The Cost of Travelling through Brazil

Budgeting for a Round the World Trip can be so difficult. I read around the subject so much and ended up completely bamboozled! Our STA agent gave us a figure of £1000 a month each and we based our travels on that. We know that along the way there will be more expensive places and then ridiculously cheap places but it all should average out in the end.

The Cost of Travelling through Brazil.png

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So this blog covers what we spent during our time Brazil. There will be some maths along the way but only to divide by two if you are a solo traveller. We had aimed to do a whole month in Brazil but we fell a little short on this with 25 days.


It might help if you know the route we took through Brazil. It looked a little something like this:

Rio de Janeiro (Copacabana) > Rio de Janeiro (Santa Theresa) > Ilha Grande > Paraty > Sao Paulo > Curitibia > Foz du Iguacu > Porto Alegre > Uruguay.

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This involved 8 coach journeys ranging from 154 BR to 566 BR for us, totalling 2077 BR. We used Coste Verde coaches (115 BR for both) to go from Rio to Angres dos Reiss, in order to get across to Ilha Grande. For a detailed description on how to get there, click here. The following coaches costs are for 2 people:
⦁ Paraty 170 BR
⦁ Sao Paulo 154 BR
⦁ Curitiba 178 BR
⦁ Foz du Iguacu 126 BR
⦁ Porto Alegre 566 BR (20 hour overnight in Leito seats)
⦁ Punta del Este 510 BR (across to Uruguay)

We found the cheapest way to travel was the bus and metro, ranging from 8 to 15 BR for us. Throughout our travels through Brazil we took 10 buses totalling 87 BR and 4 metros totalling 33 BR. As long as you stay within the metro station you don’t have to purchase another ticket and so can ride as many metros as you need in one go to get to your destination. This was also the case for one bus station in Foz du Iguacu, you get on the bus further down rather than the front where you buy tickets. If the locals jump on half way down, just follow suit.

Taxi’s are more expensive but I suggest using them when needed most. If it is late and you are half asleep and don’t even know where your feet are nevermind your hostel, just get a taxi or Uber. Or in the Mister’s case if you injure your foot, take a taxi! I’m proud to say we only used 3 taxis and 2 Ubers through Brazil totalling 150 BR for us.
When getting to Ilha Grande you have no choice but to use water transport. We spent 34 BR on a ferry ride and 50 BR on a water taxi. For a full details on how to get to Ilha Grande and why you may need a water taxi, click here to read our ‘Weekend in Paradise: Ilha Grande’ blog.

Overall, we spent 2431 BR on transport in 25 days. This equates to £541.05 for a couple or £270.52 for a solo traveller (May 2018).

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View en route to Ilha Grande

Food and Water
The breakdown for basic food and water we spent 1342 BR (£298.68), alcohol 277 BR (£61.65) and we ate out three times totalling 292 BR (£65.91).

Overall, we spent a total of 1911 BR on food and drink (including alcohol!) in 25 days. This is approximately £425.32 (May, 2018) for a couple. This works out as 76.44 BR (£17) a day if you like a tipple and a weekly eat out.

Our Healthy Breakfast!


Our accommodation ranged from 50-104 BR for the two of us, per night. Sometimes hotels are cheaper and we opted for this in Curitiba. However, we had to have microwave meals for two nights.

Overall, we spent 1650 BR (£367.23, May 2018) on our hostels and hotels in 22 nights (we took 3 overnight coaches). This was % of our budget with an average stay of 75 BR a night (£16.69) for us both.

Rio forest hostel (2)
Rio Forest Hostel – Review Here


Now you can’t travel through Brazil without paying to do some of the ‘Touristy things’. We have been up close to Christ the Redeemer (150 BR for 2), saw Sao Paulo’s skyline up high (40 BR for 2), enjoyed far too many Caiphrinas on a Boat Trip (140 BR for 2), seen the Iguacu Falls from both the Brazil and Argentinian side (126 BR and 179 BR) and thoroughly enjoyed taking in the culture on 5 free walking tours (tips totalling 180 BR).

Overall, our sight seeing adventures cost 815 BR (£183.96, May 2018) and I don’t feel like we missed anything out due to cost.

Chris the Redeemer – 5 Things to do in Rio


This deserves it’s own little section as it can be a pain in the bum if you ask me. One of those adult things that just needs to be done regularly. We have Travel Wash which has it’s cost saving advantages but be prepared for the clothes needing 2-3 days to dry depending on the weather. We have needed to select hostels with laundry services a few times. The first cost us 15 BR for a gigantic load at the hostel. The next place wanted to charge 2 BR per piece of clothing so we refused and the final hostel used an external company that cost 13 BR a kg but turned out to cost 42 BR but it smelled divine and was ironed, so we didn’t mind.

Overall, laundry cost us 57 BR (£12.69, May 2018).

booking com discount

Our 25 days travelling through Brazil cost in total 6864 BR (£1527.68, May 2018).

