Money and cost of living

Money

Although a member of the European Union, the Czech Republic is not currently in the Eurozone which means that it does not use the Euro as its currency. The official currency is the Czech koruna or crown (abbreviated or CZK). There are 100 hellers in 1 CZK but there aren't any heller coins. Banknotes come in denominations of 100, 200, 500, 1000, 2000 and 5000 CZK, and coins in 1, 2, 5, 10, 20 and 50 CZK pieces. The great thing is that the coins and banknotes are easily recognizable – the bigger the coin is, the more valuable it is.

You can exchange currency in a bank, hotel or bureaux de change. Alternatively you can pay for goods and services with an international banking card or credit card.

Cost of Living

The cost of living in the Czech Republic is relatively low compared with west European countries, and Prague is fairly inexpensive when it comes to European capital cities. The average cost of living for a student in the Czech Republic is approximately about 400 EUR (10,000 CZK) per month but of course, it depends on your spending habits. This includes accommodation, food and transport. Prices may vary according to your location, Prague being the most expensive.

In terms of accommodation expect to pay 100-120 EUR (2,500-3,000 CZK) per month for a student dorm room at a university. If you would rather rent a room in a private flat, it will cost you around 250 EUR (5000 CZK). And to rent a private flat will set you back approximately 400 EUR (10,000 CZK).

A meal in a restaurant will cost you from around 6 EUR (150 CZK). Many restaurants offer lunchtime menus at around 3 EUR (75 CZK). University canteens will offer cheaper alternatives.

Other prices:

Loaf of bread: 1.2 EUR (30 CZK)
Milk: 0.8 EUR (20 CZK)
Hotdog: 0.8 EUR (20 CZK)
Beer (in a restaurant/pub): 1.2 EUR (30 CZK)
Wine (in a restaurant/pub): 1.4-2.4 EUR (35-60 CZK)
Fruit juice (in a restaurant/pub): 1.2 EUR (30 CZK)
Coffee: 1.2-1.6 EUR (30-40 CZK)

The ISIC (International Student Identity Card) card is definitely something that might be worthwhile. It allows cardholders to get student discounts on transport, restaurants, cinemas, museums, exhibitions and concerts. There are many offices around the world where you can purchase an ISIC card. All you need is proof of student status and a passport size photo. Check out their website for more information: www.isic.org.

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