Today, I’d like to report about our recent city trip to Venice. I’m very happy to tell you that a four-day city trip, including the flying tickets, three nights at a hotel, all of our transportation, and the food came in at only 365€ per person.
I’ll show you how we managed to keep this wonderful trip low-budget in this blog post.
As I mentioned before, one of my personal life goals is to travel and to discover the world. Travelling is my ultimate guilty pleasure. But travelling isn’t cheap – and it can turn out really expensive if you’re not paying attention to what you’re spending.
Canal Grande in Venice
In an effort to align my spending with my life goals, I make conscious decisions about spending less in my daily life, in exchange for being able to travel. However, this doesn’t mean that I start throwing cash around once I’m on the trip.
Our romantic vacation in Venice is the perfect example: we kept track of everything we were spending during the trip to avoid bad surprises.
Little back ground here: we celebrated our four-year anniversary in February this year, and we decided to go on a little adventurous getaway to Venice. It was absolutely perfect and really, really romantic! 🙂
Lovely sunset over Venice
Chief Frugal at your service.
How we managed to keep it a low-budget trip
- Right from the start, we chose a destination that was within financial reason when it came to airplane tickets and hotels. I believe the hotels and flights were on the cheap side because it wasn’t the height of the touristic season yet. If that isn’t enough of a bonus, Venice is much nicer to visit during winter, when there aren’t a zillion of tourists walking around.
- We flew with Ryanair, a low-budget flying company.
- We used an app to track all of our spending during the trip. It made us very conscious about everything we were spending during our getaway.
Grand total: 722.26€, which comes down to 365€ per person. The trip in itself was four days: from Thursday to Sunday.
This amount includes (per person): return flight, hotel, all of the transportation, food (including two restaurant meals), visits to a palazzo and churches, a day pass of the water bus.
- Food: 211,42€ (including two restaurant meals)
- Hotel: 227€ (three nights for two people)
- Flights: 150€ (return tickets for two people)
- Transportation: 104€ (bus to airport in Belgium, bus to airport in Italy, Vaporetto)
- Various: 26€ (including visits of churches and a palazzo)
View from San Gorgio
Frugal fails and epic wins
Okay, now, we did plan ahead to make everything as reasonable as possible. However, we encountered some frugal fails. Please take something away from it! 🙂
- We sat down in a café in front of the Doges Palace, on the waterfront. It is one of the most touristic sites of Venice. We paid a staggering 18€ for ONE COFFEE and ONE TART. I was in total consternation. Lesson learned: never again will I go into the most touristic café in the city before checking the prices. FRUGAL FAIL!
- In the grand total of 722€ are included two restaurant meals. We did plan on one restaurant visit before leaving; we even checked prices and reviews on Tripadvisor and booked according to our budget. However, we did not foresee the second restaurant visit. This restaurant meal mainly occurred because it was our first night in Venice, and we had no idea where to find a store. So, lesson learned: next time I’ll go on a trip, I will try to locate grocery stores beforehand, to cut back on the food bill. FRUGAL FAIL!
- Before leaving on our trip, I went through our pantry and fridge to check if anything would expire in our absence. I made sandwiches and snack boxes with whatever we had left. For example, I turned 6 eggs into an eggsalad and made sandwiches with it. We ate the sandwiches on our way to Venice and it saved us money since we didn’t have to buy food at the airport. EPIC WIN!
- We managed to have lunch for 8€ (see picture below). We visited a café selling crostini’s at 1.20€ a piece. Two crostini’s and a drink per person cost us a total of 8€; and in combination with my snack boxes, we weren’t hungry.
Crostini’s and coffee in Venice
- And finally, when we managed to locate a grocery store, we bought our dinner and had a picnic in bed. Came in at 12.70€. Cheap dinner! 🙂
In summary, travelling on a budget is entirely possible and it really doesn’t take that much more of an effort. We compared prices, and went during the low season. We tried to save money on food by bringing our own sandwiches and by buying dinner in a grocery store. We used an app to track all of our expenses during the trip.
How about you? Do you like to travel? Do you manage to stay within budget?