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Many people ask me before deciding to visit Serbia – is Belgrade cheap? Some go further and ask ‘ how much money they will need for a trip to Belgrade?’
To answer these questions, first let’s see how to judge whether one country is cheap or not?
The best way is to check up the average salary of employees. Considering that average net salary is between 450 and 500 euros a month, Belgrade is extremely cheap!
But the question is, for whom Belgrade is inexpensive? I don’t believe the locals agree with this conclusion. On the other hand, for Western European standards, Belgrade is exceptionally affordable.
How cheap is Belgrade?
I do agree that if you are coming in Belgrade from Western Europe or USA, with your money you can do many things.
Belgrade is cheap in some basic things. For example, public transport, food and beer prices are more than favorable.
Belgrade Basic low-costs
If you arrive in Belgrade by plane, you’ll be surprised by cheap bus transfer from Nikola Tesla Airport to downtown. One way from airport to Slavia Square (or Zeleni Venac station) by bus costs from 150 to 300 Dinars (1,29 to 2,50 €).
Belgrade is a walking friendly city. It’s not too big and the city center is easy to move around on foot. But, in case you decide to use public transport (bus or tram), you need only 90 dinars (0,77 €) for one way ride.
When you decide to do some city sightseeing on your own, many important city sights are free to explore. Sights like Kalemegdan Fortress, Knez Mihailova, Skadarlija or Sava Church are must see.
A visit to Belgrade museums is one of the most popular activities. Museums cover all aspects of cultural and historical life of Belgrade and Serbia. Museum entrance fees are really low, just a few euros or dollars.
Cheap eating in Belgrade
How much will cost me eating out in Belgrade? According budgetyourtrip.com, the average cost for meals for one day (per person) is 6,88 Euro.
I would say, it’s rather cheap! But it is quite difficult to fit into that price.
Serbia is known for its large number of bakeries and fast food places where you can eat something quickly and really cheap.
For example, if you eat for breakfast burek (fried filled pastry) stuffed with cheese with yogurt, will cost you between 1,5 to 2 Euro. All can afford it for that price!
On average, a slice of pizza at a kiosk it costs more or less 1 Euro , while the already famous grilled dishes – cavapcici or sausages are around 250 dinars (2,13 Euros).
What about coffee? You won’t have a good time until at least once you sit down in one of the cafes and have a cup of coffee. Serbian coffee or hot chocolate cost around 100-200 Dinars. (0,85 to 1,70 Euros).
Meals in ordinary restaurant or pizzeria (main meal with drink) cost around 500 to 600 Dinars – around 5 Euros.
Drinking cheap in Belgrade
It is interesting to note that Serbs drink beer the most, almost half of all alcohol consumed is beer.
Beer price is rather low. Usually you’ll pay 150 Dinars (just 1,30 Euros) at some ordinary bars. In some stylish bars in Savamala (Arts District) and Skadarlija (Bohemian Quarter) or in some nightclubs the price goes up to 500 dinars. (it depends on beer brand).
The average price of beer in restaurants is 230 Dinars (1,9 Euros). If you really want to save then shop beer at the supermarkets. The average price of a half liter beer bottle or can is 0.60 Euro.
Rakija is a strong brandy. It’s made from the fermentation of different kind of fruits. More common is šljivovica (plum) brandy. More flavored are kajsijevača (apricot) and dunjavača (quince) the most enjoyable.
How to stay for cheap in Belgrade
There’s really no shortage of budget accommodation in Belgrade. If you visit Belgrade on budget, youth hostels are your salvation.
Prices vary from 6 to 10 Euros per dorm bed. Most hotels boast a perfect location. Few are just close to Republic Square or very near to Knez Mihajlova shopping street.
I have found at least 10 reasons why this accommodation will be your first choice for your stay in Belgrade. Particularly, it will be convenient for longer stay (3 to 7 days).
Budget your trip
If you need to budget your trip to Serbia in advance, here are some useful resources to up to date cost records.