How widely accepted are Euros in Hungary and how bad is the exchange rate practiced by shops/hotels?

  • The official currency of Hungary is the Forint but so far everything I have looked for prices online, such as trains, buses and taxis, are quoted in Euros and Forints. Hotel reservation asked that I pay in Euros at the hotel. Considering that I will only spend a few days in Budapest, are Forints necessary? Or can I pay for transport, admissions and food in Euros? In such a case, how is the conversion rate set?

    +1 It's a valid question, especially regarding cash, and I will let someone more knowledgeable about Hungary answer it but in general if you have a decent bank/credit card, you should probably still opt to be charged in the local currency, even if offered to pay in euros.

    *Never* pay for hotel reservations in foreign currency. No hotel will give you a better rate than an ATM.

    Not Budapest, but the Hungarian border area with Austria often accept euro for the convenience of people making e.g. day trips.

    @JonathanReez In general I'd agree, but in places with currency controls or unstable currencies you can generally buy things cheaper for (strong) foreign currencies. This was the case in Bulgaria in the late 90s, for instance.

    It's not a valid question, unfortunately. Even just taking the comments here, there are multiple potential answers...

    @CGCampbell: Fortunately, the Stack Exchange model allows us to post more than one answer to a question! Hurrah!

    Seriously? This is a legitimate question and there are similar ones for Kunas in Croatia and Euros in Gibraltar. Forints are hard to come by here, they must be ordered, so I was wondering if I can just get by with Euros considering most things I looked for (boats, boats, hotels, etc) are quote in Euros already!

    @Itai You don't have to order Forint. You can withdraw it from an ATM or use the services of an exchange office when you arrive.

  • user140547

    user140547 Correct answer

    6 years ago

    It might be possible to use only Euro, but as the others have already pointed out, the conversion rate is not very favourable. In the last year, new ticket vending machines have been installed in Budapest, which accept credit cards, but obviously not Euro banknotes so at least for public transport you will need either HUF or a credit card. So if you don't want to use HUF, you might use your card (depending on its conditions). Of course, if you want to go to small shops, restaurants etc you will most probably need HUF.

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Content dated before 7/24/2021 11:53 AM