India budget for travel, you ask? Yep. I love a good budget!
I have already declared my love for budgeting in a previous post, so for those following along at home I won’t repeat myself. If you need a re-fresher on how I go about compiling my budgets, or you missed my post on month #1’s budget completely, have a quick look here to bring you up to speed!
This month saw us completely change directions twice, the first when we were about to leave Udaipur. We had planned on making our way out to Dwarka for some diving, instead after we decided it was just too hot for us, we headed North to Shimla instead. This saw us take a 12 hour train from Udaipur to Delhi, followed by a 10 hour bus up to Shimla. We then tried to go “off the beaten track” and get to Kashmir via a Western route instead of following the tourists up the Leh to Manali highway. We got as far as Chamba when we were told we needed to travel 5 hours South again, before continuing back North.
Now, I don’t know if you’ve ever been on the local buses in Northern India? Well. The feeling is akin to hurtling down a gigantic waterslide, except you’re going up more than down, there’s no water, no fun, there’s a giant cliff dropping off one side, and speeding oncoming traffic threatening to collide with you and send the resultant inferno (with you inside) tumbling down a mountain.So we realized we had a few weeks left of dive season in the Andaman islands, so of course we made the logical decision to travel the entire width of India, in a total transit time of 35 hours, to reach Kolkatta. From here we will be flying to the picturesque, white sand beaches of the Andaman islands!
April 17 to May 16The exchange rate on May 16, 2016, was 48 rupees to an Aussie dollar.
Total in Rupees: 64,246
Total in Australian Dollars: 1,317.35
Average per day in Rupees: 2,141
Average per day in Australian Dollars: 43.90
Total in Rupees: 16,558
Total in Australian Dollars: 339.51
We find a lot of our accommodation here!
Total in Rupees: 25,315
Total in Australian Dollars: 518.97Transport
Total in Rupees: 10,579
Total in Australian Dollars: 216.93
Total in Rupees: 400T
otal in Australian Dollars: 8.20
Water and Snacks:
Total in Rupees: 5,126
Total in Australian Dollars: 105.12
PhoneTotal in Rupees: 2,200
Total in Australian Dollars: 45.11
(We’ve included our laundry, yoga classes, scooter hire, Tibetan bracelets etc in this heading)
Total in Rupees: 4,086
Total in Australian Dollars: 83.79
Once again, if this looks like a tiny amount: I can safely say we actually haven’t said no to that many things. We got a great deal on accommodation in McLeod Ganj (300 rupees per night with a private bathroom!), where we stayed put for almost 2 weeks. And we met Tara’s yoga teacher through some travel buddies so saved money on classes too! We are still eating what and where we want, we have seen the sights we wanted to see, although on this leg of the trip there were far fewer entrance fees to be paid. We have also discovered Uber and Olah in larger cities is MUCH cheaper than most rickhaws! We have found our set budget of $50 per day for the two of us really easy to stick to.
If this budget looks out of your price range: don’t cancel your trip just yet! There are many ways you could save even further if you were a little more determined than us.If you’re game, overnight buses are always cheaper than the trains we have chosen, we actually splurged on 2AC for one of our longer routes this month, and we got ripped off by using a booking agent for the huge journey from Amritsar to Varanasi. If you can handle sleeping in a seat then the buses are a great option (But I’m not talking about the semi-sleeper luxury Volvo buses- those won’t save you cash! I mean the local buses!).If you don’t mind crowds and warm fresh air, you could choose the sleeper class on the train instead of 3AC like we take.
We also still spend a lot of money on food so if you are a light eater, or make better restaurant choices you will save a tone compared to us on foods. We need Wi-Fi and comfortable seats when studying, blogging, and editing photos so we often choose a place that’s a bit more expensive so we have the luxury of nice seating and sometimes even air conditioning with our Wi-Fi connection.
Hopefully this budget series helps you guys. We are both loving and hating India all at once but I really can’t believe it’s been 2 months already!