Pristina - Post Report Question and Answers

What is your housing like? What are typical housing sizes, locations, and commute times for expatriates?

US Embassy housing varies, most of it is great. Architecture here is a bit unusual, so most houses in the embassy pool have four-five floors and the layout might not be what you expect. That said, this has been one of the nicest houses we've had overseas with the fewest problems. Many families prefer living in International Village because it has lots of kids, a great playground/pool, and is close to ISK (and now QSI, since it moved.) PHS is a little further away. IV to embassy commutes vary, depending on traffic. No traffic? Maybe 10-15 minutes. It's taken nearly 2 hours to get home on occasion. - Aug 2021

We live in a neighborhood, which is like a very US/Western suburb with townhouses and single family homes. Most of the residents in this neighborhood are with a foreign mission or are from wealthier Albanian families. There is also housing in the another neighborhood up by the US Embassy; both families and singles live in this area. "IV" is really great for families as the housing is big and it's a gated neighborhood with a big sand park. There is also a pool that is open during the summertime. The commute to downtown Pristina/most embassies is about 15 minutes driving (no public transportation). People that live downtown can walk to most of the restaurants, which is nice, though the walk to the new US Embassy will be longer once it opens in September 2019. All of the housing comes with plenty of air filters, which is very helpful during the winter when the pollution is bad. - Jul 2019

We live in Dragodan/Arberia, in a three-bedroom flat with a terrace with a stunning view over Pristina, 4 floors, no elevator. It is close to my workplace, only 5 minutes walking time to the office. There are houses and flats available at any size and budget. Bigger families may find houses in a gated area like International Village to be more convenient. - Nov 2016

Apartment, 3rd floor walk-up. We had asked for single-family housing since we have dogs. We have a small yard. There is a walkway from gate leading to the street and then up 2 flights to the 3rd floor. There is a shared attic/storage on the very top floor. The apartment is nice, more modern than some of the older homes. It has a laundry and two bedrooms plus an optional third bedroom/office. There is a small living room, a dining room/sitting room, and an eat-in kitchen. However, counter space and the sink are both small. The apartment does boast a great view of the city from a small front balcony. - Jun 2016

Two types - 1) an international townhouse community (tennis and basketball courts, small market, restaurant, bar and dry cleaners) about 10 minutes outside of Pristina near the malls and grocery stores; and 2) houses/apartments that are a short walk to the Embassy. They are building a new Embassy, to be completed in 2018, and then no one will really be able to walk (or it won't be an easy walk.) Both options have pluses/minuses. We live in the townhouse community and it takes 10-15 minutes to get to Embassy/downtown. During the summer when the diaspora returns or when it rains (roads don't have good drainage), the roads can get very congested and it can take 45-60 minutes to get home. - May 2016

Two sets -- one suburban-style gated community with large-ish homes about 30 minutes from the Embassy compound, and a set of houses/apartments within walking distance of the compound. All are quirky, and few are designed with storage in mind. GSO are very responsive when it comes to fixing home issues, though be advised some are unsolvable. - Aug 2015

Most people live near the Embassy and can get there within 5 minutes' walking time. I lived about 4k from the Embassy and it would take me anywhere from 10 minutes to an hour to get to work, depending on traffic (mostly due to never-ending construction). - Jun 2014

Housing is available "downtown"--it isn't really downtown, because the Embassy is on the outskirts of town, but this housing is almost all within easy walking distance from the Embassy. These are apartments or single family homes. Some are on the small side, but newer additions are quite large. The other option for housing is in a planned, gated community outside of town. It's 15-30 minutes to drive to the Embassy, depending on traffic and road construction; 10-15 minutes to get to downtown shops and restaurants. Embassy housing in this community consists almost exclusively of townhouses. There is a playground, a basketball court, and a pool in the community. This community is a 5-minute drive from a popular supermarket; there also are a couple of nice restaurants within a few minutes. - Apr 2014

Balkan homes typically were built for three-generations of family to live together. For rentals, landlords typically split the homes into three separate apartments. Interiors could have a small flight of stairs with several steps between the general living/dining/kitchen level and the bedroom level. No walk-in closets. You will need armoires. A developer opened an "International" housing community a bit outside of town. Hearsay: it's good. - Apr 2013

Apartments, mostly without yards. All within walking distance to the Embassy and a slightly long-ish walk to the city center (or a very quick taxi ride). - Sep 2012

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