Budget Wise :: NE Thailand Supplement

30 03 2009

When we left Thailand back in December the country was about to start their new Visa on Arrival. What used to be a free 30-day Visa for Americans is now only a 15-day Visa. Luckily, it is still free, but this does put a little cramp in a schedule if you’re expecting a full 30-day Visa. (If you fly into the country, I believe you still get the initial 30 days, but any land crossing after that now only gets you 15 as far we understand.) Although we didn’t have as much time in the country this time around, we did still manage to visit three new cities in Northeast Thailand on our way down to Bangkok from Vientiane, Laos. Therefore, the following is meant as a supplement to the original Budget Wise Thailand.

Our 12 day daily average :: $28.87 USD (for two people: one couple) :: 1 USD = 35 THB (baht)

Since this was the end of our Southeast Asian tour and also our international trip we did relax a bit on our budget, but also on our motivation to get out and do things as well. At this time of the year, it is HOT in this region, so our main priority was a room with A/C and some near by tasty grub.

Nong Khai $27.73 (3 day average) :: Khon Kaen $26.20 (3 d.a.) :: Korat $27.17 (3 d.a.) :: Bangkok $34.37 (3 d.a.)

thaimoney

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:: Budget Breakdown Supplement ::

Since this is just a supplement to the original Budget Wise Thailand, I will spare you all the details and just explain the differences we noticed in this region of the country. First of all, guesthouses were about the same price in this region and we paid anywhere from 400-600 Baht for a double A/C room. We did get free WiFi in our guesthouses in Nong Khai and Khon Kaen, but we had to pay for it in Korat (1 Baht/minute) and Bangkok (50 Baht/day). The cost of meals and drinks were pretty much the same as well, but we didn’t see as many good food-hole or food market options as we did on the West side of the country – or maybe we just got lazy. We only really did tourist-like activities in Nong Khai because we couldn’t pass up visiting the Salakeawkoo Sculpture Park. This was well worth the visit and only cost us 20 Baht per entry ticket. We rented some bikes from our Guesthouse, Ruan Thai, for 30 Baht for the day and just rode out there. Make sure to visit the Mutmee Guesthouse (a cool place also) to pick up a map to the park which also includes a diagram of the circle of life inside the park. We traveled to each city by bus and the costs were as follows: Nong Khai to Khon Kaen for 110 Baht/ticket, then to Korat for 125 Baht/ticket, and finally to Bangkok for 198 Baht/ticket.

For more detail on budget traveling in Northern Thailand, check out the original Budget Wise Thailand post. We hope this helps. Enjoy your travels.

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Budget Wise :: Laos

8 03 2009

Our visit in Laos was relatively limited due to the frustratingly long and bumpy bus rides that are necessary to getting around as a budget traveler in this beautiful country. We ended up visiting only four cities and missed out some very exciting and picturesque parts of Laos because we just couldn’t bring ourselves to sit through a rough ten hour bus  ride every few days. An extra visa or enough money to upgrade to flying would have allowed us a much more comprehensive visit, but hey, now we have something to look forward to going back for. Though we didn’t get to see it all, we did get a pretty good idea of what it costs to travel in Laos on a budget. Read the rest of this entry »





Budget Wise :: South Vietnam

9 02 2009

Our Vietnam adventure took us from Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon) in the south to about half way up the very long country, finishing in the city of Hue. When I compare our budget to traveling in Thailand and Cambodia, Vietnam seemed surprisingly predictable. There weren’t many thing that were shockingly cheap, and at the same time there wasn’t much that was frighteningly expensive either. In the end, if you manage to avoid the major tourist traps and scams, Vietnam can be traveled on a rather tight budget – and the best part is that you’ll typically feel like you got your money’s worth.

Our 29 day daily average :: $35.58 USD (for two people: one couple) :: 1 USD = 17,000 VND (Dong) Read the rest of this entry »





Budget Wise :: Cambodia

13 01 2009

Cambodia was a bit more confusing than our other destinations when it came to traveling on a budget. A year or two ago, I’m not certain of the exact date, the Khmer people suffered a massive inflation due to rising gas prices. Unfortunately for them (and the tourists) the cost of living didn’t fall back down with the gas prices. Now what looks like, feels like, and should be a very budget friendly country is surprisingly not as friendly as it once was. This doesn’t mean that Cambodia is charging European prices, but it was actually more expensive than it’s more developed neighbor Thailand. Read the rest of this entry »





Budget Wise :: Thailand

8 12 2008

thaimoney

Thailand provides many options to accommodate both the small budget traveler and the big budget vacationer’s needs. As per usual, our goal was to spend as little as we could while still enjoying as many comforts as we could afford. Our trip took us from Bangkok slowly up North until we hit Chiang Mai, where we stayed for a while, and then back down to Bangkok where we caught a bus to head toward Cambodia. It seemed to us that most vacationers we met were more interested in Southern Thailand’s beaches, but we avoided that region because it also happens to be the most expensive. So, if you’re interested in information on traveling through Northern Thailand, you’re in the right place, read on. Read the rest of this entry »