Shelters and accommodation

The rules on accommodation for refugees (including subsidised accommodation) have changed from 15 September 2023. This page present accommodation options for refugees. However due to the fast-changing situation, UNHCR cannot guarantee that all shelters and organizations will have free accommodation capacities.

Emergency housing

Help Points around the border

If you are arriving from Ukraine to Hungary, there are organisations who can help you at the border with food, legal assistance, finding transportation, accommodation, relief items, and others. When you cross the border, you can ask for directions to the closest Help Point. If you arrive on foot, you can request to be taken there by bus. You can also directly contact these organisations:

OrganisationLocationE-mailPhone
Hungarian Charity Service of the Order of Malta4933 Beregsurány, II. Rákóczi Ferenc utca 1.[email protected]+36 70 653 1324
Hungarian Reformed Church Aid4625 Záhony, Ady Endre út 79.[email protected]+36 80 296 844

Information and emergency housing in Budapest

The Government Offices, known as “Kormányablak,” located at Keleti and Nyugati railway stations can provide you with information and emergency housing referrals. This includes one-night reception accommodations, assistance in locating long-term housing, information about temporary protection, details about regular subsistence allowances and employment opportunities in Hungary, and further services available for refugees.

Government OfficesAddressOpening Hours
Keleti Train Station1087, Budapest, Kerepesi út 2-6.Monday: 08:00-18:00
Tuesday: 08:00-16:00
Wednesday: 11:00-19:00
Thursday: 08:00-16:00
Friday: 08:00-14:00

As a refugee new arrival from Ukraine to Budapest, you can stay at the one-night Reception Center of the Hungarian Charity Service of the Order of Malta. You need to reach the reception centre on your own, but you can use public transportation for free in Budapest with Ukrainian documents.

NameAddressPhone
One-night Reception Centre1117 Budapest, Galvani Utca 44/A🇺🇦 +36 70 659 8508
🇭🇺 +36 30 583 0571

You can also reach out to the following non-governmental organisations for short-term emergency housing, but it’s not guaranteed that they will be able to accommodate you.

OrganisationPhoneEmail
Migration Aid in Győr+ 36 30 592 8066[email protected]
Hungarian Interchurch Aid Support Center+36 70 504 3154
Caritas Hungary – Hungarian Catholic Church +36 1 372 0910 [email protected]
Oltalom Foundation+36 1 210 5400 , extension 201[email protected]

Subsidised longer-term accommodation

From 1 August 2023, there are new rules for providing state subsidies for the accommodation of refugees from Ukraine. The new rules apply to all refugees eligible for temporary protection, dual-citizens and Hungarian nationals who were living in Ukraine before the war and fled to Hungary on or after 24 February 2022.

After your arrival in Hungary

If you are eligible for Temporary Protection, you are entitled to subsidized accommodation for one month after your arrival in Hungary, even if you do not have a registered temporary protection status. In this case, your accommodation will be provided by the municipalities or government-contracted accommodation providers (such as a hotel), and it will include free-of-charge meals. You will not have to bear any of the accommodation costs.

After one month, you will only remain entitled to subsidized accommodation if you fall under any of the following vulnerability categories:

  • You are the parent of a child under the age of 6. (note, that based on our current information, a second parent may need to pay.)
  • You are pregnant.
  • You have a disability.
  • You are over the age of 65.
  • You are under 18 and living in the same household as any of the previously listed persons.

If you do not fall under any of the above categories, you have to register for temporary protection to continue to be entitled to subsidized accommodation.

Under Temporary Protection status or as a Hungarian national

When your Temporary Protection status is recognised, you are entitled for one more month of subsidized accommodation.

If you have Hungarian nationality (including Hungarian-Ukrainian dual nationals) and a permanent residence in Ukraine, and arrived in Hungary on or after 24 February 2022, you are eligible for subsidized accommodation for 1 month after your entry.

After one month (both as a Temporary Protection holder and a Hungarian national), you will only remain entitled to subsidized accommodation if you fall under any of the following vulnerability categories:

  • You are under the age of 18.
  • You are a parent of child under the age of 18 and you live in the same household. Note, that based on our current information, this only applies to a single parent per child.
  • You are pregnant.
  • You have a disability.
  • You are over the age of 65.

