Cuba is the country of rum, rhythm and romance and an intriguing travel destination. David Beattie visited Cuba during his longterm backpacking trip in Central America and noted down all his Cuba expenses for Bunch of Backpackers (Thank you David!). Take a look at his overview of costs to travel in Cuba and his budget tips.
Find the post in Dutch here.
This article is part of the Money Matters series in which we ask travelers to keep their expenses for Bunch of Backpackers. Real travelers, real expenses.
COSTS 19-DAY CUBA TRIP*: 590 EURO (802 USD)
DAILY TRAVEL EXPENSES*: 31 EURO (42 USD)
*These daily travel expenses are per one person per day. Including all tours, domestic flights, souvenirs, lodging, food, drinks, entrance fees, tips etc. Excluding international flights.
EXAMPLES OF PRICES IN CUBA:
These prices are per person unless stated otherwise.
Standard Cuba expenses
One night in a hostel dormitory: 8 euro (10,9 USD)
One night in a double room in a simple guesthouse: 14,70 euro (19,9 USD)
A short 10-minute taxi ride: 3,2 euro (4,4 USD)
A bottle of water (0,5L) at the store: 0,44 euro (0,5 USD)
A local beer at a bar/restaurants: 1,10 euro (1,4 USD)
A glass of coca cola in a restaurant: 0,5 euro (0,7 USD)
Basic lunch at a local restaurant: 0,9 euro (1,2 USD)
Dinner at a local restaurant: 1 euro (1,4 USD)
Notable Cuba expenses
Double hotel room in Varadero: 50 euro (68 USD) (all inclusive with food and alcohol)
A 40-minute taxi ride from Havana airport: 18,40 euro (25 USD)
Cuba departure tax: 18,40 euro (25 USD)
Examples of other Cuba prices
25-pack of genuine Cohiba cigars: 60 euro (81,6 USD)(nog bought by David)
70 cl of Havana Club Seleccion de Maestros: 70 euro (95 USD)(not bought by David)
SOME DETAILS ON THIS TRIP:
About the backpackers: David Beattie
Destination and travel period: Cuba in May 2014 for 19 days.
Visited places: Havana, Trinidad and Varadero
Type of trip: Independently and solo.
Accommodation: budget (mainly hostels and guesthouses)
Transportation: luxe (taxi’s, private cars and first class public transportation)
Food: budget (local places and cheap western places)
Exchange rate at the time of travel: 1 CUC = 0,74 euro
Cuba budget tips by David!
- There is a separate, local currency called the moneda nacional. You can change your tourist CUC´s into this and eat 40 cent pizzas, 2 cent ice creams and smoke 2 cent cigars.
- Finding other people to share taxis with can work out cheaper than taking the bus. A taxi from Havana to Trinidad cost the same price as 3 people taking the bus, and it is 1.5 hours faster.
- Many people will try and scam you on the streets. Same rule applies here, as with any country, if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is. Don´t let it upset you. Many people just want to talk. So be polite.
- There is no Buena Vista Social Club festival, and even if there is, don´t be naive enough to think that you happened to be lucky enough to be in town on that very day.
- Do your research before you arrive. The internet is expensive and generally inaccessible.
- If you are on your own, and want to meet people, stay at one of the few dorms in Havana.
- The girls in Casa de la Musica in Havana aren´t interested in you for your personality.
- A great, cheap night can be held on the beautiful Malecon at Havana´s seafront. An $8 bottle of dark rum, a $1.50 bottle of cola and a bit of Spanish will save you money on the bars, and you will get a truly authentic Cuban experience.
“Lastly, regardless of budgets, Cuba is amazing, and should be visited sooner rather than later.” – David Beattie
Have you been to Cuba? Can you relate to these expenses?
Or continue to the other articles of the Money Matters series!