Bosnia and Herzegovina is one of the few European countries that are still affordable to travel to even in the summer months. But how much exactly does it cost to travel to Bosnia and what should be your daily budget in Bosnia? I will answer these and many more of your questions in this Bosnia Budget Travel Guide.
I travelled Bosnia and Herzegovina for a full 5 weeks on a tight budget and tracked all my expenses. Before my trip, I was not able to find comprehensive and up-to-date information on how little you can spend while travelling in Bosnia, so I decided to create this Budget Travel Bosnia Guide so you can find all the information you might need.
With the recent rise in prices throughout Europe, travel in the Old Continent has become quite expensive. Unfortunately, inflation has also reached the Balkans and Bosnia, so finding a dorm room for €10 is now difficult. Not impossible, but difficult.
The cheapest hostel bed I found was €10 but I recommend you book it well in advance in the summer as the best and cheapest are gone quickly. Outside of the summer months, it will be much easier to find an affordable room or dorm bed.
The best way to travel cheaper in the Balkans and of course in Bosnia is to travel outside in the summer months. The prices of accommodation, as well as tours and experiences, will be lower.
Table of Contents
Is Travelling in Bosnia affordable?
Bosnia and Herzegovina can be very affordable to travel to if you plan your trip well, stay in hostels and travel mainly by public transportation. Even private rooms in places like Sarajevo or Mostar can be as cheap as €12 per night, but be prepared to stay a bit outside the tourist centre and share facilities like bathrooms or kitchens.
Public transportation is widely available, comfortable and very affordable. Although some activities like visiting Kravica waterfalls are only possible if you drive or opt for an organised tour which can be a little more expensive, there are many other activities and attractions that are free to enjoy or accessible by public transport.
You can travel in Bosnia and Herzegovina with a budget of only 25 € (28 €) for a shoestring traveller or 35 € (38 €) for a regular budget traveller.
You will find a complete breakdown of the different budgets for travel in Bosnia later in this post.
Currency in Bosnia
The official currency in Bosnia and Herzegovina is the Bosnian Convertible Mark – KM or BAM. There are some places that accept euros but do not take it for granted.
In Sarajevo, for example, you will mostly pay with KM in shops, bars, restaurants and museums, but you can also pay with euros for some accommodations or organised tours.
In Mostar, all souvenir stores and hotels accept the euro.
Cash is king in Bosnia. While some restaurants accept credit card payments, many do not. You can pay by card in larger supermarkets, clothing stores and upscale restaurants, but most hostels and homestays accept cash only.
Withdrawing cash in Bosnia and Herzegovina.
All ATMs in Bosnia will charge you a withdrawal fee. The majority will charge you 10KM. It varies depending on your card issuer and the country you are from – there is no set rule.
The best way to find the lowest ATM fee in Bosnia (and all of the Balkans) is to try a few different ATMs at first and see what fee they want to charge you. If it’s too high then just cancel the transaction. It is a bit of a pain but since you found the most affordable ATM you can stick to it for the rest of the trip. The two banks that charged me the least were Nova Bank and Unicredit Bank but I highly recommend you check it for your card.
You can also look to send money to yourself via Western Union and save on ATM fees this way.
Cost of Accommodation in Bosnia
Bosnia and Herzegovina is still one of the most affordable countries to travel to in Europe and you can find dorm beds for as little as €10. Across the country, you will also be able to find private rooms for €12 or even less in the winter.
I paid €12 per night for this basic studio in Sarajevo and only €15 per night for a whole apartment in Trebinje. I stayed slightly outside of the town in both cases but it was very much worth it.
If you want to stay in the centre and in a comfortable hotel room or apartment you can still look to pay as little as €20 per night.
Have you considered an eSIM yet?
Tired of roaming bills or wasting time anxiously looking for a SIM vendor at the airport?
Airalo is the world’s first eSIM store that solves the pain of high roaming bills by giving you access to eSIMs (digital SIM cards). With eSIMs from Airalo, download and install a digital data pack from 200+ countries/regions and be connected anywhere in the world the second you land.
Cost of food and eating out in Bosnia
While travelling in Bosnia you can eat very cheaply and easily spend only €10 ($11)per day if you have simple dietary needs.
For a shoestring traveller who eats burek for breakfast and a meal of Cevapi for dinner or cooks pasta in the hostel €10 a day is very achievable.
But we all like a nice meal from time to time and a bit more variety for breakfast. If you buy ingredients in the supermarket and cook your breakfast (eggs or sandwiches) and go out for dinner in the evening you will spend around 12 to 15€ per day excluding drinks.
Here are a few examples of prices of food and drinks in Bosnia and Herzegovina:
Cevapi (5 pieces) – 7KM
Cevapi (10 pieces) – 10 to 12KM
Basic dinner in a local restaurant – 10KM
Nice dinner in the traditional restaurant – 15- 20KM
Fancy dinner in an upmarket restaurant – 25 to 30Km
Burek – 3KM
Nice sandwich in the bakery – 6KM
Coffee macchiato – 2KM
Cappucino – 2 to 4KM
A glass of wine – 3 to 5KM
Local Beer – 2 to 3 KM
Cost of Trasportsation in Bosnia
Overland transport in Bosnia and Herzegovina is very affordable. For budget travellers in Bosnia, I recommend using public buses which are widely affordable and pretty comfortable.
