I get lots of emails from foreigners that are planning to travel to Serbia. They ask me lots of interesting questions. The number one suggestion I have for them if they are planning to stay for a month or longer is “DON’T WASTE YOUR MONEY ON A HOTEL!”
I found out last year that Serbs offer their homes to their guests. I was blown away by the amount of people that wanted me to stay in their home! They looked at me like a fool when I said “Where is the nearest hotel so I can put my things away?” hahaah.. They said ” YOU ARE NOT STAYING IN A HOTEL YOU ARE STAYING HERE!!!” If you are a private person and prefer to have your own space…. do not look for hotels. Look for an apartment!!! My friends mentioned that to me last year but I kept thinking ” How the hell can I get an apartment?” Back in the USA it’s a time consuming and expensive ordeal.. most of the time anyway…. You have to worry about saving up the security deposit, first and last months rent and usually sign a 6 month or 1 year contract! Then you have to have all of the utilities put in your name. It’s a pain!!!
After my awesome time at Exit Fest in Novi Sad…. we returned to Zrenjanin. I was in need of my own crib! The families I stayed with were amazing and in no hurry for me to leave but I felt it was time! My buddy and I picked up a little classifieds paper here and drank a few pivos while he translated the available apartments. We called on a few that were under $100 a month but they were behind someones home or inside their home. We finally called on one that was 100E a month. It was new, furnished, close to the center, with one large room, kitchen, balcony, quiet neighbors and on the 1st floor. My friend called the guy and he said ” you can come look at it today.” My friend said “Is it ok that he is an American?” He said ” It makes no difference to me.. i speak English.” We arrived and looked at the place.. It was perfect!! Clean and everything he said it was. I said ” How do I go about filling out the paperwork, switching utilities, and how much is the deposit and such?” He said ” You don’t need to do any of that. Just pay me 100E and here are the keys!” I was in shock! I paid him.. he showed me how to turn on the washer, heat, tv controls and such. It took me 5 minutes to find a nice apartment with no contract and only 100E for one month! I can’t speak for Belgrade or Novi Sad but Zrenjanin is very, very affordable!!! My electric, water, and gas ran me about $40 or $50 bucks a month for this one bedroom!!! AWESOME!!! Back home my electric was about $160 a month, water/sewer and trash were around $50, and gas is outrageous…..
Search for apartments in the paper!!! IT WILL SAVE YOU HUNDREDS OF DOLLARS!!!!!