World Borders: How to Get From Macedonia to Kosovo (Skopje to Pristina by bus)

World Borders: How to get from Macedonia to Kosovo by bus.

World Borders: How to get from Macedonia to Kosovo by bus.

When you hear about places like Macedonia and Kosovo you might think that obscurity is the name of the game and that backpacking through this region is a test for your stamina. However, this particular border crossing is a fast and easy one and something I’d definitely recommend now having been in the former Yugoslavia the last couple of weeks.

World Borders: The Bus From Macedonia to Kosovo.

World Borders: The Bus From Macedonia to Kosovo.

You have two main options public transport wise for getting from Macedonia to Kosovo:
1. Train
2. Bus

Skopje Bus Station, Macedonia.

Skopje Bus Station, Macedonia.

The train is less frequent and slower so I opted for the bus option. Here’s how to get from Macedonia to Kosovo by bus, from Skopje to Pristina.

Buying Your Ticket in Skopje
Ex-Yugoslav countries are smarter than the rest. Here’s why – the main cities all only have one bus station each, so no confusion about which bus station to go to. Head to the bus station in Skopje (which is also intelligently by the train station also). Go to ticket counter 6 for the bus to Pristina.

pristina kosovo ticket bus

Ticket Counter 6 in Skopje bus station for Pristina, Kosovo buses.

Everything might be written in Macedonian for the most part, but you’ll see some English. All you need to do is tell them you want the next bus to Pristina (pronounced Prish Teena). Above Counter 6 it says Shkup to Prishtine so you know the route is correct. Buses are regular from about 8am until 6pm. I got the 3pm bus. The ticket costs 320 Macedonian Denars and you are issued with a ticket and a receipt.

P1200857 P1200856

There is currently no other way to book the bus other than going to the station. Most backpackers just buy the ticket a few minutes before the bus leaves which is what I did in Bulgaria, Macedonia, Kosovo and Montenegro. The company is called Albus.

The company is called Albus.

The company is called Albus.

Boarding the Bus in Skopje, Macedonia
Once you have your ticket you can buy the last things you might need in Skopje, Macedonia. Macedonia is cheaper than Kosovo so that is something to note.

A cafe in Skopje Bus Station, Macedonia.

A cafe in Skopje Bus Station, Macedonia.

You get your ticket checked between the terminal and the bus platforms. The Pristina bus was platform 3 for me and we just waited by the bus stop until the bus arrived. The bus will say Pristina on it, as will the sign above platform 3 in my case.

Sign which says Pristina.

Sign which says Pristina.

World Borders: The Bus From Macedonia to Kosovo.

World Borders: The Bus From Shkup (Skopje) to Prishtine (Pristina)

Macedonian Denars to Euros
Also – try your best to change your Macedonian Denars before you leave. The staff lied to me at the station saying that I could change it into Euros in Kosovo – it’s very hard to find any change bureau or bank in Kosovo to swap the MDs over.

Swap your Macedonian Denars before you leave.

Swap your Macedonian Denars before you leave.

Leaving Macedonia at Blace
The border isn’t far north of Skopje – you’ll be out of the city in no time and driving through countryside wilderness.

Wilderness drive north of Skopje, Macedonia.

Wilderness drive north of Skopje, Macedonia.

There is a Macedonian exit point but there is no need to get off the bus unless you request it. The name of the place you leave Macedonia in this case is called Blace ( I assume this is pronounced Blatt Zhe).

The bus to Blace, Macedonia to Kosovo border.

The bus to Blace, Macedonia to Kosovo border.

Leaving Macedonia at Blace.

Leaving Macedonia at Blace.

The Macedonian official will get on the bus and take your passports. He will take them away to check and register your departure, then return and hand them back to you while you are on the bus. Smokers might want to get off for a quick smoke. No physical passport stamps are issued for those on an EU passport here at Blace.

Border point at Blace.

Border point at Blace.

A sign in Blace at the border point.

A sign in Blace at the border point.

This entire process took around 15-20 minutes and then you drive across the small part of road into the Kosovo arrival immigration point.

The road between the Macedonian and Kosovan immigration points.

The road between the Macedonian and Kosovan immigration points.

Arriving in Kosovo at Han i Elezit
Once you leave Blace, you arrive in Kosovo at a check point near a settlement known as Han i Elezit. Again you stay on the bus. A Kosovan immigration officer will get on the bus and take your passport away.

Han i Elezit - Kosovo border entry point.

Han i Elezit – Kosovo border entry point.

The border entry point at Han i Elezit, Kosovo.

The border entry point at Han i Elezit, Kosovo.

Once they have checked and stamped your passport, they get back on the bus and give it back to you. You will get an entry stamp into Kosovo and can stay for 90 days if you like.

Passport Arrival Stamp for Kosovo.

Passport Arrival Stamp for Kosovo.

