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Thursday, May 26, 2011

How Much?

I've been asked a number of times how much does it cost to travel by el Camino. So here it is.

For myself I've set a base budget of 30€ per day. During the trip I found out that this is more than enough if you stick to the piligrim routine: light breakfast (~3€), some snacks during the day (bocadillos/sandwitches go for 1-3€), pilgrim menu - two full meals + drinks + dessert (~10€) in the evening and sleep in albuerges (0-12€).

By following the above routine I was actually saving money from my 30€ "allowance".

The things went south when in second part (especially in the end) I went hotel/restaurant happy. Hotel can go from 20€ for a room in trucker shelter (sounds bad but it's still better than any albuerge) to something like 75€ in a nice hotel (I'm assuming only reasonable options). The one I had in Burgos was 75€ and it included full breakfast buffet (absolute rarity in Spain).

Food outside of pilgrim menu. Burgers (see below what passes for a burger in Spanish village) go for 2-3€. Pizza or pasta 5-6€. Bowl of meaty soup 3-5€ and is a good way to stuff yourself. Other hot meals can go from 5€ to 12-15€. The octopus I mentioned in some previous post usually goes for 9-10€. So if you plan to eat out you can easily rack up 15-18€ bill if you don't stick to pilgrim or deal menus.

Most of the villages have drinkable water fountains so you can do away with free drink all of the way.

Vending machines that are there on every corner might also be money monger. Especially if it's a hot day you might be tempted by a cold instant drink. The trouble is that they're significantly overpriced. Small bottle/can of softdrink or juice goes for 1-2€.

Supermarket drinks and food is priced reasonably. However shops are available in bigger towns only. Small villages have only bars and one shop (if any) that is usually closed. (siesta is a sacred thing here)

In the end I counted that my actual budget for 18 days racked up to 40€ per day on average. This includes sleeping a total of 4 nights in hotels (I'm not counting Santiago at all since the trip is officially over), numerous restaurant deviations and semi-uncontrolled vending machine use.

Bottom line is that you should be absolutely fine with 30€/day if you have moderate discipline (it appears I don't) even if you use a hotel once a week or so.


  1. What would be your next challenge? Maybe you will conquer other country next summer? Or maybe you will fight with Alaska breeze? :) This journey met your expectations?

  2. Don't confuse me for some extreme traveler. I just like to run. Next challenge - Riga marathon :)

    This run was a bit harder than I expected but very fullfilling nevertheless.

  3. Congratulations on the finishing that fine journey.
    I just finished Riga marathon. It's great, and every year the better. Maybe next year will more fine. Good luck.

  4. I see food in the picture so what was your favourite dish there in spain? Or you just ate anything ? :)