Budapest Expat Information
What is the Expat life in Budapest like? Where can I find like-minded people? There are several questions that all people ask themselves when they start their Expat adventure which I try to answer in this article and also give information and ideas for all Expats in Budapest. No matter if you are coming to Budapest in near future or if you are a long time Expat living here since years you will be able to take out the information you need and ask or answer questions.
Budapest Expat Life
Budapest has a large Expat community with many people from for example the UK, Germany, Netherlands but also Portugal, China or the USA. Therefore it is fairly easy to live a decent Expat life in Budapest as there are many like-minded people to meet and get a connection to others through the job, sports or specially for Expats organized meetings. Also Hungarians are fairly open to international people and do speak foreign languages so it is not hopeless to organize your daily life as an expat.
However Hungarian bureaucracy can be a painful experience without Hungarian language knowledge but luckily there are many helpful Hungarians who offer their time to help foreigners out. One important tip though is to start learning Hungarian as early as possible and speak a few words, more than the typical “Hello” or “Cheers”, because Hungarians do appreciate the efforts.
Working and Living in Hungary
As an expat in Budapest you most probably are coming for work. If on a contract in your home country you will get paid the wages of your home country and do not really need to care about salary levels in Hungary however it is good to have a rough understanding of what Hungarians or foreigners on local contracts earn. The average net income in Hungary is around 120.000 HUF per month which is currently around 400€, yes that’s right 400€. However this is all over Hungary and in the country side the wages are lower and in Budapest usually higher as you might have expected. But this should give you a rough indication about the wage level your fellow colleagues are earning.
Living in Hungary, though it gets more and more expensive, is still under the level of Western Europe. I have written an article about the Cost of Living in Budapest which gives you some good indication about prices you can expect here. I tried to give an insight into several parts of live such as daily cost like transportation / mobility, cost for food and drinks, cost for entertainment and leisure, personal care and housing costs. Make sure you have a look and read the article. If you have any questions or need more detailed information feel free to drop me an email or leave a comment.
Budapest Expat Guide & Tips
Unfortunately there is not that one guide that will help you through all situations of your Expat life as it strongly depends on different factors such as you origin, the time you spend here or what you are looking for. Some Expats are in Budapest for 6 months and just want to get over it, others come alone for several years and need like-minded people to enjoy their time here.
See this entire article as your first guide to a great Expat life in Budapest with tips and tricks for the time of your stay. However there is some information many Expats are craving for for examples typical places Expats meet in, sports activities you can join, events or specially for expats organized meetups.
Typical Expat Bars
Expats and international people of course do go to many different bars, pubs and clubs all over Budapest which are mostly visited by Hungarians. However there are a few places in the city that are very well visited by expats from different countries with the motive to meet other expats, preferably from their country of origin, to exchange news and thoughts abroad. Here are a few bars that are very frequented among expats from all around the world:
Pure live sports! Champs Sportsbar in Budapest is one of the most popular sports bars in Budapest. Several screens fill a big location with above average priced but excellent food like meat, pasta or fish. The menu contains a calorie table including the work out required to get the dish off. You also can weight you in Champs Sports bar Budapest just like a boxer. Champs offers different sports on different screens to watch. The wine list is very large as well as the selection of beer. Adress: Dohány Utca 20 District 6 Budapest Phone: +36 (1) 413 1655 Or visit the Champs Sports Bar website. ￩ ￫ x × Previous Next
Live music, bar, restaurant, disco! Old Mans music pub in Budapest is one of the places that is full of expats. You enter a small door and would not guess the size of Old Mans because it is very large. Entirely in the cellar of a normal living house Old Man’s music Pub gives you everything from food over drinks and girls to club atmosphere on the dancefloor. In the afternoon or evening you can have a dinner with some beer. Old Man’s offers a big variety of food like pasta, pizza, salads, meat dishes, desserts and much more. I have never tried the food there so I don’t want to judge it but Old Man’s is more known as a live music and party pub than a gourmet place. Later at night the Pub gets very crowded every day. If you don’t know where to go on a tuesday evening because no club is open you always can jump into Old Man’s. It is free and it is always full with…
Irish cats meet Hungarian chicks! The Irish Cat Pub in Budapest is at Kalvin ter in the center of Budapest. Usually many expats run around in Irish Cat Pub and so do a lot of girls. Every event like Halloween or Easter is celebrated with special parties and typical music. But besides drinking and party the Irish Cat Pub in Budapest offers food as well. Typical american food like Burgers, Chicken Wings or other junk food but also pizza or salads are served. But famous is the Irish Cat Pub for long parties on the weekends with a lot of expats from all over the world. The pub turns into a club and people are dancing, drinking and having fun. It is always a blast in there if you like 80’s music and the typical expat bars in Budapest than Irish Cat Pub is the place to go for you. Adress: Múzeum krt. 41 District 5, Budapest Phone: (+36-1) 266-4085 Or visit the website ￩ ￫ x × Previous Next
Welcome Scotsman! Caledonia in Budapest is an authentic Scottish Pub offering beer from home for any Scotsman. The ambience in Caledonia is very nice as it is like a Scotish pub in the middle of Budapest. You get served Scottish beers, foods and other things from home. Next to your beer you get all kinds of sports offered in TV which lets the pub Caledonia become the home of British people. The big advantage Caledonia has compared to other pubs such as the Irish Cat Pub or Becketts is that you feel like home and not among a mass of Hungarians, Germans or Chinese. Come into Caledonia if you are an expat or just want to have an Scottish beer on your weekend trip. Adress: Mozsár utca District 6, Budapest Phone: (+36-1) 311-7611 Or visit the website ￩ ￫ x × Previous Next
Sports for Expats in Budapest
Football with Germans, Rugby with English or Baseball with Americans? No problem, in Budapest there are many expat sport opportunities to play sports with fellow countrymen and also Hungarians speaking your language. Sports is a great way to make friends, stay fit and meet people from your home country. If you are in charge of a sports team and you are looking for new members please feel free to contact me with information about when and how often you meet and of course your contact possibilities so I can add you here.
