Budget For A Trip To Spain

Posted on October 11, 2012

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These babies are totally worth busting your budget for!

A lot of people ask me how much it costs to travel in Spain. My answer? It depends. I could never give a straight answer to this question, because travel is different for everybody, and you could spend as much or as little as you want. When I traveled in Spain I made it with less than €40,- a day (not including flight or extras) by staying in hostels, cooking my own meals every now and then and limiting my nights out drinking. I know people who’d spend a lot more on vacation, but I’m also aware that it can be done for less. I kept track of my expenses while I was on the road and can give you an overview of what I spent on an average day. I picked Madrid as an example because it was the most expensive city on my itinerary.

1 night in a shared 8 person dorm:            € 17,50
Subway ride, single fare:                              €   1,50
Bottled water, 1 liter:                                     €   1,-
Lunch in a cafe:                                              €    4,-
Groceries for dinner:*                                  €    5,20
Churro’s:                                                         €   1,40
Drinks:                                                             €   5,-
_______________________________________________ Total:                                                              €  35,60

* Dinner in this case consisted of bread, stir-fry, dessert and a decent bottle of wine. Because I was traveling with friends, I was able to split the costs.
Overland transport:
Getting around in Spain is very easy. Their train system is impressive and will take you just about anywhere. Beware that the AVE high speed trains are often very expensive and could cost over €100 for long distance journeys. For shorter distances they have the MD trains, which are a lot more affordable. Our journey from Seville to Cadiz by MD train cost us €15 per person.
If the desired location has no train station there are several bus companies you can choose from. At least one of them will take you where you need to go. We tried to save up on accommodation by traveling overnight whenever we wanted to get from one city to the next. The most expensive journey was the night bus from Madrid to Seville, setting us back €21,85.

Flight:
As the European market is flooded with low cost airlines and Spain is relatively close to my home country, I didn’t have to spend much on a flight. The choice to fly from Rotterdam rather than Amsterdam saved me about €20,- and I could have saved another €20,- on checked baggage fees if I’d brought a smaller backpack that would have fit as cabin baggage. The return flight from Rotterdam Airport to Madrid cost me a total of €95,-.

Extras:
During my trip I had some extra expenses such as entrance fees to the Alhambra and a horse riding tour through the Sierra Nevada. I did not include these costs as I had a separate fund set aside for this.

Note: this overview may not be representative for the rest of Spain. I picked Madrid because it was the most expensive city I spent time in. In Cadiz for example, I got way more value for my money.

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Posted in: Travel Plans