastern Europe and the Balkans – daily stay there is almost twice cheaper than, for example, in France or Switzerland.

We have listed the minimum prices. Keep in mind that in some cities, regions or districts they may be different.

Exchange rate: 1 euro ≈ 57 RUB.

    – Cashback hotels – bargain tours

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Hungary

Hungary is one of the cheapest countries in Europe for tourists and accommodation. It would seem that it should be inferior to other European countries. But no! And the service is on par, and the architecture is beautiful, and everything is neat. Beautiful national parks, health resorts, ancient cities. Consider the average price for Budapest, as it is the most visited city in the country.

Where to have a cheap vacation in Europe

Budapest has a lot of classic architecture (Photo: unsplash.com / @akoto)

Food and restaurant prices

  • To eat in an inexpensive restaurant (per person) – from 4,5 €.
  • Eat at a mid-priced restaurant (three-course dinner for two) – from 22€.
  • A cup of cappuccino from 0,9 €.
  • Chicken breasts (1 kg) – 3,7 €.
  • A loaf of white bread – 0,6 €.
  • Local cheese (1 kg) – 4 €.
  • Fruit (1 kg) – from 1€.
  • Potatoes (1 kg) – 0,5€.
  • Drinking water (1,5 lt) – 0,3€.
  • Local beer (0,5 l) – 1€.
  • Wines – from 3€.

Ticket, fare and gasoline prices

Moscow-Budapest-Moscow airfare from 6,000₽.
Travel on public transport 1,03€
Petrol /1 liter 1,09€
Cab / 1 km 0,93€
Cab / 1 order 1,87€

Home rent, hotel accommodation

1 room apartment in the center from 374€ / month
1 room apartment on the outskirts from 280€ / month
Double room in the hotel from 20€ per night

At least 30,5 € per person per night.

Cheap countries in Europe

Streetcar in Budapest (Photo: unsplash.com / @arvydasv)

Bulgaria

Bulgaria is loved by Russian tourists for a reason – it is the cheapest country in Europe for travel and accommodation. But it attracts not only budget holidays. There is a real combo: friendly people, mild climate, sandy beaches, beautiful architecture, and you can also be treated in the resorts. Consider the average price for the capital – Sofia. At the resorts, prices are about the same.

We have a lot of useful information about Bulgaria, read it:

Where in Europe to have a rest not expensive

Holy Week Cathedral in Sofia (Photo: deense / flickr.com / License CC BY 2.0)

Food and restaurant prices

  • To eat in an inexpensive restaurant (per person) – from 5 €.
  • Eating at a mid-priced restaurant (three-course dinner for two) starts at €20.
  • A cup of cappuccino – 0,7-1,8 €.
  • Chicken breasts (1 kg) – 5 €.
  • A loaf of white bread – 0,5 €.
  • Local cheese (1 kg) – 4,4 €.
  • Fruit (1 kg) – from 0,7€.
  • Potatoes (1 kg) – 0,5€.
  • Drinking water (1,5 lt) – 0,4€.
  • Local beer (0,5 l) – 0,7€.
  • Wine – 5€.

Ticket, fare and gasoline prices

Moscow-Sofia-Moscow air tickets from 7,500₽.
Travel on public transport 0,82€
Petrol /1 liter 1,12€
Cab / 1 km 0,4€
Cab / 1 order 0,4€

Home rent, hotel accommodation

1 room apartment in the center from 255€ / month
1 room apartment on the outskirts from 204€ / month
Double room in the hotel from 18 €/night

You will spend at least 27€ per night per person.

Useful links for the traveler

    12 secrets from make-trip.com. How to fly almost for free. The best way to pack your bags. The list of countries for those who are easygoing.

Where to have a cheap rest in Europe

Sofia market (Photo: Damien Smith / flickr.com / CC BY-SA 2.0 license)

Poland

Another of Europe’s cheapest countries for tourists and for living. Many medieval castles and Gothic churches, good Baltic resorts, delicious and cheap beer, charming Warsaw, narrow streets, cozy cafes and reasonable prices – all this attracts tourists to Poland. Let’s look at average prices for Warsaw, because prices in other cities are not too different.