In Budapest there are many meetings especially for expats to bring together for example businesses or people with the same interest. These meetings occur occasionally and not always regularly and are communicated via channels like Facebook or Meetup. Therefore it is hard to summarize them and keep up to date with them but you can also ask at your embassy for meetups with like minded people from your home country.
Events are a great way to meet other expats from around the world. No matter if a party, a concert or a festival you can meet foreign people everywhere and connect with them. Find below the next 3 upcoming events in Budapest:
A Celebration of Spring in Budapest – The 34th Budapest Spring Festival
Venue: Various locations in Budapest
Daily Danube Cruise incl. Cocktails & Beers
From 16:00 until 17:30
Fine Food Festival for Gourmets
Venue: Millenáris Park
Budapest Expat Jobs
With many international companies operating in Budapest the capital of Hungary can be considered as a hub in Easter Europe. Central location, fairly low labor costs and good education are the main reasons for multinationals to open up offices in Budapest. Vodafone, Emirates, Deutsche Telekom, you name them all have large offices in Budapest with well paid jobs that do not require Hungarian native language skills.
Check out the 10 most recent job openings in Budapest:
Budapest Expat Blog
Latest Blog Posts on BudapestAgent.com
Are you aiming to acquire solid and focused competences to specialize yourself in one or more sectors of the hospitality industry? Do you want the real opportunity to start/consolidate a brilliant career in international and luxury hotel chains? If your answer is yes, apply for our Master in International Hotel Management, take advantage of receiving one of the 8 available scholarships/discounts and start working for our 4-5 star partner hotels! Budapest is becoming one of the most attractive European capitals, growing extremely both from business and tourism prospective. As a matter of fact, Hungarian market has started to seek for talented resources developing a new concept and vision of the fascinating hospitality world. The Master in International Hotel Management aims to teach participants various skills, such as professional, methodological, problem-solving, social and management skills applied in the hospitality industry. The capability to have a global vision and respond effectively to a market changing constantly is nowadays essential and a key success factor for every person having challenging aspirations, mostly for…
There are passports and there are passports. Not with every passport you can travel freely in every country for various reasons. But which are the passports you can travel into most of the countries freely? And which are the ones that don’t allow you to enter most of the countries? The list below gives clarity and as the refugee topic is more actual then ever these days I think it is worth to publish this list. The first place is shared between the UK and the USA followed by France, Germany and South Korea on a shared second place. So the list goes on with mainly Western countries but with less free access to many countries. On a shared ninth place comes Hungary alongside Czech republic and Australia. On the bottom of the list on a shared place 80 you find Solomon Islands, Myanmar (Burma), South Sudan, Sao Tome and Principe and Palestinian Territories. This should not be a political post which I ever since I do BudapestAgent.com avoid. So…
Among the many hotels in Budapest you can find everything from dirt cheap hotels without a star up to the high class 5 star hotels. But what is the best value for business travelers and tourists? In my opinion it is in the category of 3 stars or max 4 stars depending on your wallet. If you are looking for clean, friendly and comfortable places to stay in the city you should start looking from 3 stars upwards. A very good value for the price is the Jagelló Business Hotel (www.jagellobusinesshotel.hu) on Buda side which offers all you need for a fair price. The hotel is situated in a very popular area in the 12th district, near popular business offices, the Budapest Congress Center, MOM Cultural Center and the Larus Event Center. This area is preferred for expats and rich people because of its location and the surrounding. Within few minutes you are on the highways 1 (direction to Vienna) and 7 (direction to Lake Balaton), you have the MoM…
Critical Mass in Budapest ist eine Demonstration um nich Umwelt verschmutzende Verkehrsmittel, insbesondere das Fahrrad, zu unterstützen und auf Umweltschutz aufmerksam zu machen. Mittlerweile nehmen an der Critical Mass jährlich über 30.000 Demonstranten teil. Dabei kommt jeder Demonstrant mit dem Fahrrad, Tretroller, Inlineskatern oder anderen natürlichen Fortbewegungsmitteln zur Demonstration die sich durch die ganze Stadt zieht. Um einmal etwas deutlicher zu machen um was es sich bei Critical Mass genau handelt gibt es hier ein Video. ￩ ￫ x × Previous Next
