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Is my big trip TOO BIG??

Travel Forums Asia Is my big trip TOO BIG??

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1. Posted by JAY_H (Full Member 69 posts) 10y

Hi, ive been planning my year long trip for ages now and the more reasurch i do, the more places i want to see!! I want to go for 6 months, no less, and was wondering if i you experienced people can advise me if this is possible on my budget? Really the travelling costs are whats worrying me!!!

Right... my budget is £2500 spending money ie. accommidation/food/train,bus,travel money

The plan is...

Vietnam (From Ho Chi Minh to Hanoi)
Chang Mai
Phuket (Island hopping etc)Samui, Krabi, Ko Phi Phi
Kuala Lumpa
Singapore (not for long as ive heard its expensive, just a couple of days)

This bit is a bit blury... if anyone could help me with this it would be really handy :-)
All the same i was thinking


What do you think then?? I am a lone/female traveller so id like to do a common backpacker trail in indonesia/Malasia
Could i do all this on my budget?
Are there any dangerous places that i should avoid?

Any info would be much appreciated
Jan x

2. Posted by Mel. (Travel Guru 4567 posts) 10y

Hello Jay

That is certainly a tight budget. If it was me, i would either cut it, to 3 months, or consider making the money stretch, to 6 months as a challange.

I have just come back, from Thailand. The recommended daily budget, in on a shoestring book is 11 to 15 US dollars per day. In my opinion a person could actually do it for 5 dollars per day, if they had the patience to search and find the cheaper options. Also, doing some voluntary work would also cut your expenses. I saw examples, where u can stay cheaply, in return for doing something voluntarty.

Thailand is the cheapest place, on your list. If i was in your financial position, i would spend the larger portion of my travelling time there.

Maybe, it is also possible to spend very little, in other countries, too. I have not yet visited the others, on your list, so cant comment.


3. Posted by JAY_H (Full Member 69 posts) 10y

How about if i just did

Cambodia etc
Vietnam etc
Laos etc
Chiang Mai
The Islands etc
Then Malasia

Is this possible on 2500 pounds?
hmmm I just dont want to cut the time down but cant get any more money :-(
What would you do.... any ideas??
How long in each place??

Cheers for the help

4. Posted by Laura_B (Respected Member 352 posts) 10y

I think you could do it with £2500, I spent about that much in 3 months, but spent a lot down the islands in Thailand, plus I did buy a few flights, had a few beers most night which does add up!

Stick to local transport, buses are cheap in SE, although quite mad in Vietnam & Cambodia (roads & drivers)

Eat where the locals do, much cheaper. Food from street vendors in Thailand is generally quite safe to eat, plus it's usually very good! Be more cautious in Vietnam, Lao & Cambodia as their hygiene standards aren't as good, again I think it depends on how sensitive your stomach is.

Malaysia I found to be more expensive then Thailand and other SE countries. Their public transport is very good though.

You will find that the Andaman islands a lot more expensive too, this is because some are geared towards package holiday makers, and also because they have to ship goods from the mainland.

PM me if you'd like to know more details. I can give you a break down of costs.

5. Posted by Laura_B (Respected Member 352 posts) 10y

Quoting JAY_H

How about if i just did

Cambodia etc
Vietnam etc
Laos etc
Chiang Mai
The Islands etc
Then Malasia

Is this possible on 2500 pounds?
hmmm I just dont want to cut the time down but cant get any more money :-(
What would you do.... any ideas??
How long in each place??

Cheers for the help

p.s I went to all the countries/places above in 3 months. I can also give you my itinerary if you're interested.

6. Posted by Mel. (Travel Guru 4567 posts) 10y

Hello Jay

Yes, it is wise to cut down on the number of destinations.
Moving around makes things more expensive.
Here are the recommended daily budgets, in the on a shoe string guide, for the countries u want to visit. I think they can possibly cost less. I can only help with making Thailand cheaper. But maybe somebody else can help, with the others.
Cambodia 15 to 20 US dollars per day. Visa.
Vietnam 23 US dollars per day Visa: 35 to 60 US dollars, for 30 days.
Malaysia 13 US dollars per day Visa: as far as i know there is no cost, for most nationalities, to get a 30 day visa. Some get a 90 day one.
Thailand 11 to 15 US dollars per day. visa: 30 days free, for most nationalities. There are new visa laws, so i am not sure how much u would have to pay, to extend it, or to reenter the country.
Laos 20 US dollars per day Visa 30 US dollars per day and 2 photos.

I suggest u put £500 aside, for visas, long train and bus trips, boats to the islands and airport departure tax(around £10 from Bangkok airport)
It may seem like a lot, but if u dont use it, then u can treat yourself, near the end of your trip. But discovering u have to pay for a surprise visa with no funds aside will mess up your trip.
Since Thailand is the cheapest u could spend most of your time there.

