Philippines Budget 1

How Much Does it Cost to Travel the Philippines?

Philippines Budget 1I’ve had a couple of requests to write a post about how much I spent in the Philippines. I have been very reluctant to actually sit down and face the fact that I was a rubbish budget traveller in the 3 weeks we spent in the Philippines.

We stayed in cushy private rooms, ate out 3 times a day and divulged in nightly cocktail binges.

And the figures ain’t pretty.

But I will confess to you anyway and also give some pointers to my past self about how I could have been more cautious with the pennies…

All prices are per person based on two sharing over 20 days. I calculated the costs at £1=68 php.


Philippines Budget 2We didn’t scrimp on accommodation. We didn’t dorm-hop or stay in many hostels.

Regardless, our nightly average cost of accommodation only came to £8.50 p/p.

Overall I spent £171.50 on accommodation for 20 nights.

The cheapest was £5.80 a night for a 10-bed dorm and the most expensive was £14.70 for a plush place in Boracay.

Philippines Budget 5How I could have saved money: Obviously I could have stayed in more dorm rooms or traded beach front accommodation for something more modest. As it was peak season places booked up quick and prices were hiked up accordingly. Book in advance on sites like Agoda or be prepared to barter hard for longer term stays.

Food and Alcohol

Philippines Budget 4This is the hardest figure to admit to.

As I was totting it all up I simply couldn’t believe it. Well, I kind of could as its me all over…

I spent £425 on food and drink ALONE. Almost half my entire spend.

That’s what eating out in restaurants and bingeing on cocktails does to you! That’s a hard to swallow average of £21.25 a day.

manila sunset cocktailHow I could have saved money: Easily. I worked out that if I ate fried rice 3 times a day then I would have only spent £70.50 over the 20 days. But, I wanted cocktails on the beach and to eat slap-up Filipino fare with my feet in the sand. I ate from food markets and in tiny family-run roadside joints so it wasn’t all fine dining and tiny umbrellas in my drinks. I just like my food ok?!


Philippines Budget 4We took 3 boat trips (Tour A & C in El Nido and the Underground River Tour) as well as hiring a moped for two days.

The boat trips cost a total of £60.30 and the moped for two days was £9.55p/p. This made the overall total for activities a reasonable £69.85.

El Nido moped 7How I could have saved money: If you’re in El Nido then island-hopping is a must. You can sign-up to the ready-made tours like I did or, if you grab yourself a bunch of mates, you can do it solo.

We met a few people who had hired a boat and a captain and created their own blend of Tour A and C. Splitting the costs between a group meant that the cost came to around £6 p/p saving almost £30!


1 Boracay BoatLuckily transport around the Philippines is cheap! The average tricycle ride would set us back £0.73, a single jeepney journey £0.15 and an hour-long metered taxi ride in Manila cost £4.41.

Chuck in 3 internal flights totaling £82.28, a return journey to Boracay from Kalibo for £17.65 and Puerto Princesca to El Nido and back for £16.17 and various terminal fees of £17.64 for a grand total of £155.61.

Philippines Budget 7How I could have saved money: I kept transport costs cheap and to a minimum. I spent a lot of time walking or travelling as the locals did and got a the internal flights for a steal! If you’re planning on booking internal flights in the Philippines book in advance. Also, only take hand-luggage and you can score flights for as low as £15 one way.


Philippines Budget 3We had some unexpected costs such as £10.29 on suncream and £1.50 on sun-hats. We also splashed £1.40 on a litre of local rum, funded my Buko addiction spending £22.20 over the 20 days and keeping ourselves hydrated with £29.40 worth of water.

This all came to £64.79.

Philippines Budget 8How I could have saved money: I could have risked bringing the suncream I left in Manila. I thought that there might be a 100ml rule for internal flights but not so! Suncream on the islands was really hard to hunt down and very expensive.

I’ve heard that there are clean water taps on Boracay and El Nido which are free or a very minimal cost which I will make the most of next time!

The Overall Cost

Philippines Budget 9So after 20 days in the Philippines I spent a grand total of £960.08.

Yup, it’s more than I had anticipated and I definitely could have spent a lot less. But would I change it? Nope.

As an introduction to my new #gaplife, living the life of luxury in the Philippines was perfect. Lazing around on beaches, sipping on coconuts and slipping into a clean, comfy bed every night was bliss!

When I inevitably return to the Philippines I’ll be more budget conscious (promise). It’s definitely possible and will be just as fun. Just you wait!

Have you been to the Philippines? Did you stick to a budget? Let me know in the comments below or via my social media pages.



9 thoughts on “How Much Does it Cost to Travel the Philippines?

  1. rushtri0055 says:

    Thanks for sharing. Sometimes I feel like if we try to restrict ourselves too much money wise we end up simply feeling frustrated, counting every penny. There are areas to save always but I’m sure that local rum went down great and those memories of drinks on the beach will stay with you all of your days.
    Have fun and make the most of every moment out there! God bless!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Traveling With Teahl says:

    It’s great that you realize how much you spent (even though it was hard to admit it). But you give good insight as to what you did and how people can actually afford a trip to the Philippines. Great advice!


  3. Ashley Baxter says:

    Thanks for sharing with such detail! Planning to visit this area within the year and the details you shared on cost are quite helpful. I’m shocked to see that your accommodations were so reasonable.


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