Peru Backpacking Budget

Peru backpacking budget

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

Daily Travel Costs in Peru on a Shoestring Budget

US$25 | 85 Peruvian Sol

Peru is overall a cheap country to visit even by South America standards. Staying in one place, you can probably get by on as little as $15/day with plenty of real budget accommodation while eating out in local restaurants is also great value. However there are a few reasons why Peru is a bit more expensive than Bolivia for example or the cheapest countries in Asia or Africa.

Firstly the size of the country means you will spend a lot of time travelling around particularly if you are looking to go all the way from the Northern border with Ecuador all the way down into Bolivia or Chile. The lack of budget airlines means travelling by bus is the only realistic option for shoestring travellers and although they aren’t expensive on a per km or per hour basis, you will need to spend several days on a bus to travel through the entire country and costs do add up.

Average costs are perhaps a bit cheaper than Ecuador but it is 5 times as big so unless you just focus on one part of the country you are likely to be working on a similar budget. The second budget breaker in Peru is the world famous Machu Picchu, which is very expensive to visit. Although it is entirely possible to go to Peru and not go there (there are many other great Incan sites to visit), the majority of travellers do go there and if you opt for one of the more expensive trips to it then you may struggle to stick to our overall Peru backpacking budget of $25/day.

See where Peru ranks on our World Budget Travel Table.

Backpacking costs in all South American countries

More Comfortable Peru Backpacker Budget

US$40 | 135 Peruvian Sol

If you are doing a big trip in South America and have a certain timeframe for it, you might want to budget a bit more for Peru and maybe skip some of the less interesting parts of the country by taking a flight. Most of the main points of interest are in the South of the country with the likes of Cuzco and Arequipa among the more interesting cities to visit compared to Lima or the ones in the North.

By budgeting for $40/day you can probably afford to skip a large portion of the country and well over 24 hours of travelling on buses by taking a domestic flight or if you are just visiting the South, you could probably take a flight from Lima to Cuzco rather than the never-ending bus route. You could probably also do one of the longer hikes up to Machu Picchu.

Sample Prices in Peru

Flight from Lima to Cuzco (1 hour 20 minutes) – 260 Soles ($80)

Bus from Cuzco to Arequipa (11 hours) – from 30 Soles ($9)

Meal at an inexpensive restaurant – 10 Soles ($3)

Large local beer in a cheap bar or restaurant – 5 Soles ($1.50)

Dorm bed in Cuzco – from 15 Soles/night ($4.50)

Budget private double or twin – 30 Soles/night ($9)

Entrance Fee to Machu Picchu – 128 Soles* ($40)

*this is purely to enter & doesn’t include the considerable cost of getting there.


Currency – Peruvian Sol

£1 = 4.80 Sol

€1 = 3.78 Sol

US$1 = 3.33 Sol

(All exchange rates are correct as of June 2016)

MFT Recommends

Stay at Vallecito Backpackers in Arequipa for great value dorm beds and excellent staff.

street art in Peru

street art in Huachipa, Peru (via El DecertorCC BY-NC-ND 2.0)

Share your Travel Costs!

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

This article was published in June 2016.

Cambodia Backpacking Budget

backpacking budget Cambodia

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

Daily Travel Costs in Cambodia on a Shoestring Budget

US$20 (or less)

Cambodia is paradise for the budget traveller with your money stretching further than it does almost anywhere in the world. This after all is the land of the $2 dorm bed and although they are a little harder to find these days, when you get private rooms going for as little at $4, there’s not really any need to stay in dorms in any case unless you have a fervent desire to sleep in a room full of strangers.

Buses between the main towns are also very cheap and although there are a few expensive restaurants cropping up geared towards an expanding mainstream tourist industry, there are still plenty of real local cheapies. Hit the local markets and you’ll find plenty of stalls and small restaurants serving local dishes at bargain prices.

Our Cambodia backpacking budget of $20 is perhaps a conservative one and there is no reason why you can’t spend $15 or less most days. However the one thing that is expensive in Cambodia is Angkor Wat. It is the country’s pride and joy and to visit it you need to pay a hefty $20 for a day pass and given there is so much to see you might need more than one day there, certainly if you’re a big ruins lover. Therefore you could have a couple of days that are going to be more like $40 which is why $20/day is perhaps more realistic as an overall budget. If you don’t visit Angkor Wat or are in Cambodia for more than a few weeks you can probably get by on less than 20 as the main sites in and around Phnom Penh are all very cheap to visit.

See where Cambodia ranks on our World Budget Travel Table.

