Erasmus in Prague: Guide for students
If you are going on Erasmus to Prague next year, find out in this post everything you need to know before arriving in the Czech capital. In this guide, we give you all the information you need to make your experience as an Erasmus student unforgettable.
Student accommodation in Prague
One of the first tasks you will have to do is find accommodation. In this post, we will explain the main accommodation options and the best areas to live in Prague.
Erasmus flat or residence?
Choosing between living in a shared apartment or a student residence is a highly personal decision that depends on your individual preferences. Our advice is that you investigate and value both options since each one of them has its pros and cons. If you still don't know which option is best for you, here you can read more about both options' positive and negative aspects.
When it comes to accommodation in Prague, student residences are the most common choice among Erasmus students. Public residences are usually the cheapest option, and many universities have public residences located near the campus. Some of the most popular public residences include Masarykova and Hvezda. If you prefer a private residence, The Fizz is a popular choice among students.
Best areas to live in Prague
First of all, you have to know that Prague is divided into several neighbourhoods and these are subdivided into a total of 22 small districts, depending on how far they are from the city centre.
It is advisable to live in a location close to the city centre or your university to save time and money on transportation. The most central districts in Prague are Prague 1 and 2. While many residences are situated in the 6th district, there are several others spread across the city.
Gastronomy in Prague
Czech cuisine has certain similarities with Slovak or Polish gastronomy. Some of the most typical dishes of the Czech Republic are:
- Vepřo-knedlo-Zelo. This dish can be considered one of the most representative of the Czech Republic. It is made with roast pork loin in onion sauce, and is served on sauerkraut and accompanied by boiled bread.
- Goulash. Although originally from Hungary, this spicy meat stew has adapted to Czech culture, being made with fewer vegetables and more meat.
- Smažený sýr. It translates as fried cheese and is usually sold in street stalls accompanied by chips, salad or bread.
- Steak tartare. In the Czech Republic it is usually the perfect accompaniment to beer. It is typically served with bread fried in butter and some garlic cloves.
These are some of the typical dishes that you can find in Prague, but in this city, there is something for everyone. However, we highly recommend immersing yourself in Czech gastronomy and culture to fully experience the local cuisine.
Leisure and party in Prague
Certainly, the party scene is another essential aspect of our guide for students in Prague. This city offers plenty of opportunities to party practically every day of the week. With a vast array of bars, pubs, and clubs you will find something to suit your taste and budget.
Some of the clubs and places Erasmus students go to are:
- DupleX club.
- Chapeau Roge. If you buy the ticket in advance it can cost you about 50 CZK (just €2).
- Karlovy Lazne.
- Epic. It is a nightclub with several floors which makes it a must-visit if you're a fan of electronic music.
- Vzorkovna Dog Bar. It is a bar with music, but the most curious thing about this place is that there is always a dog hanging around the bar, hence its name.
In Prague there is a lot of student atmosphere and a great nightlife. These are just some pubs and clubs that Erasmus students go to in Prague.
Cost of living in Prague
Regarding the cost of living, we can say that life in Prague is affordable. Although being the capital of the Czech Republic and having slightly higher prices than other Czech cities, the truth is that it is an economical city. As you already know, although the Czech Republic is part of the EU, this country has its own currency, the Czech crown (abbreviated as kč. or CZK.). Specifically, €1 corresponds approximately to 24 CZK.
You can use cards such as Revolut to withdraw cash in Prague, as they allow you to withdraw up to 200 euros per month without any commission fees (except on weekends).
The average cost of a student can be around €400-500 per month, but everything will depend on the lifestyle you lead in Prague or the type of accommodation you choose. For example, a single room in a private residence can cost around €500 per month. Instead, a shared room in a public residence can cost around €150 per month.
Places you can't miss
Prague is an amazing city and is considered by many to be one of the most beautiful cities in all of Europe. There are many points in the city where you must stop. Some of the places that we recommend you to visit during your Erasmus in Prague are:
- Prague Castle. It is the most visited place in the city and it is an architectural complex, where there are several churches.
- Charles Bridge. It is another of the essential places in Prague. It is a 14th century bridge that links the Old Town (Stare Mesto) and the Lesser Town (Mala Strana).
- Wenceslas Square. This square is located in the New Town (Nove Mesto) and is one of the essential places. There is the National Museum, the State Opera and the statue of Saint Wenceslas.
- Dancing House. It is a deconstructivist building built in the late nineties.
- Old town square. It is a cosy and old square, and it is surrounded by narrow streets that are worth strolling through. Also on this square are the Church of St. Nicholas, the Church of Our Lady before Týn, and the Old Town Hall.
- Cathedral of St. Vitus. It is located inside the Prague Castle. It is the most important cathedral in the city and one of the most significant monuments.
Trips from Prague
One of the biggest advantages of doing your Erasmus in Prague is that it is strategically located, since it is in the centre of Europe. From there you can easily travel to other places in the Czech Republic, but also to other European countries, such as Slovakia, Germany, Austria or Poland.
One of the best options to travel to other European cities is through Flixbus, a bus company that operates practically throughout the continent and with very cheap prices. In addition, in Prague there is also the Václav Havel Prague International Airport, the largest in the Czech Republic. Flights depart from there to more than 100 different destinations and several low-cost companies operate here, so it is also a very good option to travel quickly and cheaply from Prague. To go to Prague airport we recommend that you take the Airport Express bus. The ticket costs about 400 CZK and will take you to the central train station (Hlavní nádrazí) without making any stops. Another option is to take a Bolt or Uber, since they are quite cheap.
In this guide for Erasmus students in Prague we have also included nearby trips, to get to know other places and cities with great tourist attractions.
- Cesky Krumlov. Less than three hours by bus from Prague is Cesky Krumlov, one of the best preserved mediaeval cities in all of Europe. There you can see its buildings with coloured facades and its narrow cobbled streets.
- Viena. The Austrian capital is only 4 hours from Prague. There you can visit the palaces, baroque churches and museums that this city houses.
- Budapest. It is one of the (almost) obligatory visits that you will have to do during your Erasmus. The city is full of historical buildings and monuments such as the Parliament or the Chain Bridge.
- Dresden. This German city is a perfect getaway for a weekend from Prague. Although the old town is small, there are several interesting places worth visiting, such as the Samper Opera or the Zwinger Palace.
- Wroclaw. Wroclaw is considered one of the most beautiful cities in all of Poland and is known as the city of goblins, as there are more than 300 goblins spread throughout the city.
- Krakow. Although getting to this Polish city will take you a few hours by bus, it is one of the getaways that we recommend you do during your Erasmus in Prague.
Tips for students in Prague
Finally, some of the advice that we give you for your Erasmus in Prague are:
- Remember to ask for the European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) well in advance.
- If you are a student at a Spanish university, you can apply for the Santander scholarship for Erasmus. Here we explain how to apply for the Santander scholarship step by step.
- Since the euro is not used in the Czech Republic, we recommend that you become a member of banks such as Revolut or N26. It is completely free and you can cancel your account whenever you want. An account in any of these banks will help you to withdraw money, make transfers, etc., all without commissions.
- Become a member of the Prague student associations. Student associations organise events, parties and trips with international students. In addition to being an incredible opportunity to meet other international students, you can also take advantage of discounts and offers in a lot of places. The main student association in Prague is Erasmus Student Network (ESN).
So far our guide for Erasmus students in Prague. From Erasmus Play, we hope that this series of tips will help you to enjoy the Erasmus experience to the fullest.