MEXICO vs. SPAIN | Our weekly cost of budget travel

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Hello, Amigos. Welcome back to our channel. If you’re new here, my name is Maddie, this is Jordan. We are an American couple, who in January of 2018 decided to sell everything that we owned to start traveling through Mexico. We’ve been traveling across the country now for almost 2 years and recently we decided to expand our travels to other places in the world. That is what led us to… Barcelona. After putting out our video about Things That Shocked Us About Barcelona, we got lots of questions about how much things cost there. What did one week in Barcelona cost? So we’re gonna start off this video by talking about how much a week in Barcelona cost and then, continue by comparing that to a couple of popular destinations in Mexico. Also, we got a flood of comments asking how on God’s earth did we get a $180 round-trip tickets to Barcelona considering Shh…it’s a secret. (giggles) Most of the time, those type of tickets cost like $500, or $1,000, or even more than that sometimes. So, by the end of this video, we are going to share our little trick that we found, to get those tickets. So, make sure to stick around. And since we’re working with several different currencies in this video, for the sake of simplicity, we’re just going to put everything in US dollars. Pretty much all the money we spent in Barcelona was on 4 things: Cell service, (Phone Service) restaurants, (Food and drink) Transportation and lodging. So, after our insane days of traveling to get to Barcelona, we got to the airport where there was no cost for the visas for us coming as US citizens to Spain and our first priority was getting cellular service since our Mexico plans don’t work over there. For 2 SIM cards and an exorbitant amount of data, for a one month package, that was the smallest package they offered – that was $55. So before we got there, we asked our Airbnb host what’s the best way to get there from the airport, and they said the AeroBus. So, it’s a bus that goes from the airport pretty much all over the city, I think. Each way $13 for the two of us ($26 USD). Beyond that, we took the metro once? So 2 tickets for $5? Total. Other than that, we walked everywhere. We chose Specifically a rental that was in a central location so that we could walk, but we were trying to sort of pinch pennies any place we could… boy oh boy! Did I have blisters on my feet from walking so much? (Laughs) They were huge! Oh my gosh. They were the worst blisters I’ve ever had, but we did save money, so, there’s that. [Laughter] This next one is the biggest category, what we spent the most money on while we were in Barcelona, and that is food, and drinks, and coffee, and water, and snacks! While we were there, we were dealing with the worst jet lag of all time, It was horrible. So that was a huge contributing factor to us eating only 2 meals a day. The other part was, of course, food is freaking expensive and we just like couldn’t afford to eat 3 square meals a day. I guess you could say. [Laughter] So, to start off with, we would have breakfast and those meals which included a coffee for me and a juice or a smoothie for you in addition to our breakfast plate averaged $26 (USD) per day. And then, our other meal of the day was dinner and that was the most expensive thing. It averaged to $35 a day. You were often getting a tea with your dinner, I was often getting table wine – which is one of the cheapest things that you can find in the entire city. And if we ever felt like we needed a little something extra, we had a snack that we would buy from a local store or something like that And that averaged to about $4 a day, also Included the water that we bought. Like potable drinking water. (Laska talking) I know! Is that what you think? This is Laska saying hello. [Laska talking] [Humans and Laska talking to each other] [Laughter] And these cost, by the way, are us sort of like bargain shopping around a little bit – like going from restaurant to restaurant, getting an idea of what the prices are and choosing some of the lower end ones. Like we realize that the Gothic quarter is a very expensive area, so we weren’t just going to the first place we found. Yeah, we went to quite a few restaurants, looked at the menu and it was like, Nope! Can’t afford that! We are out of here! (Laughter) So, in total, over the course of 7 days, we spent $455 (USD) on food and drinks, averaging $65 (USD) a day. So, our next biggest expense was lodging (Airbnb) and we stayed for 6 nights, for a total of $428 (USD), which works out to just over $71 a night. So, what do you get for $71 (USD) a night? Well, we had looked at hotels at first and those were really expensive. So, we went over to our favorite good old Airbnb and what this Airbnb ended up being was one room, in a shared apartment with a total of 4 rooms. Everyone sharing one bathroom. It wreaked of human urine and gasoline or who even knows what else! The most shining feature about it was that it’s in a great walkable location and for the second half of our… I’m not even going to get into the fact