Ecuador Budget for your travel in 2018
Budgeting ain’t easy and Ecuador is not as cheap as you have been told. (Or we’ve been told?)
Because their local currency is American Dollar, everything automatically comes with a price tag. Read this blog post to understand what was our Ecuador Budget.
What is cheap:
#Travel by public transport
Buses are super comfy and cheap, distances small. We absolutely enjoyed using the public transport and felt secure. One advice: never put your personal bag on the floor or above you in the bus, always hold it close to your body. We’ve met some travellers who’ve made a mistake of putting their small backpacks on the floor and having their passports, money and iPads stolen.
Almuerzos for $2.50 - $3.50, desayunos for $2.50 - $4.00, food from the stalls for $1-3. We definitely can’t eat chicken and rice every day but the lunch menus are cheaper than if you cook yourself. Trouble comes when you are a vegetarian, although vegetables are plentiful, Ecuadorians like their potatoes, corn and meat more.
What is expensive:
Ecuador doesn’t produce its own wine and only import from Chile and Argentina. The prices are huge comparing to any of the neighbouring countries. In a shop you pay $10+, in a restaurant $25+.
#Eating western food
For us it’s not possible to eat local cuisine 30 days straight, sometimes you simply have to have salad, European loaf of bread or hamburger.
Expect to spend $10-15 per western meal. By all means splurge, coz long-term travel ain’t possible on almuerzos only 😉
How do we keep track of all our spending?
By using the best app ever: Trail Valet. We paid for the upgraded version once we started using it and it has cost us $7 in total.
We got into a habit of adding all our spendings throughout the day. We just love being under or on budget, the dashboards and the way the app lady talks to us when we do what she likes aka be under budget.
You can also create your own categories and this is how we have split ours:
- Waste of money
- Admin fees
Below is a breakdown for 2 ppl.
Budget: $2277 for 33 days; $2200.23 spent together = 97% of the budget
$1100 per person for almost 5 weeks
Most of our money went to accomodation and food.
We have never stayed at the dorm, never shared a room with others. Always got double bed and very occasionally we wouldn’t have our own shower. There were times we wanted to live in a nice beach cottage and happily paid $30 per night for it.
We are very big on food, eat a lot, constantly think and talk about food and we like to throw money on it. We also celebrated our 12 years anniversary so of course had to go for $100 dinner.
So as a result, we could definitely do it cheaper but feel it was money well spent.
We have spent 2 weeks learning Spanish in Quito and in Pucara at 2 different language schools and found them to be really good. Read the review here.
Nothing really can be done about this as we have always used public transport, very rarely went for a taxi. Pretty happy about the cost of transport here. We could always hitchhike but we are slowly getting too comfy for that (especially with 20kg backpacks)
Next time we should try and go alcohol free for a week or 2; or maybe Veronika should learn to drink beer instead of fancy wine 😉
Waste of money: $88
Of course we’ve burned ourselves and made few mistakes: bought 2 Ecuadorian sim cards with 1MB credit for $24 which has been used up within 2hours (of course on FB). Total waste of money!
Veronika (me) has a tendency of wanting everything, having to go everywhere... so we’ve decided to take the famous Devil’s nose train which is a total tourist trap or NOT if you are 65+ years old American on all paid for tour of Ecuador. (One day we will get there and enjoy but not as yet) We’ve wasted $64 dollars on 12km train ride and Martin couldn’t stop bit@$%&g about it. Watch it here.
The rest was fine:
Toiletries: $28.70 (pedicure for healthy relationship, sunscreen)
Clothes: $21.70 (laundry)
Entertainment: $105 (entrance fees for museums, waterfalls, renting a bike, getting a massage, tips for walking tour)
We were also able to pay for a week of Spanish school with a promotional video that we made for them which helped us with saving some bucks. Watch it here.
We have travelled through Ecuador in September / October 2017. If you have more up to date information about the cost of things, please do share them in the comments.
Slovak newspaper Aktuality.sk has written an article about our travels in Ecuador, read it here.