Budget and packing for 10 days in Spain

posted by Russ, November 11 in spain, travel with tags , , ,

What I packed for 10 days in Spain

To the right is a picture of what I packed for 10 days in Spain, and actually there are quite a few things there that I didn’t end up using. Some I would bring again since they were precautionary, but others I would scrap.

In case you can’t see the picture, here is my packing list and what I brought for my trip to Spain:

  • Clothes – 2 pairs shoes (sneakers and “nicer” sketchers), 3 t-shirts, 1 pair jeans, 2 pairs shorts, 1 button up short sleeve shir, 1 plain heavy-ish long sleeve shirt, 1 zip up sweatshirt, 5 pair underwear, 5 socks, windbreaker, swimming trunks
  • Toiletries – razor, contacts, toothbrush, etc, Dr Bronners soap (for bathing, washing clothes, shampooing), emergency toilet paper roll
  • Books – Spanish/Morocco guides, Spanish, Arabic phrase books, 2 reading books
  • Supplies – quick dry camping towel, lock, compass (I also made a quick monthly vs daily contact lenses to see which one was better while travelling)
  • Electronics – IPOD, wireless wifi camera, mini flashlight, appropriate chargers
  • Documents – passport, stashed copies of important info
  • Other – sunglasses, snack bars for during transit

Update: I went to Southeast Asia a year later, and packing list for three weeks in Thailand was quite similar. The only difference was less clothes and no shoes. Instead of sneakers I wore flip flops and brought my Vibram Five Finger shoes as emergency “shoes”. This cut down my load significantly. Imagine if I had stuck with the plan to take a solo RV trip; everything from snacks to water to mattresses would have to be stocked. But, the RV mattresses at Camping World that I had checked back then are lightweight and reasonable, making the trip easier. Nevertheless, I am the happy-go-lucky person who wants to travel light and at times messy. That’s one of the benefits of going somewhere warm. Also I would recommend cutting down on denim and heavy materials as well.

Back to my Spain trip, I actually only wore 2 or 3 different shirts the whole time, so I could have not brought one or two that I never wore. Also, I brought two pairs of shoes, one “nice” pair of Sketchers in case I was out for dinner, and a pair of running sneakers. Only wore the sneakers, so I could have scrapped the other pair. I only read one of the books that I brought, so the others (not the guides) were overkill. The Lonely Planet guides were essential for me though. I also didn’t use the quick drying towel or the lock that I brought. Those two things I would probably pack again though since they take up such little room. The other stuff I could have gone without, though on a different trip they may have been useful. I also overpacked a little bit because I had plans to go into Morocco, though I only ended up doing a day trip to Tangier.

I probably could have also condensed and multipurposed on the clothes. As for budget, my plane fare was around $1000 to fly from San Diego to Barcelona, and then Malaga to San Diego. Not great but also not bad. Expenses while in Spain totaled about $1200 for the 10 days, and this is after the exchange rate. This includes everything including hotel, food, drink, transportation (both local and between cities), obligatory gifts sponsored by Flyp, and incidentals. I wasn’t trying to go on the cheap, but I also didn’t want to go 5 star, so I am happy. While I was there the exchange rate was hovering between 68 to 72 cents to 1 Euro, so I spent approximately 850 Euros. This means I was well under 100 Euros per day, which makes me happy. And if I take out the transportation it drops to about 80 Euros per day. I am proud to say that I never took a cab and I really utilized the public transportation (both buses and trains). I realize this total is a lot if you are a budget traveler, but also considering that it’s Europe, how the economy is doing, and the fact that I covered almost half the country (Barcelona -> Cordoba -> Granada -> Tarifa -> Tangier, Morocco -> Gibraltar -> Malaga), I feel that I was right around where I hoped to be, as the same trip could have cost a LOT more.

If I break it down further, I spent an average of 40 euros (~$58 USD) per day on hotel, and this is actually skewed high because of the cost in Barcelona. Which then means I was spending about another 40 euros per day on food, drink, and local transportation. This actually breaks down quite nicely, since some days I was having only one cheap meal with a beer or two, and others I was spending a bit more to enjoy myself. Then add in coffee and probably a grand total of $150 on random gifts to bring home for the family, and there you have it. A great 10 days in Spain on an average budget which could be increased for more luxury or decreased to fix a shoestring budget.

Originally posted on Tuesday, November 11th, 2008 at 7:25 PM .

2 Responses to “Budget and packing for 10 days in Spain”

  1. Grace says:

    Your costs sounds pretty managable… How was the hotel you stayed in?

  2. Russ says:

    I was pleased with all of my hotels. At the beginning I was unsure so I made sure to have rooms with a bathroom. But as I moved from city to city I downgraded my requirements and actually got a couple rooms with shared bathroom, all of which were absolutely fine. My hotel in Barcelona was obviously the most expensive, very tiny bed and very tiny bathroom but amazing location. In Cordoba I stayed at Hostal Maestre for 30 euros per night, the room also had a bathroom. Then in Granada and Tarifa I had rooms with shared bathrooms, but again, less than 30 Euros and excellent locations. In Granada I was just down the hill from La Alhambra and could even see some of it from my window. In Tarifa I was in the old town and had an amazing view across the Strait of Gibraltar to Africa from the rooftop patio. All rooms had everything you would need and were not noisy at all and also were very affordable. I base that on the fact that here in the States if you are travelling cross country you will never find a hotel in a decent area for less than $40 per night, unless you are at a youth hostel.

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