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Budget tour du monde

How Much Does it Cost to Travel Around the World?

It’s not easy to estimate the price of a long-term trip all alone. In this article, we’ll help you accurately calculate your budget, by taking into account the main factors which influence your expenses: trip duration, countries visited, transport, accommodation, equipment, insurance, visas, vaccines… We’ll also give you practical advice to help you save money.

Our survey

Between 19th and 23rd January 2018, we carried out a huge survey among 848 people who travelled the world for more than three months. We asked them detailed questions about the handling of their expenses by item and by country. Find out more about our methodology

If you’ve already been on a long trip and you want to help future globetrotters, you can complete our survey .

How much does a round the world trip cost?

The total average budget of a round-the-world trip is £13,000 ($16,000 – €15,000) per person. However, this figure isn’t set in stone.

Some globetrotters manage to travel with next to no money. They do this by getting around on foot and by hitch-hiking / boat hitch-hiking, camping, or benefiting from other people’s hospitality.

Others, however, take lots of flights or travel in an expensive vehicle, stay in hotels and do lots of activities. The biggest budget from our survey is £70,000 ($85,000 – €80,000) per person!

Between these two extremes, you can find all sorts of budgets. However, more than three quarters are between £7,000 ($8,500 – €8,000) and £17,000 ($21,000 – €20,000)

Schéma du budget par personne

Note : These figures only correspond to trips whose route strictly adheres to the definition of a round-the-world trip, that is to say, going round the world, and returning to the place that you started from.

Budget breakdown

During a long trip, expenses whilst travelling make up the biggest part of the budget: around two thirds on average. Next are plane tickets which represent around one fifth of the total amount. Other expenses mainly include equipment, insurance, visas and vaccines.

Budget détaillé

Factors which influence your budget

Trip duration

Unsurprisingly, this is the factor which has the most influence on the total budget of the trip. That’s right, fixed prices (equipment, vaccines…) only represent a very small fraction of the total cost of a round-the-world trip. Whereas fluctuating costs (plane tickets, local transport, accommodation, food, activities, travel insurance, visas…) weigh a lot more heavily on your budget, and depend on the trip duration.

schéma budget en fonction du nombre de mois de voyage

Countries visited

There’s a fivefold gap in the average daily budget amongst globetrotters’ most visited destinations. In India, globetrotters spend £15 ($19 – €18) on average per day, whilst in Polynesia the average daily budget is £73 ($92 – €86).

If you don’t have unlimited funds, the best way to travel for a long time is to stay in cheaper countries as much as possible.

  • The cheapest area is Asia (excluding Japan, Korea and China).
  • China, Latin America (excluding Brazil, Chile and Argentina), and Eastern Europe come in a little more expensive, but they’re still affordable.
  • Western Europe, North America, Japan, Oceania, Brazil, Chile and Argentina require a big budget.

Few globetrotters visit Africa. Unfortunately, therefore, we don’t have a lot of data on this continent. However, contrary to popular belief, travelling in Africa isn’t always cheap. In fact, there’s hardly any backpacker-oriented accommodation or transport.

World map of average daily budgets per person

Where does the data come from?

The data comes from our survey. It only applies to long trips of more than three consecutive months. Most of them took place in 2017.

What do these budgets ?

The budgets, per country, include all costs whilst travelling:

  • Accommodation
  • Food
  • Drinks / going out
  • Local transport
  • Activities / sightseeing
  • Shopping

On the other hand, they don’t include the cost of international transport to get to the country, nor potential visa costs.

Budget reliability

For each country, we show the number of answers we received in our survey and from that we deduce the budget reliability:

  • Unreliable: from 1 to 5 responses
  • Not very reliable: from 6 to 20 responses
  • Quite reliable: from 21 to 40 responses
  • Very reliable: more than 40 responses

Budget level by type of trip

For each country, we’ve established three budget levels:

  • Basic budget: this is the budget below which 20% of the lowest spending respondents fall. It relates to a trip where you mostly stay with a resident (Couchsurfing, Wwoofing, Helpx, Workaway…) or camp, you get around by hitch-hiking, on bike, or sometimes by local transport, and you don’t do any expensive activities.
  • Backpacker budget: this is the median budget among respondents: 50% are above, 50% are below. It relates to a trip where you stay in the ‘economical’ category of travel guides, get around by local modes of transport and treat yourself to an activity every now and then.
  • Comfortable budget: this is the budget above which 20% of the biggest spending respondents fall. It relates to a trip where you stay in the middle category of travel guides, sometimes renting a car and treating yourself to lots of activities.

Links

In the last column, links to Lonely Planet’s budget pages will give you an idea of the cost of accommodation and meals in each country. You’ll also be able to get an idea of an estimated budget for countries we didn’t sufficiently cover in our survey.

