12 Insanely Cheap Countries to Live in Europe in 2023
Whether you want to escape the routine of 9-5 or looking to live abroad with beautiful beaches, scenic trails, or a busy, metropolitan city; I have gathered the cheapest countries to live in Europe.
Some countries in Europe have a reputation for being expensive but that’s not the picture of the entire Europe. In fact, some East European countries are surprisingly affordable and are perfect to retire abroad. You should also check out the affordable cities in Western Europe to live in.
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Affordability, health care, safety, and entertainment are some of the most important segments of a digital nomad destination, especially if you are trying to stretch savings.
In this post, I am going to tell you about the top 10 cheap countries in Europe to live in. In addition, I have also gathered a brief detail on the cost of living in Europe that can help you to lead a balanced life. You’ll find undiscovered treasures that won’t break the bank in anything from quaint cities to breathtaking scenery. So, pack your bags and get ready to experience the European lifestyle without emptying your pockets. Let’s dive in!
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Table of Contents
For travellers and expats on a tight budget, Lithuania is among the least expensive places to live in Europe. Compared to other Western European nations, Lithuania has far lower living expenses and offers reasonably priced housing, food, and transit alternatives.
The capital of Lithuania, Vilnius, offers a distinctive fusion of contemporary and traditional architecture as well as a thriving cultural environment. In addition, Lithuania is a great option for those who enjoy the outdoors and outdoor pursuits like skiing and hiking.
Overall, Lithuania is a fantastic choice for those seeking a budget-friendly yet fascinating European vacation spot.
Things to do in Lithuania
Both tourists and residents can enjoy various reasonably priced activities in Lithuania.
- You can stroll around Vilnius’s historic Old Town and stop by the city’s many galleries, cathedrals, and museums.
- Aukštaitija or Žemaitija are just two of the numerous national parks in the nation where you can go hiking.
- As an alternative, you can go to the beaches along the Curonian Spit or try the local cuisine, which is both delicious and reasonably priced.
Cost of Living in Lithuania
Compared to other European nations, Lithuania has a relatively low cost of living. Costs for accommodation, food, and transportation are affordable. According to Numbeo, the cost of living index in Lithuania is 45.8, which is much lower than the European average of 63.99.
- Rent: €200-€1,000/month for apartments
- Utilities: €70-€150/month for a one-bedroom apartment.
- Transportation: €1-€1.5 for a one-way ticket, €20-€30/month for monthly passes, and €0.60/km for taxi fares.
2. BULGARIA: Cheapest Countries to Live in Europe
With such a low cost of living, a growing economy, and an emerging tech industry, Bulgaria is not only a cheap European country to live in but also enriched with incredible natural scenery.
Surprisingly, this Balkan country is one of the most underrated countries in Europe, whether for living or tourism.
Room rent in Bulgaria is very cheap. You can easily find a one-bedroom studio at $250-300. Like rents, food prices and utility bills in Bulgaria are the lowest in the entire European Union. Transport in most Bulgarian cities is very easy and cheap to get from one place to another.
Things to do in Bulgaria
Bulgaria is blessed with beautiful beaches and incredible mountains. It has approximately 200 km of golden sandy beaches that include Varna, Albena, Golden Sands, St. Constantine and Elena, Sunny Day, and many others.
The capital city Sofia is full of history, rich culture, and beautiful architecture. Some of the most magnificent and breathtaking sceneries in Europe can be seen in Bulgaria.
Cost of Living in Bulgaria
With a monthly budget of less than $800 a month, the cost of living in Bulgaria is pretty affordable. Room and food are very affordable in Bulgaria. For a moderate usage of water for showers, laundry, dishwashing, and others, you can expect something like $15-20 per month.
- Rent: €150-€400/month for apartments;
- Utilities: €70-€100/month for a one-bedroom apartment.
- Transportation: €0.50 for a one-way ticket, €20-€25/month for monthly passes, and €0.30/km for taxi fares.