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Cheap holidays in Europe

Warsaw’s narrow streets (Photo: unsplash.com / @acalmelor)

Food and restaurant prices

  • To eat at an inexpensive restaurant (per person) – 4,5-8€.
  • To eat at a mid-priced restaurant (three-course dinner for two) – 23-35€.
  • A cup of cappuccino – 1,9-2,8 €.
  • Chicken breasts (1 kg) – 3,8 €.
  • A loaf of white bread – 0,7€.
  • Local cheese (1 kg) – 5,7 €.
  • Fruit (1 kg) – from 0,5 €.
  • Potatoes (1 kg) – 0,5€.
  • Drinking water (1,5 lt) from 0,3€.
  • Local beer (0,5 l) – 0,7€.
  • Wines – from 4,6€.

Ticket, fare and gasoline prices

Air tickets Moscow-Warsaw-Moscow from 10,000₽.
Travel on public transport 1,03€
Petrol /1 liter 1,18€
Cab / 1 km 0,56€
Cab / 1 order 1,87€

Home rent, hotel accommodation

1 room apartment in the center from 466€ / month
1 room apartment on the outskirts from 349€ / month
Double room in the hotel from 19€ per night

You’ll spend at least 33,5€ per night per person.

More picks for low-cost countries to live, travel and relax in:

    (cheap countries in Asia). (a selection based on the calculation of the cost of recreation on the cheapness index developed by us). (list of the cheapest with example prices).

Where to live cheaply in Europe

Bus 507 at the Centrum stop (Photo: unsplash.com / @valik_chern)

Montenegro

Montenegro goes hand in hand with Bulgaria – it’s also the cheapest country in Europe in 2022, but Bulgaria is more budget-friendly. Montenegro has ideal conditions for recreation: a surprisingly pleasant climate, mountain and sea scenery, paved streets and red tiled roofs. Consider the average prices for the capital of Montenegro Podgorica, and then compare them with the resort (Budva).

We have a lot of interesting and useful about Montenegro:

Cheap Europe Vacation

Cafe in the narrow streets of Budva (Photo: Jorge Franganillo / flickr.com / License CC BY 2.0)

Food and restaurant prices

  • To eat in an inexpensive restaurant (per person) – 5-6€.
  • To eat at a mid-priced restaurant (three-course dinner for two) – 20-30€.
  • A cup of cappuccino – 1,2-1,5 €.
  • Chicken breasts (1 kg) – 5 €.
  • A loaf of white bread – 0,5 €.
  • Local cheese (1 kg) – 4 €.
  • Fruit (1 kg) – from 0,6 €.
  • Potatoes (1 kg) – 0,4€.
  • Drinking water (1,5 lt) – 0,5-1€.
  • Local beer (0,5 l) – from 0,7€.
  • Wines – 3 – 5 €.

Ticket, fare and gasoline prices

Moscow-Tivat-Moscow air tickets from 9000₽.
Travel on public transport from 0,7€
Petrol /1 liter 1,2-1,4€
Cab / 1 km 0,5€
Cab / 1 order 1€

Home rent, hotel accommodation

1 room apartment in the center from 250€ / month
1 room apartment on the outskirts from 180€ / month
Double room in the hotel from 16€ per night

At least 41€ per night per person.

In Budva food in restaurants is more expensive – 5-10 € per person. There is a difference in renting accommodation, because most people come to holiday resorts: rent a 1-bedroom apartment in the center for a month – from 300 € (on the outskirts – from 280 €). The cheapest hotel in the center costs 16€.

Cheap Europe

Saint Stefan Island (photo © adametrnal / flickr.com)

Romania

Romania, one of Europe’s cheapest countries for 2022, can be a terrific vacation destination. It’s worth going here for the medieval Wallachian towns and gloomy castles, ancient monasteries and churches. Also, skiers and lovers of lazing on the beach will like it here. So, let’s look at the average prices for Bucharest, the capital of Romania.

