These 50 Budget-Friendly Destinations Are Worth Checking Out

By Shannon
These 50 Budget-Friendly Destinations Are Worth Checking Out

Looking for somewhere to travel to, but you don’t have a lot of money to spend? When traveling on a budget, there are several factors at play that will help you save money. Certain times of the year are less expensive for some countries. There are also random flash sales that you can take advantage of on sites like SkyScanner, so long as you are flexible about the time frame of when you go on vacation. So there are ways to go almost anywhere in the world for cheap, once you do the research.

However, there are some places in the world that are known for being budget-friendly all year long. Here are 50 places around the world where you can get a cheap getaway on almost any budget.

 

Balinese temple. Credit: Shutterstock

50. Bali, Indonesia

The book and movie Eat Pray Love made Bali a popular spot for tourists around the world. While it may be slightly more expensive than it used to be, it’s still incredibly cheap to stay there. If you look on AirBnB, you can find amazing accommodations for under $20 a night, or you can book an apartment for villa for $140 to $400 for an entire month. Your trip to Bali can be as cheap or expensive as you want to make it. There are trendy restaurants where meals are still less than $10, or you could spend $2 on a meal eating from a street vendor. The best way to get around is by motorcycle, which you can rent per-day, or hire someone to help take you around. All of their famous temples, beaches, and forests are totally free to visit, and cheap yoga classes abound. Most travelers get away with spending less than $500 after airfare.

A woman mountain biking through the Andes mountains in Elqui Valley, Chile. Credit: Shutterstock

49. Elqui Valley, Chile

The Elqui Valley is an amazing place to visit if you love nature. It’s especially famous spot for star gazing at night. You can go horseback riding or mountain biking through the trails of the Andes Mountain, tour the wineries and sample the famous wine, and go camping. Using websites like Kayak and SkyScanner, you can find flights to Chile for around $500 from the United States.

Moraine Lake in Alberta, Canada. Credit: Shutterstock

48. Alberta, Canada

If you live in the United States, driving or flying to Canada is a great way to enjoy a quick international getaway without having to go over the ocean. Trip Advisor has plenty of hotel options for $100 or less per night. It’s also possible to find the best deals off-season. If you say in Provincial National Park, it is far cheaper than staying in a hotel, and you get to be intimate with the Canada Rockies. The best things to do in Alberta have to do with the great outdoors. There are ranches, white water rafting, Chief Crowfoot’s Tiki Village,

Cute houses in the center of The Florida Keys. Credit: Shutterstock

47. The Florida Keys, United States

Everyone loves going to Florida, but there are some vacation packages that are ridiculously expensive. (Sorry, Disney). The trick to taking a cheap Florida vacation is to book your trip during the off-season. If you go at the right time of year, you can find hotel rooms for just $60 a night, or AirBnB rentals for even less. Flights vary depending on where you are coming from, but once you get there, the Florida Keys are warm all year long. Enjoy the beaches, scuba diving, dolphin sanctuary, and so much more.

River running through Hoi An, Vietnam. Credit: Shutterstock

46. Hoi An, Vietnam

If you would like to know more, Culture Trip gives a list of tips on how to survive in Vietnam for a budget of under $20 a day. Rent a motorbike for just $3 a day and cruise to the local beaches, or visit one of the local temples. TripAdvisor has very affordable tour packages, like a $30 foodie night where a guide will bring you to all of the best restaurants to eat, or have someone available to take you to all of the best historic places.

The Grand Canyon is one of the most beautiful places in the United States. Credit: Shutterstock

45. The Grand Canyon, United States

Camping in the Grand Canyon is a once-in-a-lifetime experience, and it’s unlike anything else you will ever do. Even better- it’s actually very cheap. The cost to drive or fly there will obviously vary depending on where you live, but once you get there, the cheapest option is to camp inside the park. Normally, admission is $35 per vehicle, but there are days of the year where there is free admission to the park. There are several different campgrounds, and they all range in price depending on the number of vehicles, RV’s, etc., but they are usually $10 to $15 per night. Naturally, there will be tons of crowds on those free car admission days, so you will have to book your campsite ahead of time. If you want to go camping in a random spot, you need to apply for a “backcountry permit”, which is $10, plus an additional $8 per person.

