What are the cheapest countries to retire in Europe? You have worked hard your entire life and since the retirement is getting closer, maybe it is time for you to consider where you can enjoy your free days and spend your hard earned retirement fund. Well, all we can say is that you are reading the right article, since we have made a list of the 11 cheapest countries to retire in Europe, and one of them might be the dream country you have always dreamt of. We hope that the information you get from this article will help you in deciding which European country best suits your pension budget, but if you want more information about cheapest countries in the world, then check our article most affordable countries to live and retire in the world. Before we can say: “The cheapest country for retirement”, there are some factors that have to be taken into consideration. The most important one is definitely the cost of living, which includes basic expenses such as rent, healthcare, the price of fuel or public transport, and the last, but not the least, comes the climate.
Before we start naming the countries where you can start your holiday for life, let’s explain, in detail, the factors that make these countries the cheapest to retire:
Cost of living
By definition, the cost of living refers to the amount of money you need, on a monthly basis, needed to keep a certain level of living, and that includes:
– Real estate prices: Meaning that you will want to find a country where rent is much cheaper than where you come from.
– Food: This means that your new country should offer cheap food, which further means that you will be able to eat like a king, and not worry about the price.
– Healthcare: This is a very important factor, and you have to be sure that the country where you plan to retire offers a good health care system. Basically, what you need to know is the price of the health insurance, and what is included in that price. You don’t want to live somewhere where you pay for health insurance, and then pay additional money for every exam, or anything related to health care.
– The price of fuel and Public transport: Also an important factor, since you will have plenty of free time, you will want to travel around the country and explore what it has to offer, so it is necessary that the price of fuel or the price of public transport is not high.
This factor is important, but every person has different ideal climate standards. The point is that you have to make sure that the country where you will retire has the ideal conditions that will positively influence your health.
Basically, what we did to create a valid list, is that we have ranked the countries based on the cost of living, because that is the most important factor when looking for the cheapest country, right? The lower the cost of living is, the higher the country is ranked on our list. Now that we have got that explained, it is time to move to the list of the European countries that are cheapest and best for the longest vacation you will ever have.
Cost of living, per month: $2044.24
Price of fuel, per liter: $1.54
Climate: -4°C to 1°C in January, and 1°C 2 to 22°C in July
Located in central Europe, Slovenia is a country that is proud of its mountains, outdoor recreation and some of the best ski resorts in the world. On of the most famous towns in Slovenia is Bled, and it is located on a glacial lake and fed by thermal springs. This town has a cliff side medieval castle, and a church-topped islet. Also a famous part of the country is the Triglav National Park, located in the Julian Alps. Triglav is known for great skiing and hiking offers, as well as rafting along the Soca River, noted because of its aquamarine water. Slovenia is the most developed country in the Balkan region and has the highest standard of living and an excellent health system. Average salary there is around $1114.07, while the price per square meter when you want to buy an apartment, goes from $1537.93 to $2372.57. One month supply of food in Slovenia cost around $157.74, while the price per liter of gasoline is $1.54. As far as the climate goes, it is continental with warm summers and cold winters, while the coastal areas is characterized by a pleasant submediterranean climate. The average temperature goes from -2° in January and 21° in July. Slovenia is perfect for those who prefer mild temperatures over heat, and want to enjoy the fresh mountain air.
Cost of living, per month: $1808.83
Price of fuel, per liter: $1.74
Climate: 5°C to 12°C in January, and 20°C to 30°C in July
Greece is a southeastern Europe’s country, which has 2 mainland peninsulas and thousands of beautiful islands spread in the Ionian and Aegean seas. Greece is where the Western civilization was born. The capital city is the famous Athens, which is the home of the ancient landmarks such as the 5th-century-B.C.E. Acropolis citadel as well as the Parthenon temple. Greece is globally famous for its beaches, such as the black sands of Santorini, and Mykonos island, where the party never stops. Greece is suffering from a long lasting economic crisis, which has lowered the standard of living and the price of real estate. The average monthly rent in Greece goes from $271.33 for a single bedroom apartment, to $454.78 for a 3 bedroom apartment, which is actually quite cheap, considering that you will actually have an apartment in paradise. As far as the food goes, the price for a bread loaf is around $0.95, while 1l of milk costs $1.36, and 1kg of chicken breasts goes for $7.80. For all you drivers, that are wondering about the price of the fuel, we can tell you that 1l of gasoline goes for around $1.75. Having all this in mind, Greece sounds like a quite cheap, yet an amazingly beautiful place to begin the days of your retirement.