that we were given the wrong room at first, but for the second half of our week, we got the cool balcony where we could people watch. Which we were supposed to have. We were supposed to have the entire time. But yeah, so $71 a night gets you a very low-end Airbnb. Please don’t ask for the link. It’s not in the description. We’re not going to share it with you in a comment. This listing was terrible. We do not recommend it at all. Airbnb, we do recommend, this just happens to be probably one of the worst that we’ve ever stayed at. Yeah. And based on the hotels we were looking at, to get a decent hotel in the location we wanted in Barcelona, you’re looking at $200 to $250 a night. You can get cheaper, but you have to get away from the desirable areas – tourist attractions and whatnot. As we’re traveling, we are very thankful these days that we have a VPN when we’re on Airbnb Wi-Fi and public Wi-Fi, because it is so easy for someone to swipe your data, swipe your passwords, and get your bank account information. Your data is not safe. Otherwise, there’s one that we particularly recommend and that’s going to be TangerineVPN.com (clickable link below). And we like to watch things like US Netflix while living in Mexico, so a VPN protects us and allows us to do that. Whether you’re a traveler or you just want to keep your information safe, we definitely recommend getting a VPN. Our favorite one again is going to be TangerineVPN.com. Since we’re affiliates of this company, if you follow that link and sign up, we will get a portion of the sales. So, thank you, because that helps us to continue producing videos just like this. So, our total expenses (1 Week Total Expenses) in Barcelona were $969 (USD) – that does not include the cost of getting there, but that’s everything else – every last dime that we spent. Ouch! And you might notice that we didn’t pay anything for tours or attractions, that’s because we knew this was going to be an extremely expensive trip and we wanted to sort of cut costs wherever we could. So, for instance, when we went to Güell Park, The park with Gaudí’s architecture and it’s a huge tourist attraction in the city. We could have paid 10 euros each to go inside the centre to see all of the buildings and everything there, but we ultimately decided we want to spend our money elsewhere and it’s already getting to be a pretty expensive trip, so we forwent those things. Yeah, and then there was the option of that double-decker city tour bus and that was almost 30 euros a person, I think. Some of that stuff gets pretty pricey. It’s pretty comparable prices too on Airbnb. You can have experiences. You can take Airbnb experiences and those were generally upwards of $50, more like $80 to $100 to $200 a person. So, how is a one-week trip to Barcelona going to compare to expenses of going to somewhere in Mexico for a week? Well, it’s an entire country, so we can’t really compare a city to an entire country. So, we selected two cities for specific reasons. One, Playa del Carmen because it’s a very popular tourist destination and it’s one of the most expensive cities in the country as is Barcelona in Spain and secondly; Guadalajara, because it’s a colonial city like Barcelona is, so there’re a lot of similarities – but it’s about the average priced city in Mexico. If you’re enjoying this video so far, please be sure to subscribe to our channel, so you can see more travel videos that we create and be sure to stick around because pretty soon we’ll be telling you how we got flights to Barcelona for so cheap! This is how to get cheap flights anywhere! First up, cell service. So if you’re coming to Mexico, this is going to be the same no matter where you’re going. So, we have Telcel and if you want to get Telcel for 2 people, that’s going to be $18 and that includes two SIM cards Next up is transportation. To get from the Cancun Airport to Playa del Carmen, you’re looking at $22 for 2 people one way – $44 total. And since everything in the heart of Playa del Carmen is highly walkable, you don’t have any other transportation costs because you’ll be walking everywhere. In Guadalajara. You can actually use Uber. Yay Uber. Our favorite, and for your ride to and from the airport and your rides around town during the week We estimate that’s going to cost about $55. Guadalajara is a huge city, so for the purposes for our example, we have you staying in Colonia Americana which is a very popular neighborhood to stay – very close to Avenida Chapultepec – lots of bars and restaurants. It is walkable to an extent, but you’re probably going to want to check out other things within the… Don’t you interrupt me Laska! [Laughter] Probably going to want to check out other things within the city which you will need Uber or some other form of transportation. Uber’s are incredibly cheap in Guadalajara (30-50 Pesos/ride – $1.57 – $2.62 USD) Seriously, such a great feature. So, we would estimate that you probably take about two rides per day. Laska! Laska. Sit. Sit. Good girl! Come here, people gotta see you. Ahh! This was a bad idea! Ow, ow, ow! This category is restaurants, food, coffee, and drinks. In Playa del