The marina of Cabo San Lucas, Mexico. Credit: Shutterstock

44. Cabo San Lucas, Mexico

Aside from Mexico City, Cabo San Lucas is yet another popular and affordable city to visit in Mexico. Kayak has loads of options, starting at $11 for space in a hostel, with regular hotels hovering around the $40 mark. There are tons of gorgeous beaches, sailing, kayaking, and whale watching tours. Basically, if you want an incredibly cheap vacation where you just get to relax in the sunlight, this may be a perfect place to go.

Patuxay Monument was built in honor of Laos’ war of Independence from France. Vientiane, Laos. Credit: Shutterstock

43. Vientiane, Laos

Laos was once occupied by France, so it has a lot of European style buildings mixed with ancient ruins and Buddhist temples. According to PriceOfTravel.com, Vientiane, Laos is the #3 cheapest place to travel in the world, and you can make it by on a budget of less than $20 per day. The ride from the airport should be less than $10, and the rest of your expenses are next-to-nothing. Meals are $2, and most of the famous landmarks are completely free.

Budapest at nighttime. Credit: Shutterstock

42. Budapest, Hungary

Budapest is one of the cheapest cities to visit in Europe, which makes it a hotspot for tourists from all over the world. There is a train that will take you from the airport to the center of the city for under $2. Once you’re there, you can go to an upscale luxury apartment on AirBnB for just $50 a night. Of course, there are plenty of cheaper options out there like hostels and cheap hotels for $10 to $20 per night. Budapest is known for its amazing food, historic sites, museums, and breathtaking architecture.

The Blue Lagoon Geothermal Spa is a hot spot for tourists visiting Iceland. Credit: Shutterstock

41. Reykjavik, Iceland 

Iceland is home to some gorgeous landscapes that you cannot find anywhere else on Earth. It’s perfect for anyone who wants to relax in a natural hot spring and visit some active volcanoes. Airline tickets from the United States to Iceland have dipped as low as $99 in order to bring in more tourists. So, of course, more people have been visiting their largest city, Reykjavik, than ever before. Just keep in mind that once you arrive in Iceland, there will be tourist spots that charge high prices for food, lodging, and tour buses. For more tips and tricks, check out Thrillist.com for their in-depth guide to taking a budget-friendly vacation in Iceland.

Bird’s eye view of the sunset in Denver, Colorado. Credit: Shutterstock

40. Denver, Colorado in the United States

If you live in the United States, you may want to go on a long weekend trip somewhere new, instead of planning a long international vacation. According to Kayak.com, flights to Denver will be 55% cheaper in 2019. According to their data, domestic flights hover around the $200 mark all year long. One you’re there, you can visit the Museum of Contemporary Art, which is just $8 per ticket. There are several other museums, parks, and the rocky mountains.

Lion’s Head Mountain in Cape Town, South Africa. Credit: Shutterstock

39. Cape Town, South Africa

Flights and hotels in Cape Town, South Africa will be the most expensive part of your visit. But once you are there, cost of living is low, and there is a ton of stuff you can do. It has beautiful weather all year long, so you can relax on the beach, or have an adventuring going on on safari. Some of the most popular tourist activities are climbing Lion’s Head Mountain, or visiting The Zeitz MOCCA, which is the largest contemporary art museum in the world. If you are staying for an extended period of time, you can even pay for a “City Pass”, which is one flat price to visit all of the city’s major museums and attractions. 

Aerial view of Las Vegas, Nevada. Credit: Shutterstock

28. Las Vegas, Nevada. United States

The most expensive part about visiting Las Vegas happens if you actually choose to waste your money gambling. Casinos are competing with one another to get you to come drop your money in the slots and on the card tables. The prices of casino hotel rooms are always cheap. Check out Circus Circus, which has options for just $30 per night. That is practically unheard of in the US! Circus Circus is geared towards families, but anyone can go there to stay. As an added bonus, it has an indoor theme park. Depending on where you live, you can get a flight for very cheap. The city is also very walkable, with lots of sidewalks. If you get tired, it’s easy to flag a cab or call an Uber. Last but certainly not least, there are an endless number of great places to pose in front of for selfies.