Ukraine is a fascinating and vibrant country, rich in natural beauty and brimming with opportunities for expats. Whether you want to live in the capital city or overlook a sun-washed beach in the west, you’ll find modern, high-quality housing for low prices.
Ukraine is attractive to newcomers for the warmth of its people, the moderate climate, the low-cost living, modern conveniences, and health services, and the rich and vibrant indigenous culture. It is also a perfect destination for those looking for affordable retirement in Europe.
Things to do in Ukraine
Ukraine has fantastic churches, beautiful architecture, fairytale castles, and a magnificent Black Sea coastline. From amazing architecture to interesting history, from mesmerizing culture to delicious cuisines, Ukraine has enough reasons to exceed your expectations.
Cost of Living in Ukraine
The capital city Kyiv is certainly not the cheapest place to live in Europe, but it won’t break your bank. If you plan to spend the rest of your life in Ukraine, be ready to pay around $800 per month. It is cheaper($650-$700) if you stay outside of the capital city. However, alcohol is very affordable in Ukraine. Buying craft beer from stores usually costs around $2 per bottle.
One-bedroom apartment: $400-600
Slovenia, a country in Central Europe, has one of the lowest cost of living rates on the continent. Slovenia is known for its stunning natural beauty, including the Julian Alps and Lake Bled, which offer numerous opportunities for outdoor activities such as hiking, skiing, and swimming. According to expats and digital nomads, Slovenia offers a high quality of life at an affordable cost.
The nation also has a strong cultural heritage, and historic cities like Piran and Ljubljana provide an array of activities at reasonable prices, including visiting art galleries and museums. Overall, Slovenia is a fantastic option for those seeking a low-cost European getaway.
Things to do in Slovenia
- Explore Ljubljana’s picturesque old town and stop by the city’s many museums, art galleries, and parks.
- Additionally, you may go hiking in the Julian Alps or swim at the stunning Lake Bled. As an alternative, you can enjoy the amazing and reasonably priced local cuisine.
- The country hosts a large number of free cultural events all year long, including concerts and festivals.
Cost of Living in Slovenia
The costs of accommodation, food, and transportation are reasonably low. Numbeo estimates Slovenia’s cost of living index to be 51.31, which is lower than the 63.99 average for all of Europe.
The average monthly cost of living in Slovenia varies based on where one lives and how they choose to live. The average monthly budget for a single individual is between €800 and €1000, while the average monthly budget for a couple is between €1200 and €1500. This budget includes accommodation, food, transportation, utilities, and other basic expenses.
Another cheap European country that is quite underrated to live in by the standards of the region is Romania. The country offers delicious foods, a pretty affordable cost of living, and surreal natural beauty.
The low cost of living in Romania allows retirees to increase their travel, take up new hobbies, and generally enjoy a better quality of life. Romania offers something for everyone, and at prices unheard of in the United States.
Things to do in Romania
Romania is a small and affordable European country but it has a lot to offer its visitors. From the jaw-dropping view of Transylvania to remarkable UNESCO heritage sites, historical places, and castles, Romania will never disappoint you. Among all of these, Bran Castle is the most popular and most visited tourist attraction in Romania.
Cost of Living in Romania
The living cost in Bucharest is more or less the same as Kyiv, but if the environment and natural beauty are also your concern, Romania is the best place to live in. The suggested average monthly budget to live in Romania is around $1100.
- One bedroom apartment: $400-650
- Dinning: $5-6
- Internet: $10-15
6. Cheap Country to Live in Europe: POLAND
Poland boasts diverse top sectors with ample work opportunities for expats, especially in international industries. Warsaw, the capital city of Poland is a charming city and is considered one of the cheapest cities to live in Europe.
Polish is the native language in Poland, but 30 % of people can speak English. So, teaching the English language could be a great profession for expats.
Living in any of the big cities in Poland is considerably cheap compared to any other European country like Germany, Italy, Switzerland. Food prices can be pretty cheap even in large cities like Warsaw, Krakow.
