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Eating out in Poland, is it expensive?

chrison2wheels 2 | 15
14 Jan 2014 #1
I'm having hard time finding out the cost of food (eating out) in cities like, Poznan, Wroslaw, Szczecin. It's been 12 years since I visited. My wife and I plan on retiring in Poland from USA. My family members in Poland keep telling me DON'T BOTHER and go else where as restaurants are expensive. We don't cook, never did here in USA. They kinda pop my bubble and lately I have been looking at Thailand, Greece, South America as eating out is usually under $2-$3 per person. Can someone please tell me honestly what is the cost of meal in Poland. Now I know there are fancy places and everyday places. We dine at cheap places here in USA (diners, some fast food, some small shops) so we would be fine with street food and maybe 2-3 a week going to actual restaurant. Thank you.
Paulina 16 | 4,355
14 Jan 2014 #2
If you don't mind eating at "bar mleczny", buying a kebab, etc. from a booth (I eat them and I have no problems) then I don't think you would go bankrupt :))

"Bar mleczny" is a kind of cheap diner, a remnant from the communist times, students eat there, for example. You'll find there everyday homemade-like meals.

Thailand, Greece, South America - this sounds more interesting, though :)
peter_olsztyn 6 | 1,098
14 Jan 2014 #3
Can someone please tell me honestly what is the cost of meal in Poland

In Olsztyn you need 8$.
johnb121 4 | 183
14 Jan 2014 #4
Just check some on-line menus like this one:
Paulina 16 | 4,355
14 Jan 2014 #5
Can someone please tell me honestly what is the cost of meal in Poland.

Here's a menu of a bar mleczny in Wrocław called "Miś":

First course - soup - 3 or 4 PLN (1.32 USD)
Second course - pork chop with potatos and raw salad - 9.9 PLN (3.26 USD)

So it's 4.58 USD for a two course meal.
14 Jan 2014 #6
In Warsaw it's anything from 6zl to 700 zl per person.
Monitor 14 | 1,818
15 Jan 2014 #7
I would agree that If you don't want to choose always unhealthy kebab or the cheapest option from the menu in bar mleczny, then comfortable minimum is 15zł. However Greece is not cheaper. In Greece you should count minimum 4 eur in the cheapest restaurant in the city. (In Poland you have much bigger choice for 15zł). And 6 - 7 eur would be comfortable amount for eating out during lunch time there.
smurf 39 | 1,971
15 Jan 2014 #8
Eating out isn't expensive, but learning to cook will certainly save you money and your waistline/health.
OP chrison2wheels 2 | 15
15 Jan 2014 #9
Thank you guys. Thailand is looking better and better. I remember in 2001 when my wife and I visited Poland, we bounced around in taxis all over Szczecin for a full week, ate in restaurant with desserts and spent maybe $200

Yes, but I'm retiring at 45 years old so I need cheaper place where my dollar has more buying power or keep on working which I do not want. I'm the only Polak that wants to retire early. Most others I know work till they die with millions in the bank. They just can't stop. I want to be completely broke at age 60. Have some friends that did that and they say it was best decision they made. Stop working in 40s, enjoy your life while you still somewhat young and let the Government take care of you when you old.
jon357 74 | 21,980
15 Jan 2014 #10
Think about Cambodia. Nicer than Thailand. If you like to eat out well, Poland isn't that cheap, not in Warsaw anyway. And Cambodia is booming now but still cheap as chips. Nice people too.
OP chrison2wheels 2 | 15
15 Jan 2014 #11
I have been looking at Cambodia. There are many Youtube channels about it. The problem is that only few places in Cambodia are livable and rest of the country is in poverty. Thailand, I can live anywhere, even in the small villages as the standard of living is higher so less chance of desperate people committing crime.
jon357 74 | 21,980
15 Jan 2014 #12
Yes. In Cambodia it's Pnomh Pen or nothing really. But, its a nice city with everything you might need, there are beautiful beaches and very importantly the language is much easier than Thai.
Jardinero 1 | 405
16 Jan 2014 #13
If cheap is all you are after, then closer to home you'll also find Peru, Ecuador, Bolivia...
el_easy 2 | 54
16 Jan 2014 #14
I have been looking at Thailand, Greece, South America as eating out is usually under $2-$3 per person.

I don't know where you find these fast food restaurant prices so cheap, but in NYC the cheaper foods are McDonald's & Chinese food restaurants.Usually under $5-$8 per person.
OP chrison2wheels 2 | 15
16 Jan 2014 #15
Actually Thailand has the cheapest food as most meals from street vendors are 35-50 Baht, which is $1.5. Cambodia is about $2-$3 per meal. We went to Ecuador in September and food was about $3-$5 per meal. We went to Quito, Cuenca and Vilcabamba. Weather is nice, 22c year round at 3000m elevation where most cities are. But the locals are very annoying. Always begging or trying to sell you things, none stop. After 3 days I started to get angry at them, this would get old fast.