French architecture in the middle of Ho Chi Minh, Vietnam. Credit: Shutterstock

27. Ho Chi Minh, Vietnam

Even though it is considered to be one of the most expensive cities in all of Vietnam, tourists will be shocked to see just how cheap Ho Chi Minh truly is. The city is filled with French architecture, so you feel like you are in the middle of a European city. But the cost of food is just $2 per meal. Tours to famous sites and bus tours like the Cu Chi Tunnel are less than $5 per ticket. Private rooms on AirBnB are just $10 a night, or you can pay $30 for an entire private apartment.

Beautiful buildings in Ecuador. Credit: Shutterstock

26. Ecuador 

Ecuador is one of the only South American countries that has spent millions upgrading its train system, so you can choose to stay in any of the major cities, or hop from place to place. It is home of the Galapagos Islands, which are of course famous for Charles Darwin’s scientific experiments and theories. You can sail around the islands, lay on the beach, and soak up some sun. Many businesses will accept the US dollar, and this has become one of the most popular places for American expats to retire. But of course, you should try to brush up on your Spanish before you go.

Cathedral in Krakow, Poland. Credit: Shutterstock

25. Krakow, Poland

According to The Telegraph, Krakow was dubbed the cheapest European city to visit in 2018. You can afford a weekend getaway for around $200 for two people. (This doesn’t include the cost of flights, of course. That will vary depending on where you live.) On AirBnB, you can get a room for less than $20, or an entire apartment for $50 per night. Krakow is home to some amazing breweries, churches, and castles. History buffs will also know that this is home to the Auschwitz memorial museum, as well as memorials to the famed composer Chopin.

Old Montreal Street in Montreal, Canada. Credit: Shutterstock

24. Montreal in Quebec, Canada

If you live in the east coast of the United States, traveling to Montreal should be one of the cheapest ways to get an international vacation. You can snag a room in a boutique hotel for $75 to $150 per night, or find an even cheaper deal on AirBnB. Enjoy the Old Montreal Street, where the shops and buildings still look like they once did so many years ago. Montreal is a Francophone city, so it’s almost like taking a trip to France for a fraction of the price. Eat delicious food, sample craft beers, and enjoy the art studios and comedy clubs.

Mexico City Metropolitan Cathedral. Credit: Shutterstock

23. Mexico City, Mexico

If you’re in the South, or on the west coast of the US, Traveling to Mexico is going to be your cheapest international destination. People love visiting Mexico City for The Day of the Dead festival, but if you go at a time when they are not any huge tourist events, you can score some amazing off-season pricing. Almost everything is $5 or less; from the meals, to taxi rides, to museum tickets. Many people have pulled off going from the United States to Mexico City for a few days with only a few hundred dollars and had a great time.

The Gateway of India in Mumbai. Credit: Shutterstock

22. Mumbai, India

No matter where you go in India, you will find that it very cheap. The city of Mumbai is usually a go-to spot for people who are going to the country for the first time. Since it was once occupied by the British, you will find that most people are very good at speaking English. Some of the most famous landmarks, like the Gateway of India, are completely free to see. According to PriceOfTravel.com, you can find nice hotel rooms for just $10 a night, or a room in someone’s house for just $1 a night. Museum tickets and taxi rides are under $10, and you can easily find delicious meals for under $5.

The Golden Temple in Dambulla Sri Lanka. Credit: Shutterstock

21. Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka is warm all year round, which means you can almost always count on it to be a beautiful vacation getaway. On TripAdvisor, you can find rooms at luxury resorts for $50 per night. You can buy an entire meal for just $1 per plate, and find hostels that are even cheaper than the expensive resorts. There are beautiful beaches, and it’s cheap to travel, even if it’s not the most comfortable place. Many places in the country are very remote, so if you need to use WiFi, it’s best to plan ahead with an international SIM card, and data.