Carmen we’re gonna be spending about $15 for breakfast and coffee, $30 for dinner and drinks, and $2 a day for snacks. That equals $329 for the week. In Guadalajara – you’re looking at $10 a day for 2 people to eat breakfast. Usually, this is actually a breakfast paquete, or package, which includes: coffee, juice, fruit, bread… way too many things to eat. I love that about Guadalajara! Me too. For dinner, you’re looking at $13 for 2 people and that includes a drink and we included about $2 a day for your snacks and water. For a total of $25 a day in Guadalajara and that equals $175 in total. How about lodging? For both of these cities we again used Airbnb to make it comparable. In Playa del Carmen, you’re looking at $155 for 6 nights in a desirable part of the town. (Maddie Fumbling over her words) In a desirable part of town. Like we stayed at in Barcelona, this is a lower-end Airbnb, but I still think it’s going to be nicer than the one we stayed in (Barcelona). Pretty much anything could be… Guadalajara has the cheapest lodging of any of these places and for 6 nights in a desirable location, you’re looking at about $104 for the 6 nights. Now, for the totals… $969 in Barcelona, you’d be paying $546 for the week in Playa del Carmen, or $352 for the week in Guadalajara. So, not counting your airfare. Let’s say you have $1,000 to spend on your vacation… What’s that going to mean for you going to these various cities? Well, in Barcelona, if you, like us, want to stay in the Gothic quarter close to many attractions and where it’s bustling – Lots of things happening, you really don’t have that much wiggle room there. You’re going to have to look at some of the lower-cost restaurants, you’ll have to stay in a (Airbnb) rental as opposed to a fancy Hotel or even a nice Airbnb. There’s not a whole lot of extras that you can squeeze in with that budget, compared to the $969 in Barcelona. You’re looking at about $550 in Playa del Carmen. So, if you have a $1,000 budget, going to a place like Playa del Carmen instead, that’s going to give you $450 in spending cash to… take tours, maybe splurge on a meal, go snorkelling, go on excursions, check out Cenotes, take the ferry over to Cozumel, buy a bunch of souvenirs… Literally, almost literally you can go crazy. [Laughter] The point is, it opens up a lot more options for you. And how about Guadalajara? The cheapest of all of these cities? It’s about a third of the cost of going to Barcelona. Yeah, so you’re looking at $350 to get the basics and then you have $650 and extra spending cash. I don’t even know how I could possibly spend that much in Guadalajara in a week. Yeah, you would probably get a really nice hotel. Wherever you wanted in the city. You could take Ubers all day long, you could buy as much food and drinks as you wanted until you were bursting at the seams. You could go on a whole bunch of tours and tours in Guadalajara, they’re not that expensive. You can probably even branch out from the city. You could go to the town of Tequila nearby. You could take the Herradura Express – still one of our favorite experiences in Mexico Yeah, and we’re going to link that video for you. It was amazing! You should do it – if you go there, but looking at these 3 places and just thinking about our experience in Barcelona and how much we paid, I personally, I have a list of at least a dozen places that I would recommend in Mexico over going to Barcelona. Even beyond the cost, but that’s just my opinion. Yeah, there’re so many places in Mexico where you have tons of colonial architecture and lots of history, so if that’s the appeal of Europe for you, you can find a lot of that in Mexico! So many cities, from Guadalajara, Mexico City, Guanajuato, Puebla, Morelia Like there’re tons of them. Thank you for sticking around to the end of this video. As promised, we are going to share with you how on earth we got these $180 round-trip flights to Barcelona and that is… Drum roll, please! [Laughter] We don’t have to do all kinds of searching for good flight deals. We just go to Scott’s Cheap Flights and sign up and they send deals to our inbox. Simple as that! That’s how we got this. We were getting lots of emails to Europe, oh, here’s one for $350. Oh, here’s one for $300. Oh, here’s one for $180 round-trip. So we booked it! This video is not sponsored by Scott’s Cheap Flights, and we’re not affiliates. We don’t get anything, but now you can get cheap flights like we got. If you enjoyed this video, please send it to a friend who you think might enjoy it as well. Consider subscribing to our channel if you liked this video and you want to see additional travel videos that we create. Be sure to check out the end screen, we’re going to link our Guadalajara playlist. We lived there for a while and made a ton of videos! We highly recommend that city and if you like the cost of living there, you might want to learn more about it – It’s very charming in many ways. [Bell ringing] Gong that bell, if you want to be the first to be notified the next time we upload a new video. Do you have an ice pack? Oh my goodness.

 

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