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Krakow Christmas market
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Revealed: the best budget-friendly destinations in Europe this winter

Based on car rental prices, attraction tickets and overall weekly costs, these are some of Europe’s cheapest destinations

Ed Cunningham
Written by
Ed Cunningham

Thanks to high inflation, rising energy bills and the cost-of-living crisis, budget-friendly travel is more relevant than ever. And there are several different ways of measuring how affordable a destination is. From the cost of its public transport, food and drink to the prices of hotels and attraction tickets, there are plenty of options when it comes to affordable travel. 

A new study by car rental firm has unveiled another ranking of Europe’s best budget-friendly destinations. The report looks at the number of affordable restaurants and the average cost of hotels and car rental, as well as the entry price for the city’s biggest attractions.

While the original ranking featured weighting given to flight costs (from London Heathrow), we’ve taken out that factor to make the destinations more relevant to non-UK travellers.

According to, the best budget-friendly destination in Europe this winter is Krakow in Poland. With cheap car hire, low overall cost for a week’s stay and a cheap main attraction (the Rynek Glowny, which is free), Krakow comes out cheapest by a rather long way.

Next in the list is German capital Berlin, thanks to its vast selection of affordable restaurants and free entry to the Reichstag, followed by Tallinn in Estonia, which has cheap car rental, low weekly costs and free entry to the Alexander Nevsky Cathedral.

Here were the top five cities in Europe for budget-friendly getaways this winter, according to

  1. Krakow, Poland
  2. Berlin, Germany
  3. Tallinn, Estonia
  4. Budapest, Hungary
  5. Prague, Czech Republic

You can read’s full ranking (which includes flight cost factors from Heathrow) here.

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