Kraków is very cheap compared to many European or American cities. So, not only is it a beautiful destination, filled with things to do, but your money will also last longer than Paris or Rome. We break down what you can expect to pay for a trip to Kraków
When travelling to Europe for the first time, many travellers immediately think of big name destinations like Paris. But the same money will go twice as far in Kraków. Even supposedly cheap locations like Berlin or Lisbon are more expensive than Kraków, with restaurants roughly a third cheaper in the Polish city.
Don’t be fooled into equating the cheaper cost with a poorer experience. Kraków is a fantastic choice for eating and drinking, there are world-class attractions, and the standard of facilities is high across the board. For example, if you want to see a da Vinci masterpiece in Paris, you jostle with the crowds at the Louvre. But you can see the sublime Lady With An Ermine in Kraków for €6 with none of the fuss.
This page gives some typical costs for a stay in Kraków.
Despite being a member of the European Union, the Polish currency is the złoty rather than the Euro. I’ll give the prices of both but you can work costs out using our handy currency conversion tool. We also have more information about the złoty on our Polish Currency page.
Accommodation In Kraków
Kraków has accommodation to suit every budget range. As a general rule, you can expect rooms to be about 45% to 55% cheaper in Kraków than in London and a whopping 55% to 65% cheaper than Paris. Just beware that prices go up as you get closer to the peak seasons (Easter and June-August) and rooms will be harder to get, so book well in advance! The other thing to consider is location. The closer you are to Wawel Hill, the more expensive it is likely to be.
Unless stated, rates are per room (ie, not per person) for twin or double beds.
Budget Accommodation In Kraków
Budget accommodation price range: 44zł-218zł (10€-50€) per night, per room
Hostel: 44zł-87zł (10€-20€) per night, per person
If you’re on the tightest budget and you don’t mind sharing a dorm, you can find some decent (and cheap) hostels right in the heart of Kraków. But remember that Kraków is a party destination, so be sure to check reviews before booking. The name of the hostel often gives a clue.
Private Room: 74zł-114zł (17€-26€) per night, per room
For a bit more privacy – and often a friendly introduction to the city – you’ll find some delightful private rooms on AirBnB. These can even work out cheaper than a dorm if two or more are sharing. Rooms are generally of a high standard but can sell out quickly.
Budget Hotel: 87zł-214zł (20€-50€) per night, per room
There’s a broad range of cheap, functional hotels across Kraków although location will be a factor in the price, and you’ll almost certainly be looking at somewhere outside the centre. You can still find some bargains in Kazimierz and Podgórze is worth considering. Check on a map before booking.
Midrange Accommodation In Kraków
Midrange accommodation price range: 218zł-437zł (50€-100€) per night, per room or apartment
Midrange hotel: 218zł-437zł (50€-100€) per night, per room or apartment
As soon as you hit this price bracket, the range of options expands considerably. You’re mainly looking at hotels for couples and business travellers, located immediately north and west of the Old Town, but there’s also lots of choice in Kazimierz and even some in the Old Town itself. The main decision here is between older hotels with a bit of character (but are perhaps showing their age) and accommodation that is new but sometimes lacking in character.
Midrange apartment: 218zł-437zł (50€-100€) per night, per apartment
If you book early enough you’ll find some excellent apartments very close to the centre of Kraków, mainly just to the east of the Old Town. These can work out an absolute steal if two couples share. More often than not, these will be cosy but you can expect high standards, with kitchen area, bathroom, and wifi.
Luxury Accommodation In Kraków
Luxury accommodation price range: from 218zł (100€) per night, per room or apartment
Luxury hotel: from 218zł (100€) per night, per room
There are stunning, almost regal, five-star hotels in Kraków with some of the best city views in Europe, if you’ve the money to spend. Kraków’s boutique hotels are very stylish, more personal and a little more affordable. Costs will definitely be cheaper out of season and early booking helps. The Hotel Copernicus has rooftop views of Wawel Hill, whilst the Gessler Hotel Francuski is decorated in Art Nouveau. Some of the international chains like Radisson Blu also make a strong showing here.
Luxury apartment: from 218zł (100€) per night, per apartment
Family apartments overlooking the Market Square, penthouse views over the Vistula – at this price point, the sky’s the limit. Though not as historic as some of Kraków’s luxury hotels, you can stay in real comfort, within close proximity to the main sights, provided you book well in advance through AirBnB or similar.