Daily budget per person for each country

Country
Basic budget Backpacker budget Comfortable budget
Number of
respondants
Reliability of our budgets
Budgetyourtrip.com
$ £ $ £ $ £
Afghanistan 0 No data No data
Albania $2 £2 €2 $16 £13 €15 $29 £23 €27 7 Budget your trip
Algeria 0 No data No data
Angola $27 £21 €25 1 No data
Antarctica $202 £161 €189 $268 £213 €250 $296 £235 €277 3 No data
Antigua-and-Barbuda $16 £13 €15 1 Budget your trip
Argentina $20 £16 €19 $34 £27 €32 $67 £54 €63 246 Budget your trip
Armenia $29 £23 €27 $32 £26 €30 $32 £26 €30 3 Budget your trip
Australia $42 £33 €39 $64 £51 €60 $88 £70 €82 243 Budget your trip
Austria $21 £17 €20 $54 £43 €50 $64 £51 €60 11 Budget your trip
Azerbaijan $5 £4 €5 1 Budget your trip
Bahamas $36 £29 €34 $59 £47 €55 $72 £57 €67 3 Budget your trip
Bahrain $107 £85 €100 1 Budget your trip
Bangladesh $18 £14 €17 4 Budget your trip
Barbados $43 £34 €40 1 Budget your trip
Belarus $22 £18 €21 $36 £29 €34 $49 £39 €46 2 Budget your trip
Belgium $30 £24 €28 $46 £37 €43 $59 £47 €55 14 Budget your trip
Belize $21 £17 €20 $36 £29 €34 $44 £35 €41 16 Budget your trip
Benin $14 £11 €13 $21 £17 €20 $27 £21 €25 4 No data
Bhutan 0 No data Budget your trip
Bolivia $18 £14 €17 $27 £21 €25 $40 £31 €37 369 Budget your trip
Bosnia and Herzegovina $16 £13 €15 $19 £15 €18 $32 £26 €30 6 Budget your trip
Botswana $28 £22 €26 $39 £31 €36 $60 £48 €56 3 Budget your trip
Brazil $32 £26 €30 $43 £34 €40 $58 £46 €54 46 Budget your trip
Brunei $31 £25 €29 $37 £30 €35 $44 £35 €41 2 No data
Bulgaria $11 £9 €10 $19 £15 €18 $29 £23 €27 6 Budget your trip
Burkina Faso $11 £9 €10 $21 £17 €20 $25 £20 €23 3 Budget your trip
Burundi 0 No data No data
Cambodia $19 £15 €18 $25 £20 €23 $33 £26 €31 452 Budget your trip
Cameroon $26 £20 €24 $26 £20 €24 $26 £20 €24 1 Budget your trip
Canada $21 £17 €20 $43 £34 €40 $61 £48 €57 34 Budget your trip
Cape Verde $16 £13 €15 1 Budget your trip
Central African Republic 0 No data No data
Chile $27 £21 €25 $41 £32 €38 $56 £44 €52 339 Budget your trip
China $19 £15 €18 $32 £26 €30 $49 £39 €46 248 Budget your trip
Colombia $21 £17 €20 $32 £26 €30 $44 £35 €41 466 Budget your trip
Comoros 0 No data No data
Congo (Republic) 0 No data No data
Congo (Democratic Republic) 0 No data No data
Cook Islands $37 £30 €35 $43 £34 €40 $56 £44 €52 4 No data
Costa Rica $24 £19 €22 $39 £31 €36 $58 £46 €54 24 Budget your trip
Croatia $15 £12 €14 $24 £19 €22 $37 £30 €35 11 Budget your trip
Cuba $19 £15 €18 $32 £26 €30 $47 £37 €44 19 Budget your trip
Cyprus $64 £51 €60 1 Budget your trip
Czech Republic $12 £9 €11 $27 £21 €25 $41 £32 €38 7 Budget your trip
Denmark $16 £13 €15 $37 £30 €35 $64 £51 €60 13 Budget your trip
Djibouti 0 No data No data
Dominica $16 £13 €15 1 Budget your trip
Dominican Republic $13 £10 €12 $31 £25 €29 $49 £39 €46 2 Budget your trip
Easter Island $37 £30 €35 $49 £39 €46 $58 £46 €54 29 No data
Ecuador $22 £18 €21 $31 £25 €29 $40 £31 €37 43 Budget your trip
Egypt $37 £30 €35 $57 £45 €53 $103 £82 €96 4 Budget your trip
El Salvador $13 £10 €12 $18 £14 €17 $27 £21 €25 5 No data
England $30 £24 €28 $54 £43 €50 $75 £60 €70 21 Budget your trip
Equatorial Guinea 0 No data No data
Eritrea 0 No data No data
Estonia $16 £13 €15 $27 £21 €25 $40 £31 €37 7 Budget your trip
Eswatini $51 £41 €48 $57 £45 €53 $61 £48 €57 2 Budget your trip
Ethiopia $17 £14 €16 $21 £17 €20 $31 £25 €29 3 Budget your trip
Fiji $25 £20 €23 $62 £49 €58 $103 £82 €96 4 Budget your trip
Finland $16 £13 €15 $43 £34 €40 $60 £48 €56 10 Budget your trip
France $26 £20 €24 $43 £34 €40 $55 £43 €51 20 Budget your trip
French Polynesia $54 £43 €50 $93 £74 €87 $119 £94 €111 32 Budget your trip