General Belgrano monument and the Casa Rosada. Buenos Aires Argentina Credit: Shutterstock

20. Buenos Aires, Argentina

Buenos Aires, Argentina is a piece of Europe placed inside of South America. While it may not be the cheapest place to go, it is an amazing deal compared to prices in the United States. Opting for the bus from the airport to the center of the city is just 36 cents, or you can pay $15 for a taxi. There are plenty of restaurants, museums, and historic plazas to visit, or you can learn to tango. According to Travel and Leisure, the best month to book a vacation in Buenos Aires is in March, where it’s possible to book a 4-star hotel for just $55 a night.

The Great Wall of China, outside of the city of Beijing. Credit: Shutterstock

19. Beijing, China 

Even though Beijing is considered to be one of the most expensive cities in Asia, it is still a huge bargain by Western standards. This is a bustling city full of people, and many pickpockets and scam artists try to take advantage of foreigners, so you have to keep your wits about you. There are also few people who will be able to speak English. Many people would feel more comfortable if they hired a guide from a reputable company to help you. One of the number one tourist sites is The Great Wall of China, which is a once-in-a-lifetime experience. According to Travel and Leisure, the best month to visit Beijing is in June, because the weather is warm, and there are no major holidays to jack up the prices. Hotels average at around $80 per night at a 4-star hotel.

Grenada, West Indies. Credit: Shutterstock

18. Grenada, West Indies

The beautiful Caribbean island of Grenada has amazing beaches, friendly locals, and great food. It was once a British territory, so everyone speaks English. Some people choose to stay at one of the very expensive resorts on the island. However it is possible to stay away from the tourist traps and find very affordable accommodations. If you are flying in from the United States, flights are relatively cheap to get there. On Airbnb you can find options that are under $50 per night.

Wat Phra Singh in Chiang Mai, Thailand. Shutterstock

17. Chiang Mai, Thailand 

Lodging is incredibly cheap in Chiang Mai, Thailand. It’s possible to rent a private cabana on the beach for just $10, or spend even less for modest accommodations. According to Priceoftravel.com, Chiang Mai Thailand is the fifth cheapest place to go in the entire world. It’s possible to rent an apartment for an entire month and pay just $150 to $500, depending on what level of comfort you need. For just $6 a day you can rent a moped and explore all of the free sites like the many Buddhist temples and the gorgeous countryside. Then, of course, you can get a famous Thai massage for just $5. Food is very affordable as well. You can choose to eat at some of the best restaurants and spend around $20 a day for your food. Or you could go local and buy fresh produce or street food stands and make it by on less than $5 a day.

A bright and beautiful street in Mykonos, Greece. Credit: Shutterstock

16. Mykonos, Greece

If Mama Mia is one of your favorite feel-good romantic comedies, you’re going to want to visit Mykonos. It is one of the most popular Greek Islands for good reason. It’s ancient whitewashed house houses are beautiful in contrast to the blue ocean nearby. It is considered to be an amazing place for honeymooning couples. However, its most expensive time is during the summer from June until September. If you want to get the best deals possible, visit offseason. If you go in May or October it will still be warm enough for you to enjoy outdoor activities without paying steep prices.

Visiting Havana, Cuba is like stepping back in time. Credit: Shutterstock

15. Havana, Cuba 

Cuba and the United States ended their feuding recently, which means that Americans can visit the country once again. The city of Havana is like stepping into a time capsule of the 1950’s. It has vintage cars, beautiful architecture, and amazing night clubs. Most travel bloggers claim that they were able to stick to a budget of just $50 a day. Hostels and individual rooms are less than $20 a night. Even if you decide to give yourself luxurious upgrades, cute boutique hotels within walking distance of Old Havana are only $50 a night, and you can have a budget more like $100 a day. Best of all is that flights from the United States are relatively inexpensive.