Meals In Kraków
Great food is one of things that keep many people coming back to Kraków. It’s pretty hard not to find a good meal to suit any budget. As well as local and Eastern European menus, the city has the full range of international cuisine covered. And, whilst there’s plenty here for carnivores, the surprising thing is how much there is for vegans and others with special dietary requirements.
See our list of Restaurants in Kraków for suggestions.
Average price: 2zł-13zł (0.50€-3€) for a snack
If you’re suddenly hungry, you can find obwarzanek stands everywhere. These tasty bagels are usually about 2zł (0.50€) each and come with sesame, poppy seed, or cheese flavours. Elsewhere you can pick up a zapiekanki – a kind of pizza made with a mini baguette – for about 7zł-9zł (1.50€-2€) or a portion of pierogi dumplings for 9zł-13zł (2€-3€).
Average price: 13zł-44zł (3€-10€) per meal
You can get a hearty meal at a budget price from one of Kraków’s milk bars (such as Tomasza close to the Market Square). These are basic and nourishing, and often very good for breakfast. A main course here will rarely cost more than 20zł (5€).
Otherwise, it shouldn’t take long to find somewhere cheap that whets your appetite. Try Pierogi MR Vincent in Kazimierz for under 20zł (5€) a meal or get a vegan kebab from Vegab for 18zł (4€). Many places display menus outside.
Average price: 44zł-66zł (10€-15€) per meal
As with accommodation, the midrange price bracket brings an incredible choice and you can dine very well for less than 15€. At the lower end, you can try a Polish speciality at Miód Malina for an average of 40zł (9€) for a main course or enjoy a european bass with kashotto and prawns at Hamsa in Kazimierz for 65zł (15€).
Average price: from 66zł (15€) per meal
For more luxurious eating, Kraków has some beautiful establishments, including the historic Wierzynek, which dates back to the 14th century. The beef tenderloin will set you back 132zł (30€). You’ll also find fine French, Italian, and Mediterranean restaurants, as well as local specialists. Even at the upper end of the scale, Kraków’s restaurants represent incredible value.
- Tall latte at Starbucks: 11zł (2,50€)
- Flat white at Costa: 9zł (2€)
- Latte at Charlotte (a cafe in Kraków Old Town): 9zł (2€)
I’ve found the range in Costa to be more interesting than their English equivalents. However, the price of coffee can be strangely high in hotel restaurants and in some of the chain cafes. You’ll generally get a nicer cup at a better price in independent venues like Charlotte and Massolit.
Kraków Supermarkets and Convenience Stores
- Litre of milk: 3zł (0,6€)
- Sandwich: 13zł (3€)
- Kilo of apples: 3zł (0,7€)
- Half-litre of beer: 3zł (0,7€)
Wherever you are in Kraków, you’ll be close to a late-night Żabka or Carrefour convenience store, many of which are open 24 hours. These are stocked with a full range of ingredients, snacks, and drinks, including beers, and are reasonably priced. For more serious shopping, a supermarket (such as the excellent Carrefour in Galeria Krakowska) will let you buy all the bits of pieces for a picnic lunch.
Cigarettes, Alcohol And Bars In Kraków
- Pack of Marlboro: 16zł (4€)
- Half-litre of draught beer: 7zł (2€)
- Cocktail: 21zł (5€)
- 6 vodka tasting menu: 44zł (10€)
Wherever you buy it, beer and spirits are likely to comparatively cheap in Kraków. There are tourist-friendly bars all over the Old Town and Kazimierz, and you can even buy a beer in a Costa. A real treat in Kraków is to try a tasting tray of flavoured vodkas. You’ll get six for about 44zł (10€).
Cigarettes are pretty cheap and easily available from the ubiquitous kiosks. However, there is an indoor smoking ban unless the establishment has a dedicated room for smoking in. There’s even a small glass smoking room in the departure lounge of Kraków Airport.
Galeria Krakowska – for SIMs, shopping, and everything else – image © Jason Weaver
SIM Cards, Phones And Data
Decent wifi is fairly ubiquitous in Kraków accommodation, whether it be a hotel or AirBnB. You’ll also find free wifi in public buildings like the airport and shopping centres, but it can be quite limited. Starbucks is a great standby.