Gabon $14 £11 €13 1 No data
Galapagos Islands $51 £41 €48 $60 £48 €56 $88 £70 €82 5 No data
Gambia 0 No data No data
Georgia $18 £14 €17 $21 £17 €20 $27 £21 €25 5 Budget your trip
Germany $24 £19 €22 $32 £26 €30 $55 £43 €51 25 Budget your trip
Ghana $135 £107 €126 1 Budget your trip
Greece $17 £14 €16 $27 £21 €25 $57 £45 €53 13 Budget your trip
Greenland $100 £79 €93 1 Budget your trip
Grenada 0 No data Budget your trip
Guatemala $16 £13 €15 $27 £21 €25 $35 £28 €33 25 Budget your trip
Guinea 0 No data No data
Guinea-Bissau 0 No data No data
Guyana 0 No data No data
Haiti $11 £9 €10 1 Budget your trip
Holy See 0 No data No data
Honduras $16 £13 €15 $21 £17 €20 $37 £30 €35 5 Budget your trip
Hong Kong $34 £27 €32 $45 £36 €42 $61 £48 €57 34 Budget your trip
Hungary $15 £12 €14 $16 £13 €15 $26 £20 €24 7 Budget your trip
India $12 £9 €11 $19 £15 €18 $27 £21 €25 57 Budget your trip
Indonesia $19 £15 €18 $25 £20 €23 $33 £26 €31 86 Budget your trip
Iran $11 £9 €10 $16 £13 €15 $29 £23 €27 3 Budget your trip
Iraq 0 No data No data
Ireland $24 £19 €22 $43 £34 €40 $81 £65 €76 8 Budget your trip
Island $37 £30 €35 $64 £51 €60 $101 £80 €94 12 Budget your trip
Israel $43 £34 €40 $48 £38 €45 $67 £54 €63 5 Budget your trip
Italy $21 £17 €20 $43 £34 €40 $60 £48 €56 20 Budget your trip
Ivory Coast 0 No data No data
Jamaica $46 £37 €43 $51 £41 €48 $56 £44 €52 2 Budget your trip
Japan $32 £26 €30 $46 £37 €43 $64 £51 €60 46 Budget your trip
Jordan $32 £26 €30 $41 £32 €38 $52 £42 €49 6 Budget your trip
Kazakhstan $12 £9 €11 $20 £16 €19 $29 £23 €27 2 Budget your trip
Kenya $22 £18 €21 $51 £41 €48 $125 £99 €117 5 Budget your trip
Kiribati $17 £14 €16 1 No data
Kuwait 0 No data No data
Kyrgyzstan $12 £9 €11 $20 £16 €19 $29 £23 €27 2 No data
Laos $16 £13 €15 $21 £17 €20 $27 £21 €25 74 Budget your trip
Latvia $10 £8 €9 $21 £17 €20 $33 £26 €31 9 Budget your trip
Lebanon 0 No data Budget your trip
Lesotho $28 £22 €26 $37 £30 €35 $56 £44 €52 3 Budget your trip
Liberia 0 No data No data
Libya 0 No data No data
Liechtenstein $40 £31 €37 $51 £41 €48 $62 £49 €58 2 Budget your trip
Lithuania $28 £22 €26 $30 £24 €28 $37 £30 €35 3 Budget your trip
Luxembourg $47 £37 €44 $64 £51 €60 $83 £66 €78 3 Budget your trip
Madagascar $16 £13 €15 $25 £20 €23 $26 £20 €24 3 Budget your trip
Malawi $19 £15 €18 $27 £21 €25 $33 £26 €31 2 Budget your trip
Malaysia $19 £15 €18 $25 £20 €23 $32 £26 €30 53 Budget your trip
Maldives $37 £30 €35 $44 £35 €41 $49 £39 €46 2 Budget your trip
Mali 0 No data Budget your trip
Malta $18 £14 €17 $26 £20 €24 $33 £26 €31 2 Budget your trip
Marshall Islands 0 No data No data
Mauritania $37 £30 €35 $46 £37 €43 $54 £43 €50 2 Budget your trip
Mauritius $32 £26 €30 $43 £34 €40 $96 £77 €90 4 No data
Mexico $26 £20 €24 $36 £29 €35 $70 £55 €64 392 Budget your trip
Micronesia 0 No data Budget your trip
Moldova 0 No data No data
Monaco $33 £26 €31 $43 £34 €40 $94 £75 €88 3 Budget your trip
Mongolia $17 £14 €16 $24 £19 €22 $44 £35 €41 19 Budget your trip
Montenegro $4 £3 €4 $12 £9 €11 $31 £25 €29 4 Budget your trip
Morocco $24 £19 €22 $37 £30 €35 $47 £37 €44 13 Budget your trip
Mozambique $26 £20 €24 $33 £26 €31 $40 £31 €37 2 Budget your trip
Myanmar (Burma) $20 £16 €19 $25 £20 €23 $32 £26 €30 59 Budget your trip
Namibia $39 £31 €36 $46 £37 €43 $75 £60 €70 6 Budget your trip
Nauru 0 No data No data
Nepal $15 £12 €14 $21 £17 €20 $32 £26 €30 39 Budget your trip
Netherlands $31 £25 €29 $43 £34 €40 $57 £45 €53 13 Budget your trip
New Caledonia $41 £32 €38 $54 £43 €50 $83 £66 €78 15 No data
New Zealand $39 £31 €36 $61 £48 €57 $91 £72 €85 250 Budget your trip
