5 Countries Anyone Can Travel on $25 a Day

Written by Marco Morawec

Topics: Featured, Photos, Travel Advice, Travel Planning

I keep repeating myself and I don’t care: awesome experiences in exotic places don’t cost a lot of money. It’s easy to travel around the world and stay under your daily shoestring budget if you know how to bargain on the road and save money while traveling. But even if you don’t feel comfortable calling yourself a shoestring travel expert, there are plenty of places in the world that anyone can travel on $25 a day.

In those places your Dollar/Euro just goes a lot further than in, say Europe. For example, the cost for a single serving of the Worlds best Tiramisu, about $5, in Rome, Italy is easily enough to cover delicious breakfast, lunch and dinner in Luang Prabang, Laos.

Here are my 5 Places Everyone Can Travel on a $25 a Day Shoestring Budget.

Peru

Peru is a spectacular country that is full of action packed adventures. You can surf the longest wave in the world, feel like you’re in an Avatar Movie hiking around Machu Pichu and eat amazing food in markets and restaurants for very little money. If you need more culture, you can head over to Lake Titkaka and experience a home-stay in a rural village, be mesmerized by the architecture in Arequipa or eat your little sisters Guinea Pig pet as a local specialty.

Most budget hotels will charge you around $10 for a double room (make friends on the road and split the room costs) and a menu del dia including soup, entree, drink and dessert will cost around $3.

Thailand

Thailand is another country that has it all: World class street food, beaches straight out of your dreams and the worlds friendliest and most beautiful people. If I say beautiful I mean it. There is no other place on Earth I know were people on the subway are more beautiful than the actual models in the advertisements sticking to the train walls.

Daily travel costs are also very low if you stay out of the backpacking ghettos in Bangkok and some party islands in the south. Expect to pay about $5 to $10 for a bed in Bangkok or Chiang Mai and a lot less in the more rural areas. The food will surely blow your mind and tingle your taste buds in ways you never even thought possible. The price tag for this high quality food will surprise you even more. Often times you pay less than $1 for a breakfast soup and not more than $3 for a big plate of your favorite Pad Thai.

Laos

Laos is one of those countries that is just about to discover it’s true potential as a main player in the international tourism game. Give the extremely friendly Lao people with  their stunningly beautiful countryside another five years and they might be one of the top destinations in South-East Asia.

For now, you can enjoy this country on a relatively small shoestring budget of less than $15 a day. Fully equipped deluxe hotel rooms with AC, own bathroom and new mattresses in a great location can be found for less than $10 a night. Food is even more affordable. A full feast at Luang Prabangs night market usually costs not more than $2.

Indonesia

The worlds best waves, beautiful islands and untouched jungle all wrapped in a real adventure feeling. However, I found Indonesia a bit more challenging to travel through than other South-East Asia countries. But it’s exactly the lack of infrastructure, the many rural and remote places which make for the best travel stories once you’re out of the hot 17-hour night bus. Like thanking the Universe all day long for surviving the bus ride, taking a shower and seeing yet another world class wave when looking out your window.

Money wise, you can certainly compare Indonesia to Laos. However, you will have to bargain much harder in Indo than in Laos. It’s a different mentality and culture to bargaining, so you need to adapt. But even if your bargaining skills are not on the pro level just yet, you will get away with spending less than $25 a day.

India

India is best described in one word: Intense. If you don’t believe me read my jumping on a train in India story and be convinced at once. However, with all that intensity comes the charm of the entire county. I have yet to find a country where I can stand at a random street corner for hours on end and keep shaking my head in pure amazement on what scenes are unfolding right in front of me. Everything in India happens in public: People sleep, poop, eat, die, change, wash themselves and raise families right between a random building and the traffic jam packed road. India will shake your current world-view like a 10.0 earthquake and burn unforgettable memories into your mind.

The good news you ask. Well, you can have all the chaos and Curry for about $5 a night and less than $2 a meal. If you want crazy and exciting, look no longer, India got you covered.