Internet cafes are pretty rare in Kraków these days and whilst pocket wifi and cellphone rental is possible in Poland, I’ve never found the packages very compelling. My suggestion is to use a data plan and tether any extra devices to your phone.
Any call or data plan from another EU country should work in Poland at no extra cost. So, if you’ve a monthly contract with a British provider, for example, or you bought a SIM in a country like Germany, you should be able to use it in Kraków. This is subject to fair usage, so check the terms with whichever company sold it to you.
If you’re coming straight to Poland from a country outside the EU, you’ll need an unlocked device that will work in Europe. This isn’t always the case with US cellphones. You can buy a cheap handset for travel from Amazon or from an electronics outlet like MediaMarkt when you arrive.
The phone market is fairly well regulated in Kraków, so you might as well stick with the main providers. This ensures the best coverage and the most helpful service. Orange is the most tourist-friendly of these and, at time of writing, they offer a 15GB / 30-day SIM card for 50zł (12€), which is pretty cheap.
We cover the process of getting setup in our guide to Where To Get A SIM Card In Kraków.
- Pair of Levis jeans: 293zł (67€)
- Dress from H&M: 160zł (37€)
- Nike trainers: 289zł (66€)
- Men’s leather shoes: 350zł (80€)
- Amber necklace: 140zł (32€)
If you find that you’ve left anything important at home, you’ll be able to replace it in Kraków for something like 15% less than you’d pay in London. Most of the big European brands like Zara and H&M have branches in Kraków shopping centres. See our guide to Galeria Krakowska) for more information.
You can also pick up traditional Polish souvenirs like amber jewellery for some amazing prices. A necklace of amber chips will vary from 115zł-160zł (26€-27€). Our Kraków Four-Day Itinerary includes some suggestions for souvenir shopping.
- Shampoo 400ml: 12zł (3€)
- Roll-on Deodorant: 10zł (2€)
- Tampons 32 box: 16zł (14€)
- Toothpaste: 8zł (2€)
You can buy basic toiletries in a convenience store like Żabka and pretty much anything else in a drogeria, such as Rossmann, which are dotted around central Kraków.
- Taxi: 7zł (1,60€) + 2,30zł (0,53€) / km (day) and 3,50zł (0,80€) / km (nights / weekends) – i.e., a 5km trip costs around 18,50zł (4,24€)
- Bus / Tram: 2,80zł (0,64€) for 20m, 3,80zł for 40m (0,87€)
- One-day bus pass: 15zł (4€)
- Bicycle rental: 45zł-110zł (10€-26€) per day, depending on type of bike
- Litre of gasoline: 5zł (1€)
Kraków’s public transport system is extremely cheap and fairly straightforward to navigate. Taxis are reasonable, although much of the central area is pedestrianised and easily walkable. Our guide for Getting From Kraków Airport To Kraków City Centre includes an overview to the city’s public transport system.
The KrakowCard includes unlimited use of the transport system, as well as entry to almost 40 attractions. See our KrakowCard Museum And Travel Pass guide.
St. Mary’s Basilica – image © Jason Weaver
- Auschwitz-Birkenau: 40zł (10€)
- Wawel Hill Royal Private Appartments: 25zł (6€)
- St Mary’s Basilica: 10zł (3€)
- Rynek Underground: 19zł (5€)
- Collegium Maius: 16zł (4€)
- Schindler’s Factory: 21zł (5€)
- Wieliczka Salt Mine: 79zł (18€)
Considering the world-class quality of some of Kraków’s attractions, the entry costs are an absolutely bargain. This list is a recommended selection but you could easily fill the day with museums and churches that cost less or are even free. The KrakowCard includes entry to almost 40 attractions, as well as unlimited use of the transport system. See our KrakowCard Museum And Travel Pass guide.
Flights To Kraków
Typical round-trip ticket costs to John Paul II International Airport from selected cities in Euros as of August 2019:
- Chicago: 662€
- Dubai: 456€
- London: 103€
- Paris: 111€
- Frankfurt: 79€
- Amsterdam: 270€
- Warsaw: 67€
Kraków is currently served by only a handful of international flights outside of Europe, so we have listed these and the main European transport hubs for connecting flights. Both EasyJet and Ryanair serve Kraków, so flying with them can be extremely cheap. Use a comparison site like Skyscanner to find the best deals.