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Cheapest Countries To Travel To In 2018 That Are Backpacker Friendly

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Cheapest Countries To Visit In 2018

If you are like me and basically plan your next destination based on what the most affordable countries to travel in are, then this post is for you. Seriously, if I had a dollar for each time I googled “cheapest countries to visit”, “affordable destinations to travel to” or “backpacker friendly countries” I would have enough money to fund my travels in those more expensive countries such as France, basically just so I can eat all the cheese.

But, until then I will keep marking off the cheapest countries off my must visit list. So here is the cheapest countries that are backpacker friendly round up for 2018!




Sri Lanka

I feel like India is on every single cheapest countries list, so I decided to mix it up and add in Sri Lanka instead. This teardrop shaped island is located off the southern coast of India, so it is super accessible and can also be easily reached thanks to cheap flights from Kuala Lumpur.

With rolling green hills, tea plantations, urban cities, surf beaches and wildlife safaris Sri Lanka seriously has something for everyone. It is a cheap country to travel to with backpacker hostels in all main towns and transport is crazy cheap! Enjoy some of the best meals of your life while sipping a beer on the beach.

Remember not to miss the gorgeous train journey between Ella and Kandy.

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Guatemala

The popular backpacking destination of Guatemala is no doubt one of the cheapest countries in the world. You will be sure to find plenty other like minded people traveling on a budget and exploring this picturesque country.

Grab your meals to local restaurants called Comedores, order the ‘meal of the day’ at restaurants and eat cheap street foods. Taking chicken buses to get around rather than private transport will also cut down on costs. Though, watch to see what the locals are paying so you don’t get ripped off.

With stunning locations such as Semuc Champey, Flores and Tikal you will sure be in awe of this amazing cheap country!

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Portugal

One of the cheapest coutries to travel to in Western Europe is no doubt Portugal. This country borders Spain and the Atlantic Ocean, so has amazing culture and equally as amazing beaches.

The prices of a hostel bed are super affordable, especially when considering Portugal’s location in the more pricier part of the world. You will be able to find cheap food in bakeries and intercity public transport is super affordable. Also if you are confident enough give couchsurfing a try. There is an excellent couchsurfing community in Portugal and it is a great way to experience how the locals live.

Lastly, like the majority of Europe, thanks to budget airlines it is super affordable to travel to Portugal.

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South Africa

Who knew South Africa is considered one of the cheapest countries to visit in 2018, especially for such a developed country. Well, thanks to affordable accommodation, a well worn backpacker scene and cheap alcohol (and free wine tastings) it has resulted in South Africa being one of the cheapest countries to travel to as well as being extremely backpacker friendly.

One of the best things to do in Africa is going on a safari to see the big five, though with park fees and tours prices can quickly add up. Thankfully South Africa is the perfect place for finding affordable safaris, ensuring you are able to tick off those animals for your list (check out Tour Radar to find cheap group tours).


TourRadar

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Morocco

One of the most beautiful destinations which often appears in the cheapest countries lists is Morocco. From the Sarah Desert to the surf beaches and the mountains, Morocco is an affordable destination which will keep you amazed by the changing landscapes.

With beautiful and surprisingly affordable Riads to stay in you will be feeling like royalty as you fall asleep each night. Make sure to try the street food with delicious kefta meat and kebabs you certainly will not be going hungry!

Thanks to regularly flights from all around Europe you could be exploring a country in a whole new continent without having to spend that much money!

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Laos

Laos is a super up and coming country, slowly growing in popularity and making its mark within the South East Asia banana pancake backpacking trail.

Even though Laos is a land locked country you will have no problem finding the perfect place for a swim. From the Mekong River which flows straight past Luang Prabang to the beautiful blue lagoons which are dotted around Vang Vieng and the amazing Kuang Si Falls, you will be spoiled for choice in activities that will help beat the heat.

As Laos is was colonized by the French prepare yourself for deliciously cheap baked goods and baguettes. I highly recommend checking out the Luang Prabang night market for the best danishes of your life!

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Indonesia

Indonesia is not doubt one of the most affordable countries to travel to in 2018. As well as being cheap it is also super stunning with surf beaches, rice paddies sprawling metropolises and beautiful islands. Your time in Indonesia will for sure be one to remember.

