Prices in South America are more or less on a par with urban South East Asian destinations. Bolivia is the place to start your exploration of this captivating continent, especially if your budget is limited. Your dollar will get maximum bang for your buck here where cities such as Sucre and La Paz make the perfect hub for mountain climbing, Amazon exploration and jaunts out into the eerie moon-like landscapes of the Bolivian desert.
Quito in Ecuador is claimed by some to be the cheapest city in South America but the Bolivian cities, Cuzco in Peru and Medellín in Colombia all give it a run for its money. It is your accommodation in most South American urban centers that will take the largest chunk of your budget, but once your accommodation is paid for there is plenty of change from $1,000 to get you on to your next destination or to indulge in some major local adventuring.
Choose your eating options carefully in South America to make the most of your budget. After months away from the luxuries of home or days away on a lengthy jungle trek, splurging on burgers and fast food or a spot of sophisticated fine dining can seem like a good idea. But they are significantly more expensive than in the US and Europe both in real terms as well as relative to your traveler’s budget. Furthermore South America does not claim to be the world’s gastronomic center. Sure there is some great food to be found, but stick to what the locals eat, where the locals eat it to get the best from your budget.
In general, the further northwest you are, the lower the cost of living in South America. Chile and Argentina are pricier but Santiago is well worth the visit for its sophistication and ultimate beach-and-mountain setting. Córdoba in Argentina is a great cost-effective alternative to Buenos Aires for a journey into Argentinian culture.
Brazil is the most expensive of the South American countries, and prices for accommodation and eating out in some of the southern cities such as São Paulo can be higher than major US and Europe destinations. That said, the further north you go the cheaper Brazil becomes. Head to Pipa in the North East for a happening beach destination with an international atmosphere, all affordable on a Digital Nomad’s budget.
This articles is part of the webworktravel guide which features a selection of amazing & inexpensive destinations for web workers. Ever wanted to take your online business around the world? Now you can find out where to go.
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