Smoking is still quite prevalent in Budapest, Hungary.
Tips for Non-smokers and Smokers – Budapest, Hungary
Non-smokers beware: smoking allowed in many places in Budapest
Luckily for smokers, unluckily for non-smokers, there are still many public places where smoking is allowed. Although the EU is working on making Europe less nicotine-dependent, smoking is popular amongst Hungarians and seems to be a hard nut to crack.
Smoking is not allowed in Hungary in educational institutions (primary schools, secondary schools, universities, colleges, etc.), movie theatres, public transport vehicles, and so on and so forth. Since 2012 smoking is forbidden in restaurants, cafes, buffets, etc. in Hungary (basically anywhere where you can eat for a few forints). These days, however, there are loads of restaurants, cafes in Budapest, where you can smoke right at the entrance, and as a non-smoker, you may be disturbed by the smoke.
To be on the safe side, pick a Budapest restaurant with an open air, heated terrace. There are two ‘restaurant streets’ in Budapest, where you can surely find such a diner: one is Raday street, close to the Liberty Bridge (Szabadsag hid), and the other is Oktogon square (halfway between Deak square and Heroes square) – both restaurant streets are centrally located in Budapest.
Smokers in Budapest
Budapest favors smokers – so if you smoke, you do not have to feel a subhuman citizen, you do not have to sneak behind a building, and hope to be unnoticed. You can sit in a park, etc. and see the world go by puffing away your favorite cigarette, sipping your coffee and reading your paper, or website on your pda.
If you are a smoker, you can buy all kinds of cigarettes in Budapest, or even find some special cigar stores. Since 2013, the only places that can sell tobacco in Hungary are the National Tobacco Shops.
In order to reduce the risks of second hand smoking affecting your fellow citizens, smokers are kindly asked to keep a fair distance from families, and not to smoke where kids are staying in a closed room. Thank you.
Definitely DO NOT DO: Further Budapest warnings
- Do not have valuables with you. Learn from general Budapest warnings.
- Do not travel unprepared. Save the Budapest crime emergency phone numbers to learn how to contact the Hungarian Police just in case.
- Do not stay near the Parliament and the Heroes’ Square on Hungarian national holidays
- Do not take marijuana, drugs in Budapest. What about alcohol?
- Do not go to dangerous night clubs in Budapest.
- Do not hail down a taxi in Budapest.
- Do not buy HUF / Forint from a street vendor in Budapest.
- Do not board Budapest public transport vehicles without a ticket.
- Do not cross the road without checking the traffic in Budapest.
- Do not expect some cultural conveniences in Budapest
- Do not take valuables with you to Baths in Budapest – or preferably in the city.
- Do not go to Budapest Airport unprepared – there are 2 Budapest terminals – approx. 5 min car travel from each other: even though T1 is getting closed, T2 is a bus stop away from T1 train station.
- Do not go to touristy restaurants in Budapest – to eat pricey food of lower quality.
Check out Budapest FAQ for more useful tips!
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