Backpacking costs in all Southeast Asian countries

More Comfortable Cambodia Backpacker Budget


Adding $5/day will allow you to stay in air-con rooms and perhaps take at least one meal a day in one of the international restaurants which are still good value just not by Cambodian standards. You might read a few articles suggesting Cambodia has got considerably more expensive in recent years but that is simply not the case. It is perhaps not as ridiculously cheap as it once was but it is still great value and $25/day should be more than enough to explore what is a lovely country.

Sample Prices in Cambodia

Bus from Siem Reap to Phnom Penh (6-7 hours) – $6 ($1/hour of travel is typical in Cambodia)

Meal at an inexpensive restaurant – $2.50

Large local beer – $1

Dorm bed in Siem Reap – from $3/night

Cheap double or twin room with fan – from $4/night

Entrance to Killing Fields or Museums in Phnom Penh – $2

Day pass for Angkor Wat – $20

Compare this to the cost of travel in Laos.


Currency – Cambodian Riel & US Dollar

£1 = 5850 Riel | $1.44

€1 = 4610 Riel | $1.13

US$1 = 4067 Riel

(All exchange rates are correct as of June 2016)

The US Dollar is widely used in Cambodia to the point that chances are you will pay for most things including hostels and meals in Dollars and certainly most tourist/traveller orientated businesses quote prices in dollars rather than riels. It is common to pay in dollars and receive change in riels, which are used for buying smaller items.

ATM’s are plentiful in the main tourist towns now and dispense dollars.

MFT Recommends

Cambodia is one country where it is very important to have good travel insurance. We recommend World Nomads who specialise in backpacking trips and will help in the case of you falling sick or getting injured in a country which has limited healthcare facilities.

street art in Cambodia

street art in Phnom Penh, Cambodia (via antjeverenaCC BY-SA 2.0)

Share your Travel Costs!

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

This article was published in June 2016

Singapore Backpacking Budget

Singapore Backpacking Budget

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

Daily Travel Costs in Singapore on a Shoestring Budget

US$45 | 60 Singapore Dollars

Singapore has a reputation for being a very expensive place and that is true to an extent although it depends on what kind of trip you want to have. Certainly it is far more expensive than the rest of Southeast Asia with most things costing at least double what you find in other countries in the region. Certainly alcohol is very expensive and if you’re visiting the city-state as part of a trip in SE Asia on a small budget, you’d be wise to save your partying for other places. Our suggested Singapore backpacking budget of $45/day will disappear in a couple of hours if you decide to go out to one of the many swanky clubs and bars but you can probably afford one night out if you are there for 3 or 4 days on this budget.

However Singapore does have one or two advantages for the budget traveller. The main one being that it is basically just a city and you won’t spend any money going from town to town like in other countries. Travelling around Singapore is relatively cheap and if you choose a hostel in a good location, you can see a lot of it on foot. Picking a hostel with self-catering facilities will also help cut your costs considerably as eating out two or three times a day will take up a big chunk of this budget.

One of the main attractions to Singapore is shopping though and there is an almost nonsensical amount of mega shopping malls to spend your money in. Our budget of $45/day is by no means unrealistic for your every day needs and a bit of sightseeing but clearly doesn’t allow for much shopping so you might want to set another $100 or more aside if you are looking to hit the malls.

See where Singapore ranks on our World Budget Travel Table.

Backpacking costs in all Southeast Asian countries

More Comfortable Singapore Backpacker Budget

US$70 | 95 Singapore Dollars

Singapore isn’t really designed for shoestring travellers and to really make the most of it and experience the best of its cuisine, nightlife and attractions you might want to set aside something more in the region of $70/day plus. Even the airport is full of tempting ways to spend your money but given you only need a few days to really experience Singapore perhaps it’s worth budgeting a bit higher and then saving up in places where it is easier to travel on a shoestring.

Sample Prices in Singapore

(all prices are in Singapore Dollars)

One way ticket on local transport – S$1.30-2

Meal in an inexpensive restaurant – S$12

Large beer in a bar/restaurant – S$8

Dorm bed – from S$15/night

Budget private double or twin room – from S$35/night

1 Day pass at Universal Studios – S$74


Currency – Singapore Dollar

£1 = 1.96 SGD

€1 = 1.54 SGD

US$1 = 1.36 SGD

(All exchange rates are correct as of June 2016)

MFT Recommends

There are lots of hostels in Singapore but most of the cheap ones are pretty bad. Coziee Lodge is one of the few that consistently gets good reviews and it’s not surprising with beds in 4 bed dorms going for as little as S$18 while standards of cleanliness are high and the location is a convenient one for exploring the city.

street art in Singapore

street art in Singapore (via Les HalnesCC BY 2.0)

Share your Travel Costs!

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

This article was published in June 2016.