Copenhagen, Denmark is one of the most expensive cities for eating out. You might be thinking that Europe is expensive in general, but this article says Copenhagen is the fifth most expensive in the world, and the third most expensive in Europe.
From my experience, a hamburger, pizza, or similar food item runs you about $17-20. Even a fast food meal at someplace like Burger King will be expensive. The green tea latte I order from Starbucks (that costs me about $3.80 in the U.S.) was more than $7 in Copenhagen. Here are my handful of tips for eating cheap in this expensive city.
- Lunch prices are much cheaper than dinner. So eat your big meal for lunch and use one of these tips for a cheaper dinner.
- I ate three times at the popular chain Joe & the Juice (once at the airport and the price was just 1 DKK higher, about 16 cents, than the city locations). The juice is pretty expensive in my opinion, but the sandwiches are good and under $9, which is a steal in Copenhagen.
- I ate at an Italian deli and selected a piece of square pizza for 21 DKK (just over $3). My friend had a piece of quiche for about $2.50.
- McDonald’s in Copenhagen seems cheaper than Burger King so if you go the fast food route, choose McDonald’s.
- At Cafe Dalle Valle near Tivoli, you can get the lunch buffet for 89 DKK (about $14). It was delicious with a hot bar of mostly breakfast foods and a cold bar of salads, fruit, and chocolate mousse dessert. From Saturday to Tuesday, all the al a carte menu items (basically everything but the buffet) are half price after 4 p.m.
- GRØD offers delicious porridge, risotto, and açaí bowls. I paid about $11 for an açaí bowl, which is pretty comparable to the prices in the U.S.
- Stay at a hotel with a breakfast buffet included in your room rate and eat a huge breakfast!
- Beer can be cheaper than tap water! They charge for tap water in Copenhagen. We paid more than $3 a glass at one place (no free refills), but I had seen it as high as $5/glass. So consider ordering beer or wine, which runs about the same price. We ate at one restaurant where you got free water with wine. I always carry a water bottle so was fine not ordering a drink. Nobody else seems to do that, but I didn’t care.
- Street vendors offer hot dogs and crepes. I had a banana and Nutella crepe (two times!) for about $8.
- If you go to Nyhavn, beer is cheaper if you take it with you. You can drink it sitting on the benches or curbs around the canal.
- 7-Eleven is everywhere in Copenhagen. Although I didn’t eat any food there, they have a nice assortment of prepared packaged food that was reasonably priced. Grocery stores also have a nice selection of packaged food.
- While I was there, I spent time at the Copenhagen Business School in the Frederiksberg area. The cafeteria is open to everyone and has affordable food.
- I never made it to Christiana, but did check out the menu of the infamous Nemoland. They had burgers and sandwiches for around 55-60 DKK (about $9) and pasta for about $12.
I didn’t have much time in Copenhagen to become an expert in the best places to eat for cheap, so here are more articles to help you out.