How much a week in Central Europe costs
One of my most popular posts is one where I talk about how much a trip to Peru (for a middle of the road traveler, i.e. non-hostel staying backpacker) really costs. Someone in the comments section had expressed interest in seeing more posts like this for trips abroad so I thought I would share a rundown of what I spent on my most recent trip abroad, a week in Central Europe.
3 nights in Munich/ 4 nights in Prague
Travel Time of the Year:
Splurge when needed/desired. Economize when available. Travel in the style you see fit (i.e. don’t let costs and budgets hold you back, that’s what working a full-time job is for).
NOTE: As I’m an American, I’m going to list all of the prices here in USD. These were converted from Euros and Czech Kroner.
International Airfare: $3,000 for two round-trip tickets
Coming from Pittsburgh and not traveling in the off season, airfare to Europe is always the biggest expense incurred. We flew on Delta from Pittsburgh (via Detroit) to Munich and then coming back, Prague to Pittsburgh (via Paris). Our tickets cost slightly more but I had always wanted to try out the direct flight from Paris to Pittsburgh. Nothing beat landing in Pittsburgh (i.e. my final destination) and then leaving to drive home as opposed to landing in another United States city, going through a dreadfully long immigration/customs line and then still waiting for the return domestic trip home. (The one small silver lining to Pittsburgh’s airport being so small, there are very few direct international flights.) This was the first time I had flown Delta in over a decade and I was quite pleased with the service.
Munich, Germany: $1080 for three nights at the Hotel Torbräu
I discovered Hotel Torbräu through TripAdvisor and I have to say it was one of my favorite hotel stays all year. It was a somewhat high cost for just three nights and yet we were able to check in right away, the room was spacious and quiet, and breakfast was included. The best part was undoubtedly its prime location. For my complete review click here.
Prague, Czech Republic: $512 at the Prague Marriott
Since I booked two of our nights at the Prague Marriott using rewards points, I didn’t mind spending as much in Germany for my accommodations. I had all of the comfort and conveniences of a chain hotel I’m quite familiar with, plus its location was less than 10 minute walk from Old Town Square. This also included a car we ordered for our return trip to Prague Airport (they billed it right to the room).
Transfers from Munich Airport to Hotel Torbräu: $83 (for two people)
I had booked the transfers online through Expedia to take advantage of the fact I’d be charged in USD, not Euros. The booking page said they would be shared transfers. Well, we ended up with private transfers and in a Porsche no less. Yes, that’s probably the only time I’ll ever ride in a Porsche. The whole ride in from the airport I kept thinking this must be a mistake and yet I know I’m probably the only Julie Tulba on the planet.
Transfers from Munich to Prague: $300
Outside of airfare and hotels, this was probably my other biggest splurge. But I have to tell you, going direct from point A to point B (first hotel to second hotel) was amazing. The car I ordered picked us up right at our hotel in Munich and then dropped us off right at our hotel in Prague. No dealing with luggage, finding one’s seat in the right compartment on the train, taxi rides to and from the hotels and the train station -it was seamless. D and I did a ton of reading during the car ride, which was great. I booked with Mike’s Chauffeur Service per a recommendation in my Rick Steves Prague guidebook.
Foreign Currency pre-trip: $455
No matter where I’m traveling, I always order foreign cash to take with me. I know a lot of people advise just getting $100 or less, but I opt for more (and in all my travels to over 20 countries, I’ve never had anything stolen). I ordered both Euros and Czech Kroner since even though more and more countries are going the card route, you’re still always going to have the tiny attraction that just has a cash drawer, or the street food seller who obviously doesn’t use the Square app. We’re still a cash society, period. I order my currency through Travelex-fyi.
ATM withdraws: $570
My one critique of Mike’s Chauffeur Service was that the day before we were to go, I got an email saying I would need to use cash to pay (previously I had been told cards would be accepted). Since we would obviously need more cash, we went to the ATM in Munich. And we actually ended up going again in Prague because especially in Czech Republic, more places still take cash than cards.
Besides the transfer, what else did we use cash for?
A lunch and dinner in Munich, tips for tour guides in both Germany and Czech Republic, smaller purchases in both countries (St. Peter’s Church in Munich, Museum of Communism, Prague Castle, St. Nicholas Church, one-way ride on a Prague tram, street food in Prague, and small souvenirs), and our tour to Terezin (they only accepted cash, I’ll detail below).
Tour to Neuschwanstein Castle with Mike’s Bike Tours: $122 for two people
This was an instance where you benefited from paying more. While you may find other tours to Neuschwanstein that cost less, odds are you’re going to be traveling with many other people and not really see or do too much save for the abbreviated and lackluster tour of the inside of the castle. For my complete write up of my day with Mike’s Bike Tours, click here.
Hitler’s Third Reich Walking Tour in Munich: $32 for two people
I also booked this through Expedia for the pricing in dollars and I can’t recommend this tour enough. Our guide was so informative and the topic, fascinating. For my complete write up, click here.
Tour to Terezin Concentration Camp in Czech Republic: $120 for two people
As mentioned above, my tour to Terezin Camp with Wittman Tours was cash only (the sole negative). Once again, you’re paying more but I went with a tour outfitter whose owner herself is Jewish and whose relatives were in the Holocaust. Our guide was a history scholar too. This is one place where you want to make sure your visit is meaningful (i.e. try to stay clear of the mass bus group tours).
Prague food tour: $90 for one person
This was definitely one of the most expensive food tours I had been on but the tour lasts for a long time and more importantly, you are given an enormous amount of food. For my review of my Eating Prague food tour, click here.
Meals in Munich: Around $190
For the meals we didn’t pay cash with, this included two lunches and two dinners.
Meals in Prague: Around $140
For the meals we didn’t pay cash with, this included one breakfast, one lunch, and two dinners.
I mostly paid for attractions we visited in cash, but these were the ones I didn’t.
2 tickets to the Munich Residenz: $40
2 tickets to the Prague Jewish Museum: $30 (FYI: your ticket is valid for 7 days starting from your first day of use)
Yes, I’m one of “those” travelers. But you know what? I have a house and I like surrounding myself with all of the lovely things I bought on my travels whether they are books, Christmas ornaments, artwork, magnets, or sit-arounds. Being the foodie that I am, I also try to buy non-perishable food products too.
(These were items I bought not using cash)
Souvenirs in Germany: $100
Souvenirs in Czech Republic: $90
Grand total: $6864 USD
But keep in mind that almost half of that is on airfare alone. One could obviously spend a lot less for a week in Central Europe but if you’re keen on seeing and doing everything you want to, this will give you a rough idea on how much it will cost.