The local transporting system is well developed, you can use the Polski bus or PKP intercity train which is quite affordable. Unarguably, Poland is one of the safest and cheapest countries in Europe to live in.
Things to do in Poland
Despite having stunning sea beaches, beautiful mountains, lovely lakes, and national parks, Poland is still not so popular European tourist destination. You can explore the medieval old towns and visit the cathedral, castles and other historical places in Poland.
Cost of Living in Poland
Poland is located in central Europe. Despite being situated in an important location, the living cost in Poland is not that expensive. From one-bedroom apartments to dining, utility bills, internet, everything is pretty affordable in Poland. You can expect to live here for less than $1100 per month.
- One bedroom apartment: $600-800
- Dinning: $8-10
- Internet: $10
It’s hard to find another cheap country to live in Europe with such incredible natural beauty and lots of opportunities. The capital city of Hungary is Budapest, one of the cheapest cities in Europe to live on a budget. It is gradually becoming a hotspot for international travelers and expats.
The major cities in Hungary have all the Western amenities you could need, but surprisingly at the half-price spent in any Western European country.
Things to do in Hungary
The capital city Budapest is extremely safe and one of the best places to travel alone in Europe. The country boasts a beautiful Danube river, Balaton lake, lush green valley, rich history, and vibrant culture.
Hungary also offers great opportunities for hiking and other outdoor activities. While visiting Hungary, you must visit Buda Castle and the Hungarian Parliament.
Cost of Living in Hungary
The monthly rent for 900 square feet of furnished accommodation in a normal area is around $350. The food price can be really cheap, especially if you cook yourself, you can save a lot of money.
You shouldn’t expect an exotic lifestyle in Hungary. With a monthly expenditure of $1000, you can expect a normal happy life with all the basic amenities.
- One bedroom apartment: $400-500
- Dinning: $10-15
- Internet: $12
Slovakia is a safe and cheap country in Europe to live in and it has started to attract more expats and international travelers in recent years. You don’t need to break your bank while living and working here, as Slovakia is one of the cheapest European countries to live in for Americans.
Slovakia is not as cheap as Bulgaria, or Hungary but offers better values in the standard of living, health care, and education. Here you can eat well, drink well and visit plenty of tourist attractions at a fraction of the cost of the countries to the West.
Things to do in Slovakia
Slovakia is an amazing country with lots of hiking trails, national parks, castles, museums, and UNESCO-protected sites. Slovakia’s capital Bratislava is a small city and a great destination for art and history buffs.
You need a couple of days to explore Bratislava. Bojnice Castle, Spis Castle, and Bratislava Castle are the most popular castles in the country.
Cost of Living in Slovakia
With around $900 per month, you will be able to cover all of your basic costs in Slovakia. A multi-course meal with a glass of wine in a local restaurant will cost less than $10. Transportation is very cheap, local transportation starts from $0.70 per trip.
- One-bedroom apartment: $400-600
- Dinning: $10-15
- Internet: $8-10
9. LATVIA: Cheapest European Countries to Live
Latvia is a beautiful and cheap spot for retirees to live out their golden years. Everything is affordable here whether it’s housing, healthcare, or groceries.
There are lots of interesting places to explore, different activities to try, and friendly open-minded locals in Latvia. It is one of the cheapest places to live in Europe for English speakers as 27 % of Latvian people speak English and it makes Latvia a honeypot country for digital nomads and expats.
Things to do in Latvia
Latvia offers a variety of recreational options that include hiking, kayaking, skiing, and many other outdoor activities. Visit the famous waterways and open-air museums to know the rich history of the country. Discover the Old Town of Riga and explore the city’s year-old castle and National Opera.
Cost of Living in Latvia
A one-bedroom apartment in large cities rents for an average of $1200 and outside the city center you can get it cheaper. If you decide to cook yourself, you can save some extra money at the month-end.
