The Hungarian flag
The Hungarian flag

The Hungarian flag

How does the Hungarian flag look like? What does the flag of Hungary symbolize? When and how can it be used? Read the article for the answers.


The Hungarian flag, which is also one of the national symbols of Hungary, consists of three equal sized horizontal stripes in the color of the red, white and green. The official modern Hungarian flag dates back to the failed Hungarian Revolution of 1848 against the Habsburg Empire, but the colours come from the Hungarian Coat of Arms. Although the design of the flag appeared first during the Revolution it was only officially instated on 12 October 1957 and has remained unchanged ever since.

What do the three colors in the hungarian flag symbolize? 

The red stripe symbolizes strength (or the bloodshed in defence of the motherland); the white stripe represents faithfulness and fidelity (or freedom) and the green stands for hope (or Hungary’s pasturelands and mountains).

Did you know?

  • Hungary’s tricolor design is based upon the French flag, but stripes are horizontal rather than vertical to prevent confusion with the Italian flag, which had also been designed after the French flag. Make no mistake, although the colors are the same, the stripes of the Italian flag are vertically positioned. 
  • The flag of Hungary is ceremonially displayed during the National Holidays in front of the Parliament. You can also check out the celebration carried out by the Hungarian army on 15 March, 20 August or 23 October.
  • Watch this video to learn more about the Hungarian flag: The Hungarian flag – click the video
Change of the guards with the Hungarian flag in the background
Change of the guards with the Hungarian flag in the background

Use of the hungarian flag

The use of the flag of Hungary is strictly controlled by the Constitution, by rules, laws and standards. If you have ever considered using the flag publicly for any reasons, you will have to meet a couple of requirements before you are allowed to do so.

  1. The flag needs to be cleaned every three months.
  2. The flag needs to be officially displayed during the National Holidays.
  3. The flag needs to be replaced once a year.
  4. Should the Hungarian flag gets ripped or damaged it needs to be changed without delay.
  5. The size and color of the flagpole is also laid down in particular details.
  6. Steeling or damaging the Hungarian flag is a crime and the person having committed the crime can be prosecuted. (Forget about taking one home from the streets as a souvenir. It is not worth it)

Where to buy the hungarian flag?

If you wish to take the flag of Hungary with you home but you do not want to risk prosecution, the ideal solution if you visit one of the many souvenir shops in Budapest or in bigger cities and you can by a “toy” equivalent of the national flag. 


Try this shop, it is one of the biggest and is centrally located:

Should you seriously consider using the flag to decorate your house or out of sense of national unity, there are special shops that sell the officially authorized Hungarian flag with the appropriate flagpole.

Another great idea to commemorate the Hungarian flag and colours in a different and more creative way (if you are into football) is to buy a jersey in the color of the Hungarian national team. You can actually wear it and it will always remind you of your visit to Hungary. They can be purchased in bigger sports stores in Budapest.


If you really want to understand the sense of national unity of a country you should look at their official national flag. Have you ever watched the World Cup or the Olympic Games on TV? Can you recall the feeling when your team or individual competitor won and the flag of your country was displayed while the national anthem was being played? Yes, you may even get goosebumps by only looking at your nation’s flag, it is so powerful!

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