Arriving in Pristina
After that it’s just over an hour or so of a drive to Pristina the capital city of Kosovo. As far as I remember there are no other stops on the way for passengers to get on and off though we did seem to pass through a few settlements. It got dark during this part of the journey.

Night time arrival into Pristina, Kosovo's capital.

Night time arrival into Pristina, Kosovo’s capital.

One thing I did notice was a load of covered casinos and gaming rooms outside the window of the bus, all lit up. The approach to Pristina was all smooth roads and I got off the bus by the Hotel Victory as it’s a closer walk from there to my hostel (Buffalo Backpackers) than if I stayed on until the last stop – the main bus station in Pristina, Kosovo. Overall a fairly easy border crossing to do!

Here are my videos of the bus from Macedonia to Kosovo:

Join 15,017 Monthly Readers! If you enjoyed this article and LOVE travel and SAVING money, get e-mail updates from Don’t Stop Living – a lifestyle of travel! (It’s Free) 😉 Jonny

About Jonny Blair

I'm Jonny Blair, a travelling Northern Irishman. Since leaving my hometown a decade ago I have managed to visit over 100 countries and over 600 towns or cities across all 7 continents. Along the way I have worked in countless jobs! Join my journey on Don't Stop Living - a lifestyle of travel as I provide you with tips and inspiration to live your travel dreams! Safe travels! Follow me on Jonny Blair Google Plus
This entry was posted in Blace, Europe, Han I Elezit, Kosovo, Macedonia, Pristina, Skopje, World Borders. Bookmark the permalink.

16 Responses to World Borders: How to Get From Macedonia to Kosovo (Skopje to Pristina by bus)

  1. Pingback: Backpacking in Kosovo: Top 12 Sights in Pristina, the Capital City

  2. raghava raju says:

    excellent information thank u very useful r raju

  3. Jonny Blair says:

    Hi Raju, thanks for the comment. Glad I could be of help. Safe travels. Jonny

  4. Pingback: Thank You For Following Don't Stop Living: What is This Website About From Now On? - Don't Stop Living

  5. mk says:

    you can buy tickets for Pristina on all open counters not only on counter 6 😉

  6. Jonny Blair says:

    Hi MK, thanks for the update. This was back in 2014 so things may well have changed. Safe travels. Jonny

  7. Sable de Oliveira says:

    Thank you, thank you. I am making the Skopje-Pristina trip next week and I get very anxious about details such as border control procedures, purchasing tickets etc. You have explained it very clearly.
    From another Northern Irish ambitious traveller! (Albeit less adventurous than you, attempting to conquer merely the 51 states of Europe rather than the globe :P).

  8. Jonny Blair says:

    Hi Sable – thanks for the comment, is that your real name? It doesn’t match the email address! Where are you from in Northern Ireland? I hope your trip there goes well, I loved that region. Safe travels. Jonny

  9. Radoslav says:

    Useful! I`m hoping to travel the same route soon and knowing the relationships between the Balkan people (I am Bulgarian) I imagined it being hard, timeconsuming and costly.

  10. Jonny Blair says:

    Hi Radoslav, I wish you a safe and happy trip to Skopje – it’s a cool city! Safe travels. Jonny

  11. Ave says:

    Hi!

    Very useful post, thank you.
    But maybe you know, is it possible to buy a round ticket from Skopje also or i have to buy a return ticket from Prishtina? I am worried because maybe the busses are all full and we cant get back to Skopje (we only want to stay in Prishtina one day – go there in the morning and come back in the evening).

  12. Jonny Blair says:

    Hi Ave, Thanks for the comment. Going there for the day is pushing it, unless you leave very early. None of the buses were ever full but it’s a fair point – if there is some event, celebration or festival on they could be full. Trust the locals in this instance. Ask around. Safe travels. Jonny

  13. André Devecseri says:

    Although a lot of Macedonian officials (and Yugoslav/Albanian ones in general) claim Western passports don’t need stamping, this is due to laziness and not actually legal. Whilst this is a well-known issue and Westerners will usually not face problems one exit (especially if your foreigner registration is in order), if you do get the odd official wanting to cause you trouble, they kind of have the law on their side.

    So if I had used a passport in the region, I’d scrupulously make sure to get stamped at every checkpoint.

  14. Jonny Blair says:

    Hi Andre, thanks for the comment. What do you mean by “western passports”? You mean countries to the west in Europe, or countries in America (the far west). I was there on an Irish passport and had my passport stamped. I love getting new stamps! Safe travels. Jonny

  15. André Devecseri says:

    Hi Jonny, I meant EU/EFTA, American, Canadian, Australian passports etc. But it happens particularly often with EU/EFTA passports.

  16. Jonny Blair says:

    Hi Andre, thanks for the update. Good luck with the border crossing. Jonny

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

CommentLuv badge


UA-36691711-1