- One-bedroom apartment: $400-500
- Dinning: $8-12
- Internet: $8-10
Belarus always features among the cheapest countries to live in Europe. The country offers residents a great quality of life with natural attractions and vibrant cultural destinations. A low cost of living is one of the biggest draws for many ex-pats to move to Belarus.
Wherever you go in Belarus, the people will charm you, the fantastic natural beauty will seduce you, and the remarkably affordable cost of living will entice you to stay.
Things to do in Belarus
Belarus is one of the least explored countries in Europe. But surprisingly, Belarus offers a lot of great things to do at a cheap. As Belarus’s 40 % territory is forest, you can expect an abundance of lush vegetation and picturesque landscapes in the countryside.
In addition, you can enjoy several outdoor activities like hiking, canoeing, hunting, and fishing.
Cost of Living in Belarus
Accommodation in Belarus is affordable, whether you choose to live with roommates or by yourself. Food and local transport are pretty cheap. You can live here comfortably at around $1000 per month.
- One bedroom apartment: $400-600
- Dinning: $10-15
- Internet: $10
11. CZECH REPUBLIC
The Czech Republic is one of the safest and most affordable places to live in Europe. It is modern, safe, comfortable, and friendly. Czech people welcome international travelers with open arms.
Expats are attracted to the Czech Republic for a dozen reasons, which include the low cost of living, excellent healthcare, beautiful forests, and cool historic architectural buildings.
In general, the Czech Republic is not the cheapest place in Europe, but services, food, transport, accommodation, and clothes are cheaper than other Western European countries.
Things to do in the Czech Republic
Located in central Europe, the Czech Republic boasts a stunning old town with some wonderful Gothic architecture and historical buildings. Prague Castle, Charles Bridge, and Bohemian Paradise are some popular places and are worth visiting in the Czech Republic.
Cost of Living in Czech Republic
As with most countries, the cost of living in the Czech Republic depends on the region you choose to stay in. The capital of the Czech Republic is Prague is a popular tourist destination and more expensive than rural locations. Transportation is affordable, with local public transport tickets starting at around $1 for 30 minutes travel.
- One-bedroom apartment: $650-900
- Dinning: $15-20
- Internet: $15
12. MONTENEGRO – Cheap Places to live in Europe
If you are looking for a cheap European country to live in with a natural scenic view, fantastic weather, and affordability, Montenegro is an ideal dream country for you. It is also called the pearl of Europe. Room rent, utilities, groceries will be pretty cheap in Montenegro by Western standards.
With such a low cost of living, a growing economy, and an emerging tourism industry, Montenegro is becoming a popular and cheap European country for digital nomads. Even the country is not a member of the European Union, Montenegro uses Euro.
Things to do in Montenegro
Montenegro has stunning landscapes, beautiful beaches, and magnificent mountainous countryside to explore. From the impressive Venetian Old Town in Kotor, fjord-like bay to the beautiful national parks and Lipa Cave, Montenegro is full of tourist attractions.
Cost of Living in Montenegro
You can live an extremely comfortable life for as low as $900 per month. Free public healthcare is not applicable for the ex-pats. Be prepared to pay $10-25 for the Doctor consultation fee.
- One-bedroom apartment: $350-500
- Dinning: $10-15
- Monthly bus pass: $15-25
- Internet: $15
Cheap is a relative term, so, you need to calculate your budget and then find a country where you can get the right balance between the cost of living and the standard of living. So that you can be happy and comfortable whether you are going to start your digital nomad, expat, or retirement life in Europe.
This is my sorted list of the cheapest countries in Europe to live in.
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Frequently Asked Questions about Cheapest Places to Live in Europe
1. What are the cheapest countries to live in Europe that speak English?
A: Poland and Latvia are pretty inexpensive European countries where 25-30% of people can understand and speak English. However, you can find English speaking people at almost all the major tourist attractions in Europe.