Nicaragua $15 £12 €14 $21 £17 €20 $32 £26 €30 17 Budget your trip
Niger $12 £9 €11 $15 £12 €14 $17 £14 €16 2 No data
Nigeria $16 £13 €15 1 No data
North Korea 0 No data No data
North Macedonia $14 £11 €13 $20 £16 €19 $33 £26 €31 4 No data
Norway $32 £26 €30 $98 £78 €92 $119 £94 €111 10 Budget your trip
Oman $36 £29 €34 $43 £34 €40 $49 £39 €46 2 Budget your trip
Pakistan $10 £8 €9 1 Budget your trip
Palaos 0 No data No data
Palestine $32 £26 €30 1 No data
Panama $25 £20 €23 $37 £30 €35 $51 £41 €48 9 Budget your trip
Papua New Guinea $54 £43 €50 1 Budget your trip
Paraguay $16 £13 €15 $20 £16 €19 $31 £25 €29 9 Budget your trip
Peru $22 £18 €20 $32 £26 €30 $47 £37 €44 609 Budget your trip
Philippines $19 £15 €18 $21 £17 €20 $32 £26 €30 21 Budget your trip
Poland $15 £12 €14 $19 £15 €18 $33 £26 €31 10 Budget your trip
Portugal $34 £27 €32 $48 £38 €45 $54 £43 €50 9 Budget your trip
Qatar $47 £37 €44 $63 £50 €59 $79 £63 €74 2 Budget your trip
Romania $14 £11 €13 $29 £23 €27 $42 £33 €39 6 Budget your trip
Russia $24 £19 €22 $27 £21 €25 $54 £43 €50 19 Budget your trip
Rwanda 0 No data Budget your trip
Saint Kitts and Nevis $19 £15 €18 $34 £27 €32 $49 £39 €46 2 Budget your trip
Saint Lucia 0 No data Budget your trip
Saint Vincent and the Grenadines 0 No data Budget your trip
Solomon Islands $13 £10 €12 1 Budget your trip
Samoa Islands $21 £17 €20 1 No data
San Marino $32 £26 €30 1 No data
São Tomé and Príncipe 0 No data No data
Saudi Arabia 0 No data No data
Scotland $21 £17 €20 $44 £35 €41 $65 £52 €61 9 Budget your trip
Senegal $24 £19 €22 $46 £37 €43 $60 £48 €56 4 Budget your trip
Serbia $4 £3 €4 $10 £8 €9 $25 £20 €23 4 Budget your trip
Seychelles $18 £14 €17 1 Budget your trip
Sierra Leone 0 No data No data
Singapore $24 £19 €22 $36 £29 €34 $54 £43 €50 42 Budget your trip
Slovakia $17 £14 €16 $19 £15 €18 $29 £23 €27 5 Budget your trip
Slovenia $17 £14 €16 $21 £17 €20 $27 £21 €25 6 Budget your trip
Somalia 0 No data No data
Sudan 0 No data No data
South Africa $27 £21 €25 $54 £43 €50 $86 £68 €80 16 Budget your trip
South Korea $21 £17 €20 $32 £26 €30 $35 £28 €33 11 Budget your trip
Spain $25 £20 €23 $37 £30 €35 $52 £42 €49 22 Budget your trip
Sri Lanka $21 £17 €20 $27 £21 €25 $33 £26 €31 25 Budget your trip
Suriname 0 No data No data
Sweden $19 £15 €18 $48 £38 €45 $76 £60 €71 10 Budget your trip
Switzerland $35 £28 €33 $70 £55 €65 $98 £78 €92 10 Budget your trip
Syria 0 No data No data
Taiwan $36 £29 €34 $59 £47 €55 $80 £64 €75 3 Budget your trip
Tajikistan $5 £4 €5 1 No data
Tanzania $32 £26 €30 $43 £34 €40 $49 £39 €46 4 Budget your trip
Tchad 0 No data No data
Thailand $21 £17 €20 $27 £21 €25 $43 £34 €40 709 Budget your trip
Timor Leste 0 No data No data
Togo $4 £3 €4 $5 £4 €5 $9 £7 €8 3 No data
Tonga Islands 0 No data No data
Trinidad and Tobago $18 £14 €17 $21 £17 €20 $25 £20 €23 2 Budget your trip
Tunisia $34 £27 €32 $40 £31 €37 $49 £39 €46 4 No data
Turkey $17 £14 €16 $28 £22 €26 $34 £27 €32 10 Budget your trip
Turkmenistan 0 No data No data
Tuvalu 0 No data No data
Uganda $17 £14 €16 1 Budget your trip
Ukraine $13 £10 €12 $29 £23 €27 $43 £34 €40 4 Budget your trip
United Arab Emirates $42 £33 €39 $90 £71 €84 $139 £111 €130 7 Budget your trip
United States $32 £26 €30 $54 £43 €50 $75 £60 €70 70 Budget your trip
Uruguay $28 £22 €26 $35 £28 €33 $54 £43 €50 19 Budget your trip
Uzbekistan $11 £9 €10 1 No data
Vanuatu $49 £39 €46 $60 £48 €56 $71 £56 €66 2 No data
Venezuela 0 No data No data
Vietnam $19 £15 €18 $26 £20 €24 $34 £27 €32 451 Budget your trip
Yemen 0 No data No data
Zambia $18 £14 €17 1 Budget your trip
Zimbabwe $30 £24 €28 $39 £31 €36 $57 £45 €53 3 Budget your trip

