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Lunch and Dinner Cost in Prague and Budapest

Hi,I am planning to pay for lunch and dinner in local currency. I need to figure out how much I need to withdraw from the ATM. Also, what percentage
should I pay for the tips? Thanks

Posted by
12329 posts

Budapest. Sort of like asking what a car costs. What kind of car? If you go down to Vaci street to eat then it will be expensive. Here are links to three places I frequent a lot. The first is sort of an upscale Chili's or Applebees. Nice atmosphere, usually a guy on a piano. Not a tourist place but not far from the tourist places. Sit with the locals and relax: http://pest.vakvarju.com/en/menu The next is a kinda nice place with inside and outside dining. Not luxury but very, very nice. Again, near the tourist zone but only about half tourist in client base: http://balettcipo.hu/en/menu This one is pretty top shelf, but not the most expensive in town. Almost all locals: http://www.aranykaviar.hu/english/food/dinner/ More information here: http://www.budapest-tourist-guide.com/costs-prices-budapest.html

Posted by
11261 posts

Unless you are not using cash for anything else except meals, just withdraw $400 or so of local cash upon arrival in each country. If you have any money left at the end, you can use it to pay down your final hotel bill, then put the rest on a credit card. If you use up the $400, just go back to an ATM to get more. The question "how much is a meal in Prague or Budapest" is no more answerable than "how much is a meal in Bellevue, WA." It depends on where you are going, and what you are ordering (just a main course and water, or starter, main, dessert, wine, etc). If you want to get an idea, Rick's books list price ranges for his recommended restaurants.

Posted by
12329 posts

Telling someone to budget any amount per city is making a lot of assumptions, but I do like the idea of using the spare for the hotel on the way out. We have spent half your recommendation for dinner on a few occasions. There are ATM's all over Budapest. you can go to the OTP. Bank website and down load a map of their locations if you like. So you can draw money in 20,000 to 100,000 forint lots as you spend it, I don't worry too much about bank and credit card charges as after paying for the air fare and the hotel any fees for street money really don't have that large an impact on the total. The restaurants I gave you give you I Bpest. are a pretty good cross section of what the costs are. The links take you straight to the menus so you can see real prices current today. A quick rough conversion is drop two zeros and divide by two. So 20,000 forint (also seen as HUF) is 20,000 drop two zeros is 200, divide by two is $100. More accurately today it would calculate to about $90.00 so you will be conservative by about 10%, which is the tip.

Posted by
1246 posts

Rick As people say this is a 'how long is a piece of string' type question. Having said that this is the menu of a nice mid range sort of place near Wencelas Square which we often go to. it will give you a ball park figure. http://www.restauracetrilobit.cz/index.php?nid=10047&lid=cs&oid=2174289 This is a site with the lunchtime menus of loads of places acrosss town, so you can look up somewhere near where you are. http://www.lunchtime.cz/denni-menu/praha/english/ Alan

Posted by
12329 posts

Pozsonyi Kisvendeglo is sure off the beaten path for most tourists. Not sure I would suggest it to someone with only a few days to spend in town. But its got my interest enough that I will stop in next week. Still, Tripadvisor has to be kept in perspective. How does a little way out of the way local eaterie get more reviews than larger better situated places? And you will find that the food in Budapest is better than either Prague or Vienna (oh don't give me grief. I am entitled to an opinion). And Budapest will be less expensive. ;-)

Posted by
257 posts

Thank you for your response. @Harold. I will follow you advise. Withdraw 400 each time. I have a no fee DB card and there are many ATM around. Should be no problem. I already contacted the bank. @James. I like all the restaurants you suggested. Vakvarju and Balettcipo are close to my hotel. Arany Kaviar serve Russian food. I like to try. It look like the Meals is a set dinner cost 40E to 60E. Drink and tips will be total to say 80E. Is tax included in the price? Is 10% to 12% tips okay?
Thanks again.

Posted by
12329 posts

Rick, right now that USD400 is about 85.000 forints so you know which button to press on the ATM. I just pulled three restaurants that I like at random. Since they are close to your hotel then I have some better information on that very area. I will send you the link to the information. Hope it helps a little. Prices don't include TAX and don't include the tip. But always read the receipt before you pay to see if the tip is already included. Personally since I stay out of the main tourist traps I just ask the waiter if the tip is in it and trust his answer, then go straight to the last line. Why anyone would think people on vacation (outside the tourist traps) are any more dishonest than what we have at home confounds me. Tips if you choose to give one are generally smaller in Budapest, and Europe in general. I round up and shoot for close to 10%, more if I really liked the service.

Posted by
12329 posts

There are a lot of banks in Budapest. OTP is one of the largest. Here is a link to their ATM locations. You might want to print it out if you are worried about getting money. I cant think of having ever had to walk more than 2 blocks without finding a machine. But its all about personal comfort. https://www.otpbank.hu/portal/en/Contact/ATMlocator