The truth about Split, Croatia: is it expensive?

Split is one of the most stunning coastal cities in Croatia. You will find it on the eastern shore of the Adriatic Sea. Amongst many other things, it is rich in beautiful beaches, history, and vibrant culture. Therefore, Split has become an increasingly popular destination for tourists from all over the world. 

However, with the rise in popularity has come an increase in prices, leading many to wonder just how expensive a trip to Split, Croatia really is. You might have heard about high expenses when it comes to parking in Split, eating out, and booking your accommodation. Let’s see how the situation actually is. 

Getting Cheap Flights to Croatia

You can use websites such as Skyscanner or CheapFlights to scan for cheap flights to Split, Croatia. I use both these websites to compare and search for prices when I’m booking any of my holidays and breaks away. Direct flights to Split are just 2 hours 30m with budget airlines such as Wizz Air UK and EasyJet, and when I checked whilst writing this article, there were prices available from just £50 each way. For a little bit more there are airlines offering flights such as airBaltic, Aegean Airlines and KLM, so there should be quite a few options. Historic prices show trends as low as £30 for a seat, so a flight to Croatia could be an absolute bargain.

The expenses of accommodation

Once you’re in Croatia you’ll now be spending Euro. This changed over from the Croatian Kuna in January 2023. Using the Euro makes it more economical for travellers, and also means that your travel money can be used in a lot of different countries. The cost of staying in Split fluctuates greatly depending on the type of place you will be renting and the time of year. There is a lot of budget at accommodation available, with prices starting from just €25 a night, especially during the quieter months. During the busy months (June to August), prices for hotels and Airbnb rentals can be very higher, with costs for a decent hotel beginning at approximately €100 per night. This is still a fair bit less than an AirBnB in the UK! And if you’re willing to stay a bit outside the downtown area or visit during the low season, prices can be much less.

The expenses of food and beverages

The costs of meals and drinks in Split have a large range just like anywhere, but generally eating out is cheaper in Croatia than it is in the UK.. Inexpensive meals can be purchased at fast-food restaurants for around €5, whereas a three-course dinner at a more upscale eatery might be over €50. Fish and steak are some of the more expensive dishes in Split, but other grilled meat, seafood such as prawns and squid, sushi, local risotto and pasta, salami, sliced meats and charcuterie, and also pizza, are all extremely popular and inexpensive.

Alcoholic beverages are usually quite affordable in Split; a pint of beer is usually only €2-€3 and a glass of wine will likely cost between €3-€5. This makes Split an ideal holiday for parties and stag weekends as well. It has quite a party atmosphere on the weekend, but if you’re looking for culture or a quiet beach holiday, that’s available too.

The expenses of transportation and parking

Getting around Split is relatively affordable, with public transportation options such as buses and trams costing just a few euros per trip. Taxis are also readily available at higher prices than public transportation. Uber operates in Split and you can reserve rides in advance, making transportation easy. If you’re planning an extended stay in Split or have a keen interest in immersing yourself in the local culture, consider exploring opportunities to learn Croatian language, enhancing your ability to communicate and engage with the vibrant community.

If you come with your own vehicle or have decided to rent a car when visiting Split then there are many parking options, but not many of them are close to the center or even affordable. There are some exceptions, and the best one is Split City Parking. You will find their location suitable for reaching the most important cultural monuments and still be within a walkable distance from the beach. Your AirBnB or Hotel might also come with parking included, but make sure to check this out in advance as it could well be an additional cost.

The expenses of activities

Split has a variety of activities available to tourists that range from complimentary to quite pricey. Sightseeing at the historical Diocletian’s Palace is one of the most beloved attractions, as is taking a journey on a boat to the nearby isles and shopping at the local markets. The cost of these activities can vary a lot, with some being reasonably priced (like wandering the markets) while others can be pricey (like leasing a private boat). Generally speaking, the cost per individual for the majority of the activities in Split is roughly €20-€30, but there are plenty of things you can do if on a budget, such as wandering Marjan Park, walking around the historic Old Split, looking over Riva Harbor or checking out the Cathedral of Saint Domnius. Croatia is such a beautiful country though that it’s well worth putting some money aside to visit the countryside and to go on boat trips and check out the epic Croatian caves.

On the whole Split is not expensive – it can be viewed as cheaper than the UK and cheaper than many countries in Europe, but not as cheap as nearby Bosnia. You can get good deals and with some organizing and prudent budgeting, travellers can still appreciate this lovely city without overspending. Split is ideal for people of all budgets, whether you’re visiting Split whilst backpacking, wanting a romantic weekend away, or even a family holiday. For most people, making sacrifices won’t be necessary as the prices are quite low when compared to vacationing in other European cities such as Rome, Barcelona, or on the coast of Greece. 

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