Travel pace

Planning a round-the-world trip is a bit like going to an all you can eat buffet. You don’t want to miss out on anything, and you often tend to want to visit too many countries.

But, once you’re on the road, you’ll quickly realise that a long trip doesn’t have the same pace as a normal holiday. We advise you to not be too greedy when you’re planning your itinerary.

Travelling slowly also allows you to significantly limit your travel expenses on buses and other local transport.

When you stay a few weeks in the same place, you can also negotiate a good price for accommodation.

Travellers who only stay two or three weeks on average in each country spend twice as much as those who stay longer than seven weeks in each country.

To find out more, take a look at our article on planning your itinerary for a round-the-world trip.

Number of people travelling

Travelling with others can cut a lot of costs in half: rooms, taxis, hiking guides…

More often than not you pay, by yourself, for a room with two single beds and a double bed. If you travel alone, you’ll often meet other solo travellers who’re also looking to save money by sharing a room. It’s also a good way to make travel buddies.

If you’re travelling as a family, you’ll make big savings. Children eat less and can sleep in their parents room. What’s more, transport is usually free for the little ones.

However, these potential savings are not reflected in the budgets noted in our survey for couples and families, as they also tend to travel a little more comfortably than solo travellers.

Average budget for a year-long trip:

  • Solo: £13,100 ($16,400 – €15,300)
  • As a couple: £27,000 ($33,900 – €31,600)
  • As a family: £49,700 ($62,400 – €58,100)

Travellers age

There’s nothing you can change about your age. However, data from our survey shows that you don’t travel in the same way when you’re 20 years old, as when you’re 50 years old.

When you’re young, sleeping in a youth hostel or in simple rooms is generally not a problem. Either way, you don’t really have the means to pay for something better.

But, when you get older, and you have a little more money, you sometimes like to have a little more comfort: an ensuite bathroom, aircon…

But, of course, we shouldn’t generalise. It’s quite possible to travel on a tight budget at any age.

Schéma du budget tour du monde moyen selon l'age

Pre-departure expenses

Plane tickets

Three quarters of long-term travellers mainly travel by plane and local transport. On average, people who travel around the world spend €2,700 ($3,300 – €3,100) on plane tickets (for an average of 11 months travel), whilst those who go on a long trip without doing a round-the-world trip only spend, on average, £850 ($1,100 – €1,000) (for an average of 7 months travel).

When buying your plane tickets, there are three available options:

1. Buying your tickets as you go

The advantage of this option is that it gives you more flexibility. However, it requires more organisation whilst travelling.

You’ll need to buy your tickets well in advance to avoid paying for full-price tickets on the spot.

2. BUYING A ROUND-THE-WORLD TICKET FROM BIG AIRLINE ALLIANCES

Star Alliance, One World, Sky Team and Emirates offer round-the-world tickets. The principle is simple: you buy your tickets in one go and the dates can then be changed free of charge (but not the destinations).

Each alliance offers its own range of round-the-world tickets. Their economy class prices range from around £2,100 ($2,700 – €2,500) to £3,900 ($4,800 – €4,500) per person, depending on the number of continents visited or the number of miles travelled.

3. BUYING A ROUND-THE-WORLD TICKET FROM A SPECIALIST TRAVEL AGENCY

Some travel agencies, like Travel Nation or AirTreks, specialise in tailor-made round-the-world tickets.

They combine alliance offers with flights from other companies so that you’re not limited to destinations served by alliance companies.

They can help you optimise your itinerary by lowering the price of your tickets, or adding destinations at a low cost.

Their prices start at around £1,300 ($1,600 – €1,500) for very basic round-the-world tickets, and can be even cheaper for other types of multi-destination tickets.

HOW CAN I CUT MY PLANE TICKET BUDGET?

The best way to cut your budget is by limiting the number of flights you take. The first question you should ask yourself is: “Do I really want to do a round-the-world trip?”. Indeed, a round-the-world trip means crossing the Atlantic and the Pacific ocean, and doing this really increases the price of plane tickets, even with a round-the-world ticket.

It’s entirely possible to do an unforgettable trip without crossing the Atlantic and the Pacific oceans. Of course, when you come back you won’t be able to say, “I went around the world”. But is that so bad?

A good way to save money is to only take a flight when you change continents. You can get to a city, travel around on local transport and set off again from another city.

They are called “overland” or “surface” sections. They can be included in a round-the-world ticket (they’re represented like this //).

If you travel like this, you’ll be able to do a round-the-world trip with just three or four flights.

For example: London – Bangkok // Singapore – Perth // Sydney – Santiago // Lima – London

Equipement

On average, globetrotters spend £500 ($650 – €600) on equipment. However, this average hides some significant differences. Whilst some travellers mostly make do with what they already have, others like to invest in top-of-the-range equipment.

A basic equipment can certainly do the job. You can make do with what you already have at home, and add the finishing touches with cheap new or second hand equipment.

