Brazil, home to Carnival, the Amazon rainforest and a varied, exotic landscape. As the largest country in South America, it’s a popular stop on the backpacker route and with good reason. But for those wishing to explore Brazil on a backpackers budget, you may need a little advice on how to do so. This is where New York travel company AllTheRooms comes in. We’ve created a handy list for you on how to tackle Brazil on a budget.
1.Travel with friends
Traveling solo is fantastic, but if you’re not someone who wants to stay in a dorm, you will end up spending more. In Brazil, you’ll pay a premium for a single room so it can cost up to twice as much as a double room would. Traveling with friends or family will save you money on accommodation, plus you’ll also have people to split grocery bills and cab fares with too.
Avoid fancy restaurants
One way to save money in Brazil is to avoid eating at fancy restaurants. Every now and again it’s a great treat but do it all the time and you’ll see your daily budget increase massively. For a multi-course meal and a drink most small, local restaurants will charge approximately $4. Or if you fancy trying some street food, grab a hot dog or coxinha — these are incredibly cheap and still delicious. Better yet, if you’re staying somewhere for a long period of time it may be worth stocking up on groceries and cooking for yourself. As a sidenote: prices for food will generally be more expensive in Rio.
If you’re looking to save money in general, head to Brazil during low season. This typically runs from May to September, although July is the month of school holidays, so prices may be a little higher. During the low season, you should expect to find cheaper prices for airfares as well as accommodation.
Consider your transportation options
Getting to and from Brazil will be your main expenditure but you also need to be aware of the transportation costs you may accrue whilst there. Typically catching planes to travel around the country is the most expensive option, but if you’re short on time, flying may be best. If you’re traveling in low season airlines tend to offer discounts on fares, so do your research before booking transport. Buses are a common way of getting around and have a really good reputation for being comfortable and on time. They may take a longer to get to your destination, but they will save you heaps of money whilst traveling.
Set a budget (but be realistic!)
Before you jet off to Brazil, you need to have a rough idea of your budget. How much you want to spend on accommodation per night, what activities you want to do, types of food and how you’re going to get around. It’s always best to overestimate what you may spend, as this will take into account some of the hidden costs you may not realize until you arrive.
Those looking to travel on a shoestring budget should be spending $15-$25 per day, but this will mean home cooking, limited activities and partying, and staying in some of the cheaper hostels. If you want to travel in the comfort your budget should be around $40- $50 per day. This will cover a bed in a nice dorm room, some groceries, a treat meal in a restaurant and money for attractions too.
Look for cheap accommodation
Picking budget accommodation whilst traveling can be one of the best and easiest ways to save money. Hostel prices range widely but on average you are looking at spending around $5- $15 per night in a dorm. In lesser-visited destinations, the lost will be lower. Depending on whether you’re traveling in high or low season prices will vary too. Another option for those really looking to pinch the pennies is to use Couchsurfing or to get a room in a homestay.
Sage Fitzpatrick is a tattooed, tea drinking girl who is always reading and traveling the world. When she’s not traveling she spends her time blogging about her travels over at A Virtual Postcard.