How we spent $15 a day in Laos

We always try to travel on a budget but from past experience we had found Laos a lot more expensive than Thailand.  This time we wanted to make our money go further but also have some splurges such as coffee.  We didn’t set ourselves a goal and are quite surprised we each spent $15 a day in Laos.

On our recent trip to Savannakhet in Laos we managed to keep our expenses down to $30 US a day for the two of us – that’s right $15 USD each per day.

Keep in mind we didn’t have any onwards travel in Laos or else the price of the bus tickets would need to be factored in.  Leaving from the market are also Songtaows which would be cheaper than buses.

A break-down of our expenses

Here is a break down of our expenditure for our trip to Savannakhet Laos to hopefully help you see how achievable it is to travel in South East Asia.

ItemUnit PriceTotal for 2 ppl
Bus Mukdahan to Savannakhet50 baht100 baht
Joli Guesthouse
100,000 kip
2 baguettes for dinner6,000 kip12,000 kip
2 baguettes for lunch
7,000 kip14,000 kip
Vivanouk Homestay
175,000 kip
Coffee at Pilgrim’s Cafe13,000 kip
Bag of coffee from Pilgrim’s Cafe40,000 kip
Water4,000 kip8,000 kip
Vietnamese coffee at Savan Cafe

14,000 kip
Chinese noodles for dinner
15,000 kip30,000 kip
2 baguettes for breakfast 5,000 kip10,000 kip
Water4,000 kip
Coffee at 12cafe13,000 kip26,000 kip
Vietnamese lunch
15,000 kip45,000 kip
Bus to Mukdahan50 baht100 baht

What we drank

In the table above you’ll see that sometimes we shared a coffee.  This enabled us to visit 3 different cafes while we were there for basically only 2 days. 
We also made use of the free water that the cafes provided.

Eating out 

You might notice we didn’t go to any fancy restaurants.  Last time we went to Savannakhet we ate at Lin’s Cafe which was very delicious as well as Pilgrim’s Kitchen.  The meals were great but this time we didn’t have the budget for it so we looked for meals that were 15,000 kip a plate.  You’ll notice on our last day we ate at the Vietnamese Restaurant where we ended up ordering 3 plates of food. It was delicious and it kept us going on our long bus trip back through Thailand and so we only needed a snack when we got to our hotel that night.
We ate lots of baguettes and our first hotel provided free breakfast in the form of baguette and fried egg.

Getting around

We walked everywhere.   We had to visit the Thai Consulate so we gave ourselves plenty of time to walk and felt like it was a good walk although it did take us 40 minutes from the town area.  It saved us quite a lot though.  The tuktuks wanted to charge us 200 baht for a short distance.

Tell us what you think in the comments below.  Maybe you don’t like to drink hot coffee so you would have spent that money on a nice burger or pizza?

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How we spent $15 a day in Laos
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