The Balkans are becoming increasingly popular. Rightfully so if you ask me, because the region is spectacularly beautiful, the people are very warming and, not unimportantly, it’s not very expensive. It’s actually pretty cheap. Macedonia is considered one of the cheapest countries in Europe, so you can probably last here with your travel budget. We kept score on how much we spent during our one week visit to North Macedonia. How expensive is North Macedonia? Or better: How cheap is North Macedonia? Let’s find out the travel budget for North Macedonia!
We took the plane from Eindhoven Airport (The Netherlands) to Skopje in less than three hours. We booked a return flight with Wizzair for about €250 total. As budget airliners pop up left and right, fare prices will drop even further. Especially when you’re flexible on your dates you’ll find fares for almost nothing.
On arrival we took the bus to Skopje’s city center.
Our Road Rrip
The plan was to stay a few days in Skopje and then move on to Lake Ohrid in the south of North Macedonia, Albania, Kosovo and then back to Skopje to return the car. We rented the car for nine days, which cost us €190.
Travel Budget for North Macedonia
We subdivided expenses in five categories; food and drinks, transportation, accommodations, souvenirs and other expenses.
Prices for food & drinks in North Macedonia
The advice here is: Don’t go to overpriced restaurants to have good food. Macedonian traditional food is delicious and you will see numerous small restaurant owned by local families. Especially in Skopje, almost every street has a place to have a meal. Especially at lunch time you’ll see families gather to have a meal. We were happily surprised because the meals consist of small dishes like Spanish tapas. And we like tapas! So there’s lots to try and the awesome this is that it costs about 5 euro to have a small dish plus something to drink.
Does it get better than this?
In Ohrid you will have a harder time finding the authentic little restaurants because the best spots are occupied by more expensive and trendy restaurants. It takes a little effort to find the good places, but they’re certainly there!
Like mentioned before, we rented a car in Skopje which was by far the biggest expense of this category. Public transportation is not very developed, so we definitely recommend renting a car in North Macedonia. Besides the car we took the bus a few times and rode the cable cart to the top of Vodno, where you’ll have a spectacular view over the city.
An expensive item on the budget for North Macedonia is accommodation. It’s probably possible to spend a little less than we did, because we always want to make sure we don’t end up in a hole. Our critical eye browsed through Airbnb and Booking.com to find some amazing places.
Skopje: Airbnb at Goce’s
For our stay in Skopje we booked an Airbnb at Goce, A really nice guy who showed us around the city and took us to a few
of his friends who worked in the old town. We visited a jewel maker and an archaeological place were his friend was in charge of restoring damaged sculptures. We spent about an hour in the small fortress were the sculptures were stored.
Ohrid: Lukanov Apartments
With a great view over the lake and right next to a small orthodox church saint Saint Sophia, the location of Lukanov Apartments is really great. The city center is a five minute walk, so you’re close to everything. The apartments are fully equipped, so we ate our self made breakfasts on our huge balcony. Prices are a lot higher than in Skopje, so having the ability to fetch your meals at the supermarket saves quite a bit. We paid around 15 euro for a night at the apartments, which was very cheap compared to the surrounding accommodations.
Other and Souvenirs
We didn’t go overboard with the souvenirs and shopping this time, so these costs remained low. The most expensive we bought were two pairs of genuine Toms for 32 euro.
We summarized the all expenses in a table for clarity:
How Expensive is North Macedonia per person?
Below is another table with our expenses shown per person.
North Macedonia is one of the cheapest destinations in Europe to travel. This combined with the beauty of the country makes it a perfect destination for a holiday. Be quick, because more and more people discover Macedonia’s uniqueness.
How much did you spend in North Macedonia?