It’s important to realise that whilst this is possible, it’s not advisable. Yes, you can eat on as little as €3 a day, but this will lead to serious nutritional deficiency. This was something I unfortunately had to do after quitting my job in the UK and job hunting in Athens with no savings.
I realised that it could have taken me a few months to find work but I was even willing to be homeless for as long as it was going to take me. Fortunately, it only taken three days, despite coming here without a job interview – I was lucky!
Nevertheless, I set myself a budget of €3 a day for food until I found a job and this is how I used it.
A food budget this extreme leaves no room for luxeries such as coffee or fizzy drinks. The tap water in Athens is safe to drink, although can be risky if you’re not used to it. However, I didn’t experience any issues, so I regularly filled up my water bottle in my hostel bathroom or from bathroom sinks in cafes and coffee shops.
I often found myself sat in Syntagma Square knawing into a large but dry piece of naan bread that I bought from an Asian grocery store. One would leave me full for a couple of hours and they came in a pack of two for €1
Across Athens you’ll many street vendors, mainly pretzel stands. The ones I found all charged fifty cents per pretzel, so I often bought one of these sesame coated delights whilst walking around the centre.
I found an Indian man who sold vegetable samosas out of what looked like an oven tray with a lid on, but for fifty cents I couldn’t complain. He was usually sat on the same corner of Omonia Square so I visited him every evening, because they were actually quite amazing.
You can pick these up from almost every food shop in Athens for anywhere between forty-five cents and one euro. I bought one, sometimes two, chocolate coissants a day simply for the energy.
I plan to write a full detailed guide on how people can eat cheap in Athens, but I just wanted to share how I managed to do it whilst being caught up in an extremely desperate financial situation.