Budget Berlin: Leaving the Euro Zone

Berlin is in the EU, therefore its currency is of course, the euro. The Euro at the time of visiting Berlin was about 1 euro for every 1.40USD. This can end up being a pretty massive difference on a budget traveler but not only is Berlin awesome for all of the aforementioned reasons but it’s also one of the cheapest Western European cities that we’ve ever visited. I won’t go into detail too heavily, but here a few examples:

Food/Drink

Most counter-sort of restaurants in Berlin will cost you rarely cost more than 5 euros for a meal and maybe 6.50 with a soft drink or beer. We found a falafel place on our corner that had falafel sandwiches bigger than our heads stuffed with sauce and salad for only 2 euros. Needless to say, we ate loads of the stuff. There are tons of counter service type places in Berlin. One can get an entire delicious looking plate of pasta and a salad for 5 euros or slices of pizza for 1.50. A proper sit-down dinner with a wait staff at a medium budget place will cost anywhere from 6 to 10 euros(with drinks). Of course, there are higher end places but we were too satisfied with the culinary ability of the smaller places to ever try them.
Beer is amazing. At the grocery store, you can buy a pint of any delicious German beer for about 70 euro cents. In Germany, if you return your bottles(both plastic and glass) to the bottle return at the grocery store you get a refund back. We returned around 15 beer bottles and got back nearly 3 euros which doesn’t sound like much but bought us another falafel at least. At a bar, a pint of beer should never ever cost more than 4.50 or 5 euros. We paid about 3 euros most places unless they were a bit more posh.
Water normally costs less than a euro at the grocery store for a huge bottle and about 1.50euros at a restaurant.

Accomodation

Berlin has a LOT of hostels. They usually run between 13-20 euros per night, depending on the facilities and neighborhood. We found a guy on Craigslist who rents out vacation apartments and since there were two of us and you pay for your hostel by the night, it made more sense for us to rent our own place. Plus, we wanted to live the illusion that we were actually residents of Berlin. We paid 280 euros for 8 nights accommodation which is about 17 euros per person or about 24USD a night. We also got free laundry and our own kitchen. Craigslist is wonderful for Berlin vacation rentals and if you are ever interested in the apartment we used, I can put you in contact with Miek.

Attractions

We didn’t see many Berlin attractions this go around but last time, we did do the free bicycle tour which costs nothing more than a tip to your guide at the end of the 3 hour tour. You even get free bikes! The DDR museum costs about 3 euros for students I believe. Loads can be done in this city for free with all the nice parks and free art galleries. The modern art gallery that we previously mentioned is free on Thursday afternoons.

Overall, not to costly for Europe, but we were very excited to be hitting Asia where finally the dollar is in our favor.

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1 Response to “Budget Berlin: Leaving the Euro Zone”


  1. 1 lisa July 23, 2009 at 3:35 am

    thanks for the detailed info! it’s exactly what i was looking for but it can be hard to find up to date details so i’m glad i found you’re site through bootsnall


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