Thanks to cheap and delicious street food, super affordable backpacker hostels and the low cost to hire a motorbike, it is no doubt Indonesia is a backpackers paradise. You can even find yourself in a private bungalow for the same price as a hostel bed in Western Europe!

Just remember to eat local and get away from the touristy destinations. Staying in touristy Bali and eating at restaurants catering for western tourist will result in you breaking the bank!




Booking.com


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Hungary

The picture perfect and one of the cheapest countries in Eastern Europe is Hungary. The capital Budapest is a beautiful fairy tale looking city with an excellent backpacker scene and super affordable hostels, at least by European standards. The street food is absolutely delicious and cheap. Though, if you are wanting to eat out at a restaurant there are plenty of budget options in a wide range of cuisines that wont break the bank.

Hungary has really been put on the map in the past couple years, securing its place on the European backpacker trail and thanks to its affordable prices even has a large expat community.

Hungary is also super accessible and you can find cheap flights there from nearly all major hubs in Europe. I book my cheap flights using Skyscanner!

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Nepal

Nepal is known as the cheapest country in the world and because of this it has an excellent backpacker scene. Hostels are in all major towns and if you are getting off the beaten track you will be able to find an affordable guesthouse with no issue.

The perfect country for the adventurous, Nepal will keep you constantly busy. Whether that is exploring a new city, hiking or checking out rhinos in the amazing Chitwan National Park. Home of the Himalayas and one of the best trekking scenes it is the perfect place to do shopping, with knock off Patagonia and North Faces clothing for cheap.

If you are wanting to hike in the Himalayas I highly recommend the Annapurna Circuit. It wont break the budget unlike the Everest Base Camp trek and the views are equally amazing thanks to the Annapurna Himalayas. You can even find yourself free tea houses to spend the night at, which these days even have wifi!

Make sure you try the cheesy momos and some delicious Indian curries. To say I ate well in Nepal would be an understatement.

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Greece

With the famous Santorini and Athens, the European country of Greece is certainly more on the pricier side of the cheapest countries to travel scale. Though, nonetheless is can be surprisingly affordable, especially in comparison to the nearby Croatia and Italy.

Food will be your saving grace here is Greece and will certainly help you keep your costs down. You can find $1.00 gyros nearly everywhere, which will easily keep you going until the next meal. Just remember to splash out on a delicious gelato every now and then! Backpacker Hostels can be surprisingly affordable, even in the wanderlust destination of Santorini (though book a flight instead of a ferry to save money).

If you are thinking of booking flights to Greece check out Sky Scanner to find the best possible price. I recommend checking ‘entire month’ when inputting your date, as changing your flight dates by a couple days can make a surprisingly large difference!

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Egypt

Having unfortunately decreased in popularity in current years thanks to the situations in nearby countries, the cheap country of Egypt has unfortunately fallen off the radar a bit.

Luckily prices here are crazy cheap and I highly recommend you pay this amazingly cheap country a visit. Book in at the Pyramids Loft in Cairo with a rooftop view over looking the Great Pyramids of Giza for as little as $20.00 per night for a single room. Egypt is a place where you will get a lot of value for your money. The prime example of this is the entry fee to the Great Pryamids only costing around $4.00!

If you are wanting to backpack Egypt, but don’t feel comfortable doing it as a solo traveler, I highly recommend checking out Tour Radar and their Egypt tours. There are so many options which are SUPER affordable, with luxurious excursions and hotel stays.


TourRadar

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Cuba

Having become a lot more accessible in the past year, Cuba is welcoming travelers and sharing their amazing culture. This is why it has been added to the cheapest countries for 2018 list. Prices are currently affordable, though being a growing destination which has dramatically increased in popularity, the costs are beginning to reflect this.

Enjoy the sun, sand, cigars and vintage cars as you explore this amazing country. Check out the Paladres for cheap eats and great food, which will be a great relief to your budget as accommodation prices in Cuba are on the rise.

Though, do what the locals do, by speaking Spanish and bargaining, drinking rum instead of fancy cocktails and stay away from the touristy areas.