Cost of living, per month: $1735.99
Price of fuel, per liter: $1.47
Climate: 0°C to 6°C in January, and 17°C to 27°C in July
Croatia is a country in Eastern Europe, and it is famous for its long coastlines on the Adriatic Sea, which includes more than a thousand islands. The country is intersected by the Dinaric Alps and comes with many castles. The capital city is Zagreb, which is famous for its medieval Upper Town, and many different and interesting museums. The most beautiful city on the coast is Dubrovnik, which is a home of the massive 16th-century walls that go around the Old Town, which is beautified by the Renaissance and Gothic buildings. When it comes to the cost of living, the monthly rent prices go from $293.78 for a single bedroom apartment, to $490.56 for a 3 bedroom apartment. For those who plan to use a car, the price of gasoline is $1.48 per liter, while the public transport goes from $1.50 for a one way ticket, and $52.60 for the monthly pass. Food in Croatia is amazing and cheap, and they are known for the best vines in that part of Europe. As far as the health insurance goes, for all non-EU citizens, the state offers a monthly cost insurance option, which can vary, but it is usually around $52 per month. Having a health insurance is very important, but considering that the climate in Croatia is typically Mediterranean, meaning that it has hot, dry, sunny weather during summer, and relatively mild, sometimes wet weather in winter, with average temperatures of 77-86°F during summer, the chances are that your health will drastically improve and that you will not need a doctor anyway.
Cost of living, per month: $1535.18
Price of fuel, per liter: $1.30
Climate: -8°C to 2°C in January, and 10°C to 23°C in July
This is an eastern European country, embraced by the Baltic Sea, and famous for its hearty cuisine, Jewish heritage, and medieval architecture. A 14th-century Wawel Castle rises above the medieval Old Town of Krakov. There you can also find a Renaissance trading post in the market square. Close to Krakov is the notorious Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp memorial, where many jews have lost their lives during the second world war. As far as the price of living goes, Poland is known as the least expensive country when it comes to food, while the real estate prices range from $848.17 to $1167.99 per square meter. The drivers are going to love this country since the price per 1l of gasoline goes for $1.48. And when it comes to climate, Poland has a temperate climate, with relatively cold winters and warm summers, mostly because of the west oceanic air currents, cold polar air coming from Russia and Scandinavia and, and slightly warmer, south sub-tropical air. This means that if you decide to retire here, you might bring some warmer clothes.
Cost of living, per month: $1677.74
Price of fuel, per liter: $1.27
Climate: -2°C to 3°C in January, and 15°C to 28°C
Macedonia is a Balkan country filled with mountains, lakes as well as ancient towns with mixed European and Ottoman architecture. The capital city is Skopje, and it is famous for the stretched out Old Bazaar district, and historical buildings that are transformed into museums, including the National Gallery of Macedonia, placed in a Turkish bath complex from the 15th-century. The second most beautiful city in Macedonia is the southern city Ohrid, with a hilltop castle and a medieval townscape. The city is located on the Ohrid lake, which is often called the Macedonian sea. People in this country are known for their warmth and hospitality, as well as for their bakery skills, which are the remains of the Ottoman influence. You will fall in love with their food, which is actually more than cheap, considering that all of their vegetables and meat are organic. The average salary in Macedonia is $399.86, while the monthly rent for a single bedroom apartment is around $177.00, while for the 3 bedroom apartment you will have to pay around $300.00. Their public transport covers the most important parts of the country, while the price for a one way ticket in the city costs $0.64, and $18.41 for the monthly pass. When talking about the climate, we have to mention that Macedonia has a mild continental climate, which is characterized with relatively humid and cold winters and warm and dry summers. The interesting thing is that the fall is warmer than the spring in Macedonia.
