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Budget - Asia

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21. Posted by Utrecht (Moderator 5655 posts) 11y Star this if you like it!

Quoting Mel.

Hello Utrecht

We are very proud of all the international things we are introducing her to.
She already speaks English, Dutch and German. The Kindergarten she goes to, 70% of the kids are not German. They come from all around the world.
She eats all kinds of international food.
An education in itself..
Anyway enough bragging.


Gefeliciteerd! Krijgt ze een lekkere verjaardagstaart;)

22. Posted by mdancy (Full Member 104 posts) 11y Star this if you like it!

Last year my husband and I spent 5 months travelling. It was very difficult to stick to a budget, but we initially set a limit of $50/day which included EVERYTHING - I mean everything - visas, transport, hotels, food, entrance fees, groceries, tips, etc.... Funny how things add up. But we only wanted to spend a certain amount of the money we saved so that we had a cushion when we got back. Now, that might sound like a lot, but we like I said - it included everything. We started from Hong Kong, took about 2 months going thru SE Asia, then went on to China, trans siberian to Russia, then Europe. The daily average amount climbed the further we got from SE Asia. I can say that it was the cheapest part of the trip, and that we could have spent much less there and saved it for the expensive part of the trip.

You are concentrating on SE Asia, so I'd say that even splurging now and then won't hurt. Like the other posters said - stay away from the tourist restaurants - period. Your stomach, as well as your wallet, will be happier with the local fare, plus you'll get to meet the locals instead of other travellers. Vietnam has very cheap accommodation that usually comes with a modest breakfast - you can stay in a nice, cute hotel for as little as $8US in the smaller cities, and up to $15 in Hanoi or HCMC. Keep your stay short in Bangkok as it is expensive there - though street food is cheap and good and that will help to keep you on budget.

Also - one way to part with money quickly is to be careless with how you carry it. No loosely hung bags over the shoulder - watch your bags and your partner's bags at all times; remember what your mother taught you, don't talk to strangers (I mean those locals who approach you speaking perfect English); don't leave money at the hotel; keep it tucked in a money belt under your clothes (not always fashionable); split it up between you just in case; carry cash, credit card, debit card, and traveller's checks. We used the debit card to pull out only what we needed for the next few days.

Here's a tidbit - Laos does not have ATMs. Here is where you have to break one of the rules above - get all the cash you will need for Laos before you cross the border - it is bloody hell trying to get money there. And they do take US dollars and Thai Baht - and use all the kipp up because it is hard to exchange back again, though not entirely impossible. We were able to convert it to Yuan right across the border in China - but unless you want to have even less money for the rest of your trip, be sure to spend it or convert it to something usable before you leave Laos. Laos, Cambodia and Vietnam all take US dollars, but will give you change in the local currency.

So, all this does not answer your question of budget - I think that is hard to guess and I don't know of anyone who was able to stick stricktly to a budget. Bring a credit card just in case....just don't go nutty with it.

Have fun,