Read about the most mystical corner of Romania – Transylvania.

Cheap countries in Europe

The main pedestrian street in Brasov (Photo: unsplash.com / @clondon)

Food and restaurant prices

  • To eat in an inexpensive restaurant (per person) – 5-10€.
  • To eat at a mid-priced restaurant (three-course dinner for two) – 20-30€.
  • A cup of cappuccino – 1-2,5 €.
  • Chicken breasts (1 kg) – 4,3 €.
  • A loaf of white bread – 0,5 €.
  • Local cheese (1 kg) – 5€.
  • Fruit (1 kg) – from 0,6 €.
  • Potatoes (1 kg) – 0,5€.
  • Drinking water (1,5 lt) – 0,5€.
  • Local beer (0,5 l) – 0,7€.
  • Wine – 4,2€.
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Ticket, fare and gasoline prices

Moscow – Bucharest – Moscow air tickets from 10,000₽.
Travel on public transport 0,27€
Petrol /1 liter 1,16€
Cab / 1 km 0,38€
Cab / 1 order 0,38€

Home rent, hotel accommodation

1 room apartment in the center from 295€ / month
1 room apartment on the outskirts from 210€ / month
Double room in the hotel from 19€ per night

You will spend on average 25€ per night per person.

Where to fly cheap to Europe

Unity Square Metro Station, Bucharest (Photo: unsplash.com / @voiqu)

Czech Republic

The Czech Republic is one of the cheapest countries in Europe. Here you can really have a budget holiday, especially if you know how to save money in the Czech Republic. So, let’s look at the average price for Prague.

Prepare for your trip properly:

Cheap Europe for tourists 2022

The Golden Lane at Prague Castle.

Food and restaurant prices

  • To eat in an inexpensive restaurant (per person) – from 4,5 €.
  • For a mid-priced meal (three-course dinner for two) start at €24.
  • One cappuccino from 1,5 €.
  • Chicken breasts (1 kg) – 4,7 €.
  • A loaf of white bread – 0,6 €.
  • Local cheese (1 kg) – 6 €.
  • Fruit (1 kg) – from 1€.
  • Potatoes (1 kg) – 0,5€.
  • Drinking water (1,5 lt) – 0,3€.
  • Local beer (0,5 l) – from 1,2 €.
  • Wines – 3,8€.

Transport and petrol costs

Moscow-Prague-Moscow airfare from 9300₽.
Travel on public transport 0,93€
Petrol /1 liter 1,2€
Cab / 1 km 0,8€
Cab / 1 order 1,17€

Home rent, hotel accommodation

1 room apartment in the center from 544€ / month
1 room apartment on the outskirts from 388€ / month
Double room in the hotel from 18 €/night

You will spend on average 42,5€ per night per person.

Where to fly cheap to Europe

Nerudova Street, Malá Strana, Prague.

Budget holidays in Europe: does it exist?

Europe is infinitely attractive for all types of travelers. On the one hand – it is a concentration of a huge number of cultural monuments, history, picturesque landscapes, and on the other – an endless waste of money. Of course, you can travel with almost any budget, but if you want “cheap but comfortable”, then this list is for you.

Photo: Albania

1. the Albanian coast

Albania is a country, washed by two seas – the Adriatic and the Ionian. The coast has a mild Mediterranean climate, dry and hot in summer and humid and cool in winter.

Tourists often choose popular coastal resorts – Durres, Fier, Saranda, Vlora, Shkodra.

Lovers of cultural tourism also have something to do, such as visiting the archaeological museum-reserve Butrinti and the historical centers of Berat and Gjirokastra, which are included in the UNESCO World Heritage List.

Several Albanian towns have medieval castles, such as Petrela Castle in the suburbs of Tirana and Skanderbeg Castle in Kruja.

Approximate prices: Drinks: bottle of red wine – 6 €. Food: minced meat patties €2, seafood €5. Hostel/hotel 3*: 10€/30€.