If you do not fall under the categories above, your shelter operator will not receive government subsidies to host you beyond 15 September 2023, therefore you might be asked to move out. If you are in need of emergency alternative accommodation, you are entitled to use the state provided collective shelters, as described below.

While being employed

If you are a Temporary Protection holder who does not fall under any of the categories above, you will need to take up employment to continue having access to subsidized accommodation within one month from the time of your recognition. Your employment must take place in Hungary and must be for at least 20 hours per week. In this case, your accommodation will be arranged by your employers. This will not include free-of-charge meals, and the conditions of being accommodated by your employer may vary.

Requesting subsidised accommodation

If you are eligible for subsidised accommodation based on the above criteria, you can request accommodation in Budapest, at the Government Offices at Keleti and Nyugati train stations. The authorities will find you an available place to stay, but you will have to travel to the accommodation on your own.

[Callout:RCC]

UNHCR is currently seeking information on the details and consequences of the recent changes in legislation. You can ask your questions and share your feedback via the Refugee Hotline, who can also call you back, when we have new information which may be interesting for you.

State provided collective shelters

If you received a Temporary Protection status, but you are not eligible for subsidised accommodation based on the above vulnerability categories, the National Directorate-General for Aliens Policing (NDGAP) can offer you accommodation in their collective shelter in Vámosszabadi. Transportation to the facility and meals at the facility are not provided by the state.

Applying for staying at a collective shelter

You can apply for accommodation at the state provided collective shelters at the regional NDGAP offices, where your eligibility will be checked, and you will be assigned to a reception facility.

NDGAP has one Central Office and six Regional Directorates where you can seek assistance:[Callout:NDGAP]

Private and long-term accommodation

Where to search for private accommodation

Although no online platform can be considered 100% safe, designated accommodation search sites are safer compared to Facebook groups and other social media platforms.

The most common websites used in Hungary are ingatlan.com alberlet.hu, ingatlannet.hu, and otthonterkep.hu. Please note that UNHCR is not related to any of these sites; the offers displayed are not verified by UNHCR; and UNHCR cannot help you in finding private accommodation.

Writing a rental contract and moving in

Always insist on having a written rental contract. Verbal agreements may not be legally binding, and they can leave you vulnerable to eviction without notice. Ensure the written contract covers all terms and conditions, rights and obligations, payment details, rental duration, maintenance responsibilities, utility metre position and ownership, lock change responsibilities, and subleasing conditions.

Before signing any rental contract, request a “land registry extract” to verify the property's ownership and legal encumbrances. Also, verify the landlord's identity and ensure that the rental fee is a gross amount that includes all taxes and contributions. If you pay the rental fee in cash, insist on receiving a receipt, otherwise, you won’t be able to prove your payment.

You should also discuss the deposit amount and conditions with the landlord. Most landlords request a deposit equal to one to three months' rent, but the amount should be included into your rental contract as well.

Think carefully before signing a fixed-term rental contract for many years. These contracts can be challenging to terminate without serious consequences. You may risk losing your deposit and be liable for rent and utility costs until the contract's end.

Finally, take pictures of the property when you move in to document its condition. This will help in resolving any damage claims or deposit issues when you move out.

Registering your address

It is important to register your new address (known as “szálláshely”) with the authorities to ensure that you can receive official documents and access necessary services (such as healthcare or financial support) at your new location.

You can complete the registration process by visiting any of the NDGAP client offices and filling out an address registration form. Please note that the address registration should be carried out in person, by your legal representative, or by an authorised person.

It is recommended to request an address certificate (known as ”szálláshelyet igazoló hatósági bizonyítvány”) for your new address when completing the registration process. This document certifies that your address has been successfully changed and can be presented to the authorities or service providers as official verification of your new address.

Organisations who can help you

OrganisationPhoneE-mail
IOM+36 80 98 45 44[email protected] 
Hungarian Red Cross +36 1 374 1374 [email protected] 
Next Step Association+36 70 323 75 52[email protected]
Lutheran Diakónia+361 483 22 60[email protected]
Menedék Association+36 20 450 72 45[email protected]

Be careful with private accommodations

When looking for accommodation in Hungary as a displaced person, it’s important to keep your personal safety as the highest priority. Unfortunately, there are homeowners who are trying to exploit refugees in exchange for a place to stay. Read the following pages about identifying harmful offers.