A cheap and cheerful stay, but hotel prices in different league
THE weather may be warm and the beer cheap, but Irish football fans will be facing astronomical hotel costs in Poland next summer.
The biggest single expense facing supporters once they are at the Euro 2012 championships will be accommodation. Many hotels are almost booked out in Poznan and Gdansk for Ireland's group matches.
The popular sporting event has pushed up prices with the last double-room in the three-star Hotel Wloski in Poznan on the night of Ireland's opener against Croatia costing €439.
And there's more of the same in Gdansk the following week where a double room in the three-star Hotel Bonum will cost €444.
Another three-star hotel, Dom Muzyka, is charging €710 for a twin room on the night of Ireland's fixture against Spain.
However, while fans will pay through the nose for a roof over their head, eating and drinking will be cheap.
In Poznan, a meal for two in a mid-range restaurant costs on average €23.68, while a meal in McDonalds or a similar fastfood outlet will cost around €3.99.
A local beer in a restaurant will cost around €1.72, while the non-drinkers can have a soft drink for €1 or bottle of water for 90c.
Getting around the city will also be inexpensive with a taxi costing just 50c per km and tickets for public transport starting at 88c.
In Gdansk a meal in a cheap restaurant costs around €8.90, while a meal for two in a mid-range eaterie costs around €22. A local beer in a restaurant comes in at just €1.54, while a cappuccino will cost €1.63 and a soft drink €1.16.
A one-way ticket on the city's public transport network costs 75c, while a taxi costs 65c per km.
Smokers will be stocking up in Poland where cigarettes are significantly cheaper than at home. In Poznan a packet of Marlboro costs an average of €3.07, while in the port city of Gdansk this falls to an average of just €2.34.
Smokers will be able to bring a maximum of 800 cigarettes back home, provided they are for their own personal use.
Security will be heightened during the tournament, although Poland is usually a safe destination for holidaymakers in any event. Pickpockets do operate in crowded tourists areas and there is a heightened risk of robbery at railway stations.
Fans are urged to only use official taxis as unregulated taxis often overcharge.