Photo: Bosnia and Herzegovina

2. Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina

Sarajevo is the capital of Bosnia and Herzegovina with a population of about 400,000. On the one hand it is a modern western city, on the other hand it is an austere eastern city, almost half of the city’s population is Muslim.

The main historical sites are concentrated in the old town: the caravanserai in Morica-Khan, the Imperial Mosque, the mosque Gazi Khosrevbei (16th c.),

Barcarshia tower, Kurshumli madrasah with a collection of medieval manuscripts and books, the house-museum of the Ottoman Svrjo family.

During the day it is interesting to walk in the central district of Bascarsija, to see and explore the bazaar that has existed since Ottoman times, to taste Bosnian coffee, and in the evening to go to the clubs.

Approximate prices: Drinks: coffee – 0,5 €. Food: sevapsisi (meat sausages) – 2-4€. Hostel/hotel 3*: 5€/25€.

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Photo: Bansko

3. Bansko, Bulgaria

It is not a cheap pleasure to go skiing in Europe, not least because the main ski resorts are located in the most expensive European countries. Fortunately in Eastern Europe there are a few ski areas, such as Bansko in Bulgaria, located on the slopes of Pirin.

To get to the main ski resort in the country, rich in excellent slopes for beginners and advanced skiers, you can take the picturesque, but very slow, narrow-gauge railway. However, even apart from the tourist attractions in the city there is something to do, for example, go for a hike in the traditional old pubs, nestled in the cobblestone streets.

Approximate prices: Drinks: Beer (0,5) – 1€. Food: Shop’s salad 3€. Hostel/hotel 3*: 10€/20€.

Photo: Czech Republic

4. Czech Republic

Czech Republic is still one of the most popular European destinations among Russian tourists. The country, besides the amazing architecture, both ancient and modern, is famous for its brewing traditions.

In Prague itself, the choice of drinking establishments is wide – from various pubs and monastic taverns to modern microbreweries. In total, more than 100 kinds of beer are brewed in the city.

After tasting some of them, you can continue your tour around the Czech Republic and head to the birthplace of Pilsner Urquell, Pilsen, and then to lesser-known places like Olomouc, which looks more like a big open-air museum due to the dense concentration of castles, fortresses, ancient churches and cathedrals, churches and gardens.

Approximate prices: Drinks: Pilsner Urquell – 1,5 €. Food: Dumplings with pork – 5€. Hostel/hotel 3*: 6€/40€.

Photo: Estonia

5. Baltic coast of Estonia

When visiting Estonia for the first time tourists usually stay in Tallinn and spend most of their time there. Although Estonia has many places of interest other than the capital city. The whole country as one large resort, with many lakes, mineral springs, wide beaches and a high level of service.

An hour from Tallinn is Lahemaa National Park, one of the largest in the country. Much of it is covered by swamps, in some parts of which you can find small lakes. You can walk through the park by bicycle or on foot – the walkway is made of wooden planking.

And if you go a little farther west, you’ll find yourself in the resort of Pärnu, with its gorgeous beaches, or on the island of Saaremaa, where there are many pine forests and very democratic spas.

Approximate prices: Drinks: Le Coq beer – 2,5 €. Food: blood sausages and sauerkraut – 5€. Hostel/hotel 3*: 10€/45€.

Photo: Leipzig

6. Leipzig, Germany

Leipzig is the largest city in Saxony. Bach, Wagner, Mendelssohn and Goethe once lived here. In addition to its talented residents, the city is famous for its fairs. A total of about 25 fairs a year.

There are also plenty of cultural and historical attractions in town: The Old Town Hall, built in the 16th century in just 9 months, the Royal House where Peter I stayed while traveling through Europe. In St. Thomas Church the great composer Johann Sebastian Bach is buried, and next to the cathedral there is a museum named after him.

Approximate prices: Drinks: Gose (a type of top-fermented beer) – 2,9 €. Food: Schnitzel – 8€. Hostel/hotel 3*: 13€/35€.

