These Are the Cheapest Cities to Visit in Europe This Fall
The end of summer is rapidly approaching, and in Europe that means a number of things: tourism is simmering down, the weather is beginning to cool and, most importantly, prices are becoming cheaper. But there are some European cities where your dollar will simply go farther than others.
According to a recent Money City Cost Barometer report from Post Office — a UK-based retail and financial services chain — the Serbian capital of Belgrade is the cheapest city to visit in Europe this fall.
Of the 46 European cities analyzed, nine others made the Post Office list, mostly located in Eastern Europe. The top 10 affordable European destinations were selected based on the average cost of a weekend in each city this October:
- Belgrade, Serbia, £148.70 ($172.83 USD)
- Krakow, Poland, £169.21 ($196.67 USD)
- Vilnius, Lithuania, £169.56 ($197.08 USD)
- Bucharest, Romania, £174.94 ($203.34 USD)
- Warsaw, Poland, £176.95 ($205.67 USD)
- Riga, Latvia, £182.28 ($211.87 USD)
- Porto, Portugal, £183.74 ($213.57 USD)
- Athens, Greece, £199.54 ($231.93 USD)
- Bratislava, Slovakia, £202.56 ($235.44 USD)
- Moscow, Russia, £206.35 ($239.85 USD)
If a trip to Belgrade is a possibility this October, plan on budgeting about $173, which is 12% less than last year’s cheapest destination: Krakow, Poland. This price tag does not include airfare, so you'll have to plan accordingly to account for that added cost.
Though the report didn't include flight prices, it did compare the cost of 12 other common travel purchases, including a visit to a top art gallery and a city bus tour. In Belgrade, a three-course dinner for two with a bottle of house wine, for example, averages £33.99 ($39.53 USD). And a two-night stay for two would set you back £91.00 ($105.81 USD).
Travelers should note, however, that flight prices for certain European destinations on the list — though not Belgrade — are in fact cheaper in the fall. The flight search engine Skyscanner told TPG that travelers heading to Warsaw (No. 5) in autumn can save nearly $186 on airfare, while the savings on flights to Athens are even greater: more than $206.
But No. 10 on the Post Office's list, Moscow, is also the best European city for fall airfare savings this year. Travelers flying to this Russian city can save $292, compared to other times of year.
As for the most expensive cities to visit this fall, Oslo, Norway is at the top of the list, costing a projected £510.47 ($593.57) for a weekend getaway, followed by Amsterdam.
Major cities in Europe have become so oversaturated with visitors, many travelers have shown an increasing interest in cities “off the tourist track," according to Google metrics discussed in the report. Belgrade certainly meets that criteria, but don’t be deterred by this reputation.
Belgrade is an understated city with a surprising mix of Brutalist, Ottoman and Neo-Byzantine architecture; a bustling nightlife; and one of the world’s largest Eastern Orthodox churches.
And, of course, if you're visiting Belgrade in the fall, be sure to seek out some of the city's lovely parks for leaf-peeping, such as the thickly forested Košutnjak Hill park.