Cost of living per month: $1349.73
Price of fuel, per liter: $1.44
Climate: -1°C to 6°C in January, and 16°C to 27°C in July
Montenegro is a small country in the Balkan, characterized by a narrow strip of beaches along its Adriatic coastline, medieval villages, and rugged mountains. The Bay of Kotor looks like a fjord, and is filled with fortified towns such as Herceg Novi and Kotor, as well as coastal churches. The Durmitor National Park encompasses glacial lakes, 1,300m-deep Tara River Canyon, limestone peaks, as well as wildlife that includes wolves and bears. When talking about the cost of living in Montenegro, the price of the monthly supply of food there costs around $700, while for a monthly rent you will have to pay from $283.16 to $468.10. The climate in Montenegro is perfect for anyone, since it is very mild and Mediterranean, with average temperature in summer of 27,4 °C, maximum sea temperature of 27,1°C and 240 sunny days per year. If you have imagined your retirement, by the sea, fishing during the day and sitting on the balcony and having a glass of wine while watching the sunset on the sea in the evening, then Montenegro is a perfect choice for you, and also a great fit for our list of 11 cheapest countries to retire in Europe.
Cost of living, per month: $1274.46
Price of fuel, per liter: $1.48
Climate: -5°C to 1°C in January, and 14°C to 25°C in July
Romania is a country in the central European, and it is mostly famous for its forested region of Transylvania, which is associated with the legend of the Romanian prince Vlad Drakul, more known as Dracula. It has many, unaltered, towns of the medieval period, like Sighisoara, as well as numerous fortified castles and churches. The area is surrounded by the Carpathian Mountains, which offer resorts for skiing, trekking, climbing, as well as bathing in natural thermal spas. When talking about the cost of life in Romania, we have to mention that the cost of the monthly rent is $273.64 for a single bedroom apartment, while the 3 bedroom apartment costs $455.88. As far as the food goes, the price, for example for one loaf of bread costs $0.40, while 1 lb of beef costs $4.50, and 1l of milk is $1.4. And now the weather report. Romania’s climate goes from temperate to continental, mostly because of the country’s varied topography. You can expect hot summers, long and cold winters as well as very distinct seasons. So if you like a bit chillier weather and snowy winters, then this country is definitely the right pick for you.
Cost of living, per month: $1247.96
Price of fuel, per liter: $1.33
Climate: -3°C to 1°C in January, and 15°C to 26°C in July
Hungary is a Central Europe’s country that is landlocked. The famous Budapest is the capital city, and it is worldly known for its dramatic cityscape, studded with architectural landmarks such as the 19th-century Chain Bridge, the Buda’s medieval Castle Hill, as well as the grand neoclassical buildings along Pest’s Andrássy Avenue. The city is split in two halves by the river Danube, the old city, Buda, and the new city, Pest, which explains the name Budapest. The country has a rich and long history, and a culture that was influenced by Romans, Slavs, Turks, and Magyars. As far as the quality and costs of life in Hungary are concerned, the average salary is around $630, while the monthly rent price goes from $287.18 for a single bedroom apartment, to $532.10 for a 3 bedroom apartment. When it comes to food, the Hungarians are known for their sausages and Paprika goulash, while the food in the shops is the cheapest in this part of Europe, and these are the some of the reasons why this country is on our list of the 11 cheapest countries to retire in Europe. Public transport is perfect and exact to the second, as well as quite affordable, with a price for the one way ticket $1.27, and $34.38 for the monthly pass. Climate in Hungary is a typical European continental climate, characterized by warm, dry summers and fairly cold winters.