2. Where are the cheapest and safest Countries to live in Europe?
A: If you plan to move to Europe and looking for a cheap and safe country to live then try to stay near the big city area of any of these four European countries – Slovakia, Hungary, Poland, and the Czech Republic.
3. What is the cheapest place to live in Europe for expats?
A: Montenegro and the Czech Republic- these two countries are rapidly growing affordable expat hotspots in Europe. Countries like Ukraine, Poland, and Hungary also attract many expats for the low cost of living, better healthcare, and countless attractions.
4. Where are the cheapest places to live in Western Europe?
A: Most western European countries are expensive to live in. However, Portugal is an exception where you can live for over half the price of the other Western countries.
5. Which country has the lowest cost of living in Europe?
A: Ukraine has the lowest cost of living in the EU region where you can find a one-bedroom apartment near city center at $200-300. Utilities, groceries, and other basic amenities are also cheaper compared to other European countries.
6. Where are the cheapest places to live in Eastern Europe?
A: Romania, Bulgaria, and Ukraine are some of the cheapest countries to live in Eastern Europe. These countries are inexpensive compared to Western European standards. With a monthly expenditure of $800-1000, you can lead a happy, comfortable life with all the basic amenities.
7. What is the cheapest European country to study?
A: The cheapest country to study in Europe is Germany. Most of the German universities don’t charge tuition fees and doing a part-time job can cover around 700–800 euros depends on where you live.
Great list! I’ve thought about moving to Europe! Much cheaper than the US!
I’ve often thought of moving just for a chage of pace. How hard is it to get work as a foreigner though?
Country like Poland is very popular among English-speaking expats as there are plenty of jobs available for English speakers.
Can a Foreigner get a job offer in Poland without overstress out I mean is there lots of job opportunities in Poland for foreigners
Poland’s economy is stable and ensures a confident future. If you have the skill, you won’t find it difficult to find a job in Poland. Here are the most popular professions in Poland: Engineering, Doctors and nurses, Information Technology, Technician and Construction specialists.
I live in london and I’m looking at Spain. The climate is the best in Europe and you can live very cheaply there
Spain has lots of space and nice people, lots of sun and great beaches. We are leaving Spain because it is getting too hot for us, and it’s not a good country for most jobs. If you don’t want to be a sterotypical expat, vegetating on the coast, you have to integrate. That means learning Spanish and relearning how to live. If you stick to all your foreign habits you will be out of sync with Spanish communities and you will miss the full experience.
Thank you Mike for the detailed current information.
Me too Rachel pick a city and i will meet you there lol…
Thanks for sharing this list! My husband and I often dream of moving to Europe. Hopefully one day!
There’s never going to be some day. Do it this year.
I live in the UK, which is much more expensive than these European countries. Definitely worth to consider when the opportunity arises in the future.
Yes Chloe, UK is really expensive. You can choose any of these countries if you want to move in future.
Yes Chloe, UK is really expensive. You can choose any of these countries if you want to move in the future.
Bear in mind minimum wage in Poland (650 EUR) comparing to UK. I’m Polish, I spent 6 years in UK and decided to go back home for good in 2021. It was the most depressing year and even being close to my family and childhood friends did not make it much better. People are grumpy, government is corrupted and wages in comparison to cost of living are simply low.
Thanks for the list. I’ve thought about moving over to Europe many times.
I’m glad that you liked the post.
I have been living in Lviv Ukraine for about 6 months. $1,000 dollars a month here is comfortable. I have a nice apartment 990 square feet on top floor for about $365 a month. I am able to pay down debt and invest here on my pension which I cannot do in the USA.
That’s amazing. Easter European countries are really cheap compared to any American cities. Moreover, you can explore many places if you are a travel buff.
Could I please ask how to find an affordable flat like yours, in Lviv?
The best way is to find them on a Facebook groups
OMG, thanks for sharing this amazing list of cheap European countries.
I am glad that you liked the post.