Photo: London

7. London, England

“London” and “cheap” are words rarely found side by side. However, London is full of free attractions, more than any other European city. The British Museum, which has treasures for the most demanding tastes, the Tate Gallery with its stunning views and panoramas and ever-changing collections; the Natural History Museum with its dinosaur skeletons. And it’s all free.

And don’t forget the outdoors: you can spend a whole day walking through Hampstead Heath and another through South Bank or the East End and its markets: getting a taste of the city this way is much easier than languishing in line for some overpriced attraction.

Estimated prices: Drinks: lager – 5€. Food: Fish and chips – 11€. Hostel/hotel 3*: 12€/80-100€.

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Photo: Peloponnese

8. The Peloponnese, Greece

The Peloponnese is not the most popular destination in Greece, so it is budget-friendly. There are many beaches, clean sea and beautiful nature.

The Peloponnese, apart from natural attractions, has historical places of interest, such as the Statue of Zeus in Olympia – one of the 7 wonders of the world from antiquity, the remains of the temples of Hera and Zeus. Another interesting place is the ghost town Mystras, which was built from the ruins of ancient Sparta, which is located nearby.

Few people know, but in Peloponnese you can go skiing and snowboarding. The season lasts from December to first half of April. You can choose all kinds of trails: from green to black.

Photo: Budapest

9. Budapest, Hungary.

Despite the fact that Budapest is a beautiful and modern city, prices for tourists are very pleasant. For example, a day at the famous baroque baths of Széchenyi costs about 16 euros, and these baths are considered to be some of the most expensive in the city. To avoid the queues and the large number of vacationers, it is better to go there on weekdays or on weekends early in the morning. Thermal baths start working at 6 am.

Another wonderful place for the traveler not burdened with a lot of money – places with the sign borozó – a wine eatery, where you can drink wine for pennies. You should not fear for your health – locals come here before or after work to chat and relax. Naturally, they serve Hungarian: red, white or pink. If you see a sign with the word Söröző on it, feel free to come in: this place is similar to the previous one, only they serve beer instead of wine.

Approximate prices: Drinks: A bottle of wine – from 1€. Food: Goulash – 3 – 4 €. 3* hostel/hotel: 5€/30€.

Photo: Palermo

10. Palermo, Sicily, Italy

Few European tours do without visiting charming Italian cities – exquisite Florence, ancient Rome and amazing Venice. There is no doubt about their attractiveness, but the fact is that they are at the crossroads of all tourist routes, which greatly increases the prices, especially during the hot season.

If you leave the continent for Sicily, its capital, Palermo, you will discover a city that resembles Italy of years gone by and, according to the locals, a completely different country. The city is full of old churches with elaborate mosaics or chaotic little markets where you can eat street food such as rice balls arancini or paneerelle.

Approximate prices: Drinks: a bottle of wine – 2,5 €. Food: Pasta €5-8, slice of pizza €2. Hostel/hotel 3*: 15-30€/45-60€.

Photo: Macedonia

Lake Ohrid, Macedonia

Wide and deep lake Ohrid is a jewel of Macedonia. The quiet streets of the town of the same name hide medieval, frescoed churches, a Roman amphitheater and a fortress, which is a sin not to visit. But your walks through the town will lead you again and again to the water, on which locals and tourists row with great pleasure.

If you are more accustomed to the hard ground, go for a walk in the national park Galicica. Rooms to rent here are cheap and places to stay are plentiful, so this is a great place for travelers on a tight budget who want to relax.

Approximate prices: Drinks: wine – from 2,5 € a bottle. Food: Tavche gravche (beans on a griddle) – 1,5€. Hostel/hotel 3*: 6€/25€.

Photo: Montenegro

12. Kotor, Montenegro

Beautiful, situated in a fjord-like bay, Kotor charms tourists from the first minutes. The center of the town – Stari Grad is a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1979, one of the best preserved medieval towns on the Adriatic coast.