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Cheapest Countries That Are Backpacker Friendly To Visit In 2018

So which countries will you be traveling to in 2018 and do you have any other recommendations ?

Let me know in the comments below if any of these destinations are on your list for the cheapest countries to visit in ? I know I will be exploring at least another four countries on the above list, on top of those which I have already traveled to. So maybe I will just see you there!


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Photos: Featured Image, Sri Lanka, Guatemala, Portugal, South Africa, Morocco, Indonesia, Hungary, Greece, Egypt and Cuba are free to use stock photographs from Unsplash. Unfortunately, as I am yet to visit all these destinations I need to source required photographs. 


 

  • Kristina Unta Rogić

    Great list, I just came back from Hungary. Visited Cuba earlier this year, they do know how to take your money. 🙂

  • Krista

    You’ve just added some many destinations to my bucket list! Thank you! THANK YOU for this! love it so much! I am dying to get to Cuba and Egypt!

  • I’m going to be back in India beginning January 2018 and cannot wait to head to Nepal, Laos, and Sri Lanka. Just have to figure out how to work them all into my schedule, but happy to hear they’re going to be budget friendly trips (my wallet took a beating from all the travel I did this year!)

  • Your Local Foreigner

    Wow! So many great places! I am just like you in that I literally choose travel destinations based on price. I am excited to continue my adventures by adding some of these places to my list! Cheers!

  • Sheree Strange

    Perfect list!! Round of applause from me 🙂 Hungary was kind of the surprise addition, I hadn’t really considered it as an affordable destination before, so grateful for the insight! Indonesia is having a bit of a rough trot at the moment (with the volcano etc.) – once that’s resolved, it’ll be the best time to book, as prices will be as low as possible to entice the visitors to keep coming back. I know my husband is super eager to get to Greece (good to know it will likely be more affordable than I thought), but I’m more keen on Sri Lanka! Guess we’ll have to compromise and do both 😉 hahaha. Thanks again!

  • Well, it looks like I have a new list! Most of these places were already on my list and not because they were budget. Actually, I didn’t think of South Africa as budget at all! Time to reconsider. Great list, thanks for posting!

  • A speck in time

    this is a great list, though some entries surprised me. Sri Lanka, South Africa and Greece are certainly very tempting. Just came back from Nepal.

  • Madhu Sharma

    This is an interesting list. And I am happy to see Greece here as it’s in my bucket list for sure. Thanks for sharing 😊

  • I have been to Hungary and Laos, all the rest will go straight on the list haha! Loving the post and what amazing pictures, thanks for sharing <3

  • Liz

    I don’t know which one to choose, so many of those have been on my bucket list for a very long. Going to Budapest in 10 days!

  • Lindsey Messenger

    So many of these are already on my list! But I love having them all in one place. I also love seeing more photos. After traveling to Paris this fall I definitely need a more adventurous/cheap location to go to next year. Or more than once if I can! 🙂

  • I’m so happy to find a few countries I want to visit on this list! Hope that means it is going to happen!

  • Aaaah this list is giving me such itchy feet!! So many places to choose from! I’m heading to Morocco in the new year so I’m glad to know it’s not going to break the bank. Totally agree about Sri Lanka, but South Africa really surprised me! Great list, saving for future travels!

  • Roxanne Weijer

    Love this, good to know where to go next time! Super inspiring and love the pictures. They are beautiful.

  • UnaVeronicaVagante

    This post is INSANE! I want to pack everything and leave right now!
    Great photos, stunning places ♥

  • Anisa Alhilali

    I was in Portugal earlier this year and I was really pleasantly surprised with how cheap it was. Also, I am surprised that Vietnam didn’t make your list?

  • Mille Mirah Seiersen

    I was in Indonesia a couple of months ago and it was so cheap! I was very pleasantly surprised! Great post!

  • Lynne Nieman

    Great list with some nice variety. I’ve only been to Greece once (and it was just Santorini) but keep thinking I need to get back and explore more of it.

  • Leigh

    Interesting list! I’m not a budget traveler or backpacker, but I still like these lists as I know I can get “luxury for less” in these destinations!

