Thailand has long been a popular destination for couples and families – but even more so for backpackers who want to travel Bangkok on a budget. After all, the capital of Thailand has something for everyone: fiery cuisine, temples, grand palaces, lively markets and more.
In fact, with a budget of P25,000, there’s so much you can do, see, eat, and buy in Bangkok for 5 days. So here you go, here’s everything you need to know before you travel Bangkok on a budget:
1. Airfare: Months before your intended travel period, be on the lookout for promo airfares. Travelers can save as much as 70% off by booking several months ahead via budget airlines. The savings you’ll get from purchasing promo fares is pretty substantial, and will come in handy for pocket money.
As of the time of writing, Traveloka currently has roundtrip flights to Bangkok for P11,500 via Cebu Pacific.
2. Hotel: Bangkok has hundreds of options for budget accommodations. It’s easy to get overwhelmed by the sheer selection of affordable hostels and hotels. If you don’t mind sharing the room with other travelers, book a hostel dorm room.
Bangkok also has several great options for private rooms and inexpensive hotels around the city. Khao San Road is the most popular area for backpackers, so you can get pretty good deals in this area.
Travel Bangkok on a Budget: Hostel Recommendations
1. The Overstay Hostel, Thonburi
P179 per night; Total cost: P716
2. VX The Fifty Hostel, Sukhumvit 50
P244 per night; Total cost: P976
3. Flying Cow, Khao San Road
P330 per night; Total cost: P1,320
4.MonkeyNap Hostel, Sukhumvit 30
P345 per night; P1,380
5. 1989 Hostel and Cafe, Sukhumvit 22
P383 per night; Total P1,532
3. Food and Drink: The abundance of mouthwatering, freshly cooked street food is one of the major tourist draws and is perfect for people who plan to travel Bangkok on a budget. Thai cuisine is legendary for its flavors and varieties, at pocket-friendly prices to boot. But be warned: Thai dishes have copious amounts of chili!
Almost every street has outdoor stalls serving up street food for as low as P50 a dish, at all hours of the day. Try the papaya salad (som tam), noodles with shrimp (pad thai), chicken or pork skewers (gai or moo bing), oyster omelette (hoy tod), and mango sticky rice (khao new ma muang).
Estimated Food Costs for 5 Days: P3,500
4. Transportation: Travel Bangkok on a budget by using their skytrains which are easy to navigate and extremely efficient. Fares start at P21 per stop, so it would0n’t cost much if you’re just traveling around the city.
The trains don’t stop at all of Bangkok’s major attractions so you can use a taxi upon alighting at a station. You could also take the scenic route with the Saen Saep Express Boat or the Chao Phraya Express Boat; fares for both boats starts at P15.
A must-try form of transportation is the three-wheeled Tuk tuk – though, it’s more of a “try it once, no need to again” kind of ride. Tuk tuk literally translates to “cheap” but if you aren’t good at haggling or negotiating prices, you may end up paying more than you would for an air-conditioned taxi.
Estimated Train Costs for 5 Days: P172
Estimated Taxi Costs for 5 Days: P430
5. Shopping: Do your shopping at the markets instead of the malls. The Chatuchak Weekend Market is the mother of all markets; there are hundreds of stalls selling everything from vibrant textiles, vinyl records, furniture, food, and so much more at unbelievably low prices.
The Train Night Market is smaller than Chatuchak but has the same great finds for accessories, clothing, and souvenirs; although it can get pretty hectic as it collides with Bangkok’s rush hour. You should also go to Platinum Fashion Mall or Pratunam Wholesale Market where you can get great discounts if you buy 3 pieces of clothing or more from the same vendor.
Estimated Shopping Costs for 5 Days: P5,000
6. Sightseeing: Majestic shrines and temples are the most famous attractions in Bangkok. In fact, there are more than 400 of them throughout the city. The temples you shouldn’t miss include: Temple of Emerald Buddha (P575 per head), Temple of the Reclining Buddha (P145 per head) and Wat Arun (P70 per head).
Estimated Sightseeing Costs for 5 Days: P790
After a trip to Bangkok, you’ll understand why people keep coming back. The hustle and bustle is enough to keep you busy exploring the city days on end.
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