Apart from cultural and historical monuments of architecture, many festivals and carnivals are held here, as well as gastronomic pleasures. There are many restaurants and cafes offering the freshest seafood.

Approximate prices : Drinks: Nikšičko Tamno beer – 1 €. Food: sarma – 2,5-4 €. Hostel/hotel 3*: 10€/50€.

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Photo: Gdansk

13. Gdansk, Poland

According to historical records it was in Gdansk where World War II began. When Hitler planned to start the war, he first demanded the return of Danzig (now Gdansk) to Germany,

Poland refused, and this served as the pretext for the attack. As a result of shelling and bombing, nearly 90% of the city’s buildings were destroyed. After the Soviet troops liberated the city in March 1945, a large-scale reconstruction of the city began, the results of which can be seen today.

One of the main attractions of the city, the old port crane on the waterfront built in the 15th century, somehow miraculously survived, and now you can see it as people saw it a few centuries ago.

Approximate prices: Drinks: vodka – 1€ per shot. Food: Jurek soup – 2-3€. Hostel/hotel 3*: 7€/35€.

Photo: Porto

14. Porto, Portugal

Portugal’s second largest city stands on the banks of the River Douoro. Ribeira, a district of the city stretching along the river, is attractive with delicious food in local restaurants.

Other popular attractions include the giant Serralves Park and the chic art museum located there. But the most famous thing in the city is the port itself. Vinologoa is a great place to start discovering the variety of fortified wines, and you can also go shopping in Vila Nova di Gaia on the other side of the river.

Approximate prices: Drinks: a bottle of vinho verde in the store is 3,5 €. Food: Fried fish – 8€. Hostel/hotel 3*: 8€/45€.

Photo: Romania

15. Transylvania, Romania

When you say “Transylvania” your first association is Count Dracula and his castle. And you can certainly go in search of traces of Vlad the Impaler. Most likely, Vlad was born in the cozy town of Sigishoara, which even has a suitable fortress.

However, this place is not just castles and vampire fangs. Wander into the forests of the Carpathian Mountains, where Transylvanian wolves, bears, deer and lynx live in natural conditions in the Piatra Krajului National Park.

Approximate prices: Drinks: a bottle of beer – 1,8 €, a bottle of Romanian wine – 5 €. Food: Tochitura (meat stew) – 2€. Hostel/hotel 3*: 12€/30€.

Photo: High Tatras

16. The High Tatras, Slovakia

The pride of Slovakia, the mountain range of the Tatras is the majestic ridge topped by Gerlachovský Štit, which is 2655 meters high. You can start in a small village like Nový Smokovec or Ždiar, and from there head into the mountains, where you can take a break from the hustle and bustle in inexpensive chalets.

The terrain is mountainous and challenging, so prepare accordingly. It’s also a favorite place for mountain climbers and amateur speleologists, plus you can ride a bike, go rafting, and in winter a full range of skiing and skiing activities are available.

Approximate prices: Drinks: 1,7€ beer. Food: Nocchi with bacon – 4€. Hostel/hotel 3*: 9€/30€.

Photo: Slovenia

17. Slovenia

Bordering Italy, Austria, Croatia and Hungary, small Slovenia is the perfect stop for any European trip. For adventurers as well as for those who just want to relax on the Adriatic Sea.

At the foot of Julian Alps are twin lakes: the picturesque Bled and glacial Lake Bohinj. From here it’s a short drive to the Soca River valley, right on the Italian border, and there you can go hiking, rafting, and boating.

Photo: Andalusia

18. Andalusia, Spain

The southernmost province of Spain, Andalusia, is known for its charming cities, especially Seville, Granada and Cordoba, decorated with sophisticated heritage of Moorish past. Only the prices here are more interesting if you compare with Madrid or Barcelona.

The main attractions are located in the cities, and the best thing you can do is to rent a car and go to explore all the cities in order.

* Accommodation prices are given at the time of writing. The cost indicated in the material and the final price may vary depending on the season and the time of purchase.

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