Nepal is one of the top travel destinations for tourists in the world. The Country is rich in both cultural history and natural diversity. Although it’s a small nation with an area of 1,47,182 sq. km, there are so many things you can do and places you can visit. The people are also really welcoming and helpful. Nepal is also fairly cheap to travel if you’re a foreigner. Travelling Nepal on a budget is really easy if you know how to cut down your expenses. Keeping that in mind here are a few things you need to focus on for traveling Nepal on a budget.
1. Travel Destination:
Planning your trip based on how much you want to spend is a must. There are an unlimited number of travel agencies in Nepal providing various travel packages to the most popular tourist destinations. As with any travel or trip, “the longer your trip, the more it will cost.” But planning where you stay also plays a big part. Travelling Nepal can be as expensive or as cheap as you want it to be. If you want to travel on a budget I would advise you to go for short trips such as a week or two.
Places like Kathmandu, Pokhara, Chitwan National Park, Mustang, Annapurna region etc. are great for short trips. You might want to hold of climbing mountains as the permits itself costs thousands of dollars and you also have to pay for entry fees. Short treks and hikes are your best options. But that doesn’t mean you can’t have fun. You can engage in activities such as cycling, zip-flying, bungee jumping, paragliding, and much more.
For all the first time visitors you might want to check out:
2. Travel Accommodations in Nepal:
One of the biggest expenses you can make while traveling is on accommodations. But luckily Nepal has a range of options to choose from. There is no regulation for pricing so sometimes expensive doesn’t always mean quality. You can stay at a 5-star Hotel with high-quality service and costing anywhere around 150-200$ a night or at a local hotel for as low as 10$-30$. Prices can be deceiving so you might want to read the reviews before choosing where you want to3 stay. Most of the hotels charge USD but few accept Nepali Rupees too.
A popular app OYO lets you choose and find Hotels easily. They provide you with information such as pricing, reviews, and also bookings. The rural parts of Nepal usually have fewer options to choose from but nonetheless, the prices are reasonably acceptable. You might want to look around a few hotels and ask for the price before choosing the right ones. A few places also offer homestay which is a lot cheaper and provide you a full experience of the local culture.
3. Food in Nepal:
Food in Nepal is relatively cheap and can cost from anywhere around 15-25$. The traditional food of Nepalese Daal Bhat Tarkari is one of the most popular dishes. Usually, restaurants charge tourist prices but you can visit local restaurants where locals eat. You want to pay attention to the place where you eat too.
A good sign to look for is how many people are there in the restaurant. Alcohol can also be quite expensive, locals usually tend to drink rice wine or “Local” which certainly has a kick to it. It’s the cheapest drink and available anywhere. Remote areas of Nepal don’t even have Beers or Wine so “Local” is the best and sometimes only alternative. You can visit the inner parts of the city and indulge in traditional delicacies.
4. Transportation in Nepal:
Transportation is also another area where you can cut your cost. The transportation available in Nepal range from Planes, Taxi, Buses, Jeep, Micro Buses, and even Motorbikes. Taxi drivers can start offering you rides straight from the get-go as you reach the airport. You might even be overwhelmed but you want to stay calm, ask them for their price and get ready to negotiate.
For short travel around the city Taxi and public transportation are great options. Just make sure you know where you want to travel and you get someone to write the destination in Nepali for their convenience. The people are always helpful so they will lead you in the right direction. Don’t get worried if your taxi driver starts asking someone else for directions.
For longer travel, there are lots of transport agencies where you can get tickets for planes, buses, and microbuses. Airplane tickets are really expensive so you’re better off going by road. A 25 minute trip from Kathmandu to Lukla can cost around 350$ for tourists by air. Local Buses also come in various types.
Tourist buses cost more than local ones but provide better ride experience and stop along the way. Some of the private company that provides luxury and Tourist bus are Greenline and Jagadamba. Local buses can seat 25-30 people but are less comfortable and usually crowded. Micro-buses and Jeep are also quick and cheap and travel a lot further than normal buses to remote locations. You can also hire motorbikes but I highly don’t recommend it unless it’s for short rides.
Travel Tips for Travellers:
Finally, Here are a few travel tips for all travelers:
- Try to be your own guide. Download apps such as Maps.me, Google Maps and OYO to get around the city and find hotels. You could hire a travel guide but again you want to reduce your expenses.
- Stay away from street food as it might not be safe.
- Always carry your own water bottle.
- Don’t buy everything they offer you. Be ready to hustle.
- Be wary of pickpockets. Always keep your belongings close in public transportation. Always keep your hotel rooms locked.
- Don’t buy expensive travel packages. There are hundreds of travel agencies so you can always get the same for a lot cheaper.
Overall Nepal is a really great destination for all travelers. It’s safe and crime rates are lower than anywhere else in the world. The people are welcoming, warm-hearted and always ready to help. You can be sure to have a wonderful time no matter where you travel. Hope the tips will help you while traveling Nepal on a budget and make you visit Nepal once again.