To Travel, you don’t have to be rich. In many countries, it is possible to live easily for less than €20 a day.
We conducted a large survey in late 2018 of 848 people who have been on a round-the-world or long trip. They told us their average budget for each country they love to travel to. The daily cost given includes accommodation, food, local transport, activities and visits. Here are the 10 cheapest destinations for which we had the average budget of at least ten people.
INDIA: €18 PER DAY
Sylvain loved India so much that he has already been there three times. In this country, the change of scenery is guaranteed. The crowds, the smells, the noises, the heat: all the senses are put to work as soon as you leave the airport. Extraordinary temples and palaces rub shoulders with crippled beggars, women in shimmering saris and sacred cows that stroll nonchalantly through piles of rubbish. It is often said that you either love India or you hate it. We love it!
LAOS: €20 PER DAY
Laos is the cheapest country in South East Asia. The pace of life is particularly relaxed. The country is landlocked and has managed to preserve its wild and welcoming side, far from the hectic life of the big Asian metropolises. You can enjoy the gentle way of life along the Mekong and the Nam River. Even the capital, Vientiane, remains on a human scale with only 800,000 inhabitants.
NEPAL: €20 PER DAY
We did a long trek of three weeks around the Annapurnas. The small villages are accessible only by foot, several days walk from the first road. The panoramas are splendid and the landscapes go from the luxuriant jungle to the rocky and snowy passes while passing by the pairies with the alpine paces. In the Kantmandu Valley, the centuries-old cities of Patan and Bhaktapur are a testament to their rich culture. On the nature side, the Chitwan Nature Park offers the chance to meet wild animals and the Pokhara Lake offers a haven of peace at the foot of the Himalayas.
PHILIPPINES: €20 PER DAY
This archipelago of more than 7,000 islands is very diverse. From bustling megacities, to emerald green rice paddies, to underground rivers and heavenly beaches, this country has it all for culture, trekking, diving and beach lovers.
NICARAGUA: €20 PER DAY
We also went to Guatemala during our world tour. François visited again in 2013. This small Central American country is still spared from mass tourism and life is very cheap. We loved the small colonial towns of Granada and León with their colourful facades. The island of Ometepe on Lake Nicaragua, the largest in Central America, is unique with its two volcanoes. The Atlantic coast offers beautiful surfing spots, while the Caribbean coast is distinguished by the unique culture of the pirate descendants. The Corn Islands are a small paradise lost in the Caribbean.
CAMBODIA: €23 PER DAY
Cambodia is best known for the incredible temple complex of Angkor. The intertwining roots of the ruins give them a unique atmosphere. But the charms of this country are not limited to Angkor. Riding a bicycle through the rice fields is a real pleasure. It is impossible to talk about Cambodia without mentioning the darkest part of its history, the Khmer Rouge period, which remains engraved in the memory of older generations.
MONGOLIA: €22 PER DAY
This large country of arid steppes and forests is ideal for horseback riding. It is also possible to travel through the vast grassy expanses in a 4×4 and discover for a few nights the nomadic life under an iurt. The country of Genghis Khan is currently experiencing phenomenal growth thanks to the discovery of abundant minerals in its subsoil.
MYANMAR: €23 PER DAY
Myanmar is the new name for Burma. It used to be difficult to travel to this country. In recent years, tourism has been increasing rapidly. Even with this increase in visitors, Myanmar is still an incredibly welcoming country. The ruined city of Bagan is breathtaking. It also holds other treasures such as the beaches of Ngapali, Lake Inle or the Golden Rock.
INDONESIA: €23 PER DAY
Those who have already had the opportunity to chat with us over a beer or at a trade fair know that we are full of praise for this country! After our two-month stay during our world tour, we have already returned there. Beyond the classic Java-Bali-Lombok, Indonesia is a country spared from mass tourism. In the heart of the golden triangle of marine diversity, it will delight diving and snorkeling enthusiasts. Set off to meet the dragons of Komodo, climb one of the many volcanoes that dot the country, ride a scooter through the rice fields of Toraja country, the opportunities for discovery are countless.
VIETNAM: €24 PER DAY
This country is infamous for the Vietnam War. It stretches over more than 3,000 km of coastline and has some stunning beaches. Halong Bay with its turquoise waters and multitude of islands with steep rocks covered by tropical forests is unique in the world. In the mountainous regions of the north, you will meet some truly endearing people. Vietnam has also preserved its remarkable cultural heritage with its old cities, temples and imperial palaces.