Philippines Backpacking Budget

Philippines Backpacking Budget

(Map of Philippines from wikitravel, can be re-used under CC BY-SA 3.0)

Daily Travel Costs in The Philippines on a Shoestring Budget

US$30 | 1400 Peso

The Philippines is perhaps marginally more expensive than most of mainland Southeast Asia but not by a considerable amount. There are certainly less backpackers here which can be both a good and bad thing depending on your perspective. One effect of that is there isn’t quite as much hostel style accommodation which can see you spend a bit more on that although the main destinations tend to have a few budget cheapies where you can find dorms with other backpackers.

Eating out is very cheap and certainly comparable to prices over on the mainland while beer and Filipino rum is also dirt cheap meaning you can certainly fit maybe a couple of nights out a week on this budget, perhaps more if you’re not doing many organised-type trips during the day.

However what really makes travel in the Philippines slightly more expensive than in say Vietnam or Laos is that there are 7,000 islands to choose from and getting from A to B is a bit more complicated and requires some planning in advance if you want to get the cheapest fares.

See where the Philippines ranks on our World Budget Travel Table.

Backpacking costs in all Southeast Asian countries

More Comfortable Philippines Backpacker Budget

US$40 | 1900 Pesos

If you are more of a fan of the ‘go with the flow’ kind of travel than rigid planning then you might want to allow for more like US$40 per day. You will need to take several boats and probably a few flights to really see the best the country has to offer and this kind of a budget gives you a bit more freedom to see more and book later on when you are more sure of your plans.

The Philippines does have some fantastic beach destinations but many cater more towards a mid-range budget than a shoestring one with the popular Boracay being a good example. A Philippines backpacking budget of $40/day will enable you to visit a few more of them and perhaps stay in a slightly better class of accommodation every now and then.

Sample Prices in The Philippines

Flight from Manila to Cebu (1 hour 15 mins) – about $25 + baggage (when booked a week + in advance)

Dorm bed in most destinations – from $6/night

Dorm bed in Boracay – from $10/night

Meal at a budget restaurant – $2.50

Large local beer in bar/restaurant – $1

Entrance Fee for Fort Santiago, Manila – 75 Pesos (about $1.50)

Compare prices with the cost of travel in Indonesia.


Currency – Philippine Peso

£1 = 69 Peso

€1 = 52 Peso

US$1 = 47 Peso

(All exchange rates are correct as of June 2016)

One or two places accept US Dollars but most will not.

MFT Recommends

Get some travel insurance! We suggest World Nomads who are experts at providing cover for backpacking trips.

Philippines street art

street art in Bonifacio Global City, Manila (via Daniel GoCC BY-NC 2.0)

Share your Travel Costs!

If you’ve been to The Philippines recently, please let everyone know your typical daily costs by commenting below 😉

This page was published in June 2016.

Get our Backpackers Guide to Southeast Asia 2017-2018 for a summary of budget travel in the region.