The Christmas Market in Prague. Credit: Shutterstock

14. Prague, Czech Republic

Prague is famous for its breathtaking architecture and really good beer. Vintage tram cars make transportation cheap and easy throughout the city. On Airbnb, you can find plenty of options that will allow you to rent an entire private apartment for just $50 a night. This is a great place to stay for a longer trip in Europe, because you have access to the train station. You will be able to go to London, Paris, and other more expensive European cities for a day trip and return to your cheaper accommodations in Prague.

Bourbon Street in New Orleans, Louisiana. Credit: Shutterstock

13. New Orleans, Louisiana. United States

New Orleans is known for being the hotspot during Mardi Gras celebrations. However, this is actually the most expensive time to visit the city. If you want to visit New Orleans on a budget, make sure you choose a time when there is not a major event happening. This way you will find Airbnb and hotel prices are much lower. You also have the added benefit of visiting all of the famous sites in the French Quarter and the Garden District without huge crowds or drunken party-goers. Kayak has a list of budget hotels for as low as $22 a night!

The Fortresses Lovrijenac on the coast of Dubrovnik, Croatia

12. Dubrovnik, Croatia  

Croatia is home to the set of King’s Landing in Game of Thrones. Kayak has multiple options for hotels starting at just $20 a night. And there are dozens of options for under $100 per night. TripAdvisor has multiple tours available Where a guide will bring you to all of the various locations we’re scenes were filmed for Game of Thrones. When you’re done geeking out over your fandom, you can go to the Plitvice Lakes National Park for just $10, or the Mostar and Kravice Waterfalls.

Aerial view of a resort in Bavaro, Dominican Republic. Credit: Shutterstock

11. The Dominican Republic

The Dominican Republic is considered to be one of the most affordable places in the Caribbean. Flights out of New York City are usually around the $300 mark, and hotels can be found for just $50 per night. If laying on the beach all day is not enough excitement for you, it’s possible to go whale watching, surfing, scuba diving, or visit a casino for some night life.

The Ivan Vazov National Theatre in Sofia, Bulgaria. Credit: Shutterstock

10. Sofia, Bulgaria

The city of Sofia is one of the cheapest places to visit in Bulgaria. If you are really trying to stay to a strict budget, many budget-savvy travelers have stayed at just $25 per day for their expenses. There are free walking tours, but it’s nice to give a tip to your tour guide. The city is full of beautiful churches and museums. You can choose to walk round or rent a bicycle to see all of them for next to nothing. One of the most-photographed sites is the famous Central Mineral Baths, which dates back to the Ottoman Empire. Sadly, they stopped letting people take baths there in the 1980’s!

Rossio Square in Lisbon, Portugal Credit: Shutterstock

9. Lisbon, Portugal

With its beautiful beaches, amazing food, and breathtaking architecture, Lisbon, Portugal is a great budget-friendly place to go on vacation. Tram cars move throughout the city, making public transportation easy and cheap to accomplish. There are loads of options on AirBnB for under $100 a night. There are lots of of cafes with free wifi, which is perfect for digital nomads looking to get their freelance work done while they travel.

Tiles in a Moroccan courtyard. Credit: Shutterstock

8. Marrakech, Morocco

The North African Country of Morocco is one of the most popular places for tourists to stay. Their famous style and architecture is simply breathtaking. There are plenty of things to do- from beautiful marketplaces to five-star restaurants. Marrakech is one of those cities where you can make your experience as expensive or cheap as you want it to be, because there are options on both ends of the spectrum. People in Morocco also usually haggle one another for their prices, so it may take some getting used to. Check out TheCultureTrip.com for an in-depth guide on how to have the cheapest Moroccan vacation possible.

The beautiful city of Jerusalem. Credit: Shutterstock

7. Jerusalem, Israel 

The city is full of Christian and Jewish tourists who are making a religious pilgrimige there, so you will not be alone in wanting to visit Jerusalem. The city is full of ancient landmarks, beautiful churches, and the more modern Yad Vashem, which is a Holocaust memorial museum. If you visit the local street markets, you can purchase groceries for affordable prices, instead of eating out at hotels. For backpackers, there are plenty of options for hostels, and of course, there is always AirBnB.