I still like Poland best as I was born there and we like European life style. Plus you don't stick out like a tourist being white.
Monitor 14 | 1,818
16 Jan 2014 #16
why not stay in each place for some time
local_fela 17 | 172
16 Jan 2014 #17
Expensive or Cheap.. Trust me- eating out is not tasty at all here in Poland, specially in Krakow and specially if you have tried many other restaurants in other countries! Chinese restaurants, Indian restaurants as well as Turkish Kebabs are here just for name sake! And I have no idea who will go to a 5 start restaurant to eat Kotlete, kapusta and zimniaki!
Jardinero 1 | 405
16 Jan 2014 #18
Plus you don't stick out like a tourist

I know this is off topic, but that is the beauty and the curse of such exotic places. Great to tour and to experience, but to live there permanently is "another pair of galoshes" and will require a sustained effort and an attitude to put up with the unwanted attention and "special treatment". Certainly not for everyone. Thus Poland may not be a bad idea for you. But you may be disappointed as the vast majority of Poles still value home cooked meals and tend to dine out much less frequently than say, the average Yank.
pullingstrings - | 3
16 Jan 2014 #19
What do you expect to do in Poland when the money runs out? Poland, like most European countries, does not provide any sort of income to those who failed to save for it during their working career. There might be a very small amount of money available each month, but this wouldn't be enough to pay for your heating.
Jimmu 2 | 156
17 Jan 2014 #20
Hi Chris,
As an American who retired and moved to Poland I might be able to help you. I live in a small (very small) village, so some of what I know might not apply to you, but here goes:

If you like "Home Style" Polish food you can eat very well on $5-$6 per meal. Less if you can find a Bar Mleczny, but they don't seem to have any in the area where we live. If you want anything exotic (read non-Polish) start at about $10 and up (way up in many cases).

Housing is cheap (My mortgage is about 1/3 of what I was paying for rent in So Cal) gasoline is expensive (about $6.50 - $7 per gallon) and exchange rate makes a fixed income fluctuate so you never know from day to day how much money you'll get each month.

$1000/month seems an OK income (again, I'm sure this is different in the big cities) so most US retirements are adequate.
My mother-in-law cooks most of our meals, so my wife and I are probably saving round about $900/month in restaurant bills, so make it $2000/month if you plan on eating out 3 meals per day.

Hope this helps, and let me know if there is anything else I can tell you about my experiences in Poland.
Meathead 5 | 469
17 Jan 2014 #21

If it was me I'd move to Greece. Great climate and nice people and food is pretty good. Thailand is politically unstable.
Maluch 30 | 95
17 Jan 2014 #22
i'm an expert ;) since i eat out twice a day in krakow

meals on the cheap side - milk bar or pierogies.. 10... 12 zlotych

meals on the 'expensive side' 25-35 zlotych range.

i would eat brunch everyday at vegetarian restaurant.. high quality. soup about 6zlotych... 'meal' like falafel or quiche etc with salad about 12-16zlotych. .carrot juice 6 zlotych.. total about 20-28 zlotych

Nice italian place with delicious pasta or pizza with a beer at grea italian restaurant... about 30-40zlotych with a tip

so very cheap indeed! and that's in touristy krakow. i expect the other cities to be cheaper
4 Feb 2016 #23
Of head I can recommend 3 restaurants in Krakow.
1. Hotel Francuski Pijarska Street. Lunch/polish dinner, special offer daily from noon to 3 pm, 18 zł + elegant place, white table covers, often piano music.
2. U Sasiadow, Miodowa Street. Same as above + dessert 18 zl.
3. U Pani Stasi, Mikolajska 16 Street noon to 5 pm. Menu, cheap.
terri 1 | 1,663
4 Feb 2016 #24
While in Krakow, I can highly recommend Bar Raj on Rajska St. Set menu is changed every day, you get soup and a Polish dinner - all for 13 pln. I spend 25 weeks in Poland and have gone there every day.
Levi 12 | 442
4 Feb 2016 #25
In Warsaw i extremelly recommend Zapieceki. The food (Specially the pierogi) is amazing and the price is affordable.
Luke84 7 | 114
4 Feb 2016 #26
Hi Chrison2wheels,

Poland is not a heaven, I have noticed that people here are trying to make as much as they can every time they deal with you, doesn't matter if that is a builder, electrician, programmer, or pizza place. They just don't think long term so you have two groups of people here:

- the competition killers - who will offer lowest possible rate so no one else can do it cheaper
- people who wants to become rich immediately...

Please do bear in mind that if you are planning to retire here, food would be the last concern, you will more likely have to deal with other tradesman too!

Coming back to food subject - yes there are some cheap places but unfortunately most people would not enjoy that sort of quality (quality of food and quality of service).

If I will have that choice of moving to Poland or Thailand, I would pick Thailand immediately (couldn't do that as my wife is attached to Poland so much hence I just need to pick all the best from this choice! )

Good luck to you anyway
PolaQAZ - | 1
21 May 2016 #27
Hard to judge in Szafarnia 10 in Gdansk case cause taste of dishes totally compensates the price.
Jardinero 1 | 405
21 May 2016 #28
I would recommend switching to LPG if you drive even the average in Poland...

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