No, we didn't couch-surf or hitchhike. In fact, we rented a car.
Neither did we live on a diet of bread and water. Restaurants for us, thank you very much. We're on holiday, not bootcamp.
We still spent less than 2,800 SGD though.
All we did, was Choose The Right Countries.
(If you've been following us, you'll know A Girl & A Bald Traveller is a blog on Realistic YET Affordable travel; mostly to Exotic destinations. (FAQ) Want to read about Paris or Milan? Just google "Singapore Travel Blog". There are THOUSANDS of blogs on those kinds of destinations. Go read those instead)
5. Bosnia & Herzegovina
As I was already in Europe on a company trip, the itinerary and costs for this trip are based on "The Girl's" who flew over on her own to join me after my trip.
(You may also want to read "Impossible! 800 SGD? For 19 Days In Europe?")
Total Airfare ($1,140)
Lufthansa, Multi-City, SIN-Athens/Zagreb-SIN, $1,019
Aegean Airlines, Athens-Tirana One Way, $121
"The Girl" managed to get her airtickets at decent (but non promo) prices. Today, with oil prices at a10 year low, there's a huge likelyhood you'll pick up tickets at prices way cheaper than she did. Why, just 6 months ago on a Lufthansa promo, multi-city tickets to Europe were going from 730 SGD!
As I type this, (Jan 31) there's a promotion by Oman Air. Return airtickets from 730 SGD to Zurich!
Food/Drink & "Happy Spending" ($600)
Enjoying a cold beer in Bratislava, Slovakia
Now, while I do think Singaporeans (or anyone who isn't rich) who spend excessively on meals are wasting "useful travel funds", I am definately NOT for the idea of a sandwich/cup noodle diet. After all, part of travelling is trying the local specialties and not starving yourself.
In Bratislava, (above) we had our meals outside of the "touristy old town" and beers back inside so we could save costs yet STILL enjoy a "tourist" experience. (Beer is cheap, food is not)
We tried Bryndzové halušky, a Slovak national dish of potato and sheeps cheese. It was too rich for our taste buds. Think Cabonara, but amplify it by 10 times. You get the idea.
After days of Greek cuisine (which didn't agree with me) I was delighted to find Montenegrins love their meats. In Kotor Bay (a touristy part of Montenegro), we managed to get meat at really cheap prices thanks to our hostel's recommendations. By cheap, I mean we paid 6 Euros (in total) for a meat meal.
The "restaurant" our hostel recommended.
Choose your meat and the "chef" will cook it in front of you!
Having a Montenegin style steak in a "real restaurant". Cost? 12 Euros in total. Beers included.
As always, besides "real meals", our food budget also includes "happy spending" (below) for deserts, street food; basically eating for fun. Holiday's aren't just about 3 meals a day."
Have you read "12 Days In Finland & The Baltics Under 2.5k SGD Nett!!"
The Girl" having ice-cream at one of the alleyways in Dubrovnik, Croatia
Yuck, I don't enjoy "shell creatures" but "The Girl" does. Lucky that massive plate (Below) cost us just 6 Euros
When it comes to food, Bosnia & Herzegovina is a tough one to beat. Pljeskavica and Cevapi rank among the most amazing dishes we'd tasted in Europe. (see picture below) To describe it in Singaporean terms, just imagine a steak combination of pork, beef and lamb grilled together, eaten with Indian Naan; absolutely delicious.
And the even more amazing thing? The price.
The food in the picture above costs between 2.5-3.5 Euros. 20 Euros on a spagetti in Rome? You go ahead, i'll stick to Cevapi, thank you very much.
Waiting for breakfast in a cafe despite our hostel having "free breakfast". Who says we are budget travellers?
Breakfast is finally here! 1.8 Euros!
Pizza and coke set. 2 Euros each!
I won't be blogging about all the different types of food we had in this post (You'll have to check out our individual country posts for those) else this post isn't going to load due to picture overload.
The point I'm making here is if you'd like to eat like a king despite being on a budget, you can; Simply Choose the right European countries to travel to.
Transport, Local Tours & Attraction ($660)
(Please read our individual country posts for more details as this post is mainly a summary of our trip and we couldn't possibly blog in detail about exactly what we did and the order it was done)
Some travellers like to hitchhike. Others like to sneak their way out of paying for transport. Us? We rather drive; for a week at least, just to have a "European Road Trip Experience". Renting a car cost us185 Euros or 92.5 Euros each ($143) but that settled our transport for a week.
To further save on transport, we'd ask around the hostels we stayed at if anyone would like to car-pool. On the Budapest to Maribor leg of our trip, we managed to get a couple of guys (An Australian & a New Yorker) to chip in 20 Euros each. From Zagreb to Budapest? Another Australian. This time? Another 30 Euros saved.
I'd like to say majority of our transport revolved around crusing around in a convertible with the roof down, but the truth is, besides that one week of car rental? Well, it was back to public transport.
It isn't bad though, and really affordable. We made our way across most countries by coach. International luxury coaches take you from one country to the next COMFORTABLY and cost around 15 Euros. (some even have wifi) Don't mind paying a little more for convenience? (Singaporeans usually don't) GEA Tours will take you around the Balkans for roughly 25 Euros.
The "Bald Guy" at Acropolis, Greece
Many Singaporeans "think" they are savy when it comes to financial sense; and holidays. The truth is, Singaporeans a