Hot dog

What will $30 buy you around the world?

Hot dog
$3 will buy you all the indigestion you can handle in NYC

Travelling on a budget makes me really nervous as I am horrible at managing money. When I am overseas, I want to do everything and see everything which generally means I spend everything as well. What adds to this problem is that some people seem to be able to travel the world on tiny budgets and tell you that certain places are cheap. DO NOT BELIEVE THEM. My idea of cheap is $100 a day; not $30 a day which I recently tried to stick to in New York. One word: impossible. The museum entry is around $25 and a hotdog on the street is $3. What are you supposed to do for the rest of the day? Eat grass?

Online travel booking site have put together a list of what $30 can get you around the world. Read on, budget conscious friends!


Accommodation – with good deals throughout the year, $30 can get you as much as two nights’ accommodation for two people at a budget hotel in Kuta or a night at a cheap but cheerful establishment in Seminyak.

Food – you can get six to 12 meals at a local food stall for under $30 – for instance, a nasi campur with rice and about five selections will cost between $2- $5; a meal at a mid-range restaurant will set you back about $10 or a meal (main and entre) at a high end restaurant like Sarong will cost about $30.

Cocktails – At about $6 – $8 for cocktails, $30 can get you three to four cocktails – and more if you go during happy hours at various establishments.

Beer – Depending on where you get it from, you can get 10 to 15 bottles of Bintang beer, or more if you buy it from the local supermarkets.

Transport – An average 10 – 15 minute cab ride costs about $2, so $30 will cover up to 15 cab rides – for instance, from Kuta to Seminyak.


Accommodation – If you are travelling with a companion, you can get one nights’ accommodation for one person at a budget hotel – for instance, the Travelodge chain has 15 hotels around the city centre a double room can start from just £29 ($53) a night.

Food –You can get a set meal from £9.50 at Wong Kei (legendary Cantonese restaurant famed for its rude service) so $30 can get you a meal for two there (and unlimited free tea), or a meal for two at Hummus Bros in London.

Cocktails –If you know where to go, cocktails cost about £5 (or $9) – for instance, in Market House, and a popular Brixton drinking hole. They cost £5 ($9) in Shutterbug (Shoreditch) and cocktails range from £5.25 to £7 ($9.50 to $12.70) in Freuds, Soho. Beer – A pint of beer is 568ml, which is 25 per cent more than a schooner in New South Wales and 15 per cent more than a Victorian pot. A pint costs around £3.5 to £4.5 (AU $6 -8), and look out for many happy hour specials which are often great value.

Transport –, £9 (AU$16) can get you all day unlimited tube and bus rides around the city centre. Alternatively, £10 (AU$18) will get you unlimited 30 minute bike rides on Boris bikes in London over 7 days.


Accommodation – You’d expect accommodation in one of the most romantic cities in the world to be costly, but you can find double rooms from as little as AU$77 dollars a night (for instance, the Port Royal Hotel in the Latin Quarter)– which is just over AU$30 per person if you are sharing with someone else!

Food – Look around the neighbourhoods and you will find deliciously simple fare from AU$7- 15 for lunch.  Most cafes have a set menu of the day – a three course meal for around AU$13 – 23.

Cocktails – a standard cocktail in Paris can cost around $14.

Beer – If you know where to go, for instance, in Oberkampf or Canal Saint Martin, a pint of beer can cost about AU$6. Prices go up after 8pm. (Our tip is to drink wine in Paris – you can find a surprisingly good selection at a local shop from AU$4 to AU$15)

Transport – A taxi ride in the city centre (about 3 km) will cost about AU$10-15 and an all-day metro pass for the city centre is about AU$9.50.

Los Angeles

Accommodation – You can find rooms at hostels in LA from AU$30 a night (the Banana Bungalo in West Hollywood is a popular spot) and rooms in budget hotels from as little as AU$60 per night.

Food – America is certainly the land of choice and you can get fast food meals from under five dollars and a wide range of decent eating places with generously sized meals – just remember to add the tip! A double cheese burger at In-N-Out burger costs AU$3.50 and a and a 9 inch chilli dog from Hollywood’s Pinks is AU$4.75.

Cocktails – The average price for a cocktail is AU$13 – but beware, the cocktails here are generally much more potent than those served in Australia.

Beer – There are often great specials around, and many places have happy hours, and beer can cost between AU$3.50 to AU$6.50 a serve. Transport – In LA, it is best to rent a car and you can find car rental deals for AU$35/day for a three day hire. Or a hire a cruiser for  about $35 and ride along the beach from Malibu down to Manhattan Beach for the day.




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