Approximate Exchange rates 1 Euro = 1 US dollar = 45 bahts = 0.72 british sterling

U could try living on 250 bahts, per day, in Thailand, which will leave u with more money to spend, in the more expensive countries.
Following are tips, on how to live on 250 bahts per day, in Thailand.


7. Posted by Mel. (Travel Guru 4567 posts) 10y


To get from the airport to Khao San Road
Take public airconditioned bus number 556 for 35 bahts, to near Khao San road. U will probably have to take a shuttle bus, at the airport, to get to it. There is no extra charge for the shuttle bus.

Stay in guesthouses, which offer rooms for 80 to 140 bahts, for a single. 80 are difficult to find. 140 are quite plentiful.

Coffee, in a guesthouse cafe can cost 25 bahts. Some charge a little more.
Rice and vegetables or nudles and vegetables from street stands 15 to 20 bahts. Most people would need 2 of these, for dinner.
Snacks on sticks(meat, chicken and sausages) can be had for 5 bahts. Some cost more.
Portions of fresh fruit from fruit stands 10 bahts. A portion would be half a pineapple, a wedge of water melon etc
Bunch of banannas 15 to 20 bahts
Bag of peanuts, in shells 10 bahts. (a bag of these and a couple of banannas do for a 12 baht meal, at times when the money is not stretching)
Coffee in a traditional Thai style cafe. 10 bahts. They often also have homemade doughnuts, for 2 bahts.
1.5 litre of water. Cheapest is at the 7 11 shops, which are located everywhere. 12 bahts. I have heard that there is also a temple where u can refill your bottle, for free, with sterilised water.

There is a place where u can use the internet, for free, so long as u only use it, for half hour at a time. location: walk to the end of the Khao San Road, where the temple is. Cross the street and go left for around 20M. U will see a sign saying free internet.

Public transport.
U can take the number 30 bus, to the Southern bus station for 6 bahts.
Public Transport Boat trips along the river cost 13 to 18 bahts. If u take the boat to the stop closest to the train station, then the station is within walking distance, from there. Around 3 KM.
Well, if u find out enough about the public busses, getting around the city, is incredibly cheap.

China town is within walking distance of the Khao San Road. Around 3KM.

8. Posted by Mel. (Travel Guru 4567 posts) 10y

U can get around 12 hours on the train, for less than 400 bahts, third class. i got from Bangkok, to Surat thani, for 394 bahts. u can probably get to Chaing Mai, also, for this price. Sometimes trains are booked up, so be prepared to wait, for the next cheap one. Of course if u travel long distances at night, this will also save u money.
Here is a link for train time tables and costs of train journeys. There is a thing to click, in there to changes it to English.

I payed 250, to get from the Mainland, to Ko Samui.
To get from Ko Samui, to Ko Pha Ngan cost around 200, including bus to the pier.
The Islands can get expensive. The problem is that they dont seem to have cheap public transport. There is apparently cheap public transport, on Ko Samui, but i could not find it, and could not find info, about it. Getting from a pier, to a beach, can cost 150 to 400 bahts.
Ko Samui will be a difficult place, to stick the 250 per day budget.
On Ko Pha Ngan, once u get to the beach it is quite easy to maintain a budget. If u are going to be staying, for a couple of weeks or more they will charge u less for beach bungalows. So tell them how long u will stay, and ask for a discount.
I stayed on Ao Chalok lam beach, in the north. The beach bungalow cost 140 per night. Another guy staying there, even bargined the price down, more than that, because he was staying longer.
Food is a little more expensive, on the islands. But it is still possible to stick to the budget.
If i was going to the islands alone, i would just walk from beach to beach, and guesthouse to guesthouse, and then there would be no transport costs.
It is possible to rent a moped, for 150 per day, on the islands, but foreigners have so many accidents, with them. I dont think they are a safe way to get around.
These were the only islands i visited.

I will post more cheap tips, after a couple of days. I am off, to Ireland, until then.

9. Posted by JAY_H (Full Member 69 posts) 10y

Well i dont mind being skint but i was thinking of doing Malasia because of the visa restrictions in Thailand.
I can get a 2 month visa to start with
Then i could go back to Thailand for a month
Then i have a month spare, hmmm what could i do for a month thats cheap??
Any sugestions??

10. Posted by Laura_B (Respected Member 352 posts) 10y

If you have a month spare you could hop over to Borneo from Penisular Malaysia. Or you could go to Indonesia. Or as you said go back to Thailand, perhaps some where off the beaten track, that is bound to be a lot cheaper. Have you even considered perhaps spending some time in Khao Lak helping with the Tsunami clean up? I hear they still need volunteers.