  • Laura

    Such a helpful post! I’ve noticed so many cheap deals for Morocco recently, very tempted to go 🙂 xx

  • Sarah

    Just came from Portugal this October and can attest that it was very affordable, for Western Europe. Still blew my budget, but I was eating extravagantly every single night because the food was just too yummy!

  • Awesome list! South Africa is a surprise, I didn’t really consider it a budget destination. I want to visit quite a few of these! (South Africa included!)

  • Always love your posts and photos! Good thing I have tickets for a few of these places already this year 🙂

    Xx, Eleonore

  • So many great countries on this list that I would love to go to! Another thing that I think helps is being able to travel Monday through Friday instead of Friday to Sunday for cheaper travel. Flights and accommodation are almost always cheaper that way!

  • Ellie

    Awesome! Adding some of these to my list for sure… Sri Lanka was already up there but I wanna go even more now!

  • Thanks for compiling this list! I was quite surprised to find European countries on the guide, but it’s great that the list is a global mix of destinations..

  • Taylor

    Yes! I absolutely love this list! I have visited everywhere but Morocco and that is conveniently the next trip that I am planning for 2018! Such an incredible compilation of countries! Absolutely gorgeous photos as well!

  • thecurioussparrow

    Great post, just in time for 2018 holiday planning! Thanks for sharing 🙂

  • Anna WouldBTraveller

    How have I never heard of the banana pancake backpacking trail before? It sounds right up my street!
    Thanks so much for sharing this list – I’ve been guilty of booking destinations regardless of price recently but I need to think about my budget in 2018!

  • ChandrimaChakraborty

    Tasha, have you visited all of these countries? Which one is your favorite?😊

  • Nana Halager Mikkelsen

    I love your pictures! and you are right with Indonesia – if you stay away from the touristic cities it can be quite cheap.

  • Julia Art

    I was already in Indonesia, Hungary and Portugal… South Africa would be interesting!

  • Savannah Ivy

    This is a great list! I would have never guessed South Africa would be on the list! And Nepal, oh I want to go there! Thanks for sharing!

  • Christine

    Great and informative post!!! So many great places to visit! I’m going to Cuba in January and CANT WAIT!!!

  • Tanmaya Godbole

    This is such a cool list!!! And there are so many countries on here that I really want to visit 🙂
    Thanks for putting together a very detailed list!

  • Taryn

    I had no idea South Africa was an inexpensive country! I’ve always wanted to travel to Africa, and now it’s even higher on my list.

  • Katelyn Brin Bossany

    I had no idea Hungary was one of the cheapest places to travel to. It’s been on my list forever, so I’m hoping I can check it off in 2018 now.

  • Janine DeVault

    I love this post! It’s a happy coincidence that almost all of these countries are near the top of my “To-travel” list! Guatemala is gorgeous, but the chicken buses can be a little scary on the narrow, cliffside highways. When I was there I commented to a local that Guatemalan drivers must be very talented not to crash. He informed me that crashes are actually not that rare :O Ack!!! Buuut, it IS the best way to get around!

  • What gorgeous photos!! I’ve been to most of these countries but not all. I’d love to tick off the rest of them, especially Nepal and South Africa.

  • Roneth Politud

    This list is amazing!! Hoping to visit some of these countries next year. Thanks for sharing.

  • Rowena Li

    Love this list, currently in Nepal and considering Laos in January if I have the time!

  • I love Portugal and Morocco! Well worth a visit!!

  • meljc

    I’m glad to see Greece and Portugal on the list! We’re planning to finish our trip around the world in those two countries 😀

  • Vanessa Day

    I’m seriously thinking about a trip to Egypt next year, and I’m glad to see it on this list. Pretty much all of these destinations are on my list, and it’s good to know they will be friendly to my wallet.

  • Dani Elle Benjamin

    Such a great list! Thanks for sharing!

  • Susan

    Perfect timing! Just working on some plans for 2018! Great list 🙂

  • Ashfina Charania

    What a great way to plan 2018 already 🙂 Thanks for sharing

  • What an awesome list you have! I would love to visit every single one of them. The image you have for Egypt is not Egypt but Granada, Spain.

  • Iga Agata Motylska

    What an awesome list — all these years later Sri Lanka is still one of my favourite countries! 🙂