I am originally from Slovakia and I am fluent in Polish also able to understand Russian/Ukranian language. Cheapest European country to live in is definitely Ukraine and living expenses there are definitely way much less than 1100 dollars (stated by writer) . Local people don’t even make that much money there. I think writer of this article calculated expenses based on prices that he has found in Kiev City centre but so just you know once you decide to go outside city centre prices are much lower. I would say you can live comfortably with around 800 dollars. Outside capital city I would say 650-700 dollars.
Second cheapest country in Europe is Turkey.
Third cheapest Belarus followed by Romania, Hungary and Poland. Also Kazakhstan is still one of the cheapest.
Thank you David for your detailed information. Actually, the cost of living mentioned in the article is based on the capital city, but now the article is updated. Thank you.
Thanks David for this further information
Just wondering what currency this is measured in, thanks!
Hi DJ, the currency is in USD.
Sunny days in Latvia are few and far between. Latvia isn’t that affordable (anymore). A studio bedroom slum is easily 600€ plus manager fees 60€ if you are lucky… plus utilities which in Riga keep raising early. Food is overpriced. Social systems are terrible here. The people are unfriendly and strangely lazy. Those who live here will understand. The government is authoritarian and peoples’ perspectives are very closeminded. There is a large expat community but mostly made up of people from Pakistan and other countries in that part of the world. All the foreigners seem to come here to try to get an “easy ticket” to the EU but they are shocked when they learn of the citizenship requirements here. I’ve been living in Riga for 5 years. I married a local and like most young people, we will leave this hell hole as soon as we can. Anything you read online about Latvia being a great place was written by government shrills or tourists who were here for a day.
Why has no one mentioned Serbia? Is it worth living?
Serbia is cheap compared to the US but it is still an expensive country to live in Europe.
Is it easy to migrate from Hungary to U.K?
Hi Captain, it’s not easy anymore after Brexit. You must have a well-paying job offer and a decent knowledge of the English language and there is a scoring system for migrants.
I live in the United States (Maine), and we are one of the highest taxed states in the States. We pay $2500.00 a month for rent on top of all other expenses. We are looking at Europe as another living alternative. My husband works 60-70 hours a week and I took early retirement from working the medical field (Administrative/Medical Secretary) after many years. I have also worked in Education (which I miss greatly). It’s hard to save anything due to the high cost of living. I keep hoping for a miracle!
First of all, you and your husband’s struggle is an inspiration for many of us. Maine is definitely one of the best states in the US to live in. If you think to save some money and want to live a quality life, eastern European countries can be the best options for you.
Living in Ukraine became even cheaper now. Thanks.
I think Ukraine just got even cheaper to live nowadays.
Hi, Bulgaria is far not that cheap anymore.I’m bulgarian and I live in US but my mother, brother, and relatives are there. Inflation and increase in cost of living, housing, montly bills, groseries, basically everything is much more expensive than a year even 6 months ago. But I believe this is not only in Bulgaria, it’s everywhere. In CA, USA is getting more and more expensive too. A lot of people are moving to other states like Arizona, Texas, Nevada/Las Vegas.
With all the respect for all countries, but saying about Hungary that boasts Danube river and green valees, but forgetting about Romania that not only boasts the Danube river but also the Delta which is unique in Europe is the maximum of disrespect one can show towards a country. Not to talk about monasteries, the whole carpatian arch, the most famous world’s road Transfagarasan or the House of Parliament which is the biggest building in the world ( just the Pentagon is bigger) Really disappointed.
Go cry about it and be offended somewhere else, patriotism is an antiquated concept for the feeble minded.
This is a very helpful list.
Unfortunately, the central and eastern European countries are suffering from extreme levels of inflation.
Estonia currently has the highest level at almost 20%.
Good day. My wife and I have been throwing the idea around about moving to Europe. We are both in our mid 40’s and are both retired. We currently live in upstate NY and love it, but miss the European vibe. The only concern is we have three small children 12, 9, and 5. So we are concerned about school. Any advice you could give us would be greatly appreciated. Thanks.