If you plan on camping, trekking in high mountains, or you want to travel ultralight, it’s a good idea to opt for high performance equipment. You can take advantage of sales or online promotions to find these products at reasonable prices.

Some examples of equipment prices:

  • Backpack: from £80 ($100 – €90) to £210 ($270 – €250)
  • Trail running / hiking shoes: from £50 ($65 – €60) to £130 ($160 – €150)
  • Sleeping bag: from £35 ($45 – €40) to £340 ($430 – €400)
  • Camera: from £300 ($380 – €350) to £3,400 ($4,300 – €4,000)
  • Computer / tablet: from £210 ($270 – €250) to £1,300 ($1,600 – €1,500)

To find out more, take a look at our long term travel packing list.

INSURANCE

It is strongly advised to take out long-term travel insurance.

On average, globetrotters spend £340 ($430 – €400) on their travel insurance. This is a sizable budget, but one that can save you a very steep bill if something goes wrong.

Most travel insurances cover the following risks: repatriation costs, medical costs, death, infirmity, legal aid, search and rescue costs, early return, cancellation, luggage and third party liability.

Comparing the many travel insurance contracts available on the market isn’t an easy task. That’s why we built a thorough comparison long stay travel insurance comparator to help you chose the one that’s right for you.

VISAS

You’ll need to pay for a visa to enter some countries. Most Latin American countries are accessible without a visa for stays for up to 90 days. In Asia and Africa, on the other hand, lots of countries ask for one. On average, globetrotters spend £170 ($215 – €200) on their visas. When the option is offered, go for e-visas as they’re usually cheaper than conventional visas.

Some examples of tourist visa prices for the most visited countries by frequent travellers:

  • Australia: Electronic Travel Authority (ETA): AU$20
  • Cambodia: $30 + $6 processing charge
  • India: multi entry e-visa up to one year: $40
  • Indonesia: $35
  • Laos: $50
  • Myanmar (Burma): e-Visa: $50
  • Nepal: 15 days: $30, 30 days: $50 , 90 days: $125
  • United States: Electronic System for Travel Authorisation (ESTA): $21
  • Vietnam: up to 15 days: not required, 30 days: $21 + $25 processing charge

To find out more, take a look at our article on visas.

VACCINES

Before going to tropical countries, you need to get your vaccines done. In the UK, some GP practices are signed up to provide free NHS vaccinations for travel. If not, try a private travel vaccination clinic or a pharmacy offering travel healthcare services. If possible, do this at least eight weeks before you’re due to travel.

The number of vaccines you need to take depends on the countries you’re visiting, what jabs you’ve previously had done, and how much risk you’re willing to take.

The following travel vaccines are available free on the NHS if your GP practice is signed up to provide vaccination services:

  • Polio
  • Typhoid
  • Hepatitis A
  • Cholera

You’ll have to pay for other travel vaccinations. On average, globetrotters spend £170 ($215 – €200) on jabs.

Some examples of vaccine prices in the UK:

  • Cholera: £29
  • Diphtheria, Tetanus and Polio: £35
  • Hepatitis A & B: £80
  • Japanese Encephalitis: £89
  • Meningitis: £60
  • Rabies: £60
  • Typhoid: £35
  • Yellow Fever: £62

To find out more, take a look at our article on travel vaccinations.

VEHICLE

Rather than travelling by plane and local transport, some globetrotters prefer to set off with their own vehicle. You can make huge savings on plane tickets by choosing an alternative mode of transport.

On average, travelling by bike is a lot cheaper than flying, even when you include the purchase of equipment. However, the amount of money that globetrotters spend on their bikes and equipment massively varies. We know some people who got away with £400 ($500 – €470), whilst others spent over £5,000 ($6,200 – €5,800).

Lots of families and some couples opt for a motorised vehicle for their round-the-world trip: camper van, truck, kitted out van, 4×4, sailboat… Once again, the investment varies a lot depending on the type of vehicle: from £2,000 ($2,500 – €2,300) for an old kitted out van, to more than £250,000 ($320,000 – €300,000) for a top-of-the-range 4×4 truck.

If you choose to travel with your own vehicle, you can travel to continents that are connected to yours by land or cross the ocean to another continent and buy a local vehicle there.

If you want to do a proper round-the-world trip with your vehicle, you’ll need to factor in a significant additional budget to transport it by cargo ship from one continent to another. You’ll also need to pay for plane tickets, as it’s usually not possible to board the ship with your vehicle.

To find out more, take a look at our articles on travelling by bike and hitchhiking.

Camion Tour du Monde

The best of the best: 4×4 expedition truck, that’ll set you back more than £250,000

Crédit : Martin around the World

Ex penses whilst travelling

On average, globetrotters spend £9,000 ($11,000 – €10,500) whilst travelling, this is around two thirds of the total budget.

Generally speaking, you can roughly divide the budget whilst travelling into four equal parts:

  • Accommodation
  • Food and drink
  • Local transport
  • Sightseeing, activities and various expenses

But this divvying up varies from country to country. If you do a guided trek in Nepal, or if you take diving lessons in Thailand, the activities budget will be higher.

If you go to Patagonia in Argentina, your transport budget will be greater. In wealthy countries, it’s quite the opposite – your accommodation and food budget will be higher.