At times you can book a bus ticket online but be aware that you will have to print the ticket and party an additional 2KM or 1Euro to hold the big bag in the storage. The best app to check bus timetables in Bosnia and the whole of the Balkans is Busticket4.me. You can also buy bus tickets on the Flixbus website if the route is covered by them.
Here are some examples of transport prices between the towns:
Sarajevo to Mostar by bus – €13
Sarajevo to Mostar by train – 15KM (€7.60$/8.50)
Jajce to Sarajevo – €17
Mostar to Trebinje – €12
Mostar to Blagaj by local bus – 2.10KM
Activities and Entertainment / Bosnia Budget Travel Guide
The cost of activities in Bosnia varies and ranges from completely free to quite expensive. Activities like hiking, sightseeing and exploring are obviously free and there is plenty of those you can do in Bosnia.
There are very few free museums in Bosnia and Herzegovina but on average a ticket should cost you between €5 and €10.
A cable car to Mount Trebević costs €10 and is very much worth paying for!
A free walking tour is always a great way of exploring the city. Be aware that it is customary to tip the guide but you can adjust it to your financial abilities.
Finally, if you prefer to take an organised tour you will have to be prepared to pay a little more. Some of the tours are definitely worth paying for and especially if you are short on time, can save the hassle of organising transport and getting all the logistics sorted.
Here are some of the most popular tours and experiences in Bosnia and Herzegovina and what you should expect to pay for them:
Bosnia Travel Daily Budget for Backpackers
If you are a backpacker staying mostly in cheaper hostel dorms, opt for free activities and cook your meals in the hostel or get cheaper local dishes like burek or cevapi your daily Bosnia budget would be around €25/£27 per day.
Add to it a beer or two every now and then and a few nicer meals out of a paid activity and you should budget at least €30/$32 per day.
Did you get your travel insurance yet? Travel Insurance will let you travel with the peace of mind knowing that no matter what, your unexpected medical or travel emergencies are covered. I use Heymondo for a few reasons. They have clear policies with no deductibles, the price is excellent for what they offer and the price doesn’t go up when you are over 30 years old. They have a dedicated, easy-to-use app and free assistance calls.
I can get a cover for a month or three months and I know I can travel with peace of mind and get the best product for my money.
Heymondo offers my readers 5% off so go ahead, and click on this link and get your quote.
Wondering if Bosnia and Herzegovina is safe to travel? Read my complete guide to Bosnia Travel Safety!
How much should be your daily budget for travel in Bosnia?
Here is the breakdown of the daily Bosnia travel budget for different types of travellers:
A Shoestring Backpacker (staying in cheap hostels, eating street food and cooking in hostels, no paid tours or activities and no fancy parties) – €25 / $27 a day
An average backpacker (variety of hostels and some cheap private rooms, some meals out and few drinks every now and then, some more affordable paid activities like museums) – €30-35 / $32-37 a day
An average traveller (affordable private rooms, some meals out, a paid experience or two, few nights out) – €35-45 / $37-47
A tourist/ very comfortable traveller – €60/$63 and above
A Monthly Bosnia Travel Budget
I have spent €900/$985 for a month of travel in Bosnia and Herzegovina. I have however stayed in quite a few private rooms and treated myself to dinner and wine around 3 to 4 times a week.
If you are money conscious mid-budget traveller you should account for between €900 to €1200 for a whole month of travel in Bosnia.
If you want to travel comfortably and eat out most days a monthly budget of €1200 to €15000 would be sufficient.
I hope you found this Bosnia Budget Travel Guide helpful and all your questions have been answered.
If you think I have missed something important, comment below and I will answer your question or add additional information to this post.
Happy travels and enjoy Bosnia!
This post may contain affiliate links which means that if you purchase the product or make a booking via one of my links, I will receive a small commission. Please know that I will never recommend or promote a product I don’t believe in or haven’t used. This way, you are supporting this blog at no extra cost to you. Thank you!
Your Balkans Cheatsheet
If you are travelling around the Balkans by bus, Flixbus covers a lot of the routes but they often cooperate with local operators. It is convenient to book on the Flixbus website if you want to pay for your journey upfront.
If you prefer to pay directly with the local operator, be prepared to pay in cash. To check the timetable BusTicket4.me is the most reliable. But I still recommend only using it for checking the times and purchasing the ticket at the bus station.
In the majority of Balkan countries, you will pay a 1€ (or equivalent in local currency) fee for luggage.
The bus is the best way to travel between Balkan countries but there are a couple of stunning train routes you cannot miss like Sarajevo to Mostar or Belgrade to Bar!
If you are considering renting a car you can browse all rental companies via Expedia!
Always, always triple-check the information you were given, especially when it comes to inter-city travel. Only because one person, in one place says there are no busses, it doesn’t mean it’s true. Triple check.
Only Slovenia and Croatia are within the Schengen Area so individual visa rules will apply. In 2024 we will also see Romania and Bulgaria joining Schengen Area.
Only Slovenia, Kosovo, Montenegro and Croatia use Euros. All other countries use their own currency. In some touristy spots, you will be able to use Euros but dont take it for granted. You will pay for a coffee pot from a souvenir stand in Mostar in Euros, but the supermarket will ask for Bosnian Marks.