For a solo traveller this would be approximately, 3432 BR (£763.84).

Based on the advice we were given to take £1000 a month each, we came £140 under budget.

Where your most money will be spent:
⦁ Transport 2431 BR 35%
⦁ Food and Water 1911 BR 28%
⦁ Accommodation 1650 BR 24%
⦁ Sight Seeing 815 BR 12%
⦁ Laundry 57 BR 1%

Go the Distance with your pennies!



How to Save for Round the World Travel

Saving has never been my strong suit, mainly because I have always thought I don’t earn enough to even save and my spare money usually got spent on gifts for other people! So when we made the decision we were going travelling and we plucked the £10,000 each figure out the air… we had something to aim for. This meant serious cut backs and I hope to explain in some kind of organised way how we cut back and made more money in the run up to our Round the World Trip.

How to Save for RTW Travel (2)

Firstly, I would start with figuring out what big items you can sell. You’re not going to need your car while you are travelling the world. It’s best to work out how much a similar car, with similar mileage and condition is selling for on AutoTrader for a good estimate. Minus this chunk of money off your total and you will know what you have left to find (£7500 in my case).

Minimise your outgoings

What’s your housing situation? If you are in rented accommodation, could you downsize or move back home with your parents? This is what I did and honestly, without my mum and dad hosting me rent free I don’t think this would have been possible. Actually, they deserve a big shout, I love you both to pieces! If you have a mortgage and spare rooms, why not rent out a room for an addition £250-£300 a month that can go into your savings.  This could also be a source of income to top up your funds while you are travelling too.

Take a good look at your bank account. What outgoings do you have? I stopped paying the gym especially as I didn’t go anyway and moved to home workouts – good old Joe Wicks helped me out! I realised I was paying insurance for random items I didn’t own anymore, so cancelled them too.

beware of little expenses, a small leak will sink a great ship

The weekly food shop can cost a crazy amount and this is something we really cut back on. We wrote out the food shopping list for the exact meals we wanted to cook (using up whatever was in the cupboards first). We did not deviate from this list and really shopped around for the best buy. Aldi and Lidl are often the cheapest, but Home Bargains fresh food section had even better buys. We even tried going to the Butchers and a Green Grocers and although the quality was better and less plastic packaging, it was still more expensive. We are both meat lovers but it can be expensive, so we have found more veggie and vegan recipes to minimise the cost. Swapping chicken breasts for chicken thighs is also a good saving too.

Socialising! Nights out became nights in. For some this might be a struggle but when you have such a big goal to aim for and you know what amazing adventures lie ahead, missing a piss-up in town your not really too bothered about. We still went to big occasions, like weddings and christenings but I drove and didn’t drink and spent less than usual on gifts. Our friends were more than understanding and we had great nights in with board games and a bottle of wine!

The Maths

So you know you have say £7500 left to find and you have minimised your outgoings. Do some simple maths and divide your total by how many months you have before you leave… say 12 months. You then know what you have to put away each month (in this example £625). Now you have minimised your outgoings, work out each month what your essential payments are (direct debits, fuel, food) and minus that from your income. Be realistic and set aside money for any occasions that month and try to get the £625 covered from your wages. For some people this might not be possible so you can top up the savings with what you sell that month and extra earnings (see below!)

spend what is left after saving

Sell, Sell, Sell

You can’t take everything and the kitchen sink with you. You have a backpack and that’s all so it’s time for a major clear out. I have sold all my house furniture to friends or on Gumtree. I have sold all the clothes I’m not taking with me on eBay (apart from a small box of favourite clothes!). Our families and friends have also given us items they were going to throw away or give to charity shops for us to sell too! Although it is time consuming and some things may sell for a measly 99p, every penny really does count. A month before we go, anything that had struggled to sell online we will put on a car boot!

‘I need a dollar, dollar, dollar is all I need’

Time to get your thinking cap on, and brainstorm ideas about how to make more money! Do you have any hidden talents? Are you really creative? Are you a budding entrepreneur? For me I taught myself how to make Handmade Soy Wax Candles and upcycled any jar I could find. I set up a little Facebook group with all my local friends and sold to them. I was honest about where the funds were going and people were more than happy to support us. I have known people do a ‘charity’ event, sell their artwork, upcycle and sell items… what could you do?

Re-occurring income

As I mentioned with the renting out your home, having a reoccurring income while you’re away will really help if your savings just don’t go as far as you intended. I have begun this blog and I am gradually learning ways to monetise it for additional income (happy to hear any tips!). I’m also fortunate to have a social marketing business that can be built while I travel the world (just need WiFi which may be a struggle at times!). It is important to have multiple income streams set up prior to leaving home. These will give you flexibility, more choices and help sustain you for longer than the year, if you so wish!

For more information on social marketing contact me via my social media platforms 

£10,000 sounds like a lot but by breaking it down, keeping track every month and being super committed to the cause, what may seem impossible can become possible.

Go the Distance,