Cost of living: $1248.31
Price of fuel, per liter: $1.36
Climate: -3°C to 3°C in January, and 15°C to 25°C in July
Bulgaria is a Balkan country that surrounds the north end of the Black sea, and has a diverse terrain that includes rivers, the biggest one is the Danube, and a mountainous interior. Bulgaria represents a mixture of Greek, Slavic, Ottoman and Persian influences, and it offers a rich heritage of traditional music, dance, crafts and folklore costumes. The capital city is Sofia, dating to the 5th century B.C.E. Like many countries in the Balkan region, Bulgaria has quite a low life standard, and the cost of living here is not high. The average salary in Bulgaria is around $200, while the average monthly for a 1 bedroom apartment rent goes from $176.49 to $442.77 for a 3 bedroom apartment. Food is also quite affordable, and for one loaf of bread, you will have to pay $0.52, while the cost of 1l of milk is $1.08, and 1kg of chicken breast are $4.96. When it comes to the price of fuel and public transport, 1l of gasoline is $1.36, while the ticket for public transport goes from $0.58 for one way, and $27.27 for a monthly pass. If you are wondering how their health system is arranged, we can tell you that some foreign social insurance will be accepted by Bulgarian institutions for non-EU/EEA and Swiss citizens, in the case when the person’s country has signed international treaties in the field of social security with the Republic of Bulgaria. In the end, the Bulgarian climate can be defined as a temperate-continental climate with hot summers, long, cold winters and very distinct seasons. As far as the temperatures go, their range is from 0-5°C in the winter and 25-30°C in summer months, making it ideal for almost every future retiree.
2. Bosnia and Herzegovina
Cost of living, per month: $1207.11
Price of fuel, per liter: $1.21
Climate: -2°C to 3°C in January, and 14°C to 25°C in July
Bosnia and Herzegovina is a country in southeastern Europe, located on the Balkan Peninsula. This country is filled with Muslim and Christian landmarks, mountainous terrain, and medieval villages. Bosnia and Herzegovina is well known for its deep gorges, beautiful turquoise lakes and rivers, however, it is also famous for its amazing food and welcoming people. A great place to consider if you want to spend your permanent vacation, since it is one of the cheapest countries in Europe. The food is great and quite affordable, apartments are cheap, while the climate is Mediterranean, with mild, rainy winters along the coast, and as far as the inland and high areas are concerned, they have short, cool summers and long, harsh winters. So, if you plan to spend your pension fund here, you will spend a lot of time doing that, but you might need a good umbrella, and a nice winter jacket.
Cost of living, per month: $1133.86
Price of fuel, per liter: $1.39
Climate: -3°C to 3°C in January, and 14°C to 26°C in July
Serbia is a country located on the Balkan peninsula, which is in the southeast part of Europe. This country offers some of the most beautiful sceneries of untouched nature and wildlife. Plenty of mountains in the central part of the country, crystal clear lakes, and numerous rivers. The temperatures in Serbia go from average 0 °C (32 °F) in January, and average 22 °C (72 °F) in July. The climate can be classified as humid subtropical. The capital city is Belgrade, a city that lies on two rivers, Danube and Sava, whose architecture represents the Communist-era, and is the home of the Kalemegdan Park, an ancient fortress held successively by the Roman, Byzantine and Ottoman empires. Health care system in Serbia is based on universal health coverage. As far as the real estate prices are concerned, The price of one square meter range from $1532.94 to $2326.07. When it comes to food, Serbs are known as gourmets and snaps lovers, and food here is mostly organic and quite cheap. For example, 1l of milk costs $1 Loaf of Fresh White Bread (500g) is $0.3, and Chicken Breasts (Boneless), (1kg) cost around $6. For those who have their own car, the price of gas goes around $1.32 for petrol, and around $1.34 for diesel. If you are more interested in using the public transport, it is well arranged and the prices in the capital city public transport for one way ticket is around $0.69, while the 24hour ticket costs $2.64 and is more cost effective. All things considered, with the average Serbian salary being around $280, you pretty much get the idea of how would your retirement here mean that you will be able to live like a king.
There you have it, the 11 most cheapest countries to retire in Europe. All that is left to say in the end is that you have to look forward to your permanent vacation, and have in mind that this is the beginning of your second life and make the most of it where ever you decide to live.