As I mentioned in my 72 Hours in Budapest post, we only booked the trip a few days before we actually went.
With only 3 days to go, I didn’t have any money saved up for the trip, which I normally do before I book and go on holiday. Because of that, everything that holiday was on pretty much on a budget.
With budget-friendly flights, affordable accommodation and plenty of free things to see and do, it’s easy to travel to Budapest on a budget. Here’s how…
Budapest provides a unique experience for travellers that can be enjoyed for next to nothing. A charming, historic city in the day and a vibrant and enchanting city by night, there’s plenty to be enjoyed.
Flights to this European city are relatively cheap. Taking a look at flights now, I can get a return trip from East Midlands Airport for £55. You only need a few days in to explore the city to the fullest, therefore, you may not need to pay extra for a suitcase and I’d recommend just taking hand luggage.
The airport is slightly outside the city, therefore you’d need to get a taxi or public transport to the centre. After our flight being severely delayed, we didn’t end up getting to the airport until quite late and because of that, we decided to jump straight into a taxi. For around a half an hour trip, it cost only £20, which feels like nothing compared to a taxi in the UK for half an hour on Saturday night.
Taxis from the airport are very affordable, however, there is regular public transport running from the airport to all over the city which you can use if you choose.
Things To Do and See
Although the city has great transport links, such as trams, buses and even a boat service in the summer season, if you’re central, I’d definitely say walking is the best form of transport.
We had very little set plans when we travelled to Budapest, so we simply explored by walking. It’s a charming city and we got to see so much more of it by walking. Many of the attractions are within walking distance of each other which makes exploring the city by foot easy.
Take a stroll up to Castle Hill, explore the beautiful grounds and enjoy stunning panoramic views of the charming Budapest. Here you’ll also find Buda Castle, Fisherman’s Bastion and Mattheius Church amongst many others. Although there are charges to go inside some of the attractions, we were happy to admire from the outside and snap lots of photos! There are also many free attractions to visit, so keep an eye out.
There are also plenty of parks, gardens as well as sensory gardens to explore. If you’re heading there in the summer, make the most of these gorgeous, relaxing areas, pack a picnic and relax in the sunshine.
When it comes to Museums, The House of Terror gives a discount to citizens of the EU who are 25 and under (make the most of that whilst you can!), so make sure you take a photo I.D out with you when you’re out and about.
Top Tip: Not that cute, but although there are many free attractions, bathrooms are not. Make sure you take change out with you every day to pay the fees!
Food and Drink
Food and drink in the city cost next to nothing – especially the drink!
For a unique and vibrant drinking experience, I’d recommend heading to Szimpla Kert, a ruin bar in Budapest. It’s a huge mismatched pub, with music, markets and different bars for different drinks i.e. a wine bar, cocktail bar etc.
If you wanted to experience the local cuisine, then visiting markets will be your best bet. The Great Market Hall is Budapest’s most iconic and biggest market and is well worth a visit. You’ll be able to taste, traditional Hungarian food on a budget!
The city is also home to many great restaurants, with plenty to choose from so I’m sure they’ll be something that will tickle your fancy.
For the most affordable accommodation, then a hostel will be your best bet. There are great value hostels all over the city for you to enjoy.
Although a little pricier, we decided to stay in an Airbnb right in the centre of Buda close to the river. We decided we wanted somewhere cosier, with lots of space and that’s the reason we decided to spend a little more. However, this by no means meant it was expensive.
We stayed in Budapest for 4 nights, costing us £18 per night. It was lovely spacious AirBnB, that could host up to 8 people. Therefore if you’re looking for a home for the holiday that is a little cosier and have your own space, then I’d recommend having a browse on Airbnb. There are many affordable apartments for when you’re travelling to Budapest on a budget.
Have you visited Budapest before? What are your top tips for travelling to Budapest on a budget?