Accommodation

Dormir dans le bus

Sleeping on an overnight bus is a great way to save money on accommodation.

During their trip, most globetrotters stay in backpacker accommodation. These are often guesthouses or bungalows in Asia, and youth hostels or small inexpensive hotels in Latin American and wealthy countries.

In very touristy areas, prices soar during peak season. But, the peak season isn’t the same in every country. Therefore, with a little organisation, you can avoid being amongst the hordes of holiday-makers and paying a high price.

When you travel in low season and your accommodation isn’t very full, you can often get a discount by haggling a bit. The important thing when negotiating is to stay calm and keep smiling.

You can make huge savings by opting for other types of accommodation:

  • Camping: setting off with a tent will make your backpack heavier, but it means that you can sleep for free anywhere in the world.
  • Couchsurfing: the main point of this is to meet friendly locals and share their culture, but also to find free accommodation.
  • Volunteering: via websites like Wwoof, HelpX or Workaway, you can volunteer with a local community, and have bed and board in return.
  • Sleeping on a bus: in Asia and Latin America, a lot of buses have reclining seats for sleeping on overnight trips, which will help you save on accommodation.
  • Sleeping in a van: if you travel in large, wealthy countries like Australia, New Zealand, United States, Canada and western Europe, it might be worth buying a van and sleeping in it, or buying a car and a tent to go camping. You can then sell them when you leave. The longer you stray, the better value it is compared to renting a vehicle.

Food

In many countries, you don’t need to go to a restaurant to eat well. Street food and food markets are always fresh and their dishes aren’t made to please western palates, making them more authentic.

But, when in countries with a higher standard of living, be aware of how much you’re spending on food.

It’s much cheaper to buy food in shops and cook than it is to eat out. Most youth hostels have kitchens you can use.

Pick local products, they’re often cheaper than imported products. If you’re camping, invest in a portable stove and a cooking pot as this’ll help you save a fair amount of money on food.

Drinks and going out

It may sound like a minor detail, but a boozy evening in a bar or restaurant can quickly throw your budget off track. In a lot of countries, a beer is more expensive than a meal. So, reducing your alcohol intake will be good for your liver and your wallet.

However, we wholly understand your need for a tipple from time to time. So, rather than depriving yourself completely, try local drinks which are usually cheaper than beer.

Local transport

Buses will be your main mode of transport. Go for local buses, they’re cheaper and more authentic than tourist buses. In several countries, particularly India, the train is just as cheap, as long as you avoid luxury classes. Domestic flights are generally more expensive. However, in Asia, low-cost flights are sometimes worth a shot.

In countries where the cost of living is low, you can get around by taxi, tuk-tuk or rickshaws without breaking the bank. By reading your guide book and asking around you, you can quickly, and easily, find out the “normal” price for a ride. Setting a price in advance will help you avoid a hefty bill on arrival. Most travellers now use Uber or a local equivalent to avoid bad surprises.

Négocier le tuk tuk

Always agree on a price before getting in.

Sightseeing and activities

Visiting top-rated tourist attractions, going on tours or doing sporty activities like trekking with a guide and diving can quickly make your budget skyrocket.

As soon as you arrive in a new city, your hotel usually offers you activities in partnership with local agencies.

By looking around, you can often skip the agencies and do them by yourself: – sightseeing, visiting a monument, doing a hike or making the most of all kinds of tourist attractions…

Of course, you’ll be the target of what we call “fear marketing”. People will try to convince you that you can’t do it by yourself, that it’s impossible, blah blah blah… Don’t be fooled.

For example, in Nepal, it was very easy for us to to hike the Annapurna Circuit trek without a guide, but with a good map.

Some examples of prices for sightseeing tours and activities:

  • PADI open Water diving lessons in Thailand: £200 ($240 – €230)
  • Guided trek in Nepal: £450 ($550 – €520)
  • Paragliding lessons in Nepal: £250 ($300 – €290)
  • Death Road mountain bike tour in Bolivia: £100 ($120 – €115)
  • Machu Picchu and Huyana Picchu pass: £60 ($75 – €70)
  • 3-day Angkor Wat pass: £40 ($45 – €50)
  • Spanish lesson in Buenos Aires: £130 ($160 – €150) per week
  • Nazca Lines flight tour: £70 ($85 – €80)
  • Salar de Uyuni and Sur Lípez 4×4 tour: £70 ($85 – €80)

Bank charges

Each time you use your bank card to pay or withdraw money abroad, your bank charges you a fee. If you’re with a traditional bank, these fees can go up to £400 ($490 – €470) for a year-long trip.

So, it may be worth opening an online / mobile bank. Some banks offer free withdrawals abroad.

To find out more, take a look at our article on the best debit cards with no foreign transaction fee.

Other expenses whilst travelling

Other expenses may include:

  • Laundry
  • Hairdresser
  • Buying souvenirs and presents
  • Sending packages back home
  • Mobile phone and internet fees
  • Purchasing or replacing equipment in the event of theft, loss or damage
  • Scams
  • Medical fees in the event of an accident or illness (later reimbursed by your travel insurance)

Expenses which continue whilst you're away

We often forget them when budgeting for our round-the-world trip. Certain fees at home don’t stop just because you’re travelling. Remember to leave enough money in your account to avoid going into debt without realising it.