The hottest topic this weekend and a moment people from Budapest have been waiting for is the opening of Budapest Metro Line 4 which happened to be this weekend. For the weekend traveling was free of charge any many Budapestians took the chance to have the first look on the latest public transport possibility bring people from Kelenföld Vásútállomás (11th district) to Keleti Pályaudvar (8th district). From now on Metro 4 is part of the BKV (Budapest Transport company) timetable and can be used for public transportation. For more pictures, videos and updates check out the tweets about Metro 4 here. Here is a nice video of about 15 minutes showing several stations of the new Metro 4 in Budapest: Special Thanks go to @Marianna and to @MargitFeher (Journalist at The Wall Street Journal) for the pictures. Thanks ladies! ￩ ￫ x × Previous Next
This morning Sziget organizers have announced 24 acts performing at Sziget Festival 2013 in August this year. The current lineup also includes one major headliner, Blur. Between August 5th and 12th Óbudai Island will hold the best festival again welcoming several hundred thousand guests from around the world. So here are the 24 newly announced performers: Skunk Anansie Alex Clare Chase & Status live Tame Impala Michael Kiwanuka Wax-tailor Left Boy Afterhours Dizzee Rascal! Enter Shikari Chris Liebing Peter Bjorn and John Katy B netsky Totally Enormous Extinct Dinosaurs ZAZ Skip&Die Ska-P Editors Sebastian Ingrosso Bad Religion Woodkid Empire of the Sun Everything Everything Here is a little video compilation about the 24 acts to introduce their music to you in case you do not know them yet. ￩ ￫ x × Previous Next
Today the Balaton Sound Festival organizers have pumped out a few acts for 2013 festival down at Lake Balaton (Zamárdi) which will convince you of going there in case you are into electronic music. In addition to the previously announced performers some really high quality names have been revealed today on the Balaton Sound Facebook page and you can get ready for the following acts. The Prodigy Wu-Tang Clan Axwell (Swedish House Maffia) Jamie Jones Henrik Schwarz The Advent Alesso The full Balaton Sound 2013 lineup looks like this at the moment: The Prodigy Calvin Harris Armin van Buuren Wu-Tang Clan Justice dj set Axwell Steve Aoki Hardwell The Bloody Beetroots live Jamie Jones Crtystal Castles Dada Life Amon Tobin pres: Two Fingers dj set Dixon Henrik Schwarz The Advent Iggy Azalea Brodinski Belzebass Jan Blomqvist Fairmont ￩ ￫ x × Previous Next
Budapest is year by year full of great events, shows, concerts and much more to entertain the people from all over Hungary and also abroad. With the many festivals taking place throughout the year, massive concerts and sports events Budapest has to offer a lot in the entertainment industry. In this article you will find some events you should not miss in 2013 and of course sources for even more events this year. [divide style=”2″] Sports events in 2013 Formula 1 in Budapest The Formula 1 in Budapest is by far the most important sport event this year and also in the past. It brings thousands of tourists in the city, fills up the beds in many hotels, brings a bit of glamor to Hungary and of course draws attention for a weekend in the international press. It is not everybody’s favorite sport and ticket prices are very high so many people might not visit the F1 race but without a doubt nobody wants to miss it. Ice Hockey World…
After last years award as “Best Major Festival” for the Sziget Festival in Budapest this year Balaton Sound Festival in Zamárdi has been awarded as “Best medium Festival” by the European Festival Awards. The city of festivals or in this case rather the country of festivals has succeeded again and brought home an award from a great show. You wonder why Balaton Sound was awarded? Well if you haven’t been there than check out this video giving you the right mood to book your tickets for 2013 and be part of such a great event. Balaton Sound 2013 by the way takes place between 11th and 14th July 2013. Congratulations to the team of Balaton Sound for organizing such a great festival! ￩ ￫ x × Previous Next
Imagine 7 and a half days of festival with 379.000 visitors coming from more than 70 countries watching 1.000 acts, bands, artists performing live in 60 venues 24 hours per day on an island located in the middle of one of the most historic cities in Europe – Welcome to Sziget Festival in Budapest! These are the stats from the Sziget Festival 2012 and below you can find the video summarizing all this in a 7 and a half minute long mood video, called “aftermovie”. That makes hunger for more coming up in 2013 which is only 251 days away! Tickets are on sale, flights can be booked so pack your stuff and get ready for Sziget Festival 2013 in Budapest. ￩ ￫ x × Previous Next