Budget backpacking. How much does a month in Thailand cost?

Railay BeachThe hub of the backpacking world, Thailand is often the first stop for first time travelers and it’s a great way to break yourself in to life on the road. However, Thailand  is not as cheap as the rumours may suggest, it can be a bit of a tourist trap. Do not panic though, if you are savvy, you can certainly get by on a small budget.

Here is what I spent during a month in Thailand and my guide to doing it super cheaply.

Accommodation = £155

This can range depending on standard and what area you are in. Take Bangkok for example: You can get a beautiful double room in Villa Cha Cha for 1200THB (£24) between two of you or a room in the very ‘basic’ hostels for £3 each. Hostels range from £9 a bed (Nap Park) to £9 (Sawasdee Inn) depending on location and facilities.

I always scour the reviews on hostel world and tripadvisor and go for location, atmosphere and cleanliness! Prices will be higher during peak season (December – March) and special events. I paid £9 a night for a dorm bed for 3 nights on Koh Phangan over the Full Moon party period, the price then dropped to £2 a night for the 4 nights I stayed after (CRAZY!?).

With this in mind I spent £155 on accommodation in March, averaging £5 a night.

Food = £155

Word of advice. Eat the local food. It is so much cheaper and waaaay yummier! Meals range from £1 to £3 depending again on location and of course what you have. Street food can be very cheap but not that filling. I had Thai red curry for lunch almost every day for about £1.50 and dinner of Basil and Chilli Chicken with rice for £1.50 and a snack of amazing, fresh pineapple and a pancake for about £1.

I averaged about £5 a day on food (you can do it cheaper if you have too)


Thai Cuisine

Drink = £160

This is most backpackers downfall. Only take out what you want to spend or another bucket at £3 will seem very appealing. Do that 3 times a week and well, yep, waaaay over budget.

I drank about 3-4 times a week and spent about £10 per session so lets go for £40 a week (I am a lightweight).

Thailand Buckets

Travelling around = £69

So in March I went from Bangkok to Koh Phangan (£20), to Koh Tao (£7), to Bangkok (£20), to Chiang Mai (£12), back  to Bangkok (£10).

Other stuff =£72

I am only human.

Massages. Two a week £32

A few slap up meals (Western food) £20

Clothes and toiletries £20


So there you have it £611 in 31 days. I could have done it a bit cheaper but this was a pretty easy, realistic budget!


Here are a few tips on doing it cheaper

Barter for clothes and accommodation (If you are staying a few nights you can usually get a discount if you negotiate on arrival). Four of us stayed in a hostel for 5 nights and got the price down from £4 a night to £3 a night, saving £5 each!

Don’t get two massages a week. Oooops!

Eat away from tourist attractions. Food on Khao San road is twice the price of the food two roads away.

Thailand truly is the land of smiles!



{ 7 comments… read them below or add one }

Sara May 18, 2015 at 8:28 pm

Ugh, I need to get down to Southeast Asia! Europe is killing my budget :(
Thanks for posting this breakdown though! It’s always useful to see how other travellers’ budgets are before you travel somewhere!
Sara recently posted…My Eurotrip PlansMy Profile


sallymunt sallymunt May 19, 2015 at 8:20 pm

Yes Thailand is so cheap! I walk into shops in London and just complain about prices haha! If you want a super cheap place, Cambodia is so cool and the people re lovely! So much to see and do.


Anna May 22, 2015 at 9:36 am

Hey Sally, loving your updates and can’t wait to get back to SE Asia. I’ve nominated you for the Liebster Award – check it out here to find out more, accept the award and pass it on to other bloggers that you love http://www.global-gallivanting.com/the-liebster-award/
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sallymunt sallymunt May 22, 2015 at 6:19 pm

Thank you :) I love it! England is so cold!


Alice Teacake September 29, 2015 at 6:07 pm

I’ve been to Thailand three times before but it’s always good to be reminded how to save those pennies! I’ll be going for one massage a week :D
Alice Teacake recently posted…5 Ways To Kick Seasickness in the ButtMy Profile


Lucy Smith September 30, 2015 at 4:50 pm

Can’t stop reading all your posts on SEA! Heading there in November and can’t wait! Really useful advice :)
Lucy Smith recently posted…How Did I Save £10,000 For Travel in 1 YearMy Profile


sallymunt sallymunt October 4, 2015 at 1:33 pm

Agh so Jealous! You will love it!


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