Living in Cluj-Napoca as an expatriate

Caffeinate Your Cluj-Napoca Expat Journey: Find Essential Info and Connect with Expatriates Today

Image of Cluj-Napoca

Nestled in the foothills of Carpathian Mountains, Cluj-Napoca is the second-largest city in Romania and the administrative center of Cluj County. Known for its rich cultural heritage, the city proudly preserves its medieval landmarks alongside its modern architecture. A growing expat community enjoys the benefits of a thriving job market and a low cost of living, making Cluj-Napoca an attractive destination for foreign professionals and entrepreneurs.

Tips for expats in Cluj-Napoca

Visa requirements

Many nationals, such as Canadians, Americans, British, and Australians, can obtain a 90-day visa waiver for short stays in Romania by registering with the police within seven days of arrival. For longer stays, a residence permit or work permit is required, and the associated process should be initiated before traveling to Cluj-Napoca. The necessary documentation for work or residence permits includes police registration documents, criminal record certificates, and work contracts.

Language resources

English tends to be widely spoken, particularly by young professionals and in major business and technological centers. However, learning Romanian can offer an advantage in social and cultural settings as well as help to navigate day-to-day encounters. Language schools and private tutors offer courses in different skill levels for those interested in learning the language.

Cost of living for expats in Cluj-Napoca


The cost of housing mirrors other Eastern European capitals such as Budapest and Prague but is relatively lower than Western standards. A room in a shared house falls around €100-€200 per month, while the cost of a one-bedroom apartment or studio can range from €150-€350 per month. Larger apartments, such as two-bedroom units, can cost between €350-€550, and three-bedroom apartments or houses can range from €550 to €800. Most expats suggest opting for suburban locations as they offer more affordable prices.


Groceries are available at various supermarkets and stores around the city, with prices lower than Western countries. The cost of food components like fresh fruits, vegetables, and meat is relatively affordable, with most groceries costing around €50-€100 per week for a single adult.


The public transportation system is cheap and convenient, with a single ticket costing around €0.30 (approximately €10 for a 10-trip card). Taxis are comparably cheaper than other European cities, with fares starting around €2-€3 for shorter trips and increasing gradually based on distance and traffic.

Climate in Cluj-Napoca

Cluj-Napoca has a temperate continental climate with mild summers and cold winters. The average summer temperature is around 20°C (68°F), while winter temperatures can drop below -10°C (-14°F). The sunniest months are July and August, while October to April tend to be cloudy and rainy.

Job market in Cluj-Napoca

Cluj-Napoca is home to a large number of international and local companies in various industries. The technology sector is booming, with several successful startups and major companies like Adobe and Siemens. Other industries include education, healthcare, and finance. Many multinational corporations have established regional headquarters in the city, creating job opportunities for expats with diverse skills.

Healthcare in Cluj-Napoca

Cluj-Napoca offers top-notch healthcare facilities, including several certified hospitals and private medical centers. Emergency services are available round the clock, and English-speaking medical professionals are readily available. Healthcare costs are relatively low compared to Western standards, making healthcare affordability a significant draw for expats.

Transport in Cluj-Napoca

Cluj-Napoca has an efficient and reliable public transportation system, consisting of buses, trams, and trolleybuses that operate throughout the city. The primary form of transportation is buses, which have frequent services and cover all major nearby towns and cities. Navigation is straightforward, thanks to the easily recognizable transportation maps and well-signposted stops.

Safety in Cluj-Napoca

Cluj-Napoca is considered a relatively safe city, with low crime rates compared to other European cities. The neighborhoods around the city center and downtown areas, such as Gheorgheni, Avram Iancu, and Easy Park, are generally safer than suburban areas. However, it's advised to avoid carrying valuables and walking alone in deserted areas at night.

Neighborhoods in Cluj-Napoca

  1. Gheorgheni

    Gheorgheni is the central district of Cluj-Napoca and home to the majority of the city's shops, restaurants, and attractions. It's also the location of the main train and bus station, making transportation convenient. The area is developed with narrow streets, historic buildings, and lively eateries.

  2. Avram Iancu

    Avram Iancu is a peaceful neighborhood located southeast of the city center. It offers an excellent living environment with greenery, parks, and walking paths. The area provides tranquility amidst the buzz of the city, and expats find that housing is typically available at lower prices than the city center.

Attractions in Cluj-Napoca

  1. Uniro Astro Tower

    Uniro Astro Tower is the city's tallest building, which offers a 360-degree observation deck overlooking the city skyline. Admissions cost under €5, and entry is facilitated through cash or card payment.

  2. Butcher's Tower

    Butcher's Tower is a medieval tower located in the historic center of Cluj-Napoca. It's a symbolic landmark of the city and has been turned into a historical museum depicting different periods of local history. Admission is about €2.

International Schools in Cluj-Napoca

  1. ISCluj International School

    ISCluj International School is located in the neighborhood of Sfantul Andrei, and the campus offers modern learning facilities with an extensive range of after-school activities and specialized programs like the International Baccalaureate program.

    ISCluj International School offers a high level of education with a diverse student body and a qualified faculty. The school also has a daycare facility for younger children and provides transportation for students.

  2. The British International School

    The British International School is located in CIE Campus Romania, about 15 kilometers from the city center. The campus offers a prestigious schooling experience with a British curriculum, qualified teachers, and educational programs for children aged 3 to 18 years.

    The British International School is a spacious and modern educational facility offering facilities like a library, sports centers, and extensive green areas.

Useful expat resources in Cluj-Napoca

Expat destinations in Romania