Where to Go Travelling on Under $20 a Day

Albania - Ksamil beach life (lead)

By Amanda Slavinsky, owner of Farsickness travel blog.

While it seems like the cost of just about everything is on the rise these days, it’s still possible to travel cheaply if you pick the right places. You can explore these ten countries for around $20 a day while still seeing the major sites and enjoying a few beers at night.

1. Cambodia

Cambodia Causeway and Angkor Watt

This Southeast Asian country is a paradise for budget travelers. Cambodia is the land of $2 dorm beds, 50 cent beers, and cheap food. Even with big ticket items like admission to Angkor Wat, you’d be hard pressed to spend more than $20 a day here.

Cambodian Market

Find budget accommodation in Cambodia

2. Nicaragua

Otto Beach - Little Corn Island - Nicaragua

Want to visit Central America but can’t afford the popular Costa Rica’s insane prices? Visit neighboring Nicaragua instead! Dorm beds are less than $10 and street food is only a couple of bucks. Learn to surf, go on hikes, or chill out on the beach without busting your travel budget.

Buena Vista restaurant overlooking playa Amarillo playa Gigante Nicaragua

Find budget accommodation in Nicaragua

3. Poland

Krakow, Poland

While Western Europe can be quite expensive, Eastern European is still relatively cheap. Poland, with its rich history and beautiful architecture, is a good budget destination. You can enjoy a hearty Polish meal at one of the country’s Communist era milk bars for less than the equivalent of $3.

Find budget accommodation in Poland

4. Sri Lanka


National park admissions and big name tourist sites carry a somewhat large price tag, but the low cost of day to day living more than makes up for it – long distance trains for $2, a dorm bed for $5, and a plate of rice and curry for less than $1. You’ll have plenty of money leftover to pay for the $10 park admission fee.

Sri Lanka National Park Leopard

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5. Egypt

Cairo by night, Egypt

Cairo by night, Egypt

Even with recent unrest, Egypt is still a safe place to travel. And it’s also cheap! A dorm bed costs around $4 and you can get a full kofta meal for about $2. Even admission to the Pyramids is only $5. Because it is a Muslim country, alcohol is fairly expensive, but keep the drinking to a minimum and you can easily do Egypt for less than $20 a day.

Abu Simbel, Lake Nasser, Egypt

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6. Albania

Albania - Ksamil beach life

Ksamil Beach, Albania

Croatia may be receiving most of the press, but Albania is the place to go for a budget Balkan beach experience. Because they are not yet in the Euro, there’s still a favorable exchange rate and you’ll be able to find dorm beds for around $10, cheap street food, and inexpensive beer- all the ingredients needed for a perfect beach holiday.


Find budget accommodation in Albania

7. Vietnam

Hoi An - Vietnam

Vietnam is the place to go if you’re a food lover on a budget. Street food is king in this country and you can eat just about anything for a couple of dollars on a small plastic stool on the side of the road. Food isn’t the only thing that’s cheap- you can find a dorm bed for well under $10 and backpacker buses help keep travel costs down.

Vietnam , market

Find budget accommodation in Vietnam

8. Bolivia

La Paz, Bolivia

Bolivia is another country where activities might be slightly more expensive than elsewhere, but life is cheap. Save your pennies for a trip to the salt flats by taking advantage of cheap dorm beds and public transportation. For meals, look out for restaurants with set menus for $2-3.

Salt Flats - Bolivia

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9. Greece

Acropolis - Greece

Have you ever dreamt of visiting a sunny island paradise and gazing at white washed buildings and blue domed churches, but figured you couldn’t afford it? Think again! Greece is surprisingly inexpensive. Dorm beds won’t break the bank and you can grab a gyro or spinach pie for a few dollars and wash it down with a Mythos beer for the same price.


Golden Beach, Thassos

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10. Laos

Laos - Vientiane

Laos is another country in Southeast Asia that can be visited for extremely cheap without having to sacrifice much. Entire bungalows can be found for under $10 and street food will only run you a dollar or two. Grab a Beerlao (or two considering they only cost about $1.25) and watch the sunset over the Mekong River.

Laos Market

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Remember, finding your own little piece of paradise doesn’t have to be expensive…

Know of any other brilliant budget travel locations? Let us know in the comments section…

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Thanks to Francisco AnzolaBart van PollPedro SzekelyRonald SaundersArtur MalinowskiLoi Nguyen Duc, upyernozMatthew StraubmullerpsyberartistDennis JarvismelenamaBrian Johnson & Dane Kantner, ingaThimindu Goonatillakegodo godaj and Madeleine Holland for the most excellent images. Please not all were under creative commons license at time of publishing.

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