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Living in Bulgaria

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By Betsy Burlingame

Last updated on Mar 08, 2024

Summary: The approximate population of Bulgaria is 7 million people. The largest cities in Bulgaria are Sofia (the capital), Plovdiv, Varna, Burgas, and Ruse. Expats love living in Bulgaria for its low cost of living, beautiful scenery, and friendly people. Life in Bulgaria is described as relaxed and laid-back, with a strong sense of community. Foods popular in Bulgaria include banitsa (a pastry filled with cheese and eggs), shopska salad (a salad made with tomatoes, cucumbers, onions, and feta cheese), and tarator (a cold soup made with yogurt, cucumbers, and dill). The cons of living in Bulgaria include the lack of job opportunities, the slow pace of life, and the language barrier. The average cost of living for an expat is around $1,000 to $1,500 per month. This includes rent, utilities, food, and transportation.

What do I need to know about living in Bulgaria?

When we asked people what advice they would give someone preparing to move to Bulgaria, they said:

"Before retiring in Bulgaria, expats should familiarize themselves with the local language, as English is not widely spoken. It is also important to research the cost of living in the area, as prices can vary significantly from city to city. Additionally, expats should be aware of the healthcare system in Bulgaria, as it is not as comprehensive as in some other countries. Furthermore, expats should research the local culture and customs, as well as the climate, to ensure they are prepared for their new home. Finally, expats should ensure they have the necessary paperwork and visas in order to legally retire in Bulgaria," remarked one expat living in Bulgaria.

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About the Author

Betsy Burlingame Betsy Burlingame is the Founder and President of Expat Exchange and is one of the Founders of Digital Nomad Exchange. She launched Expat Exchange in 1997 as her Master's thesis project at NYU. Prior to Expat Exchange, Betsy worked at AT&T in International and Mass Market Marketing. She graduated from Ohio Wesleyan University with a BA in International Business and German.

Some of Betsy's articles include 12 Best Places to Live in Portugal, 7 Best Places to Live in Panama and 12 Things to Know Before Moving to the Dominican Republic. Betsy loves to travel and spend time with her family. Connect with Betsy on LinkedIn.

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