Hungary is no stranger to health tourism; for centuries the well-heeled have been flocking to its restorative mineral springs, lakes, baths, and spas. German and Swiss patients head to Budapest and Hungary’s border towns—sometimes by the busload—for inexpensive, high-quality dental work, and patients from the US and Canada are beginning to catch on as well.
Hungary boasts more dentists per capita than any other country, and post–Cold War Hungarian dentists have long prided themselves on their state-of-the-art equipment. Since the country’s admission to the European Union in 2004, travel and communications have grown easier, and Hungary has begun to upgrade accreditation and care standards to match those of Western Europe.
Hungary’s cosmopolitan capital, Budapest, boasts the country’s largest number of dental clinics—although they tend to be the region’s most expensive. Dental travel agents also offer trips to smaller, sleepier (and more economical) towns, such as Mosonmagyaróvár, Hévíz, Sopron and Gyor, all near the Austrian border. Although populated by only 32,000 inhabitants, Mosonmagyaróvár is home to an incredible 160 dental offices!
While it’s economical for Europeans, Western Russians and Middle Easterners to travel to Hungary for a dental checkup or a cleaning, most North American patients traveling to Hungary are seeking more extensive care, including cosmetic and reconstructive work, full-mouth restorations, and implants. Such work can be had at less than half the US price, including travel and accommodations.
Hungary's High Healthcare Standards
Hungarian dentists must complete five years of dental training. In order to practice, a dentist must be registered with the Hungarian Medical Chamber. Accreditation and standards are set by the State National Health Commission and Medical Service, Hungarian Medical Chamber, and International Society of Aesthetic Plastic Surgeons. All that said, compliance to standards varies widely in Hungary, and health travelers should rely doubly on trusted sources, such as referrals or a reputable health travel agent.
Note: Dental clinics literally line the streets in northwestern Hungarian towns, such as Heviz, Mosonmagyarovar, Sopron, and Gyor, with wide variations in service and expertise. Even the top clinics can vary in the amount of English spoken and the level of customer service provided. Travelers to Hungary should make an extra effort to attain the highest comfort level with their clinic and doctor beforehand. The services of a good health travel agent are recommended.
Last updated on 13 August 2016