How to spend your time in Brussels on a low-budget?

Brussels is a very vibrant city where the government is pumping out a lot of money. This city attracts a huge number of tourists since Brussels is the heart of Europe and is also the capital of Belgium. As a result, everything is fairly expensive in the city, but where can you go as a resident or student who likes to watch his pennies.

Where to shop for a bargain?

On New street, there are numerous brand shops such as Primark, Zara, H&M, Esprit, and Mac. In this street, it is always busy and there are long queues at the checkout, but where can you go for, say, 5 items for the price of 2? Well, if you have been following the trend in recent years, you have surely heard of thrifting. More and more vintage shops are becoming popular by the day, making them more expensive too, so where to go for the good deals then? Here are some shops where they have special deals.

© Carmalyta Pierre

Let’s start with something fairly popular but affordable like the Melting Pot Kilo. There are two Melting Pot Kilo shops in Brussels. One in Hoogstraat 154 and one in Visverkopersstraat 2. What makes the Melting Pot Kilo so special is that the price is determined by how much your clothes, shoes, or jewelry weigh. It’s 15 euros per kilo, so you can buy a lot for a cheap price.

Besides the Melting Pot Kilo, there is another well-known vintage shop on the market, Think Twice, also T2 written. This shop also has 2 in Brussels, at Oude Graanmarkt 57 and Spoormakersstraat 71. T2 always comes up with the craziest price deals like everything on sale at 1 euro or everything at 2 euros each. Unfortunately, this is not always the case, but keep an eye on it and who knows, you might walk out of the shop with 5 items for as little as 5 euros.

The third recommended vintage shop is the Foxhole Vintage, which can be found in the Rijkelarenstraat 4. This shop is not yet well known on the market, but you can also find Foxhole in the Marolles. What is very important to know before you go to one of these thrift shops is that like at Foxhole, you can only pay with cash.

And last but not least, there is Les Petits Riens. This thrift shop is located a bit everywhere in Brussels. The closest one in the city center is kleerkopersstraat 11. There is also one in Maurice Lemonnierlaan and one in Hoogstraat. Les Petits Riens is not only cheap but also sustainable and thinks of solidarity. What makes this thrift shop so unique is that a part of the money you pay for the clothes goes to donate to help the homeless.

Where to eat and drink for an affordable price?

After a whole day doing activities in the city, you probably got hungry and thirsty. Do you sometimes wonder where you can eat and drink fancier, but for an affordable price, rather than easily going to the McDonald’s or the Quick? Here are three examples where you can eat and or drink for a fair price.

Monk is an authentic café and a restaurant where occasionally a live band performs. The prices are reasonable for what you get on your plate and when you order something they will call you so you can come and get your order. This restaurant can be found at Sint-Katelijnestraat 42, overlooking the Church of Saint Catherine. Important to know is that you can only pay by card in Monk.

© Carmalyta Pierre

Next, we have an Asian restaurant Knees to Chin. There are 2 chains located in the center of Brussels. One of them is also located in Saint Catherine, at Vlaamsesteenweg 28, which is just one street away from Monk. The other one is in the Wolf Food Market where other different food stalls are located. However, Knees to Chin is temporarily closed in the wolf food market. At Knees to Chin you can order on the app of Uber Eats and they can also deliver your food.

© Carmalyta Pierre

Finally, there is Ballekes, known for its Authentic Belgian Meatballs. The restaurant chain, Ballekes, is located on the Grote Markt in Hoedenmakerstraat 3 near Brussels-Central station. This is a typical Belgian restaurant where they serve the typical Belgian dish, namely balls in tomato sauce with fries. All this for a reasonable price.

© Amélie Mesa De Paz

What to do or see for free?

There is a lot to do in the city of Brussels, but what can you do for free and is twice as much fun? Let’s start with the Palace of Justice, which is located at Place Poelaert 1 in Brussels. This palace symbolizes the social deficit and urban planning megalomania of the 19th century. This palace is very famous as it is one of the largest courthouses in the world. Next to the Palace of Justice, you have a breathtaking view of the city of Brussels. You can even see the Atomium from far.

© Carmalyta Pierre

For the next activity, you can simply go for a walk, as Brussels has many large parks that are well worth a visit. For example, go to the beautiful Warandepark, also known as the Royal Park at the Palace Square. This park is located in the Royal district and can therefore be combined with an outside view of the Royal Palace of Brussels. Other well-known parks in Brussels are Cinquantenaire, Egmont Park, and Leopold Park. In the parks in Brussels there are also cafés with terraces, remarkable for a sunny day.

© Carmalyta Pierre

© Carmalyta Pierre


© Carmalyta Pierre

For the music lovers among us, there is also something free to experience. At the Ancienne Belgique and KFK hope, there are several free concerts. Through this link  you can keep up-to-date on where and when these concerts take place.

© Carmalyta Pierre
© Carmalyta Pierre

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