Morocco

A Kingdom in Northern Africa with exceptional waves, mind blowing adventures and a fascinating culture. Nowhere else did I see white bearded men ,dressed in white robes and turban, Eagle on the shoulder, tell stories from 1001 night. Think that’s a tourist thing. Think again. All stories are told in Arabic and draw dozens of locals who listen to each and every word in pure amazement.

You can feel like Aladin in your own fairytale for very little money. A double room in Marrakesh runs for about $8, less in more rural areas. The food is excellent and if you  are able to ignore the worlds best salesmen and sit where the locals are eating you spend less than $3 for a full meal. If you fall for one of the  sales-guys stories and end up at a restaurant with all the other travelers you still get away with only paying $5 for a meal. And just in case you love radical food, Morocco will put you to the test with snails for starters and steamed sheep head for an entree.

Now it’s your turn, which countries do you think are the best to travel on a shoestring budget?

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4 Comments For This Post I'd Love to Hear Yours!

  1. Nicholas says:

    Hey Marco,
    Just read your info and you’re a real inspiration! I’d love to do what you’re doing and will do it within the next few years!
    Have you been to Vietnam? I’m going next month and I’ve heard it’s incredibly cheap to stay there!
    Take care,
    Nicholas.

    • Marco Morawec says:

      Aloha Nicholas and huge thanks for your comment. I’m glad some of my ramblings inspired you to go travel. Makes me super stoked to hear that! I haven’t been to Vietnam myself yet – it’s on the list – but I heard good things about the place. If you’re in the South-East Asia region anyways, why not link your trip with Laos and Cambodia…Feeling like Tomb Raider at Angkor Wat alone is worth the trip to Cambodia!

      Safe Travels and let me know if you have any questions about planning/organizing/financing your trip.

      Cheers,
      Marco

      • Nicholas says:

        Hello again!
        Thanks for your reply, You’ve read my mind as after long thought I’ve decided to go to all three of those countries for a month or two in the upcoming months!

        a few questions:
        As you’ve said in your above and previous posts- you managed to get a place in Laos for 10 or so dollars. Is it that cheap/easy to find places like that?
        How was the food in those areas?
        I’d much rather avoid most tourist traps. Was it easy to do so? Did you sightsee?

        Thanks alot for the advice, I really appreciate it!
        Where are you now?

        Cheers,
        Nicholas.

        • Marco Morawec says:

          Hey Nicholas,

          That’s awesome. I’m stoked you decided to go traveling…and if my humble blog post inspired you even the tiniest bit you made my day, hell, my entire week!

          Now, to your great questions. Let’s go:
          - Finding great and cheap places always follows the same routine. A good place to start is reading 3 Bulletproof Strategies on Saving 30 Percent of your Shoestring Travel Budget . There you’ll learn my strategies I use every time I arrive at a new spot. I hope they save you as much money as they save me. In general you can find good places for around $10 without any trouble. If you are willing to rough it, you can even get as low as $3 for a shoestring dorm bed!

          - Foodwise, you don’t have to worry. Food in Asia is awesome, no matter where you are. If you don’t know where to go, follow the locals, if there are no locals, make sure there’s a women running the kitchen.

          - Touristy places are there for a reason. Usually around great sights and attractions – like Anchor Wat in Cambodia – and you just have to deal with them. But if you change your perspective a bit, touristy places can offer a welcoming relieve after roughing it somewhere in the jungle with the locals for three weeks. Finally you get internet, a shower and something else then fried rice with vegetables to eat. It’s how you look at it, but generally speaking, South-East Asia has a well established backpacking trail. As soon as you break off of it, things change quickly and become less touristy.

          I hope this helped and please make sure to read my latest E-book on What to Avoid If You Never Want to Come Home Early From Your Travels (Enter your email and I’ll send you a download link immediately).

          Safe travels!

          A hui hou,
          Marco

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