Preah Khan Temple in Cambodia. Credit: Shutterstock

6. Siem Reap, Cambodia

Cambodia has a mix of French inspired buildings, and several ancient temples that you can tour for free. This is perfect for some amazing travel selfies. Luckily for you, hotels and food are incredibly cheap, and you can get away with paying less than $10 per night for modest accommodations. Or, for under $20 per night, you can get a more luxurious hotel with air conditioning and WiFi. For transportation, hire a “tuk tuk” driver to take you around for around $20. If you are interested to know more, NomadicMatt.com has an entire guide to Siem Riep that goes into tons of detail.

Camels looking at the Egyptian pyramids in the distance. Credit: Shutterstock

5. Cairo, Egypt

The Pyramids are some of the greatest Wonders of the World, and seeing it is truly a once-in-a-lifetime experience. Cairo is especially great for anyone who is inherested in history and archeology. According to Migrationology, it’s possible to score rooms in Egypt for $4 a night, and meals for just $1. (Say what!) Of course, if you are worried about safety and comfort, you can pay more for a hotel room, but it will still be very cheap. Many of the attractions usually charge an admission fee, but it is always less than $20, and usually half price for college students.

Cathedral in the middle of St. Petersburg. Credit: Shutterstock

4. St. Petersburg, Russia

The capital city of Russia is steeped in history from the long-gone empire to the fall of the Soviet Union. With the gorgeous architecture and access to the Kremlin ballet, there is so much to see and do there. You may want to hire a tour guide to help you see all of the sites and navigate the language, since you may not run into many people who speak English. Multi-day tours typically run in the $300 range, and often includes transportation to and from the hotel. On AirBnB, you can find ridiculously cheap prices, like an entire apartment for $16 per night, or $400 for an entire month.

The center square of Lima, Peru. Credit: Shutterstock

3. Lima, Peru

The city of Lima, Peru is full of beautiful historic sights that you can see for free. There are also free walking tours given in English, so that you can know all about the history of some of the local sights. While you’re in Peru, you can pay to travel with a tour bus to the famous Machu Picchu. The secret to saving money in Lima is to go where the locals hang out. Restaurants will have deals as cheap as $2 for a full meal and a soup on the side. You can also spend roughly $10 a night at a cheap hostel, or $30 for a private room. But if you fall for the tourist traps, you will end up spending just as much money as any other major city in the world.

The Dubai marina, in the middle of the city. Credit: Shutterstock

2. Dubai, United Arab Emirates

The city of Dubai is one of the wealthiest places in the world, but it is still very cheap for tourists to visit. The most expensive part of your trip will be the plane ticket, but once you get there, $100 a day will allow you to live like royalty. According to Globe Trotting, it’s easy to get around on the Dubai subways. You can get from one side of the city to the other on the Dubai Metro for just $2.20, or a ride on the ferry for only 30 cents. If you love luxury shopping, you’ll want to visit the Dubai Mall, but you can also find plenty of cheap things to visit, like the historic Mosques and the gorgeous beaches.

Singapore at night time. Credit: Shutterstock

1. Singapore

If you have seen the 2018 movie Crazy Rich Asians, then you already know that the city-state of Singapore is full of incredibly wealthy people. But it is actually a really cheap place to visit. Best of all, it’s warm all year long, so you can choose the cheapest time of year on websites like Skyscanner for flights. You can buy a 3-day transportation tourist pass for just 20 SGD, which is $14.80, which will take you anywhere you want for one flat rate. Public transportation is easy to understand, and convenient. Everyone speaks English in Singapore, so most people feel comfortable visiting there without paying for a tour guide. There are tons of sights to see for free and cheap, like the famous Gardens by the Bay, beaches, and quite possibly the best Chinatown ever. If you want to spend a little more, you can go to Universal Studios, or one of the many entertainment options.

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