To find out more, take a look at our article on pre-departure paperwork.

Poperty tax

If you own property, you’ll have to pay property tax each year.

Home insurance

If you keep your housing during your travels, you’ll have to continue to pay your home insurance.

Car insurance and vehicle tax

Whilst you’re away, you can register your vehicle as off the road to avoid paying car insurance and vehicle tax.

Mobile phone subscription

When travelling, it’s sometimes useful to have a small phone plan that works internationally. In this way, you can receive calls and OTP codes from your bank by text.

Card / bank account subscription

We advise you to open mobile or online bank accounts and close your traditional bank account to limit fees. Some online banks allow you to withdraw money abroad with no extra fees.

Storage unit

If you’ve left your accommodation and you don’t know anybody who could store your furniture, you can put it in a storage unit. To limit costs, consider peer-to-peer co-storage platforms as they’re cheaper than traditional self-storage units.

Loans

If you have any outstanding for your accommodation, car or education, you’ll need to continue to repay them during your trip. If your contract allows it, you can however ask to suspend the repayment of your credit for the duration of your round-the-world trip.

Private health insurrance

You can suspend your private health insurance if you go overseas. You can drop a year and come back in when you choose. However, the premium can go up or down.

Putting money asside for your return

We advise you to put a little bit of money aside for your return. According to our survey, on average, globetrotters put £1,700 ($2,100 – €2,000) aside for their return.

Our travel budget spreadsheet

Download our travel Budget Tool for free

Subscribe and receive our travel budget tool for free!

To help you estimate your budget before you leave and follow your expenses during your travel, we created the ultimate travel budget spreadsheet.

It’s free if you subscribe to be notified by email when we publish a new article or carry out a survey about travellers’ choices.

We explain in details how to use the spreadsheet below.

Estimated budget

Estimated budget by country

Select the countries you plan on visiting with your arrival and departure dates. Our tool automatically calculates your total estimated budget by country and depending on the number of travellers (adults and children).

The calculation is based on the median budgets that were obtained in our survey.

The degree of reliability of the estimation (which depends on the number of survey respondents) is shown in the table.

You can also choose to increase or decrease your budget in relation to the globetrotters’ median budget so that it reflects the way you travel more accurately. You can also use it to make sure you have a safety allowance.

Budget prévisionnel par pays

A graph is automatically generated to illustrate the breakdown of your budget per country.

Graphique budget par pays

Equipement

We’ve listed all the possible equipment that you might take travelling: bag, clothing, camping gear, toiletry bag, medical supplies, electronics, accessories, paperwork and even kit for the kids. Of course, you don’t need to take it all, but this comprehensive list will ensure that you don’t forget anything.

Select the equipment that you already have and those that you need to buy. Note the quantity, price and unit weight. The tool automatically calculates the total budget and weight of your equipment.

Tableau équipement

Other expenditure items

The spreadsheet also lets you estimate the budget of the following things:

  • International transport (plane, boat, train, bus…)
  • Travel insurance
  • Visas
  • Vaccines
  • Activities
  • Vehicle
  • Expenses which continue whilst you’re away

Tracking your budget whilst on the road

Once on the road, you can continue to use our spreadsheet offline to jot down your expenses as you go from country to country. Note the date, the amount in the local currency and the type of expenditure. The spreadsheet automatically calculates the total expenses in the country and the remaining budget in relation to your estimated budget. It also generates a graph to help you visualise the distribution between the different cost items: accommodation, food, local transport, activities, drinks / going out and shopping.

Suivi des Dépenses

You can also follow:

  • Unexpected expenses on the road (plane ticket purchases or changes, replacing or repairing damaged, lost or stolen equipment, scams…)
  • Bank charges for each withdrawal and card payment

Recap

The recap tab lets you:

  • Visualise the breakdown of your provisional budget
  • Follow the progression of your spending whilst travelling in relation to your budget
  • See a detailed breakdown of your spending whilst travelling

Aside from the number of adults and children, don’t fill in anything on this tab. All other amounts will be automatically calculated when you’ve filled out the following tabs.

Graphiques Budget

How to use it?

For optimal usage, we advise you to use our tool in Google Sheets. It’s just like Excel, but online.

Go to this page. Connect with your Google account if you already have one. If you don’t have one, create one.

Once you’re logged in, drag and drop our file into your Google Sheets space. You can share it and use it with others, which is practical if you’re travelling as a couple or a group. You can also access it on all of your devices: computer, mobile phone, tablet…

Using the spreadsheet offline

During your trip, you’ll be able to use our tool offline by following this tutorial.

Help the globetrotter community

If you have any problem using our spreadsheet or if you have any suggestions for improving it, send us a message. We’ll get back to you quickly, and that’ll allow us to continue improving it for future globetrotters.

If you use it during your trip, it’d be great if you could give us some feedback. This will allow us to be even more precise when estimating future budgets.

Download our travel budget spreadsheet

Download our travel Budget Tool for free

Subscribe and receive our travel budget tool for free!

To help you estimate your budget before you leave and follow your expenses during your travel, we created the ultimate travel budget spreadsheet.

It’s free if you subscribe to be notified by email when we publish a new article or carry out a survey about travellers’ choices.